Governing: In World’s Most Expensive City for Building, an Attempt to Lower Costs

Lawsuit Reform Alliance of New York executive director Tom Stebbins was quoted in an article at Governing about how the Scaffold Law leads to increased costs and project delays. He discusses the impact that reforming the law through Congress will have on work site safety:

The federal legislation targets New York’s 1885 Scaffold Act, which imposes absolute liability on a property owner or construction employer in any case of a work-related fall. According to a 2013 Rockefeller Institute report, the law has the effect of increasing construction costs by about 7 percent. Although most states had such a law on the books a century ago, federal health and safety protections and state workers’ compensation laws have supplanted scaffold laws everywhere except New York.

“It’s important to note the bill we’re advocating for doesn’t alter safety provisions,” says Tom Stebbins, executive director of the tort reform group Lawsuit Reform Alliance New York. “It just applies liability for these injuries the way it’s done elsewhere.”

Read the full article here.

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