Relates to the distribution of circular advertisements; establishes the do not circulate registry.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the general business law, in relation to the distribution of circular advertisements
PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF THE BILL: The purpose of this legislation is to create a "Do Not Circulate Registry" regarding the delivery of unsolicited advertising materials to consumers.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1 of the bill amends the general business law by adding a new section 397-b to create a "Do Not Circulate Registry". The bill creates a registry which shall contain a list of consumers who do not wish to receive unsolicited circular deliveries and which is updated quarterly. No advertisers may make or cause to be made any unsolicited circular deliveries to any consumer whose information has been posted to the registry. The department of state shall provide notice to advertisers of the registry and all registry updates. Persons who violate the law will be subject to a $200 to $400 fine for a first offense, and for a second offense within 30 days be liable to a fine of $500 to $1,000, and for a third and subsequent offenses within 30 days be liable for a fine of $1,000 to $2,000.
Section 2 of the bill sets forth an effective date of one hundred and twenty days after it shall have become law; provided, however, that effective immediately, the addition, amendment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for the implementation of this act on its effective date are authorized and directed to be made and completed on or before such effective date.
JUSTIFICATION: On a daily basis consumers are bombarded with unwanted circular advertisements, which are left strewn on their doorsteps, front lawns and driveways.
For the same reasons which led to the creation of the "Do Not Call" registry, the time has come to create a "Do Not Circulate" registry whereby property owners choose to register their names and stop the unwanted delivery of circular advertisements. Consumers will be able place their names on a registry maintained by the Department of State, which will be made available to advertisers. Advertisers will then be prohibited from making any unsolicited circular deliveries to any consumer who has placed their personal information on the registry.
The Department of State will maintain the registry and set forth the means by which the registry will be updated and made available to advertisers. In addition, the legislation will only prohibit the delivery of unsolicited circulars and will not prohibit the delivery of circulars requested by consumers or those that are delivered in connection with an established business or customer relationship, i.e., newspaper subscriptions.
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect one hundred and twenty days after it shall have become law; provided, however, that effective immediately, the addition, amendment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for the implementation of this act on its effective date are authorized and directed to be made and completed on or before such effective date
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 451 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE (PREFILED) January 9, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sen. AVELLA -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Consumer Protection AN ACT to amend the general business law, in relation to the distrib- ution of circular advertisements THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. The general business law is amended by adding a new section 397-b to read as follows: S 397-B. DISTRIBUTION OF CIRCULARS. 1. FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION: A. "CONSUMER" SHALL MEAN ANY NATURAL PERSON WHO MAY BE REQUIRED TO PAY FOR OR TO EXCHANGE CONSIDERATION FOR GOODS AND SERVICES OFFERED THROUGH CIRCULAR ADVERTISEMENTS. B. "CIRCULAR ADVERTISEMENT" SHALL MEAN ANY PAMPHLET, FORM, DOCUMENT OR COMMERCIAL ADVERTISEMENT PRINTED ON ANY FORM OF MEDIA, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO LEAFLETS, LETTERS, PAMPHLETS AND MENUS, THEREAFTER DISTRIBUTED TO TWO OR MORE CONSUMERS THROUGH A PLAN, PROGRAM OR CAMPAIGN CONDUCTED TO INDUCE PAYMENT OR THE EXCHANGE OF ANY OTHER CONSIDERATION FOR ANY GOODS OR SERVICES, OR TO PROMOTE SOME PRODUCT OR SERVICE. THIS DEFINITION SHALL NOT INCLUDE ADVERTISEMENTS DISTRIBUTED BY THE UNITED STATES POSTAL SERVICE OR THOSE ADVERTISEMENTS REGULARLY INCLUDED WITH ANY OTHER MEDIA SUBSCRIPTION, INCLUDING, BUT NOT LIMITED TO, NEWSPAPERS, PERIODICALS AND MAGAZINES. C. "PERSON" SHALL MEAN ANY NATURAL PERSON, ASSOCIATION, PARTNERSHIP, FIRM, CORPORATION OR OTHER BUSINESS ENTITY. D. "ADVERTISER" SHALL MEAN ANY NATURAL PERSON, ASSOCIATION, PARTNER- SHIP, FIRM, CORPORATION OR OTHER BUSINESS ENTITY THAT DELIVERS CIRCULAR ADVERTISEMENTS TO A CONSUMER FOR A COMMERCIAL PURPOSE. E. "COMMERCIAL PURPOSE" SHALL MEAN HAVING THE GOAL OR END OF BUYING OR SELLING OF A GOOD OR SERVICE FOR THE PURPOSE OF MAKING A PROFIT.EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD03403-01-3 S. 451 2
F. "UNSOLICITED CIRCULAR DELIVERY" MEANS ANY DELIVERY OF A CIRCULAR ADVERTISEMENT, BY AN ADVERTISER OR EMPLOYEE THEREOF, TO A CONSUMER, OTHER THAN A DELIVERY MADE: (I) IN RESPONSE TO AN EXPRESS WRITTEN OR VERBAL REQUEST OF THE CONSUM- ER RECEIVING SUCH CIRCULAR; OR (II) IN CONNECTION WITH AN ESTABLISHED BUSINESS OR CUSTOMER RELATION- SHIP, WHICH HAS NOT BEEN TERMINATED BY EITHER PARTY, UNLESS SUCH CONSUM- ER HAS STATED TO THE ADVERTISER THAT SUCH CONSUMER NO LONGER WISHES TO RECEIVE THE CIRCULAR ADVERTISEMENTS OF SUCH ADVERTISER. G. "DEPARTMENT" SHALL MEAN THE DEPARTMENT OF STATE. 2. A. THE DEPARTMENT SHALL ESTABLISH, MANAGE AND MAINTAIN A REGISTRY WHICH SHALL CONTAIN A LIST OF CONSUMERS WHO DO NOT WISH TO RECEIVE UNSO- LICITED CIRCULAR DELIVERIES. B. THE REGISTRY SHALL BE UPDATED ON A QUARTERLY BASIS, OR MORE FREQUENTLY AS PRESCRIBED BY RULE. SUCH UPDATES SHALL BE MADE READILY AVAILABLE TO ANY PROSPECTIVE ADVERTISER IN A MANNER TO BE PRESCRIBED BY THE DEPARTMENT. 3. NO ADVERTISER MAY MAKE OR CAUSE TO BE MADE ANY UNSOLICITED CIRCULAR DELIVERIES TO ANY CONSUMER WHEN THAT CONSUMER'S PERSONAL INFORMATION HAS BEEN POSTED ON THE REGISTRY, ESTABLISHED PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION. 4. A. THE DEPARTMENT SHALL PROVIDE NOTICE TO CONSUMERS OF THE ESTAB- LISHMENT OF THE REGISTRY. ANY CONSUMER WHO WISHES TO BE INCLUDED ON SUCH REGISTRY SHALL NOTIFY THE SECRETARY OF STATE IN A MANNER TO BE PRESCRIBED BY THE DEPARTMENT. B. THE DEPARTMENT SHALL PROVIDE NOTICE TO ADVERTISERS OF THE ESTAB- LISHMENT OF THE REGISTRY, AS WELL AS PROVIDE SUCH ADVERTISER WITH INFOR- MATION FOR OBTAINING ALL SCHEDULED REGISTRY UPDATES IN A MANNER TO BE PRESCRIBED BY THE DEPARTMENT. 5. ANY PERSON WHO VIOLATES THIS SECTION SHALL: FOR A FIRST VIOLATION THEREOF, BE LIABLE FOR A CIVIL PENALTY OF NOT LESS THAN TWO HUNDRED DOLLARS AND NOT MORE THAN FOUR HUNDRED DOLLARS; FOR A SECOND VIOLATION, BOTH VIOLATIONS WHICH WERE COMMITTED WITHIN A PERIOD OF THIRTY DAYS, BE LIABLE FOR A CIVIL PENALTY OF NOT LESS THAN FIVE HUNDRED DOLLARS AND NOT MORE THAN ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS; AND FOR A THIRD OR SUBSEQUENT VIOLATION, ALL VIOLATIONS WHICH WERE COMMITTED WITHIN A PERIOD OF THIRTY DAYS, BE LIABLE FOR A CIVIL PENALTY OF NOT LESS THAN ONE THOUSAND DOLLARS AND NOT MORE THAN TWO THOUSAND DOLLARS. S 2. This act shall take effect on the one hundred twentieth day after it shall have become a law; provided, however, that effective immediate- ly, the addition, amendment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation necessary for the implementation of this act on its effective date are authorized and directed to be made and completed on or before such effective date.