Directs the commissioner of labor, in consultation with the public service commission, to conduct a study and report on current trends in the workforce that supports the generation and transmission of power in the utility industry; authorizes additional studies and reports upon rates hikes, complaints by third parties or upon identification of a shortage.
Ayes (62): Adams, Addabbo, Alesi, Avella, Ball, Bonacic, Breslin, Carlucci, DeFrancisco, Diaz, Dilan, Duane, Espaillat, Farley, Flanagan, Fuschillo, Gallivan, Gianaris, Golden, Griffo, Grisanti, Hannon, Hassell-Thomps, Huntley, Johnson, Kennedy, Klein, Krueger, Kruger, Lanza, Larkin, LaValle, Libous, Little, Marcellino, Martins, Maziarz, McDonald, Montgomery, Nozzolio, O'Mara, Oppenheimer, Parker, Peralta, Perkins, Ranzenhofer, Ritchie, Rivera, Robach, Saland, Sampson, Savino, Serrano, Seward, Skelos, Smith, Squadron, Stavisky, Stewart-Cousin, Valesky, Young, Zeldin
Ayes (33): DeFrancisco, Johnson, Alesi, Bonacic, Farley, Flanagan, Fuschillo, Golden, Griffo, Hannon, Lanza, Larkin, LaValle, Little, Marcellino, Nozzolio, Robach, Saland, Seward, Young, Breslin, Diaz, Dilan, Gianaris, Montgomery, Oppenheimer, Parker, Peralta, Perkins, Rivera, Stavisky, Stewart-Cousins, Squadron
Ayes W/R (1): Krueger
Nays (1): Duane
TITLE OF BILL: An act directing a study and report on current trends in the workforce that supports the generation and transmission of power in the utility industry
PURPOSE: This bill would require the Department of Labor to provide analysis and recommendations of how the traditional utility industry is addressing and should address workforce development in the areas of generation and transmission.
SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Section 1 of the bill would add require the Department of Labor to monitor workforce trends in the utility industry.
Section 2 of the bill outlines when the Commissioner of Labor can and will initiate a report of workforce trends in the utility industry.
Section 3 of the bill requires the Commissioner of Labor to report any information that would suggest a shortage in workforce needs in the utility industry to the legislature.
Section 4 the Commissioner with the assistance of a Data Review Committee shall make recommendation on how to address any shortages in the workforce within the utility industry.
JUSTIFICATION: New York's traditional energy sectors are falling behind in terms of workforce development. The state's policy shift toward making the alternative energy sectors part of a long term energy strategy has left many utilities companies in the coal, gas, oil, and electric industries with little reason to make serious investments in the workforce. However, the time at which alternative energy can be a substantial contributor to New York's energy needs is many years away. This uncertainty in New York's energy transition has caused a lack of investment on the part of utilities. It is certain that because of the lack of understand of what the workforce needs are within New York's utility industry there will be an "energy gap", meaning a period of time where the traditional energy industries failed to take necessary action to ensure that the workforce and infrastructure needs were meet to guarantee a smooth transition to alternative energy at a point in time where alternative energies are able to produce the amounts of energy necessary to replace some forms of traditional energy production. Currently, we are in a serious situation as the lack of new hires coupled with an aging workforce ready to retire has created an institutional knowledge problem. This bill will shed light on the challenges New York State face as we bridge the energy gap and will be a blueprint to addressing those challenges.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: None
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: Minimal, there is no anticipation that any additional resources will be needed outside of the ones that currently exist at the DOL
EFFECTIVE DATE: Thirty days after it shall have become law
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 5085 2011-2012 Regular Sessions IN SENATE May 3, 2011 ___________Introduced by Sen. MAZIARZ -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Energy and Telecommuni- cations AN ACT directing a study and report on current trends in the workforce that supports the generation and transmission of power in the utility industry THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. 1. The commissioner of labor, in consultation with, and using data collected by, the public service commission, shall monitor trends in the workforce of: (a) personnel that support the generation of power in the utility industry; and (b) personnel that support the transmission of power in the utility industry. 2. Not later than one year after the effective date of this act, the commissioner of labor shall submit to the legislature a report on current trends under subdivision one of this section, with recommenda- tions to meet the future labor requirements for the energy industries. The commissioner of labor shall have the authority to commence addi- tional studies when (a) a utility initiates a rate hike request; or (b) a complaint is brought by a third party. The scope of any additional study can be broadened to include all utilities in the state or limited to the evaluation to just one utility. 3. As soon as practicable after the date on which the commissioner of labor identifies or predicts a significant shortage in this state of personnel in one or more energy sectors, the commissioner of labor shall submit to the legislature a report describing the shortage, after the data review committee, appointed pursuant to subdivision four of this section has reviewed and provided input on the report. The commissioner of labor shall have broad authority to require utilities to provideEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD11351-01-1 S. 5085 2
documents and reports regarding their staffing practices. The commis- sioner of labor shall have the authority to seek the following types of information, including but not limited to: (a) staffing-related service quality data; (b) current staffing levels; (c) recruitment and hiring plans; (d) anticipated retirements; (e) anticipated skills set needs; (f) retention plans; (g) succession plans; and (h) efforts to capture knowledge from retiring personnel. 4. The commissioner of labor shall evaluate the data with the assist- ance of experts in human resources, corporate management, internal controls and business/planning policies, and forecasting and planning. The commissioner of labor shall benefit by being informed by all enti- ties with interests in, and relevant information concerning, utility staffing issues. The commissioner of labor shall form a data review committee and shall appoint one member each from the following consti- tuencies to serve for terms of 2 years: (a) a regulated utility; (b) a labor representative; (c) a state ratepayer advocate organization; (d) an industrial customer or other large user; and (e) the public service commission. S 2. This act shall take effect on the thirtieth day after it shall have become a law.