Small businesses across New York state will be getting some relief from red tape after a package of three bills authored by state Assemblywoman Aravella Simotas (D-Astoria) were signed into law by Gov. Andrew Cuomo. The new laws will also increase transparency and public participation in agency rule-making.
“As the daughter of a small business owner, I know first-hand how vital small businesses are to the economic health of our communities and our state,” Simotas said. “My bills will help create a healthier environment in New York for small business and to ensure that regulatory agencies are more user-friendly.”
Simotas sponsored the bills as the chairwoman of the Administrative Regulations Review Commission. One of the bills helps small businesses comply with regulations by requiring state agencies to create plain language guides that would include information on the most common regulatory violations that small businesses are cited for by the agency and actions that small businesses can take to minimize or prevent violations.
“Small business guides will improve compliance with necessary regulation to ensure public health and safety without hurting the health or strangling the growth of small businesses,” Simotas said.
A second piece of legislation extends to a minimum of 60 days the time to review and comment on rules proposed by state agencies, enabling greater participation by businesses and the public. The prior mandate was only 45 days for many state agencies.
The third bill brings agency rule-making changes into the 21st century. The law will let people email their requests for notices of proposed new rules rather than having to snail mail them. Agencies, in turn, would be required to send rule-making notices electronically rather than by regular mail, when people ask them to do so.
Reach reporter Bill Parry by e-mail at bparr
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