The Recorder: LEGISLATORS SPEAK OUT ABOUT STATE BUSINESS CLIMATE

Scaffold Law

Scott began with explaining that the New York state Scaffold Law enacted in 1885 virtually holds a contractor and property owner at fault even if an employee did not abide by safety rules, was acting carelessly, or was under the influence of alcohol or drugs.

Scott noted that general liability insurance costs in New York are the highest in the nation, which drives up the cost of economic development and other construction projects. He asked whether the legislators would support a bill that would offer a solution by changing wording on the law from absolute negligence to contributory negligence, which could also hold the employee liable.

Butler was the first to answer by saying that he was a co-sponsor of the bill Scott referenced to change the Scaffold Law. Butler said combined with Worker’s Compensation, the Scaffold Law is consistently an issue brought up by employers. He said the Scaffold Law is not fair and not right.”

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