After sitting on the Governor’s desk for 6 months, and after NWIDA wrote her an open letter to sign it, NY Governor Kathy Hochul signed the NY Right to Repair bill and made it law.
This legislation will give consumers and independent shops equal access to the parts and information needed to fix electronic products. Manufacturers will no longer be able to limit part sales and documentation availability to their own repair services, and consumers will have more choice over how they repair their products.
“New York leads the nation again—today, the United States’ first right to repair bill, the Digital Fair Repair Act, was signed into law—putting consumers first, leveling the playing field for independent repair shops, and reducing our e-waste footprint on the environment,” said bill sponsor Assemblymember Patricia Fahy of Albany.
The law applies to virtually all electronic equipment that manufacturers can repair through existing service channels. It does exclude some sectors but NOT wireless phones, tablets or watches.
Gay Gordon-Byrne, New Yorker and Executive Director of the Repair Association, said, “This is a great day for New York and the world. New York has stood up to the biggest of the big tech oligarchs and delivered a resounding blow to block their repair monopolies. This war for repair access is being fought around the world, and this first victory is historic.”
Unfortunately, it’s not the exact same bill that was sent to the Governor. After extensive lobbying by electronics manufacturers Governor Hochul made changes that weakened the language of the original bill. The revised language excludes enterprise electronics relied on by schools, hospitals, universities, and data centers. It also excludes products that consumers already own and applies only to newly manufactured devices.
Kyle Wiens of iFixit stated:
Similarly, we expect manufacturers to adapt quickly to apply the New York law nationwide by posting service documentation online and selling repair parts. So far this year, Apple, Google, Valve, and Samsung have rolled out parts programs that will help them comply with this new law.
This law will apply to all products sold after July 1, 2023.—
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One comment on “NY Passes Right to Repair Law”
Addison SnyderDecember 29, 2022 at 9:40 am
This bill was actually neutered by the Governor and the language was changed last minute and:
“eliminates the bill’s original requirement calling for original equipment manufacturers to provide to the public any passwords, security codes or materials to override security features, and allows for original equipment manufacturers may provide assemblies of parts rather than individual components when the risk of improper installation heightens the risk of injury” (src: https://pbs.twimg.com/media/FlHtbaRWAAEdwdv?format=jpg&name=large)
Using this change, companies will justify not giving anything useful with that justification (because you could burn yourself soldering a chip! Ooh, scary!). Instead, you’ll see manufacturers sell large assemblies of products that make for non-economically viable repairs. Think screen assemblies (including webcams, housing, etc) instead of LCDs, or whole $900 motherboards instead of the $20 chip. Battery “assemblies” for $200 instead of the battery itself, which likely would cost more like $40.
Point is, there is a reason it sat on her desk for 6 months after being passed 147-2 in the assembly and 59-4 in the senate. There is a reason that THE DAY it would have been an overrideable pocket veto it was absolutely destroyed. There is a reason that the changes happened on holiday season.. I plead that constituents read more into this and consider what went on here.