Albany wants to give it one more try.

Last week, New York Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and Assembly Members Cathy Nolan and Michele Titus announced the passage of the Paid Family Leave Act. The law would enable workers to maintain employment and still receive some income while on leave to either care for an elderly relative, manage an unexpected medical emergency or bond with a newborn or adopted child.

“The Assembly understands that family comes first,” said Heastie in a statement. “New Yorkers should not have to choose between keeping their jobs and taking care of a sick family member or spending time with a new one.”

Hastie continued, “Through this bill, we uphold our commitment to give families the critical support they need to live healthy, fulfilling lives. When we invest in the health and safety of our families, we invest in the future of New York.”

The Assembly’s bill provides caregivers for sick relatives or new parents three months of paid leave through New York’s temporary disability system and pays workers 45 percent of the average weekly wage in New York. It would also be funded through a payroll deduction tax. The current federal Family Medical Leave Act provides for up to 12 weeks of unpaid leave to care for a sick relative, but not much beyond that.

New York State Democratic Conference Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins praised the Assembly for passing the bill and hoped to eventually get New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s approval.

“The Senate Democratic Conference has long supported this legislation that would provide the most help to New York families,” said Stewart-Cousins in a statement. “Those who provide care for a sick loved one or give a newborn baby the care, time and attention prescribed by doctors should never be punished for doing the right thing. The Senate Democratic Conference remains committed to building a stronger economy by helping our hardworking families and will continue to lead the way on paid family leave.” 

The Cuomo administration is allegedly studying the issue of paid family leave but wants to put together a plan that doesn’t involve the government paying for it. They’re looking to other states whose family leave plans are funded either by employees or by employers and employees together. Cuomo rejected a state Senate proposal on family leave because it involved state funding.

But despite the remaining obstacles, New York Civil Liberties Union Executive Director Donna Lieberman remained happy with the Assembly’s action and looked forward to the future of the bill’s eventual passing in New York.

“Paid family leave is essential to the health and well-being of New York’s workforce, especially those who live paycheck to paycheck and lack job security,” said Lieberman in a publicly released statement. “Today there are more women in the paid workforce than ever before, and many households are headed by single parents. This benefit would ensure that no New Yorker has to choose between the health and economic stability of their family.”