STATE OF NEW YORK
        ________________________________________________________________________

                                          3272

                               2021-2022 Regular Sessions

                   IN ASSEMBLY

                                    January 22, 2021
                                       ___________

        Introduced  by  M. of A. FAHY, WALLACE, LUPARDO, STIRPE -- read once and
          referred to the Committee on Economic Development

        AN ACT to amend the general business law, in relation  to  establishment
          of  the  water-based  fire protection licensure act, and providing for
          the repeal of certain provisions upon expiration thereof

          The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and  Assem-
        bly, do enact as follows:

     1    Section  1.  This  act  shall be known and may be cited as the "water-
     2  based fire protection licensure act".
     3    § 2. Legislative intent. It is declared that there exists and  may  in
     4  the  future  exist  within  the state of New York locations where water-
     5  based fire protection systems are installed  and  improper  installation
     6  and  improper  inspection,  testing,  and  maintenance  of existing fire
     7  protection systems may adversely affect the public  health,  safety  and
     8  general welfare. It is further acknowledged that fire protection systems
     9  are  critical  life  and  property safety systems and such systems whose
    10  layout,  installing,  repairing,  inspecting,  testing,  or  maintenance
    11  require  specialized  knowledge and experience. Therefore the purpose of
    12  this act is to protect, promote and preserve the public  health,  safety
    13  and general welfare by providing for the establishment of minimum stand-
    14  ards  for  licensure  of water-based fire protection system installation
    15  and inspecting contractors as well as  designating  and  utilization  of
    16  responsible managing employees as qualifiers of said license with estab-
    17  lishment  of  penalties  for  improper  layout,  installing,  repairing,
    18  inspecting, testing,  or  maintaining  of  water-based  fire  protection
    19  systems  and  prohibit  unlicensed activities. Furnishing and installing
    20  underground  water-supply  and  one-family  and  two-family  residential
    21  systems,  unless  a residential system in a "group home" are exempt from
    22  this act.
    23    § 3. The general business law is amended by adding a new article  35-G
    24  to read as follows:

         EXPLANATION--Matter in italics (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                              [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                                   LBD07013-01-1

        A. 3272                             2

     1                                ARTICLE 35-G
     2                         WATER-BASED FIRE PROTECTION
     3                                LICENSURE ACT
     4  Section 759-g. Definitions.
     5          759-h. License  and  RME requirements; scope of practice; penal-
     6                   ties for non-compliance.
     7          759-i. Powers of the department and board.
     8          759-j. New licensure requirements.
     9          759-k. Licensure for existing contractors.
    10          759-l. Licensure: application; insurance; display; duplicates.
    11          759-m. License renewals and RMEs.
    12          759-n. Inspection of water-based fire protection systems.
    13          759-o. Fees.
    14          759-p. Suspension and revocation of licenses.
    15          759-q. Hearing on charges; decision.
    16          759-r. Judicial review.
    17          759-s. Violations and penalties.
    18          759-t. Official acts used as evidence.
    19          759-u. Disposition of moneys  derived  from  operation  of  this
    20                   article.
    21          759-v. Severability.
    22          759-w. Applicability.
    23          759-x. Contractual agreements.
    24    §  759-g.  Definitions.  As  used  in this article, unless the context
    25  requires otherwise:
    26    1. "AFSA" means the American fire sprinkler association.
    27    2. "Board" means the state fire protection advisory  board  under  the
    28  department.    Such  board  shall  be  the  advising body for all rules,
    29  requirements, regulations, and future modifications affecting licensure,
    30  certificates  and  certification,  exams,  training,  and  other  topics
    31  covered under this act.
    32    3.  "Business  entity"  means  a  firm,  company, partnership, limited
    33  liability company, or corporation.
    34    4. "Department" means the department of state  division  of  licensing
    35  services.
    36    5. "Engineer of record" means an education department-licensed profes-
    37  sional  engineer, qualified by experience and training to provide design
    38  criteria for fire protection systems including:
    39    (a) selection of system types and components;
    40    (b)  classification  of  potential  hazards  and  commodities  to   be
    41  protected;
    42    (c) density, water flow, and pressure requirements for system designs;
    43    (d) confirmation of available water supply data;
    44    (e)  preliminary  hydraulic  calculations  verifying  the  adequacy of
    45  proposed water supply arrangements;
    46    (f) ability to identify water supplies that could lead to microbiolog-
    47  ically influenced corrosion; and
    48    (g) familiarity with seismic information and other items identified by
    49  law or the uniform fire and building codes of the state.
    50    6. "Fee" means any examination fee, license fee, registration fee,  or
    51  renewal  fee  accompanying  an  application  or issuance of any license,
    52  certification, or registration, including any temporaries  or  renewals,
    53  pursuant to this article. Such fee shall be non-refundable.
    54    7. "Fire control" or "fire suppression" means:
    55    (a)  the  practices,  or  materials  and equipment in or adjacent to a
    56  building or premises, used in the installation, maintenance,  extension,

        A. 3272                             3

     1  or  alteration  of all piping materials and equipment, as defined by the
     2  state uniform fire prevention and building code, in connection with  the
     3  discharge  of  water  and backflow prevention for the express purpose of
     4  extinguishing and controlling fire; and
     5    (b)  the  practice  of installing, repairing, inspecting, testing, and
     6  maintaining water-based fire protection systems as defined by the  state
     7  uniform fire prevention and building code.
     8    8.  "Fire  sprinkler  system"  means  any  water-based fire protection
     9  system, fire suppression system, or fire control system  employing  fire
    10  sprinklers  and consisting of underground and overhead piping, including
    11  fire pumps and associated piping, fire standpipes that convey water with
    12  or without other agents to dispersal openings or devices for the purpose
    13  of extinguishing, controlling,  suppressing,  or  containing  fire,  and
    14  which  provide protection from fire exposure or exposure to the products
    15  of combustion, and are installed in accordance with  the  state  uniform
    16  fire prevention and building code and referenced standards and state-ap-
    17  proved local standards.
    18    9.  "Full-time employee" means an employee of a business entity who is
    19  expected to work at least one thousand  five  hundred  sixty  hours  per
    20  year.  Earned,  paid  time for leave such as vacation, sick, or personal
    21  days shall be inclusive within  the  one  thousand  five  hundred  sixty
    22  hours.
    23    10.  "Inspection"  means the visual examination of a building's water-
    24  based fire protection system, or a portion thereof, to verify that  such
    25  system  appears  to  be  in  operating condition and is free of physical
    26  damage.
    27    11. "Inspection, testing, and maintenance" means a program provided by
    28  a  state-licensed  water-based  fire  protection  contractor   who   has
    29  contracted with a property or building owner, or such property or build-
    30  ing owner's representative, in which all components unique to such prop-
    31  erty or buildings' systems are inspected and tested at required frequen-
    32  cies and in which necessary maintenance is provided. Such programs shall
    33  include logging and retention of relevant records and reporting of defi-
    34  ciencies  and  malfunctions  to the property or building owner or his or
    35  her  authorized  representative,  and  the  appropriate  authorities  as
    36  required.
    37    12.  "Inspector"  means  a  person who is employed by a state-licensed
    38  water-based fire protection  contractor,  who  performs  inspection  and
    39  testing  on  a  water-based  fire  protection  system,  as per the state
    40  uniform fire prevention and building code, and a program provided  by  a
    41  state-licensed water-based fire protection contractor.
    42    13.  "Install"  or  "installation"  means  the  initial placement of a
    43  water-based fire protection system, or its extension or alteration after
    44  the initial placement.
    45    14. "Layout" means the placement of risers, cross mains, branch lines,
    46  fire sprinklers, and hanger locations, and sizing of  pipe  and  supple-
    47  mental  hydraulic  calculations  in  accordance  with  the provisions of
    48  water-based fire protection design  standards  and  design  criteria  as
    49  provided by the engineer of record.
    50    15.  "License  holder"  means  a  business  entity  as defined by this
    51  section and as licensed by the department to engage in the  business  of
    52  the  layout,  installing, repairing, inspecting, testing, or maintaining
    53  of water-based fire protection systems. A single  license  may  name  no
    54  more than one business entity.

