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New York Bans Radio, TV Non-Competes

N.Y. gives broadcast non-competes the boot.

New York Governor David Paterson signed a bill that restricts non-compete agreements in the broadcast industry in that state.

The Broadcast Employees Freedom to Work Act bans contract provisions that condition employment based on certain types of “non-compete” agreements such as not allowing broadcasters to take another job in a particular region, with a competitor in the same market, or within a defined period of time. The Governor’s Office said these provisions forced some broadcasters to leave the state to find work and limited others from finding employment in New York — ending some careers.

“With the approval of this bill, we hope to empower broadcasters with greater independence as they pursue employment options,” Paterson said.

AFTRA has been working state-by-state to end non-competes. On its Web site, AFTRA says four states — Arizona, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maine, and the District of Columbia — ban restrictive covenants in the broadcast industry.