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Lawmakers target consumer protections in post-budget state legislation

  • / Updated:
  • Staff Report 

New York legislators are set to prioritize enhancing the state’s consumer protection laws after initial proposals were omitted from the recently completed $237 billion state budget. Governor Kathy Hochul had underscored the importance of updating consumer protections in her State of the State address, highlighting it as a means to improve affordability and fairness in New York.

Despite Hochul’s push, the necessary reforms did not make it into the final budget agreement. However, momentum is building in the Legislature to pass significant consumer protection measures, including the Consumer and Small Business Protection Act. This legislation aims to broaden the definition of abusive conduct and ban unfair and deceptive business practices, aligning with laws in 43 other states.

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As the legislative session approaches its June 6 conclusion, New York business leaders are pushing back against the proposed changes, arguing that they would increase litigation and costs for small businesses. Meanwhile, consumer advocates are calling for swift action to ensure New Yorkers have better recourse against unfair business practices.