        A. 3272                             4

     1    16. "Limited maintenance" means adjustment of or replacement of system
     2  components like and kind, inclusive of maintenance requirements per NFPA
     3  25, as defined in this section.
     4    17.  "Maintenance" means work performed by a licensed water-based fire
     5  protection contractor to  keep  water-based  fire  protection  equipment
     6  operable including repairs.
     7    18. "NCCI" means the national council on compensation insurance.
     8    19. "NFPA" means the national fire protection association, inc.
     9    20.  "NFPA  25" means the NFPA's most recent state referenced publica-
    10  tion, which  establishes  the  minimum  requirements  for  the  periodic
    11  inspection,  testing,  and  maintenance  of  water-based fire protection
    12  systems and the actions to undertake when  changes  in  occupancy,  use,
    13  process,  materials, hazard, or water supply that potentially impact the
    14  performance of such water-based system are planned or identified.
    15    21. "NFSA" means the national fire sprinkler association, inc.
    16    22. "NICET" means the national institute for  certification  in  engi-
    17  neering  technologies  or other entities recognized as being equal to or
    18  better than NICET, as determined by the department.
    19    23. "OFPC" means the state office of fire prevention and control.
    20    24. "Repair" means any work on a system after the initial installation
    21  to replace, correct or maintain such system.
    22    25. "Responsible managing employee" or "RME" means an individual  with
    23  appropriate  NICET  certification  or state-approved equivalent who is a
    24  full-time employee of a water-based fire protection contractor, and  who
    25  is designated as such water-based fire protection contractor's qualifier
    26  to  do  business  as a water-based fire protection contractor. A RME may
    27  serve to qualify no more than two water-based fire protection contractor
    28  under this article in the state.  Where an RME qualifies multiple  busi-
    29  ness  entities,  the  entities must be shown to have common ownership or
    30  controlling interest and the RME must be a full-time employee.
    31    26. "Supervise" or "supervision" means the direction, management,  and
    32  oversight  by  the  RME  named on a contractor's business license of the
    33  activities of personnel in the layout, installing,  repairing,  inspect-
    34  ing,  testing,  or maintaining repair of any water-based fire protection
    35  system. Notwithstanding this subdivision, supervision shall not  require
    36  such  RME to be at the site of each layout, install, repair, inspection,
    37  test, or maintenance of  water-based  fire  protection  systems  at  all
    38  times.
    39    27.  "Testing"  means  testing  water-based fire protection systems as
    40  defined by the state uniform fire prevention and building code.
    41    28. "Water-based fire protection contractor" or "contractor" means any
    42  of the following classes:
    43    (a) "Contractor I" or "water-based fire protection contractor" means a
    44  business entity that offers to undertake,  represents  itself  as  being
    45  able  to undertake, or does undertake the layout, installing, repairing,
    46  inspecting, testing, or maintaining of all  types  of  water-based  fire
    47  protection systems and components.
    48    (b) "Contractor II" or "water-based fire protection systems inspection
    49  contractor"  means a business entity that is limited to the execution of
    50  contracts requiring the inspection and testing along with limited  main-
    51  tenance of fire protection systems.  Contractor II businesses shall have
    52  an  RME  certified  NICET II or better or state equivalent in inspection
    53  and testing of water-based systems.
    54    29. "Water-based  fire  protection  contractor  business  license"  or
    55  "license"  means a license issued by the department to a business entity
    56  to operate as a water-based fire protection contractor.

