Bill Text: NY A04220 | 2019-2020 | General Assembly | Introduced

Bill Title: Makes provisions regarding the payment of utility bills to authorized payment agencies providing that such payment shall be deemed to be a payment to the utility on the date of payment to the agent, requiring written contracts between a utility and its payment agent and review of such contracts by the public service commission.

Spectrum: Partisan Bill (Democrat 8-0)

Status: (Introduced) 2019-02-01 - referred to corporations, authorities and commissions [A04220 Detail]

Download: New_York-2019-A04220-Introduced.html

                STATE OF NEW YORK
                               2019-2020 Regular Sessions
                   IN ASSEMBLY
                                    February 1, 2019
        Introduced by M. of A. WEPRIN, OTIS, CRESPO, ABINANTI, VANEL, DE LA ROSA
          --  Multi-Sponsored  by  --  M.  of  A. MOSLEY, PERRY -- read once and
          referred to the Committee on Corporations, Authorities and Commissions
        AN ACT to amend the public service law, in relation to protecting  resi-
          dential utility customers who make bill payments to authorized payment
          agents, to provide for written contracts between electric corporations
          and  payment  agents,  and  to  provide  for public service commission
          review of the credit-worthiness of payment agents in certain cases
          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:
     1    Section  1.  Section 45 of the public service law, as added by chapter
     2  713 of the laws of 1981, is amended to read as follows:
     3    § 45. Payment agencies. 1. A utility corporation or  municipality  may
     4  permit  its  customers  to  pay their bills to [a] an authorized payment
     5  agent. The date of payment to any such authorized payment agent shall be
     6  regarded as the date of payment to the utility or municipality, and  the
     7  payment  shall be regarded as if it were paid directly to the utility or
     8  municipality on such date. Where a customer of such utility  or  munici-
     9  pality  has  paid  a  bill to an authorized payment agent on or before a
    10  designated due date, no penalty or extra charge  shall  accrue  on  such
    11  bill  for  the  reason that the payment did not reach the corporation or
    12  municipality on or before the designated due date.
    13    2. No party shall act as payment or collection agent with  respect  to
    14  more  than  twenty  residential  units for the purpose of collecting and
    15  remitting to such electric corporation any charges for electric  service
    16  to  such  residential  units,  including but not limited to distribution
    17  service, unless such party has a written  contract  with  such  electric
    18  corporation  in compliance with subdivision three of this section. Noth-
    19  ing in this subdivision shall be construed to prevent  any  person  from
    20  appointing  any  family  member,  other volunteer caregiver, or personal
         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.

        A. 4220                             2
     1  business manager as his or her agent for paying  utility  bills  to  any
     2  utility corporation.
     3    3.  No  electric  corporation  shall  enter  into  any  contract which
     4  provides in whole or in part for collecting and remitting to such  elec-
     5  tric  corporation  any  charges  for electric service, including but not
     6  limited to distribution service, unless such contract shall provide that
     7  any party acting as a payment or collection agent shall be  the  author-
     8  ized payment agent of the electric corporation.
     9    4. Each electric corporation which enters into any contract subject to
    10  subdivision  three  of  this  section shall submit to the commission for
    11  approval each such contract which  is  intended  to  result  in  or  has
    12  resulted  in  the  authorized payment agent having in its custody at any
    13  one time more than fifty thousand dollars to be remitted to  such  elec-
    14  tric corporation with respect to payments received with respect to resi-
    15  dential  units.  The  commission shall approve such contracts only if it
    16  concludes that the authorized payment agent, with or without such  secu-
    17  rity  as  the  commission  shall  order, is credit-worthy in view of the
    18  foreseeable indebtedness of the authorized payment agent to the electric
    19  corporation.
    20    § 2. This act shall take effect on the ninetieth day  after  it  shall
    21  have become a law.