Page 4

4B I




Business Council unveils 2017 legislative and regulatory agenda BY JOURNAL STAFF


he Business Council of New York State, Inc. recently released its 2017 legislative and regulatory agenda report, which it branded as “Back to Business.” The agenda urges Governor Andrew Cuomo and the New York Legislature to “reverse the negative impact of last year’s anti-business session by implementing commonsense reforms” and enacting key legislation to promote economic growth, create jobs, and “benefit the entire state.” “It’s no secret that the 2016 Legislative session, with the combination of an onerous minimum wage increase and the most expansive Paid Family Leave mandate in the country, was poorly received by the state’s business community,” Heather C. Briccetti, president and CEO of the Business Council, said in a news release. “Those mandates, combined with the lack of any meaningful, broad-based business climate reforms, left our state’s small, medium and large job creators wondering when Albany was going to get Back to Business and start working for them.”

The Business Council’s legislative agenda includes focusing on the following goals: Workers’-compensation reform — The Business Council said its top priority is “meaningful workers’-comp reform.” That includes issuance of updated scheduled loss-of-use medical guidelines and starting benefit-duration caps at two years after an injury. It said that is needed to “fully realize the cost savings of duration caps on permanent partial disability benefits.” Promote energy infrastructure investments — The Business Council said that expanding access to natural gas for manufacturing facilities, power production, transportation, and other purposes will support the state’s economic and environmental objectives. Maintain budget discipline — The organization said New York’s “fiscal discipline” over the past six years has allowed the state to adopt important tax reforms and avoid the significant budget challenges faced by other states that have had to resort to tax increases. “It is increasingly important that the state keep spending growth to 2 percent or lower, and avoid imposing significant new taxes and fees on

the state’s business sector,” the Business Council said. Eliminate regulator y barriers to growth — The council said the state needs to remove “outmoded barriers and restrictions in state law that prevent sector-specific growth.” Examples include adopting new insurance provisions that allow for the extension of ridesharing services to Upstate and Long Island, and promoting innovation in the financial-services sector by authorizing minority non-CPA ownership in public accounting firms. Continue with business-tax reform — Following on state and New York City corporate-tax reform adopted in 2014 and 2015, the Business Council contends that the state should adopt business-tax reductions for small businesses organized as pass-through entities, including Sub-S corporations, LLCs, and partnerships. It also wants New York to cut the corporatefranchise tax rate for small businesses and reform the administration of the local utility gross-receipt tax and the real-property tax. Reform HCRA — Set to sunset on Dec. 31, 2017, the state’s Health Care Reform Act (HCRA) imposes about $6 billion in

With 34 partners and principals in Central New York, Bonadio is the largest accounting and consulting firm in the area—and in all of Upstate New York. What’s more, the firm recently was ranked as the 38th largest CPA firm in the nation by Accounting Today magazine. Our growth has been geared to the needs of our valued clients, and if early 2017 is any indication, this year will hold more of the same.

taxes on premium payers and others to support “a myriad of programs not envisioned in or sanctioned by the law,” the Business Council said. Originally intended to support bad debt and charity care for hospitals as well as promote graduate medical education, HCRA taxes have become “more of a slush-fund for health-related programs,” the council contended. Given the intent of the law and with nearly 3 million New Yorkers now insured through NY State of Health (many of them newly insured), the organization said the state should assess whether HCRA is needed anymore. The Business Council’s full 2017 “Back to Business” agenda may be found at Legislative-Regulatory-Agenda.pdf 

graduates across New York, ensuring we’re able to meet the ever-growing needs of our clients. Employees get unlimited time off The firm launched an Unlimited Paid Time Off program for employees. Ensuring our team members enjoy work life balance is a top priority. This new benefit helps to recruit and retain top talent.

New subsidiary for healthcare

Donald Taylor, CPA—Partner The Bonadio Group

On January 1, Bonadio formed Beacon Solutions Group from two existing companies. Beacon provides healthcare clients with billing and receivables services as well as document-improvement assistance. New York City office expands The firm broadened its geographical footprint by moving to a new office in New York City. Our team there handles long-standing clients in the Metro area— especially in government and tax-exempt sectors. College hiring is strong The firm hired more than 50 new college


More about Bonadio Founded in 1978, The Bonadio Group offers accounting, business advisory, and personal financial services to clients of all sizes. The firm’s professionals deliver practical, proactive, and innovative solutions to help clients reach their financial, compliance, management, and personal goals. Bonadio is the largest independent provider of audit, tax, and management advisory services in upstate New York—with offices in Albany, Batavia, Buffalo, East Aurora, Geneva, New York City, Rochester, Syracuse, Utica, and Rutland, Vt. For more information, visit


2017 Lookahead/Presidents' Forecast Messages


2017 Lookahead/Presidents' Forecast Messages