        A. 3272                             5

     1    30. "Water-based fire protection system" means a commercial  or  resi-
     2  dential system individually designed to protect the interior or exterior
     3  of  a specific building, structure, or other potential hazard from fire,
     4  or to promote life safety. Such systems include, but are not limited to,
     5  water  fire-sprinkler systems, water spray systems, foam-water sprinkler
     6  systems, foam-water spray systems, and foam extinguishing  systems  used
     7  for fire protection.
     8    §  759-h.  License  and RME requirements; scope of practice; penalties
     9  for non-compliance.  1. (a) It is unlawful for any  organization,  busi-
    10  ness entity, or individual to engage in the business of layout, install-
    11  ing,  repairing,  inspecting,  testing,  or maintaining water-based fire
    12  protection systems, to  act  in  the  capacity  of  a  water-based  fire
    13  protection  contractor,  or  to  advertise itself as being a water-based
    14  fire protection contractor without having been duly licensed and without
    15  holding a valid license, except as otherwise provided in  this  section.
    16  The  RME  named to qualify an organization or business entity under this
    17  article must be a full-time employee of such  organization  or  business
    18  entity.
    19    (b)  The  department  shall revoke, for a period of time determined by
    20  the department,  the  RME  as  a  qualifier  for  all  water-based  fire
    21  protection  contractors  if  such  RME makes use of or allows the use of
    22  NICET or equivalent certification to qualify a contractor of which  such
    23  RME is not a full-time employee.
    24    (c) All entities performing layout of drawings, installing, repairing,
    25  inspecting,  testing, or maintaining water-based fire protection systems
    26  within the state (exempting systems within the jurisdictions of the five
    27  boroughs of New York city, Nassau county, and Suffolk county) must  have
    28  in  their employ one or more RMEs with appropriate certification for the
    29  layout of  water-based  fire  protection  system  shop  drawings  to  be
    30  performed,  or  for the practice of inspection, testing, and maintenance
    31  of water-based fire protection systems. This includes contractors  based
    32  in  other  states,  New York city, Nassau county, and Suffolk county, or
    33  any other location work covered under this article is to be performed.
    34    (d) Nothing in this subdivision shall prohibit an employee  acting  on
    35  behalf  of  any  government entity or insurance provider from inspecting
    36  and enforcing the state uniform fire prevention and  building  code  and
    37  local  laws,  provided  such employee is acting solely on behalf of such
    38  government entity or insurance  provider.  All  fire  protection  cards,
    39  registrations,  certificates,  and licenses required by this article and
    40  issued by the department shall have statewide application (exempting the
    41  jurisdictions of the five boroughs of New York city, Nassau county,  and
    42  Suffolk  county).  Local governments (exempting the jurisdictions of the
    43  five boroughs of New York city, Nassau county, and Suffolk county) shall
    44  not establish or impose any further standards, licensing, certification,
    45  or registration upon state-licensed water-based fire protection contrac-
    46  tors or their employees.
    47    (e)  Local  governments  (exempting  the  jurisdictions  of  the  five
    48  boroughs  of New York city, Nassau county, and Suffolk county) shall not
    49  require any type of additional licensing, certification, or registration
    50  of a water-based fire protection contractor, its RME, or  its  employees
    51  that  are  licensed, certified, or registered by the department of state
    52  unless such contractor maintains a physical  office  within  such  local
    53  government's jurisdiction.
    54    2.  As of eighteen months after the effective date of this article, no
    55  person or business entity  shall  engage  in  the  business  of  layout,
    56  installing,  repairing,  inspecting, testing, or maintaining water-based

        A. 3272                             6

     1  fire protection systems  beginning  at  the  point  of  fire  protection
     2  service  to  the  most  remote  parts  of the system, or hold himself or
     3  herself out as being able so to do unless he or she is licensed pursuant
     4  to this article.
     5    3.  Retrofitting  of a backflow prevention device: It is the responsi-
     6  bility of the building or property owner, commercial or  residential  to
     7  obtain  a  state  licensed  professional  engineer to become engineer of
     8  record to evaluate any water-based fire protection system, supply  docu-
     9  mented  findings  to  the  water-based  fire  protection contractor, and
    10  approve the installation of any backflow prevention device, in order  to
    11  avoid the introduction or addition of a backflow prevention device to an
    12  existing  water-based fire protection system, that causes a reduction in
    13  available water pressure and may create a system malfunction.
    14    4. A water-based fire protection contractor licensed under this  arti-
    15  cle shall not:
    16    (a)  enter into a written or oral agreement to authorize, subcontract,
    17  or otherwise knowingly  allow  any  individual  or  entity  who  is  not
    18  licensed  under this article to engage in the business of, or act in the
    19  capacity of, a water-based fire protection contractor; or
    20    (b) apply for or obtain a construction  permit  for  water-based  fire
    21  protection  work unless such water-based fire protection contractor or a
    22  business entity qualified by such contractor has contracted  to  conduct
    23  the work specified in his or her application for the required permit.
    24    5.  Any  person  who violates any provision of this article or commits
    25  any of the acts constituting a cause  for  disciplinary  action  as  set
    26  forth by this article shall be guilty of a class B misdemeanor, punisha-
    27  ble as provided by this article, and the laws of the state.
    28    6.  In  addition to the penalties provided in subdivision five of this
    29  section, a water-based fire protection contractor  licensed  under  this
    30  article  who  violates  any provision of this section or who commits any
    31  act constituting cause for disciplinary action is subject to the suspen-
    32  sion or revocation of his or her license and such  administrative  fines
    33  as prescribed by this article.
    34    7.  A license holder has an affirmative duty to provide supervision of
    35  employees and all business activities. Such supervision shall consist of
    36  regular, frequent personal guidance, instruction, oversight, and  super-
    37  intendence  by  the  qualifying  RME or RMEs with respect to the general
    38  business conducted by a firm, and all matters relating thereto.
    39    8. Nothing in this article shall prohibit a principal of a given busi-
    40  ness entity from qualifying as such business entity's  RME  as  long  as
    41  such principal meets the qualifications of this article.
    42    9.  Licenses issued to contractors shall clearly identify the level of
    43  such license for ease of identification by field staff of the department
    44  and OFPC, local code enforcement officials, the public,  and  any  other
    45  interested parties.
    46    10.  License  applicability  shall be in accordance with the following
    47  table:
    48          FUNCTION    CLASS I     CLASS II
    49          Inspect     All         All
    50          Test        All         All
    51          Maintain    All         Limited
    52          Install     All         N/A
    53          Repair      All         N/A
    54    § 759-i. Powers of the department and board. 1.  In  addition  to  the
    55  powers  and  duties elsewhere prescribed in this article, the department
    56  and board shall have the following powers:

