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Paulin, Galef and Oppenheimer Call for Repeal of Wicks Law
Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, Assemblywoman Sandy Galef and Senator Suzi Oppenheimer joined the Westchester Putnam School Board Association and local school board members at a press conference today at Tappan Hill in Tarrytown to call for the repeal of the Wicks Law, which requires public construction projects to issue four or more contracts to separate contractors for plumbing, electrical, heating and general construction.
Named for Senator Arthur Wicks who sponsored a bill to expand the law in 1946, the Wicks Law requires that, under General Municipal Law §101, state and local government construction projects (including school district construction projects) costing more than $3 million in New York City, $1.5 million in Nassau, Suffolk and Westchester counties, and $500,000 in the rest of the state are subject to separate plumbing, heating/ventilation/air conditioning and electrical contracts. Proponents of the Wicks Law have argued that the statutes are a firewall against corruption, promote transparency, and eliminate the "mark-up" of a general contractor.
Lisa Davis, Executive Director of the Westchester-Putnam School Boards Association, disagrees. “Wicks Law reform is long overdue,” she noted. “A repeal of this onerous requirement for suburban public school districts will help reduce the cost impact of school construction on the local taxpayer, and shorten the timeline to complete capital construction projects.”
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