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April 17, 2003

COBRA Subsidy Bill Referred to NY State Senate Health Committee

S 3610, the COBRA Subsidy Bill for the Entertainment Industry, has been introduced into the New York State Senate and referred to the Senate Health Committee. It was introduced by Senator Kemp Hannon of Nassau County, with co-sponsorship from Republican Senators John A. DeFrancisco (Syracuse), John J. Flanagan (Suffolk County), Nancy Larraine Hoffman (Onondaga County) George D. Maziarz (Erie Monroe area) and Guy J. Velella (Bronx, Westchester, Chair of Senate Labor Committee).

Under COBRA, the Consolidated Omnibus Budget Reconciliation Act of 1985, if an employee resigns or is terminated from work, federal law guarantees the worker's right to continue, on a self-pay basis, the former employer's group plan for individual or family health care coverage for up to 18 months. This coverage, however, can be extremely expensive. This bill, S 3610, creates a subsidy for the payment of 50% of the COBRA health premium for a period of up to one year for eligible members of the entertainment industry. It was initiated by, and has the support of, Equity and other unions and guilds through the New York Entertainment Industry Health Insurance Coalition.

This bill is identical to the bill that passed the State Assembly last year except for a different title.

Members are urged to send thank you letters to the following Senate sponsors (Please note: We have been told that "letters" work better than e-mails):


Kemp Hannon

Senatorial District: 06th, R-C-I
Counties: Part of Nassau
District Office: 1600 Stewart Ave., Suite. 315, Westbury, NY 11590
Phone: 516-222-0068
Albany Office: 708 Legislative Office Bldg., Albany, NY 12247
Office Phone: 518-455-2200
E-Mail: hannon@senate.state.ny.us (Send mail to Albany)

John A. DeFrancisco

Senatorial District: 50th, R-C-I
Counties: Part of Onondaga
District Office: 804 State Office Bldg., 333 E. Washington St., Syracuse, NY 13202
Phone: 315-428-7632
Albany Office: 307 Legislative Office Bldg., Albany, NY 12247
Office Phone: 518-455-3511
E-Mail: jdefranc@senate.state.ny.us

John J. Flanagan

Senatorial District: 2nd, R-C-I
Counties: Part of Suffolk
District Office: 260 Middle Country Rd., Suite 203, Smithtown, NY 11787
Phone: 631-361-2154
Albany Office: 817 Legislative Office Bldg., Albany, NY 12247
Office Phone: 518-455-2071
E-Mail: flanagan@senate.state.ny.us

Nancy Larraine Hoffman

Senatorial District: 49th, R
Counties: Madison and parts of Cayuga, Oneida, Onondaga
District Office: 801 State Office Bldg., 333 E. Washington St., Syracuse, NY 13202
Phone: 315-478-0072
Albany Office: 811 Legislative Office Bldg., Albany, NY 12247
Office Phone: 518-455-2665
E-Mail: hoffman@senate.state.ny.us (Send mail to District Office.)

George D. Maziarz

Senatorial District: 62nd, R-C-I
Counties: Orleans, parts of Monroe, Niagara
District Office: 60 Professional Parkway, Lockport, NY 14094
Phone: 716-438-0655
Albany Office: 805 Legislative Office Bldg., Albany, NY 12247
Office Phone: 518-455-2024
E-Mail: maziarz@senate.state.ny.us

Guy J. Velella

Senatorial District: 34th, R-C-I
Counties: Parts of Bronx, Westchester
District Office: 2019 Williamsbridge Road, Bronx, NY 10461
Phone: 718-792-7180
Albany Office: 805 Legislative Office Bldg., Albany, NY 12247
Office Phone: 518-455-3264
E-Mail: velella@senate.state.ny.us

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