Democrat Gov. Andrew Cuomo is stalling on signing an elevator safety bill that New York State lawmakers passed in June, lawmakers said Sunday.
The urgency for the bill’s passing comes after a 30-year-old Manhattan man died in a freak accident on Thursday, where the elevator in his Third Avenue apartment gave way when he stepped out of the cab and crushed him between the cab and the shaft.
The cause for Sam Waisbren’s death is still under investigation, but lawmakers say there needs to be more regulation in the industry.
“It’s critically important that this gets signed into law,” State Sen. Diane Savino (D–Brooklyn/Staten Island), who sponsored the bill in her chamber, told the New York Post. “It’s important for the people who work on the elevators and the safety of [those] who ride on them.”
The bill, which state lawmakers passed in June, would require elevator mechanics to go through an extra step to prove their qualifications before obtaining an elevator mechanic’s license for the first time.
“It won’t, unfortunately, change anything in terms of this recent tragedy,” bill co-sponsor State Sen. Brad Hoylman (D–Manhattan) said of the legislation. “But I think it shines a light on how something as commonplace as getting into an elevator can be a roll of the dice in some buildings.”
Cuomo’s office said it is waiting for state lawyers to look at the fine print of the legislation before he signs it.
“This is one of more than 900 bills that passed both houses at the end of session, and while it hasn’t been sent to us yet, it remains under review by Counsel’s office,” a Cuomo spokesman said.