Governor Cuomo and Vice President Joseph Biden will be holding an event in the state on Friday to promote paid family leave and other economic priorities. Supporters of paid family leave have been informed of the event. Our coalition members are hoping Governor Cuomo agrees to a more robust proposal for paid leave which will include 2/3 of the wages of workers up to twelve weeks. Cuomo’s proposal starts at 35% of workers wages and rises only to 50% after a phase-in of four years. The coalition will hold a press conference during a lobby day in Albany on Tuesday to push for its plan.
Massachusetts Attorney General Maura Healy is the first state attorney general to raise the issue of “unfair trade practices” of drug companies for their exorbitant prices. She sent a letter to Gilead sciences, makers of Sovaldi and Harvoni, two drugs to treat hepatitis C and costing $84,000- $94,000 for the course of treatment. Healy says she is investigating to see whether the pricing breaks state laws. She urges the company to adjust its pricing to make the drugs more accessible. The company is requesting a meeting with Healy. The mere threat of legal action may cause problems for companies which see their stocks dive when government officials attack their pricing or suggest some action may be taken. Also, Healy’s public stance may quickly lead to other state AGs beginning their own investigations, including New York’s Eric Schneiderman.