HCA to Testify Remotely Against Unfunded NYC “Premium Pay” Legislation

Tomorrow (Tuesday, May 5), the New York City Council Committee on Civil Service and Labor will host a remote hearing at 10 a.m. on a package of legislation that pertains to supporting essential workers during the COVID-19 pandemic. 

The Committee is scheduled to address Int.1918-2020, legislation that would mandate premium pay for New York City non-salaried workers deemed “essential” in the current COVID-19 state of emergency, including home care personnel.

HCA’s Director for Advocacy and Public Policy, Alyssa Lovelace, is scheduled to testify on behalf of the Association in opposition to the bill. HCA also encourages provider members in New York City to voice their concerns with this legislation by signing up to testify remotely or submitting written testimony on the New York City Council website here.

Last week, HCA submitted this memo of opposition requesting the Council to withdraw the bill, as it would create a new unfunded pay mandate for home care, hospice and Managed Long Term Care at a time when organizations are already facing major payroll and other financial impacts due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Under this bill, organizations with more than 100 employees would have to pay hourly “essential” workers the following bonus amounts on top of their regular wages: $30 for a shift under four hours, $60 for a shift of four to eight hours and $75 dollars for any shift over eight hours. The legislation does not provide an associated funding mechanism to pay for the additional bonuses.

HCA has already asked the state Department of Health to consider funding increases so that home care, hospice and Managed Long Term Care organizations can provide enhanced pay to workers. In like form, HCA urges the Council to instead adopt a resolution requesting state and federal supplemental funding for this explicit purpose of frontline worker wage enhancement — a path that does not cause yet further financial duress to the home care system, undermining the Council’s otherwise laudable intent.

Click here to view the Committee’s Hearing Agenda.

For questions or concerns, please contact Alyssa Lovelace at alovelace@hcanys.org.