        A. 3272                             7

     1    (a) To prescribe the duties of, fix the compensation of,  and  appoint
     2  an  adequate number of assistants, field inspectors, and other employees
     3  as may be necessary to carry out the provisions of this article.
     4    (b) To examine the qualifications of applicants for licenses or regis-
     5  trations under this article.
     6    (c) To keep records of all licenses, certifications, and registrations
     7  issued,  suspended,  or  revoked,  and  to publish such information on a
     8  website accessible to the public.
     9    (d) To prepare a manual of rules and  regulations  for  the  licensure
    10  process  of  water-based fire protection contractors and to publish such
    11  information on a website accessible to the public.
    12    (e) To promulgate such rules  and  regulations  as  may  be  necessary
    13  prescribing  the  form,  content,  and  reception  of  applications  for
    14  licenses and registrations, the manner of investigation and  examination
    15  of applicants and their qualifications, and any other matters incidental
    16  or  appropriate  to  the powers and duties as prescribed by this article
    17  and for the proper administration and enforcement of the  provisions  of
    18  this  article,  and to make recommendations to add, amend, or repeal any
    19  of such rules and regulations.
    20    2. The secretary of state shall create a state fire  protection  advi-
    21  sory  board  and have the first meeting within ninety days of the effec-
    22  tive date of this article. Such board shall be composed of the following
    23  members:
    24    (a) one position for the secretary of state or his or her designee;
    25    (b) one position for the state fire administrator or his or her desig-
    26  nee;
    27    (c) one position for the state department of state division of  build-
    28  ing standards and codes or his or her designee;
    29    (d)  three persons appointed by the president of the NFSA who shall be
    30  of New York state, and whose businesses must have been actively  engaged
    31  in the business of layout, installing, inspecting, testing, altering, or
    32  maintaining  water-based fire protection systems for at least five years
    33  immediately prior to their appointment;
    34    (e) three persons appointed by the president of AFSA who shall  be  of
    35  New  York  state and whose businesses must have been actively engaged in
    36  the business of layout, installing,  inspecting,  testing,  altering  or
    37  maintaining  water-based fire protection systems for at least five years
    38  immediately prior to their appointment;
    39    (f) one position for the NFSA staff person or designee;
    40    (g) one position for the AFSA staff person or designee; and
    41    (h) one state education department licensed professional engineer with
    42  experience in water-based fire protection.
    43    3. The chair of the board shall be the secretary of state  or  his  or
    44  her  designee.  The  state fire administrator or his or her designee, or
    45  the director of building standards and codes  division  or  his  or  her
    46  designee,  may  serve  as  chair in the chair's absence so as to conduct
    47  business. The chair of the board shall serve as the deciding vote  where
    48  there are tie votes.
    49    4.  The board shall advise the department in the administration of the
    50  requirements established by this  article  and  all  other  future  fire
    51  protection system licensing.
    52    5.  The  board  shall  be  the  author  of water-based fire protection
    53  certification exams for RMEs in the state of New York.
    54    6. The board shall meet at least once quarterly. The board shall  have
    55  the  authority  to  review complaints and disputed administrative action
    56  and to make non-binding recommendations for disciplinary action  to  the

        A. 3272                             8

     1  department  at  the  request of a certificate holder, license holder, or
     2  the department. The board shall make decisions and supply in writing  to
     3  the  department  rules, codes, standards, interpretations, and training.
     4  The  board  members'  terms  shall  expire  on the thirtieth day of June
     5  following the effective date of this article and biennially  thereafter.
     6  Term limits shall be limited to four consecutive terms. No member of the
     7  board  shall  be  paid  a  salary as such member, but each shall receive
     8  necessary expenses  for  attending  board  meetings  and  reimbursement,
     9  including travel for performance of his or her board duties.
    10    7.  The board shall review and advise the department regarding all new
    11  applications and the department shall administer new licenses  following
    12  board approval and renewals with proper documentation.
    13    8. Members of the board shall exercise due diligence to participate in
    14  all  scheduled  and  special  meetings as required. The department shall
    15  take minutes and make minutes available as soon as  reasonably  possible
    16  to board members that are absent.
    17    9.  The  majority  of  the  board  with  at  least one fire protection
    18  contractor board member must be present to constitute a quorum.
    19    10. Motions shall not move forward  without  a  minimum  of  two  fire
    20  protection contractor board members in support of the motion.
    21    11. Proxy votes shall be allowed.
    22    12. Remote electronic audio or audio and visual participation shall be
    23  allowed.
    24    §  759-j.  New licensure requirements. 1. As a prerequisite for licen-
    25  sure as a contractor I, a RME qualifier must be  at  least  twenty-three
    26  years  of  age, be of good moral character so as not to adversely impact
    27  his or her ability to perform  the  duties  and  responsibilities  of  a
    28  licensed  contractor,  and shall possess five years of proven experience
    29  and progressive  training  in  the  employment  of  a  water-based  fire
    30  protection  system contractor I or a combination of equivalent education
    31  and experience. It is the intent that the  contractor  I  RME  meet  the
    32  criteria of NICET III certification requirements or state equivalent set
    33  forth  by  the  advisory  board  in the specific technical discipline of
    34  water-based layout, or equivalent criteria accepted by the board and the
    35  department  as  a  prerequisite,  along  with  NICET   special   hazards
    36  suppression  systems  or  equivalent  criteria accepted by the board and
    37  department. Two RMEs are permitted, with one in  each  discipline.  More
    38  than one RME may be permitted per company.
    39    2. As a prerequisite for licensure as a contractor II, a RME qualifier
    40  must  be  at least eighteen years of age and shall be certified NICET II
    41  for inspection and testing of water-based systems or equivalent  certif-
    42  ication accepted by the board and the department.
    43    3.  A  state  professional  engineer  license along with education and
    44  documented experience in water-based fire protection system  engineering
    45  may be substituted for the RME requirements in this section.
    46    §  759-k. Licensure for existing contractors. Each existing contractor
    47  shall file for a license as an existing contractor by presenting to  the
    48  department  satisfactory evidence that such contractor has been actively
    49  engaged in the proper class of contracting in the scope of  the  license
    50  applied  for  in  layout, installing, repairing, inspecting, testing, or
    51  maintaining of water-based fire protection systems, as a contractor I or
    52  contractor II and shall show proof of proper insurance as a  water-based
    53  fire  protection contractor. Such evidence shall include proof of insur-
    54  ance which includes the latest NCCI rating  sheet  for  workers  compen-
    55  sation  showing  the  appropriate  code  for fire sprinkler fitters. All

