Directs the commissioner of health to establish a schedule of reasonable maximum allowable charges for the use, maintenance and repair of air conditioners used by residents of adult homes, enriched housing programs and residences for adults.
TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the social services law, in relation to establishing a fee schedule for the use, maintenance and repair of air conditioners in adult homes
SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
1. Amends section 461-q of the Social Services Law. Authorizes and directs the Commissioner of Health to establish maximum charges for the use, maintenance and repair of air conditioners used by individual residents, except for those air conditioners paid for through the EnAble program, to ensure that charges for the use, maintenance and repair of such air conditions are not unreasonable or excessive. That program bars the operator from charging for the use, repair or maintenance of the units.
2. Effective Date
EXISTING LAW: Current law requires the Commissioner of Health to promulgate rules and regulations regarding temperature standards in adult homes, enriched housing and residences for adults.
JUSTIFICATION: Most residents in adult homes, enriched housing programs or residences for adults have very meager allowances for personal items for their own comfort. In the summer, in very hot, stuffy rooms, these residents can often fall ill from the heat if they do not have air conditioning. Many take medications which exacerbate the effects of the heat, making the need for air conditioning a medical issue.
The State, with some extra incentives, has encouraged the adult homes to purchase air conditioners. But some of them have charged residents exorbitant fees for running the air conditioners even after they get them. This bill would direct the commissioner of health to set maximum charges, taking into consideration the price of electricity, while preventing the cost from making it impossible for residents to use the air conditioners.
The amended version of this bill clarifies, but does not change the purpose of this bill.
PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: 2013: S 5607 Referred to Health Committee/ A.4306- Passed Assembly 2012: S.403A-Amended and Recommitted to Consumer Protection/A 315A- Passed Assembly 2011 S.403-Committee Discharged and Committed to Consumer Protection/A.315-Passed Assembly 2010: S.6932-Died on 3'd Rdg Calendar/A.5681A - Passed Assembly
FISCAL IMPLICATIONS TO STATE AND LOCAL GOVERNMENT: None.
EFFECTIVE DATE: 90 days after enactment.
STATE OF NEW YORK ________________________________________________________________________ 5607--A 2013-2014 Regular Sessions IN SENATE May 24, 2013 ___________Introduced by Sens. DIAZ, SAMPSON, STAVISKY -- read twice and ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee on Health -- recommitted to the Committee on Health in accordance with Senate Rule 6, sec. 8 -- committee discharged, bill amended, ordered reprinted as amended and recommitted to said committee AN ACT to amend the social services law, in relation to establishing a fee schedule for the use, maintenance and repair of air conditioners in adult homes THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND ASSEM- BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS: Section 1. Section 461-q of the social services law, as added by section 46 of part B of chapter 58 of the laws of 2004, is amended to read as follows: S 461-q. Temperature standards in adult homes, enriched housing programs and residences for adults. 1. The commissioner of health shall promulgate rules and regulations with respect to an allowable temper- ature in all areas occupied by residents of an adult home, enriched housing program and residence for adults, including any areas intended for use by its residents in common including auditoriums, meeting rooms and cafeterias. One common room in such adult home, enriched housing program and residence for adults shall be required to be air condi- tioned. 2. THE COMMISSIONER OF HEALTH IS HEREBY AUTHORIZED AND DIRECTED TO ESTABLISH A SCHEDULE OF REASONABLE MAXIMUM ALLOWABLE CHARGES THAT MAY BE ASSESSED BY ADULT HOMES, ENRICHED HOUSING PROGRAMS, AND RESIDENCES FOR ADULTS TO RESIDENTS FOR THE USE, MAINTENANCE, AND REPAIR OF THE INDIVID- UAL AIR CONDITIONERS IN THE RESIDENTS' PRIVATE LIVING QUARTERS, PROVIDED THAT THE AIR CONDITIONERS WERE NOT ACQUIRED THROUGH THE ENHANCING ABILI- TIES AND LIFE EXPERIENCE (ENABLE) PROGRAM. ADULT HOMES, ENRICHED HOUSING PROGRAMS, AND RESIDENCES FOR ADULTS THAT ELECT TO CHARGE RESIDENTS WHO OPERATE INDIVIDUAL AIR CONDITIONERS IN THEIR PRIVATE LIVING QUARTERSEXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets [ ] is old law to be omitted. LBD08212-03-4 S. 5607--A 2
MUST ADHERE TO SUCH SCHEDULE OF REASONABLE MAXIMUM ALLOWABLE CHARGES. IN DETERMINING THE REASONABLE MAXIMUM ALLOWABLE CHARGES FOR THE USE, MAIN- TENANCE, AND REPAIR OF THE INDIVIDUAL AIR CONDITIONERS, THE COMMISSIONER OF HEALTH SHALL CONSIDER THE VARIABLE NATURE OF THE MARKET PRICE OF ENERGY AND SHALL ANNUALLY ADJUST SUCH SCHEDULE OF APPLICABLE COSTS TO ACCOUNT FOR SUCH VARIABILITY AND FOR ANNUAL INFLATION, AS DETERMINED FROM THE INCREASE IN THE CONSUMER PRICE INDEX AS REPORTED BY THE BUREAU OF LABOR STATISTICS OF THE UNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF LABOR. S 2. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day after it shall have become a law.