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NY Gov Signs Call Center Bill

Thursday, January 2, 2020

Companies shipping call center jobs overseas could face stiff penalties under a law signed Thursday by Gov. Cuomo.

The new measure penalizes companies that move call center jobs to foreign countries, making them ineligible for state loans, grants or tax breaks for a period of five years. Businesses must also repay the value of any grant or guaranteed loans received for the call center in the past five years.

“As technology advances, more and more call centers are sending jobs overseas, leaving employees scrambling to find work to support themselves and their families,” Cuomo said. “This legislation will protect New York’s call center workers by putting in place serious financial disincentives for employers who move jobs out of New York.”

The law also requires businesses to notify the state 100 days before they intend to relocate jobs to a foreign country. If a company fails to inform the state, it could face penalties of up to $10,000 a day.

The Communications Workers of America union applauded the governor as well as sponsors Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal (D-Manhattan) and Sen. Tim Kennedy (D-Buffalo).

“It is long past time New York stopped rewarding companies that send call center jobs overseas with taxpayer dollars,” said Dennis Trainor, vice president of CWA District 1.

This article first appeared in the NY Daily News.

The state has lost more than 40,000 call center jobs since 2006. In the past year, AT&T announced the closure of a call center in Syracuse, moving 150 jobs to Florida. In 2017, Verizon Wireless eliminated 850 jobs by shutting down two upstate call centers.