        A. 3272                             9

     1  existing contractors shall file for a license pursuant to  this  section
     2  within eighteen months of the effective date of this article.
     3    §  759-l.  Licensure: application; insurance; display; duplicates.  1.
     4  Once a representative RME meets the provisions of this act to be a qual-
     5  ifier, any business entity desiring a license to engage in the  business
     6  of  layout,  installing,  inspecting, altering, or maintaining of water-
     7  based fire protection systems under this article, may make  an  applica-
     8  tion  to  the  department.  The  RME  shall be subscribed by the license
     9  applicant and affirmed by him or her as  true  under  the  penalties  of
    10  perjury. The license application shall be in such form and shall contain
    11  the  RME's NICET certification number, category of discipline, and level
    12  of discipline. Each license application shall be accompanied by  a  copy
    13  of  required  certifications as established in this article, proving the
    14  level of certification for inspection by the department.
    15    2. All licenses shall be valid for a period of two years and shall not
    16  be based on certification obligations.
    17    3. No license shall be assignable or transferable except as  otherwise
    18  provided by this section.
    19    4.  If  a RME, who has met the requirements of this article, ceases to
    20  act in the capacity of RME, the license holder shall notify the  depart-
    21  ment  in  writing  within  thirty business days from such termination or
    22  cessation. The license holder may continue to conduct  the  business  of
    23  layout,  installing,  repairing,  inspecting,  testing,  or  maintaining
    24  water-based fire protection systems for  a  period  not  to  exceed  one
    25  hundred  eighty  days  from  the  date of such termination or cessation,
    26  except that such period may be  extended  upon  an  application  to  the
    27  department  with  good  cause for an additional period not to exceed one
    28  hundred twenty days. By the end of such period a new RME must be  desig-
    29  nated who has met the certification requirements of this article.
    30    5.  (a)  As  a  prerequisite  to issuance of a license, the department
    31  shall require a business entity to  submit  satisfactory  evidence  that
    32  such   business   entity   has  obtained  appropriate  water-based  fire
    33  protection contracting commercial general liability  insurance,  showing
    34  proof  of  appropriate  coverage  amounts for the appropriate contractor
    35  level being applied for, with a  minimum  of  one  million  dollars  for
    36  contractor  I  or,  contractor  II. Said evidence shall show appropriate
    37  coverage for comprehensive general liability for bodily injury and prop-
    38  erty damages,  products  liability,  completed  operations,  contractual
    39  liability,  and workers' compensation. The board may adopt rules provid-
    40  ing for the minimal amount of insurance for all contractor classes.
    41    (b) Water-based fire protection contractor certificates  of  insurance
    42  shall  provide  that  such  insurance  shall not be modified, that there
    43  shall be no material changes in coverage or any  termination,  non-rene-
    44  wal,  or cancellation unless thirty days' notice is given to the depart-
    45  ment.
    46    (c) Water-based fire protection contractor certificates  of  insurance
    47  must include the policy number, date of expiration, and physical address
    48  of  each  contractor  location.  Each contractor's operation of business
    49  must be noted in the description part of such contractor's certificate.
    50    (d) The "State of New York" shall be named as the certificate holder.
    51    (e) An insurer who fails to so notify the department shall be  subject
    52  to the penalties provided within this article.
    53    6.  A license shall be issued upon satisfaction of the requirements of
    54  this section. No license shall remain in effect if, after issuance,  the
    55  license  holder  fails  to  maintain insurance coverage required by this
    56  article.

        A. 3272                            10

     1    7. The department may, at any time subsequent to  the  issuance  of  a
     2  license  or  renewal,  require,  upon  demand  and within thirty days of
     3  notice of such demand, the license holder to provide proof of  insurance
     4  coverage  on  a form provided by the department, containing confirmation
     5  of  insurance  coverage  as required by this article. Failure to provide
     6  proof of insurance coverage as required, for any length of  time,  shall
     7  result  in the immediate suspension of the license until proof of insur-
     8  ance is provided to, and accepted by, the department.
     9    8. A license issued to conduct the  business  of  layout,  installing,
    10  repairing,  inspecting,  testing,  or  maintaining  of  water-based fire
    11  protection systems shall be conspicuously posted upon the premises where
    12  the license holder is engaged in such business  of  layout,  installing,
    13  repairing,  inspecting,  testing,  or  maintaining  of  water-based fire
    14  protection systems.
    15    9. Upon obtaining a license, all documents or receipts issued by or on
    16  behalf of a contractor licensed pursuant to this article  shall  contain
    17  the license identification number issued to such contractor.
    18    10.  A  duplicate  license  may  be issued for one lost, destroyed, or
    19  mutilated upon an application for  such  duplicate  license  on  a  form
    20  prescribed  by  the department and upon payment of the fee prescribed by
    21  this article. Each such duplicate license shall have  the  word  "dupli-
    22  cate"  clearly stamped or watermarked across its face and shall bear the
    23  same number as the original license. All information from  the  original
    24  license shall be transposed identically.
    25    11.  Notice  in  writing shall be given to the department by a license
    26  holder of any change in address of such license holder together with the
    27  return of such holder's license, whereupon a properly signed endorsement
    28  shall be made on the face of such license as to such  change,  and  such
    29  license shall then be returned to the license holder.
    30    12.  Each  license  to  conduct  the  business  of layout, installing,
    31  repairing, inspecting,  testing,  or  maintaining  of  water-based  fire
    32  protection  systems  issued  to  a business entity may be used after the
    33  death of the RME for a period of not more than one hundred  eighty  days
    34  from  the  date  of such RME's death. Such one hundred eighty-day period
    35  may be extended upon an application to the department and for good cause
    36  shown for an additional period not to exceed  one  hundred  twenty  days
    37  total.
    38    §  759-m.  License  renewals  and RMEs. The contractor shall submit an
    39  application and  fees  for  license  renewal  along  with  all  required
    40  documentation including RME qualifications to the department.
    41    §  759-n.  Inspection  of water-based fire protection systems. 1.  The
    42  department and OFPC shall have the right to inspect any water-based fire
    43  protection system during and after  construction  to  determine  whether
    44  such  system  meets the standards set forth in the laws and rules of the
    45  state. This does not diminish the capacity and duties of the local  code
    46  enforcement office having jurisdiction.
    47    2.  A  building  owner  who  has  water-based  fire protection systems
    48  installed in public or private properties, including  group  homes,  but
    49  not including private one-family or two-family dwellings or manufactured
    50  housing,  shall  cause  such building to be inspected in compliance with
    51  the procedures set forth in NFPA 25 by a state licensed water-based fire
    52  protection contractor. This section does not prohibit governmental enti-
    53  ties and code enforcement officials in the performance of  their  duties
    54  from inspecting and enforcing state uniform fire prevention and building
    55  code and local laws.

