The Paid Family Leave program provides an eight-week benefit funded through employee payroll deductions that for 2018 are capped at a maximum of $1.63 per week. By 2021 the benefit will be 12 weeks at 67 percent of an employee’s weekly wage. The program is designed for employees who need time with a newly born, adopted or fostered child; to care for a family member with a serious health condition; or to assist loved ones when a family member is deployed abroad on active military duty. See ny.gov/paidfamilyleave or call 844-337-6303.
The third year of a four-year property tax rebate program begins. Homeowners who are STAR-eligible with incomes of $275,000 annually or less and who reside in tax-cap compliant school districts will receive a check that will average $380.
The state Child and Dependent Care Tax Credit will increase for taxpayers with incomes between $50,000 and $150,000 annually. The cap on qualifying expenses will rise to $9,000 from $6,000.
Couples filing jointly who earn $40,000 to $300,000 annually will see the beginning of a gradual, eight-year decrease in their income tax rate, from 6.65 to 5.5 percent. In the first year, about 4.4 million New Yorkers are expected to see savings.
The minimum fine for operating an unregistered snowmobile will be $200, with half going to the Trail Development and Maintenance Fund. The new law also increases funding for police snowmobile patrols. Last winter there were 24 deaths over the winter, the most since 2008, with most caused by excess speed, collisions with obstacles covered in snow, or thin ice.
A ballot initiative approved by voters on Nov. 7 will allow courts to reduce or revoke the public pension of a public official convicted of a felony related to his or her duties on or after Jan. 1.
The minimum wage outside of New York City will become $10.40 per hour, up from $9.70. The minimum-wage for fast-food workers outside of New York City will increase to $11.75 per hour, from $10.75.
As of Dec. 19, schools are allowed to store and use epinephrine auto-injectors (EpiPens) on students or staff members in an emergency “whether or not there is a previous history of severe allergic reaction.”
As of Dec. 22, insurers may not require preauthorization for neonatal intensive care.