TO RESEARCH NYPPL POSTINGS type in your key word in the box at the upper left and tap enter.


Are you an author looking for a publisher? If so, click on http://www.abuzzpress.com for details.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Nepotism and public employment in New York State

Nepotism and public employment in New York State
Public Officers Law §73.14 (a)

New York State Inspector General Joseph Fisch alleges the New York State Theatre Institute’s (NYSTI) Producing Director, Patricia Snyder, has engaged in nepotism* by “routinely [hiring] members of her immediate family for NYSTI productions” while Attorney General Andrew Cuomo has alleged that a State Senator, Pedro Espada, Jr., had engaged in nepotism by employing a relative to serve as a special assistant when he took office.

Public Officers Law §73.14 (a) provides as follows:

No statewide elected official, state officer or employee, member of the legislature or legislative employee may participate in any decision to hire, promote, discipline or discharge a relative for any compensated position at, for or within any state agency, public authority or the legislature.

The New York State Commission on Public Integrity, charged with interpreting, administering, and enforcing the State's ethics laws, has commented that the current definition of the term “relative” for purposes of §73.14 (a) “is confusing and fails to recognize significant relationships that should appropriately be included within the definition.”

To cure this, the Commission has proposed that Public Officers Law §73(1)(m)** be amended to clarify the term “relative” to include blood relatives as well as persons living in the same household that may not share a blood relation.

According to the Commission, as currently written the statute defines a relative as “any person living in the same household as the individual” and includes foreign exchange students, friends and roommates and "direct descendants" of the State Officer or employee grandparents or the spouse of such descendants.

The following relationships, said the Commission, are not “relatives” for the purposes of the statute unless such individuals reside in the state officer’s or employee’s household: foster children, adopted children, step children, “in-law” relatives, and step-relatives.***

The trend in many states, said the Commission, is to define the term “relative” by identifying the actual relationship the term is intended to capture. It recommends that legislation be enacted that would re-define the term “relative” by specifically identifying the blood relationships, and step relationships that fall within its plain meaning, and domestic partner relationships.

NYPPL has set out some court and administrative decisions concerning nepotism at:

http://publicpersonnellaw.blogspot.com/2010/04/state-inspector-general-alleges-that.html


* Although an anti-nepotism policy is generally viewed as barring of the employment of relatives in the same organization, technically nepotism involves an appointing authority appointing others to public positions because of the blood or marital relationship of the individual to the appointing authority. In other words, nepotism does not simply involve the employment of relatives within an organization; it results when the individual is employed within the organization solely because of the influence or authority of his of her relative to effect the employment.

**
Public Officers Law §73(1)(m) currently defines the term “relative" to mean “any person living in the same household as the [State officer or employee] and any person who is a direct descendant of that individual's grandparents or the spouse of such descendant."

*** In its 2008 Annual Report the Commission stated that “The Commission proposal [amending the definition of "relative"] would clarify the term to include blood relatives as well as persons living in the same household that may not share a blood relation. As currently written, said the Commission, the following relationships are not captured by the statute unless such individuals live in the same household: foster children, adopted children, step children, “in-law” relatives, and step-relatives.”

No comments:

Post a Comment

Electronic books [e-books] focusing on New York State and Municipal Public Personnel Law:

The Discipline Book, - a concise guide to disciplinary actions involving public employees in New York State. A 1900+ page e-book. For more information click on http://booklocker.com/books/5215.html

The Layoff, Preferred List and Reinstatement Manual - a 645 page e-book reviewing the relevant laws, rules and regulations, and selected court and administrative decisions. For more information click on http://booklocker.com/books/5216.html

A Reasonable Disciplinary Penalty Under the Circumstances - A 600+ page guide to penalties imposed on public employees in New York State found guilty of selected acts of misconduct. For more information, click on http://booklocker.com/books/7401.html

General Municipal Law§§ 207-a and 207-c - Disability Leave for fire, police and other public sector personnel - a 1098 page e-book focusing on administering General Municipal Law Sections 207-a/207-c and providing benefits thereunder. For more information click on http://booklocker.com/books/3916.html

Caution:

Subsequent court and administrative rulings, or changes to laws, rules and regulations may have modified or clarified or vacated or reversed the decisions summarized here. Accordingly, these summaries should be Shepardized® or otherwise checked to make certain that the most recent information is being considered by the reader.

THE MATERIAL ON THIS WEBSITE IS FOR INFORMATION ONLY. CHANGES IN LAWS, RULES, REGULATIONS AND NEW COURT AND ADMINISTRATIVE DECISIONS MAY AFFECT THE ACCURACY OF THE INFORMATION PROVIDED IN THIS LAWBLOG. THE MATERIAL PRESENTED IS NOT LEGAL ADVICE AND THE USE OF ANY MATERIAL POSTED ON THIS WEBSITE DOES NOT CREATE AN ATTORNEY-CLIENT RELATIONSHIP.

Consistent with the Declaration of Principles jointly adopted by a Committee of the American Bar Association and a Committee of Publishers and Associations, the material in this blog is presented with the understanding that the publisher is not providing legal advice to the reader and in the event legal or other expert assistance is needed, the reader should seek such advice from a competent professional.

Items published in NYPPL may not be used for commercial purposes without prior written permission to copy and distribute such material. Send your request via e-mail to publications@nycap.rr.com

Readers may share material posted in NYPPL with others provided attribution to NYPPL is given.

Copyright© 1987 - 2014 by the Public Employment Law Press.



___________________



N.B. From time to time a political ad or endorsement may appear in the sidebar of this Blog. NYPPL does not have any control over such posting.

_____________________

.