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Hochul questioned on 'Grieving Families Act'. "I know it's critically important"

Hochul questioned on 'Grieving Families Act'. "I know it's critically important" (WRGB)
Hochul questioned on 'Grieving Families Act'. "I know it's critically important" (WRGB)
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A group of business leaders is speaking out against the Grieving Families Act which is under review right now by Governor Kathy Hochul (D-New York).

We’re hearing from one of the medical groups on the list of businesses and organizations which signed and submitted a letter to Hochul asking her to veto the legislation. The letter says the bill "creates a new class of damages" that it says would have "a disastrous impact on businesses in the state" the letter also claims the bill would increase liability insurance rates and drive business out.

MORE: Hochul answers on bail reform a second day after NYC Mayor ramps up pressure on Albany

Wednesday, we first told you about the legislation which passed both houses of the state legislature this past session. Senator Brad Hoylman (D- Manhattan) telling CBS 6 that if passed, the bill would change a 170-year old state law, regarding wrongful death in New York. He says it would help victims like children and seniors get compensation.

The Medical Society of the State of New York is one group opposing the legislation. We spoke to President Dr. Parag Mehta and Executive Vice President Troy Oescher.

We're not against a reasonable compensation for victims, but this wrongful death bill, it goes way too far and as Dr. Mehta mentioned, it will really undermine our very healthcare for which our patients depend,” Oescher said.

Hoylman says the bill would put New York State law regarding wrongful death in line with statutes in 47 other states, allowing families to sue over wrongful death based on grief suffered by the loss in addition to economic impacts. Mehta explained one of his issues with New York’s bill.

All other states have a cap, they have a limit,” Mehta said.

The ‘Grieving Families Act’ has support from advocates who want to file lawsuits regarding the 15,000 seniors who died in nursing homes during the COVID outbreak. We spoke to Fox News personality and advocate Janice Dean and Assemblyman Ron Kim (D- Queens) Wednesday. They support the legislation and think it could help hold state government and medical facilities responsible for implementing policies they believe killed patients in 2020.

MORE: Hochul "reviewing" 'Grieving Families Act', Hoylman urging signature with no amendments

After hearing from both sides on this issue over the past two days, CBS 6’s Anne McCloy asked Governor Hochul about the ‘Grieving Families Act’ Thursday while she held a news conference in Albany.

Anne: Have you taken a look at it, do you have a timeline on it, and do you see any issues with the legislation?

Hochul: I know it’s critically important. There's a lot of pain behind this from those families and I hear from them as well so I will be looking at all the factors involved in the writing of this. Is it the exact language it should be? It is being analyzed by my office, but I know how important it is for families.

Hochul said she has 1,007 bills to consider signing this year, and she has until December 31st to decide which ones will get her signature.

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She didn’t give a timeline on when she may have a decision on the legislation in question.

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