NYS Says Printers Who are Vendors or Suppliers to an “Essential Business” are Exempt from Employment Reduction Provisions – With Conditions

New York State says printers who are vendors or suppliers to an “Essential Business”​ are exempt from employment reduction provisions- with conditions

Some good news anyway!

Over the past few days we have been working with a variety of companies in New York State, New Jersey, and Pennsylvania, all dealing with their states designating “essential business” lists and issuing orders for companies deemed non-essential to close their operations. Pennsylvania issued a blanket order that would have required all printing businesses to close that was quickly rescinded after decisive action by our sister organization, the Graphic Arts Association. New Jersey recognized the importance of their printing industry and designated printing as “essential” from the get-go.

New York State designated printing as non-essential but provided a process where companies could appeal and be placed on the “essential” list.

We worked with a number of companies in assisting with preparation of their waiver application. I was really taken by the volume of work that these companies performed that was directly connected to essential activities including food and pharma packaging, door hangers with COVID-19 instructions, sanitizing instructions, information on home banking, election printing, printing for the GPO and DOD, and much more. All kinds of really important materials are produced here in NYS. That’s why I was really surprised when some of the waiver requests were denied. We started to help the companies with appeals and began a campaign with New York state for a blanket ruling of “essential” for printing.

That’s why I was particularly happy yesterday to review a recently released FAQ document. One of the questions perfectly clarifies this issue for our industry. 

QUESTION: What if my business is NOT an “Essential Business” listed on ESD’s guidance but provides services, materials, supplies or other support to an Essential Business?

ANSWER: If your firm is a vendor, supplier or provides other support to an Essential Business that is required for the Essential Business’s operation, then your business is exempt from the employment reduction provisions contained in Executive Orders 202.8. However, only those employees necessary to support the Essential Business are exempt from the employment reduction requirements of Executive Orders 202.8 and your business is still required to utilize telecommuting or work from home procedures to the maximum extent possible.

What This Means 

  • Companies who are providing printing or other support to an Essential Business that are required for the Essential Business’s operation are exempt from the employment reduction provisions contained in the Governor’s Executive Order 202.8. (View EO 202.8)
  • Only employees necessary to produce the work for the Essential Business are exempt from the employment reduction requirements,
  • You are still required to utilize telecommuting/work from home as much as possible.

You should review the full list of “essential businesses” to determine other customers that may qualify you. The full list is here.

You can review the full list of FAQs here.

We are continuing to pursue a blanket designation for printing to be deemed essential in New York State. You can write Governor Cuomo, your elected state representatives and Empire State Development using the sample letters we have prepared in PIA’s Legislative Action Center.

Please do not hesitate to contact Print & Graphic Communications Association with your questions and concerns.

Timothy Freeman
Print & Graphic Communications Association
Phone- 716-691-3211
cel – (716) 983-3826



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