New York State Bar Association President David M. Schraver today said the association is pleased that Governor Andrew Cuomo signed the Nonprofit Revitalization Act of 2013, which modernizes the way New York regulates nonprofit organizations, such as hospitals, museums, colleges and universities, religious and other charitable institutions.
“The State Bar Association has long advocated for meaningful reform of New York’s Not-for-Profit Corporation Law,” said Schraver of Rochester (Nixon Peabody). In June, a reform bill— which the State Bar Association helped draft—was passed by the Assembly with a 131-0 vote and by the Senate with a 62-1 vote.
The State Bar Association was actively involved in developing the legislation, working closely with interested groups, legislators, their staffs and Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman. Members of the Bar Association’s Business Law Section testified at legislative hearings held in Rochester, New York City and Albany during May.
Schraver praised the efforts of the bill’s legislative sponsors, Sen. Michael H. Ranzenhofer (R-Williamsville) and Assemblyman James F. Brennan (D-Brooklyn).
“We congratulate Senator Ranzenhofer and Assemblyman Brennan for successfully guiding the bill through the Legislature,” he said. “We also commend Attorney General Schneiderman for his leadership. We are pleased that Governor Cuomo signed the reforms into law.”
“The Nonprofit Revitalization Act updates New York law, eliminates redundancies and improves state regulatory practices,” Schraver said. “By removing costly and unnecessary burdens, it lowers operating costs for charities and reduces incentives for them to incorporate in other states. These measures help nonprofits thrive in New York by reducing government red tape without compromising government oversight.”
The bill signed by the governor revises the state’s cumbersome Not-For-Profit Corporation Law. One key provision of the bill streamlines the designation and distinction among statutory types of non-profit corporations, replacing four types with two categories: charitable and non-charitable. The law takes effect July 1, 2014.
Private nonprofit organizations affect the lives of millions of New Yorkers every day and play a very significant role in the New York economy, he noted.
New York has more private nonprofit jobs than any state in the country, employing nearly 1.3 million individuals, mostly in the health care, education, social assistance and religious, civic and professional areas. In 2010, New York’s nonprofits paid $57 billion in wages and accounted for more than 18 percent of the state’s private sector jobs. The nonprofit sector job count grew 17 percent between 2000 and 2010.
The New York State Bar Association, with 76,000 members, is the largest voluntary state bar association in the country. It was founded in 1876.
-30-Contact: Mark Mahoney
Associate Director, Media Services & Public Affairsmmahoney@nysba.org