        A. 3272                            11

     1    3.  A  building  owner  shall  cause  to be corrected all deficiencies
     2  discovered during inspection.
     3    4.  A  building  owner  or  building owner's authorized representative
     4  shall contract with a state-licensed contractor for scheduled inspection
     5  and testing before any certificate of occupancy is issued and  does  not
     6  detract liability of the building owner and the building owner's respon-
     7  sibilities.  The  inspecting  contractor  shall provide to such building
     8  owner a copy of the inspection report detailing  applicable  state  code
     9  requirements  and  NFPA 25 standard inspection, testing, and maintenance
    10  criteria. The maintenance of water-based fire protection systems as well
    11  as corrective actions on deficient systems is the responsibility of  the
    12  owner of the water-based fire protection system connected thereto. It is
    13  recognized  that the inspecting contractor and the installing contractor
    14  may or may not be one and the same. The limit of liability of inspecting
    15  contractors shall be that of the dollar value of the  inspection,  test-
    16  ing,   and   maintenance   contract.  The  installing  water-based  fire
    17  protection contractor shall be reposed and may not be  sued  for  latent
    18  construction  defects,  more than ten years after substantial completion
    19  of a project.
    20    5. A building owner shall ensure that inspections, testing, and  main-
    21  tenance  of  water-based fire protection systems for detached one-family
    22  dwellings, detached two-family dwellings, and manufactured housing, meet
    23  the standards set forth in NFPA 13D. Group homes shall be subject to the
    24  standards set forth in NFPA 25 and shall be governed by this article.
    25    6. Maintenance of water-based  fire  protection  systems  as  well  as
    26  corrective  actions  on  deficient  systems is the responsibility of the
    27  owner  of  the  system.    Notwithstanding  inspection  contracts   with
    28  conflicting  language,  the  owner  of  the  water-based fire protection
    29  system shall  indemnify  and  hold  harmless  the  other  party  to  the
    30  contract,  and  their officers and employees, from liabilities, damages,
    31  losses and costs, including, but not limited to,  reasonable  attorney's
    32  fees,  to  the  extent caused by the negligence, recklessness, or inten-
    33  tional failure of the system owner to maintain or take corrective action
    34  to maintain a water-based fire protection system.
    35    7. Effective thirty-six months from the effective date of  this  arti-
    36  cle,  the  department  shall require NICET III inspection and testing of
    37  water-based fire protection systems or equivalent training and education
    38  as determined by the  department  for  the  RME  or  RMEs  qualifying  a
    39  contractor  II  as  proof  that  they  are  knowledgeable  in nationally
    40  accepted standards for the inspection  of  water-based  fire  protection
    41  systems.
    42    8. It is the responsibility of the contractor II RME to maintain NICET
    43  III  inspection  and  testing  of  water-based  fire  protection systems
    44  certification or  equivalent  state  certification  as  a  condition  of
    45  license  renewal  after  thirty-six months of the effective date of this
    46  article.
    47    9. No jurisdiction through local law or code enforcement office policy
    48  shall require any forms or documents  for  water-based  fire  protection
    49  system  inspections, testing, or maintenance beyond what is in the scope
    50  of the fire code of the state and NFPA 25. All inspection, testing,  and
    51  maintenance  reporting  forms and documentation required shall come from
    52  the building owner or such owner's legal representative unless local law
    53  requires otherwise.
    54    § 759-o. Fees. 1. The fee for a license to engage in the  business  of
    55  layout,  installing,  repairing,  inspecting, testing, or maintaining of

        A. 3272                            12

     1  water-based fire protection systems shall be two  hundred  dollars.  For
     2  each renewal thereof, the fee shall be one hundred dollars.
     3    2.  The  fee for issuing a duplicate certificate or license in substi-
     4  tution for one  lost,  destroyed,  or  mutilated  shall  be  twenty-five
     5  dollars.
     6    3.  The  fee  for changing a name or address on a license shall be ten
     7  dollars.
     8    4. The fees set forth in this  section  shall  be  for  registrations,
     9  certificates, and licenses issued for the period of two years or a frac-
    10  tion of such period.
    11    5.  Fees  collected  shall  be deposited for the department's adminis-
    12  tration of this article. Excess fees shall assist in providing education
    13  for state certified code enforcement officials, building safety  inspec-
    14  tors, and firefighters.
    15    § 759-p. Suspension and revocation of licenses. 1. A license to engage
    16  in  the  business of layout, installing, repairing, inspecting, testing,
    17  or maintaining of water-based fire protection systems may  be  suspended
    18  or revoked, or in lieu thereof a fine not exceeding one thousand dollars
    19  per violation payable to the department may be imposed, or a penalty may
    20  be issued by the department or board, for any of the following causes:
    21    (a) fraud or bribery in securing a license;
    22    (b)  making any false statement as to a material matter in an applica-
    23  tion or other statement or certificate required by or pursuant  to  this
    24  article;
    25    (c) incompetence;
    26    (d) failure to display the license as provided in this article;
    27    (e)  violation  of  any  provision  of this article, or of any rule or
    28  regulation adopted pursuant to this article;
    29    (f) conviction of a felony involving fraud, theft, perjury or  bribery
    30  or any other cause which would permit disqualifications from receiving a
    31  license upon the original application;
    32    (g)  failure to supervise the installation of a fire protection system
    33  covered by a building permit signed by a RME;
    34    (h) a RME or license holder's violation of any provision of this arti-
    35  cle or any rule or regulation adopted and promulgated pursuant  to  this
    36  article  or the failure or refusal to comply with any notice or order to
    37  correct a violation or any cease and desist order;
    38    (i) improper layout, installing, repairing,  inspecting,  testing,  or
    39  maintaining a water-based fire protection system;
    40    (j)  having  rendered inoperative a water-based fire protection system
    41  except during such time  as  the  system  is  being  inspected,  tested,
    42  repaired,  altered,  or  maintained,  using impairment procedures as per
    43  state uniformed code, or except pursuant to a court order;
    44    (k) while holding a certificate or license allowing another person  to
    45  use  such  certificate  or  license  number,  or  using a certificate or
    46  license number other than the valid certificate or license number;
    47    (l) failure to provide proof of insurance to the department or failure
    48  to maintain insurance coverage required by this article; or
    49    (m) loss of a RME for more than one hundred twenty consecutive days.
    50    2. An order of suspension shall state the length of  such  suspension,
    51  which  may not exceed two years from the date of such order. Such orders
    52  shall affect suspension or revocation of a  RME  qualifier  or  licenses
    53  held  by a contractor and during such period of time no license shall be
    54  issued to such contractor. During the period of suspension or revocation
    55  of any license, the former license holder shall not engage in or attempt
    56  or profess to engage in any transaction or business for which a  license

