Landscaper Insurance???

January 25, 2011

Okay, we know there is insurance out there for almost everything. I mean, just last Christmas we learned that you can get insurance in case you fall out of a sleigh. But a lawmaker in Rhode Island has recently filed a bill that would require landscapers to register with the state and carry at least $100,000 in public liability and property damage insurance.

The bill was sponsored the earlier this week by Rhode Island state Senator John J. Tassoni, Jr. (D-Smithfield) who says that the point of it is to “level the playing field” between reputable, upstanding landscaping companies and “fly-by-night” companies that don’t pay taxes. He also claims that since the latter sort of landscaper has no overhead they have a big advantage.

Tassoni also said his state is losing a lot of revenue from income and sales taxes.

A spokeswoman for a taxpayer and business advocacy group known as the Rhode Island Statewide Coalition said that she was concerned that smaller landscaping businesses could be hurt by the bill’s requirements.

What I want to know is, what are they defining as a “landscaping business?” Will the teenager who mows someone’s lawn for $20 have to find the cash to buy $100,000 in insurance if this bill passes?