TO SEARCH this database type in a word or phrase in the box in the upper left and any material containing the word or phrase will be displayed for your review.
Also, §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 typically follows this protocol.
November 18, 2010
Employee dismissed for altering the value of his paycheck
Local 375 v NYC Health & Hospital Corp., 257 AD2d 530
Jose Hernandez was charged with changing a “3” on his pay check into an “8,” “significantly enhancing the putative value of the check.” Hernandez explained that the change was caused by his inadvertent “doodling.”
A disciplinary arbitrator found him guilty of altering the value of the amount of the check payable to him, concluding that “Hernandez’s consistent conduct [with respect to attempting to cash the check or have it reissued in the “forged amount”] evinced an effort to benefit from an alteration concededly made by him.” Hernandez was terminated and his union, Local 375, appealed.
A State Supreme Court justice, finding some inconsistencies in the arbitrator’s findings and that criminal charges concerning the same allegations had been dismissed,* vacated the award on the grounds that the arbitrator had exceed her authority.
The Appellate Division reversed and reinstating the arbitrator’s determination. It noted that Section 7511 of the Civil Practice Law and Rules allows an arbitration award to be vacated only in situations such as “fraud, corruption or bias of the arbitrator” or a procedural violation by the arbitrator, or in the event the arbitrator exceeds his or her authority, none of which were present here.
The court said that it found no basis to set the arbitration award aside “notwithstanding the explainable absence of the check and some possible inconsistencies in the arbitrator’s findings.** It commented that the lower court’s conclusions “amount to no more than impermissible second-guessing these factual findings.”
* In Kelly v. Levin, 440 NYS2d 424, the court ruled that is reversible error for an administrative disciplinary body to acquit an employee if the individual has been found guilty of a criminal act involving the same allegations. In contrast, an individual may be found guilty of charges in an administrative disciplinary hearing notwithstanding the fact that he or she may have been acquitted of criminal charges involving the same allegations. The reason for this is that the standard of proof required to prove guilt in a criminal proceeding is more rigorous than that in an administrative disciplinary proceeding. In a criminal case, the standard is “proof beyond a reasonable doubt” while in an administrative disciplinary action the standard of proof is the less demanding “substantial evidence” test. In an administrative proceeding, “substantial evidence” will support a finding that the individual is guilty of the disciplinary charge or charges. In some case, however, the standard used to determine guilt applied in an administrative disciplinary action is the even less demanding “preponderance of the evidence” test [see Martin v Ambach, 67 NY2d 975].
** Criminal charges had been filed against Hernandez. The altered check, however, “was destroyed in the normal course of events” by the District Attorney after forgery charges brought against him were dismissed and thus the item could not be introduced as evidence at the disciplinary administrative hearing.
Public Personnel Law E-books
The Discipline Book - A concise guide to disciplinary actions involving public employees in New York State set out in a 700 page e-book. For more information click on http://booklocker.com/books/5215.html
A Reasonable Disciplinary Penalty Under the Circumstances - A 442-page e-book focusing on determining an appropriate disciplinary penalty to be imposed on an employee in the public service in instances where the employee has been found guilty of misconduct or incompetence. Now available in two formats - as a large, paperback print edition and as an e-book. For more information click on
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
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
SELECTED REFERENCES and BLOGS
- A Handbook addressing disciplining public employees
- A Handbook focusing on imposing reasonable disciplinary penalties
- A Handbook focusing on layoff and reinstatement
- A Handbook on Disability Benefits for public employees
- A sample personnel handbook
- Blogging Civil Rights Law
- Blogging Constitutional Law
- Blogging Disability Law
- Blogging Education Law
- Blogging Human Rights Law
- Blogging Legal Information
- Blogging Military Law
- Blogging public libraries
- Challenging Adverse Personnel Decisions
- COVID-19 - New York State maps and data
- Delaware Employment Law Blog
- Gotham schools newsroom - A NYC school news blog
- New York City ERS blog - by John Murphy
- NY Municipalities - NYMUNIBLOG
- St. Lawrence County Civil Service Web Site
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.
THE MATERIAL ON THIS WEBSITE IS FOR INFORMATION ONLY. AGAIN, REMEMBER THAT 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, 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.