        A. 3272                            13

     1  is  required under this chapter, or directly or indirectly own, control,
     2  or be employed in any manner by any business entity for which a  license
     3  under  this  chapter  is  required.    If, during the period between the
     4  beginning  of  proceedings  and  the  entry of an order of suspension or
     5  revocation by the department, a new license has been issued to the busi-
     6  ness entity so charged, the order  of  suspension  or  revocation  shall
     7  operate  to  suspend  or  revoke  such new license held by such business
     8  entity.
     9    3. So long as a  revocation  or  suspension  remains  in  effect,  the
    10  department  shall not grant any new license for the establishment of any
    11  new business entity to any person, business entity,  or  qualifier  that
    12  has  or  will  have  the same or similar management, ownership, control,
    13  employees, or license holders, or will use the same or similar  name  as
    14  such  previously  revoked or suspended business entity, person, or qual-
    15  ifier. In addition, the department shall not issue a new license  if  it
    16  finds  that  the  circumstances  for  which  such license was previously
    17  revoked or suspended still exist or are likely to recur.
    18    4. Whenever a license to engage in the business of layout, installing,
    19  inspecting, testing,  repairing,  or  maintaining  of  water-based  fire
    20  protection  systems  is revoked, such license shall not be reinstated or
    21  reissued until five years from the date of such revocation.
    22    5. The filing of a petition in bankruptcy, either voluntary or  invol-
    23  untary,  or  the making of a composition of creditors or the appointment
    24  of a receiver for a business entity's license may be considered  by  the
    25  department as just cause for suspension of such license.
    26    6.  The  lapse  or  suspension  of a license by operation of law or by
    27  order of the department or a court or the voluntary  surrender  of  such
    28  license  by  its  license  holder does not deprive the department of its
    29  authority to investigate or act in disciplinary proceedings against  the
    30  license holder.
    31    7.   A  contractor  filing  an  application  for  a  water-based  fire
    32  protection license following the revocation of a previous license in any
    33  category shall follow all procedures for obtaining a new license.
    34    § 759-q. Hearing on charges; decision. No certificate or license shall
    35  be suspended or revoked nor shall any fine or penalty be  imposed  until
    36  after  a hearing is held before an officer or employee of the department
    37  designated for such purpose  by  the  department,  upon  notice  to  the
    38  certificate  or  license  holder  of at least ten days.   The department
    39  shall consider the recommendations of the board.  The  notice  shall  be
    40  served  either personally or by registered mail and shall state the date
    41  and place of the hearing and set forth the ground or grounds  constitut-
    42  ing  the charges against the certificate or license holder. Such certif-
    43  icate or license holder shall have the opportunity to be heard either in
    44  person or by counsel and may produce witnesses and testify on his or her
    45  own behalf. A stenographic record of the  hearing  shall  be  taken  and
    46  preserved.  The  hearing may be adjourned from time to time.  The person
    47  conducting the hearing shall make a written report including his or  her
    48  findings  and  a  recommendation  to  the  department  for decision. The
    49  department shall review such findings and recommendation and, after  due
    50  deliberation,  shall  issue  an order accepting, modifying, or rejecting
    51  such recommendation and dismissing the charges or suspending or revoking
    52  the certificate or license, or in  lieu  thereof,  imposing  a  fine  or
    53  penalty upon the certificate or license holder. For the purposes of this
    54  article,  the  department  or  any officer or employee of the department
    55  designated by the secretary of state, may administer oaths, take  testi-
    56  mony,  subpoena  witnesses,  and compel the production of books, papers,

        A. 3272                            14

     1  records, photographs, and documents deemed pertinent to the  subject  of
     2  investigation.
     3    §  759-r. Judicial review. The action of the department in suspending,
     4  revoking or refusing to issue or renew  a  certificate  or  license,  or
     5  imposing  a  fine  or  penalty  upon  the  holder of such license may be
     6  reviewed in a proceeding brought under and pursuant to article  seventy-
     7  eight of the civil practice law and rules.
     8    §  759-s.  Violations and penalties. Any person or business entity who
     9  directly or indirectly engages in the business  of  layout,  installing,
    10  repairing,   inspecting,   testing,   or  maintaining  water-based  fire
    11  protection systems or holds oneself out to the public as being  able  to
    12  perform  such work and is without a license, or who shall violate any of
    13  the provisions of this article, or having had  a  license  suspended  or
    14  revoked,  continues  to  engage  in  the business of layout, installing,
    15  repairing,  inspecting,  testing,  or   maintaining   water-based   fire
    16  protection  systems  or who, without a license to engage in the business
    17  of layout, installing, repairing, inspecting,  testing,  or  maintaining
    18  water-based  fire  protection  systems,  directly or indirectly employs,
    19  permits or authorizes an uncertified person to engage in the business of
    20  layout,  installing,  repairing,  inspecting,  testing,  or  maintaining
    21  water-based  fire  protection  systems, shall be guilty of a misdemeanor
    22  and, upon conviction, shall be punishable by imprisonment  of  not  more
    23  than  six  months, or by a fine of not more than one thousand dollars or
    24  both upon the first conviction, and by imprisonment of not more than one
    25  year or by a fine of not less than one thousand  dollars  or  more  than
    26  five  thousand  dollars  or  both  upon  a  subsequent  conviction. Each
    27  violation of this article shall be deemed a separate offense.
    28    § 759-t. Official acts used as evidence.  The  official  acts  of  the
    29  secretary  of  state and the department shall be prima facie evidence of
    30  the facts therein and shall be entitled to be received  in  evidence  in
    31  all  actions  at  law and other legal proceedings in any court or before
    32  any board, body, or officer.
    33    § 759-u. Disposition of moneys derived from operation of this article.
    34  Fees collected pursuant to this article shall be paid into the appropri-
    35  ate account for the department pursuant to the state  finance  law,  for
    36  administration  of  this article.  All remaining moneys derived from the
    37  operation of this article shall on or before the tenth day of each month
    38  be paid into a fund of the state treasury to the credit of  the  depart-
    39  ment's  account  to assist in providing education for state certificated
    40  code enforcement officials, building safety inspectors,  and  firefight-
    41  ers.
    42    § 759-v. Severability. If any part or provision of this article or the
    43  application thereof to any person or circumstance be adjudged invalid by
    44  any  court of competent jurisdiction, such judgment shall be confined in
    45  its operation to the part, provision or application directly involved in
    46  the controversy in which such judgment  shall  have  been  rendered  and
    47  shall not affect or impair the validity of the remainder of this article
    48  or  the  application  thereof to other persons or circumstances, and the
    49  legislature hereby declares that it would have enacted this  article  or
    50  the  remainder  thereof had the invalidity of such provision or applica-
    51  tion thereof been apparent.
    52    § 759-w. Applicability. 1. This article shall not apply to water-based
    53  fire protection work  performed  under  the  jurisdiction  of  the  five
    54  boroughs of New York city, Nassau county, or Suffolk county. Any munici-
    55  pality or local government agency located in New York city, Nassau coun-
    56  ty,  or  Suffolk  county  may  require  other  licenses or evidence of a

