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NY Gov. Kathy Hochul’s campaign sued for failing to pay $50K fine over not carrying employees’ insurance coverage

The New York State Workers Compensation Board has sued Gov. Kathy Hochul’s campaign — Friends of Kathy Hochul — for failing to pay a $50,000 fine for not carrying employees’ insurance coverage.

The state board filed for the judgment in state Supreme Court in Buffalo on February 26, according to court documents.

Virtually all employers in New York State must provide workers’ compensation coverage for their employees, which is used to cover medical expenses for sick or injured workers who become ill or hurt from their job.

Gov. Kathy Hochul’s campaign is being sued by the New York State Workers Compensation Board for not paying a $50,000 fine for not offering employees’ insurance coverage. Robert Miller
Gov. Kathy Hochul’s campaign is being sued by the New York State Workers Compensation Board for not paying a $50,000 fine for not offering employees’ insurance coverage. Robert Miller

According to state officials, Hochul’s campaign failed to carry workers’ comp insurance from Dec. 30, 2022 to September 6, 2023 — following her 2022 election victory.

“I am familiar with the status of payment in this matter. The award/penalty/assessment/demand of the deposit of $50,000 is in default,” WCB attorney Michael Mealy said in a court filing.

“No payment has been received …. to date,” he said.

Critics accused Hochul and her campaign team of not practicing what they preach.

“It’s unfortunate the Hochul campaign does not live up to the standards that others need to live up to,” said state Conservative Party Chairman Gerard Kassar.

Hochul’s campaign allegedly failed to carry workers’ compensation insurance from Dec. 30, 2022 to Sept. 6, 2023. Workers Compensation Board
Hochul’s campaign allegedly failed to carry workers’ compensation insurance from Dec. 30, 2022 to Sept. 6, 2023. Workers Compensation Board

“These insurance policies are there for a reason — to protect workers and they should be paid, except for the governor who manages the system.”

Hochul campaign spokeswoman Jen Goodman responded, “The Hochul campaign became aware of a matter with the Workers’ Compensation Board today and is actively working with the board to resolve any questions.

“At all times the Hochul campaign maintained employees, it had an appropriate workers’ compensation policy in place,” the Hochul campaign rep said.

Workers’ compensation insurance is mandatory for most employers with one or more employees.

It protects employers from liability for on-the-job injury or illness and provides payment to injured workers on a temporary or permanent basis.

Business owners have long complained about the cost.

“Workers compensation is expensive. Gov. Hochul is in a position to do something about it — but she hasn’t,” said state George Borrello (R-Jamestown), who owns 4 restaurants upstate.