Monday, April 11, 2011

Senate Proposes to Spread Service Fee

The New York Senate is poised to address a proposal on Monday that would ease the burden of custodial parents by spreading the burden of service fees between custodial and nocustodial parents.
The bill (SB 816) from Republican Senator Ken LaValle argues that the $25 fee imposed on child support payments represents a significant burden in these economic times, so it is only fair to share the cost. His memorandum suggests that this change would be especially meaningful for single parents across the state that rely on child support payments to live.
One concern raised by Democratic Senator Liz Krueger during the committee process was that this proposal represents an unfunded mandate on local municipalities, who would now have to secure fees from two people instead of one. Counsel for the majority said that this change would actually make the collection process easier, because fees are already collected from both parents.
This bill has an Assembly companion and has been proposed in both chambers in the past, but to no avail. After being unanimously passed in committee, LaValle's bill will likely fly through the Senate, especially since Republicans are unlikely to schedule a vote they could lose.

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