ALBANY — Following reports by non-profit organizations of delayed state contracts and payments, state Sen. George Borrello wants to governor to cancel suspension of prompt payment laws.
Borrello, R-Chautauqua County, sent a letter to Gov. Andrew Cuomo this week asking him to rescind his executive order suspending prompt payment, while also requesting that the state fulfill its financial obligations to its nonprofit partners as soon as possible.
Borrello notes that at a time when the COVID-19 crisis has increased the demand for human services, the delays are hurting organizations.
“Our nonprofit contracting partners provide essential services to our most vulnerable New Yorkers,” the senator said. “From housing and food assistance, to child care and educational programs, to mental health and addiction services and more, these organizations make it possible for us to meet a spectrum of critical needs.”
Borrello said he has heard from nonprofits that are struggling to cover expenses while they wait for payouts on invoices and contracts.
“While recognizing the difficult budget situation that New York is grappling with,” he said, “we cannot ask financially-strapped service providers to essentially subsidize the state to help bridge our budget gap.”
Doug Sauer, CEO of the New York Council of Nonprofits, said community-based nonprofits are core to the state’s health, social, cultural and economic well-being.
“The state has not lived up to its prompt contractual and payment obligations to nonprofits for decades, greatly weakening our capacity to be resilient during this pandemic crisis,” Sauer said.
Borrello said, in addition to delays in contract registrations and payments, the nonprofit sector is also being impacted by the state’s withholding of 20% of funds in local assistance aid, which includes payments for nonprofits who have contracts with the state or local governments.
The funds are being withheld in response to the state’s budget crisis and may eventually be distributed if federal assistance is provided.