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State of New York vs. COVID-19 - Governor Andrew M. Cuomo periodically updates New Yorkers on the state's progress during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. The latest reports of the number of new cases, the percentage of tests that were positive and many other relevant data points concerning COVID-19 are available at

N.B. §22 of the New York State's General Construction Law, in pertinent part, provides that “Whenever words of the masculine or feminine gender appear in any law, rule or regulation, unless the sense of the sentence indicates otherwise, they shall be deemed to refer to both male or female persons.” NYPPL applies this protocol to individuals referred to in a decision self-identifying as LGBTQA+.

February 4, 2010

At-will employee not entitled to a pre-termination hearing

At-will employee not entitled to a pre-termination hearing
Matter of Dorsey v Herkimer County Community Coll., 61 AD3d 1380

Janet Evelyn Dorsey was employed by the Herkimer County Community College in a series of annual and biyearly appointments and did not have a continuing appointment or other tenure status with the College.

Herkimer terminated Dorsey’s employment following allegations of misconduct asserted against her by another employee. Dorsey sued, seeking a court order [1] annulling her dismissal and [2] directing the college to conduct a pre-termination hearing as a condition precedent to her being terminated from her employment.

Supreme Court granted her petition and the College appealed.

The Appellate Division vacated Supreme Court’s order, ruling that Dorsey had no guarantee of employment and the College “had not relinquished its right to terminate [her] without notice and hearing.” The court said that Dorsey’s status with Herkimer was that of “an at-will employee” and thereby it could suspend or dismiss her from employment without a hearing and without a statement of reasons in the absence of proof that the dismissal was for “a constitutionally impermissible purpose or contrary to statutory or decisional law.”

The court said that Dorsey had not presented any evidence that her termination was for “a constitutionally impermissible purpose or contrary to statutory or decisional law."In addition, said the Appellate Division, there is no provision in the College’s employee handbook that prohibits it from suspending or terminating an employee without first conducting a hearing.

Posted pro bono:

Concerning the viral evolution of COVID-19: Science Magazine e-Letter had posted NYPPL's Science Consultant Robert Michaels' item concerning "Viral evolution may herald new pandemic phase.” Click here to read Dr. Michaels' comments.

Paid Family Leave Webinars for Employers and HR Professionals -- Webinars are offered by the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board. Sign up for a free session to be held on Tuesday, February 9, 2021: 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. or Tuesday, March 2, 2021: 12:00 p.m. - 1:00 p.m. Submit your required registration form by clicking: Registration

Wild Thoughts by Julia Randall. A three-part series on wilderness ethics and management offers a comprehensive review of wilderness as a legal concept, an ecological condition and as a cultural phenomenon. Click on the following links to access Part I, What is Wilderness; Part II, For Whom Does Wilderness Exist?; and Part III, Wilderness and a Livable World. Ms. Randall's StoryMap can be found on the Adirondack Council’s website at:

Combating on the job misbehavior: An “app” (the #NotMe app) employers can make available to their personnel permitting the easy and timely submission of complaints of alleged supervisor or co-worker misconduct to personnel officers, human resource teams, compliance officers or designated individuals. Click on for information concerning this program.

Sexual Harassment is a form of unlawful discrimination: New York State's Internet guidelines addressing employer obligations to combat sexual harassment in the workplace is at:

The Steel Bar is the epic story of the rise and fall and rebirth of the Pittsburgh lawyer, from the earliest days of the Pittsburgh bar to the modern era, against the backdrop of American history." More at

Contaminants of Emergent Concern was discussed by Dr. Robert A. Michaels [] at the New York State Bar Association, Energy and Environmental Law Section on January 31, 2020. Dr. Michaels' remarks are posted for viewing/downloading at no charge at the following URL: Other articles addressing environmental issues by Dr. Michaels are posted on on the Internet at:

Ransomware continues assault against cities and businesses - take a look at the most recent attacks, how US and international cities have handled them, and advice for dealing with the aftermath. Keep reading.

Social Effects and Outcomes of Identity and ID Programs - Download this impact report that details research, use cases and tips for creating a successful municipal and government ID program to better transact with citizens by clicking here: Government ID Impact Report

New technology assists local governments to better serve its residents by using new technologies to save money, communicate with residents and allow taxpayers to make payment. Click here to download a report released on September 16, 2019 by New York State Comptroller Thomas P. DiNapoli.

Governing Daily has posted a link to an item, How to Prevent Job Loss in the Public Sector, noting that when budgets get slashed and hiring comes to a halt, municipalities need a way protect their most valuable resources – people and finances. [Content provided by CentralSquare Technologies.] Click here to LEARN MORE

A CyberCemetery: The University of North Texas Libraries and the U.S. Government Printing Office, as part of the Federal Depository Library Program, created a partnership to provide permanent public access to the Internet sites and publications of defunct U.S.government agencies and commissions. Named the "CyberCemetery" by early users of the site, information about the collection is posted on the Internet at:; the latest additions to the collection are posted at:

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Subsequent court and administrative rulings, or additions or amendments to laws, rules and regulations may have modified or clarified or vacated or reversed or otherwise have had an impact on 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.



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 New York Public Personnel Law is presented with the understanding that the publisher, editor, contributors or members of the staff are not providing legal advice to the reader and in the event legal or other expert assistance is needed, the reader is advised to seek such advice from a competent professional.