        A. 3272                            15

     1  person's competence to layout, install, repair, inspect, test, or  main-
     2  tain  all  types  of water-based fire protection systems and components.
     3  Nothing in this section shall be construed to imply that a holder  of  a
     4  New  York  city, Nassau county, or Suffolk county license shall have any
     5  standing  outside  the  boundaries  of  the  jurisdiction  issuing  such
     6  license.
     7    2. This article shall not apply to:
     8    (a)  a  person  who  performs  water-based  fire  protection work with
     9  respect to any one-family or two-family dwelling owned or leased by such
    10  person unless otherwise specified;
    11    (b) a person who, while employed by a public utility or its affiliate,
    12  performs  water-based  fire  protection  work  in  connection  with  the
    13  furnishing of such public utility service;
    14    (c)  any  work covered by any national, state, or municipal electrical
    15  code including but not limited to pull stations,  strobes,  heat  detec-
    16  tors,  smoke  detectors, fire alarms or bells, and any electrical wiring
    17  including conduit connected to raceway control cabinets; or
    18    (d) underground water supply for  fire  protection  up  to  the  floor
    19  flange where the water-based fire protection system above ground begins.
    20    3.  This act shall not be held to invalidate any provision of the laws
    21  of this state or any  subdivision  thereof  unless  there  is  a  direct
    22  conflict between the provision of this article and the provision of such
    23  law  or  unless  such  law is duplicative of this article, in which case
    24  this article shall prevail. No local law shall require any fee, license,
    25  or certificate for the layout, installing, repairing, inspecting,  test-
    26  ing,  or maintaining of water-based fire protection systems, except when
    27  the water-based fire protection contractor business is located within  a
    28  political  jurisdiction.  Any  jurisdiction may apply business licensure
    29  criteria and fees consistent with other businesses in such jurisdiction.
    30    4. Nothing in this article shall limit the power of a municipality  or
    31  county  to  regulate  the  quality  and  character  of work performed by
    32  water-based fire protection contractors through  a  system  of  permits,
    33  fees,  and inspections which are designed to secure compliance with, and
    34  aid in the implementation of, state and local laws or to  enforce  other
    35  local laws for the protection of the public health and safety.
    36    5.  Nothing in this article shall limit the power of a municipality or
    37  county to adopt any  system  of  permits  requiring  submission  to  and
    38  approval  by such municipality or county of plans and specifications for
    39  work to be performed by contractors before commencement  of  such  work,
    40  except  that  no municipality or county shall require a water-based fire
    41  protection contractor's shop drawings to  be  stamped  or  sealed  by  a
    42  professional engineer or registered architect.
    43    6.  Any  elected or appointed official authorized to issue a building,
    44  fire protection, or other related permit for  a  project  that  includes
    45  water-based  fire protection shall ascertain that the applicant contrac-
    46  tor or subcontractor  is  appropriately  licensed  before  issuing  such
    47  permit. The evidence shall consist only of the presentation to the offi-
    48  cial of evidence of the current contractor license I. If the water-based
    49  fire  protection  contractor is not known at time of permit request by a
    50  general contractor or other party  applying  for  permit,  the  required
    51  information   above  shall  be  supplied  before  any  water-based  fire
    52  protection work commences.  Any  permits  for  the  layout,  installing,
    53  repairing,  inspecting,  testing,  or  maintaining of a water-based fire
    54  protection system may only be issued  to  a  licensed  water-based  fire
    55  protection  contractor  of the appropriate classification to conduct the
    56  work.

        A. 3272                            16

     1    § 759-x. Contractual agreements. 1. Any portion of  any  agreement  or
     2  contract for or in connection with, or any guarantee of or in connection
     3  with  any  layout, installing, repairing, inspecting, testing, maintain-
     4  ing, or demolition of a water-based fire protection  system  between  an
     5  owner  of  real  property or general contractor and the water-based fire
     6  protection contractor wherein any party promises to  indemnify  or  hold
     7  harmless  the  other  party to the agreement, contract, or guarantee for
     8  liability for damages to persons or property caused in part by any  act,
     9  omission,  or default of the indemnitee arising from the contract or its
    10  performance,  shall  be  void  and  unenforceable  unless  the  contract
    11  contains a monetary limitation on the extent of the indemnification that
    12  bears  a  reasonable commercial relationship to the contract and is part
    13  of the project specifications or bid documents, if any.  Notwithstanding
    14  the foregoing, the monetary limitation on the extent of the indemnifica-
    15  tion  provided  to the owner of real property by any party in privity of
    16  contract with such owner shall not be less than one million dollars  per
    17  occurrence,  unless  otherwise  agreed  by  the parties. Indemnification
    18  provisions in any such agreements,  contracts,  or  guarantees  may  not
    19  require  that  the  indemnitor  indemnify  the indemnitee for damages to
    20  persons or property caused by the sole negligence of another  party,  or
    21  in  whole  or  in part by any act, omission, or default of a party other
    22  than:
    23    (a) the indemnitor;
    24    (b) any of the indemnitor's contractors,  subcontractors,  sub-subcon-
    25  tractors,  materialsperson,  or  agents  of any tier or their respective
    26  employees; or
    27    (c) the indemnitee or its officers, directors, agents,  or  employees.
    28  However,  such  indemnification  shall not include claims of, or damages
    29  resulting from gross  negligence,  or  willful,  wanton  or  intentional
    30  misconduct  of  the  indemnitee  or  its  officers, directors, agents or
    31  employees, or for statutory violation or punitive damages except and  to
    32  the  extent the statutory violation or punitive damages are caused by or
    33  result from the acts or omissions  of  the  indemnitor  or  any  of  the
    34  indemnitor's  contractors, subcontractors, sub-subcontractors, material-
    35  spersons, or agents of any tier or their respective employees.
    36    2. A construction contract for a public agency or in connection with a
    37  public agency's project may not require one party to indemnify,  defend,
    38  or hold harmless the other party, its employees, officers, directors, or
    39  agents  from  any liability, damage, loss, claim, action, or proceeding,
    40  and any such contract provision is void as against public policy of this
    41  state.
    42    3. This section does not affect any contracts, agreements, or  guaran-
    43  tees  entered into before the effective date of this article but affects
    44  renewals thereof when such renewal takes place after the effective  date
    45  of this article.
    46    4. Water-based fire protection contractors shall be granted sufficient
    47  time  to  inspect  any  perceived construction defect in a building that
    48  they may disprove or accept as in their purview before any legal actions
    49  or suits are brought forth. If such contractor takes responsibility  for
    50  such defect, reasonable time shall be allowed for such contractor or his
    51  or  her  representative to correct such defect without fear of any legal
    52  actions or suit. A water-based fire protection contractor shall  not  be
    53  held liable for economic damages caused by others.
    54    5.  An  owner  has an obligation to install fire protection systems in
    55  compliance with adopted fire protection system standards.

        A. 3272                            17

     1    § 4. This act shall take effect one year after it shall have become  a
     2  law,  provided,  however  that  the  provisions  of section 759-k of the
     3  general business law as added by section three of this act shall  expire
     4  eighteen months after the effective date of this act when upon such date
     5  the provisions of such section shall be deemed repealed. Effective imme-
     6  diately, the addition, amendment and/or repeal of any rule or regulation
     7  necessary  for  the implementation of this act on its effective date are
     8  authorized to be made and completed on or before such effective date.