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December 26, 2011

Provisional employee loses bid for permanent appointment

Provisional employee loses bid for permanent appointment
Haynes v. Chautauqua County, 55 NY2d 814

In Haynes the court held that reachable for appointment from the eligible list does not serve to give a provisional employee any right to selection for the permanent appointment.

Haynes had been removed from the position about a month following the certification of the list and had sued for reinstatement.

The decision indicated that Section 65.3 of the Civil Service Law permitted termination of a provisional within two months and contrasted the situation with that in Roulett v. Hempstead, 40 AD2d 611, where a provisional employee, eligible for permanent appointment, was retained in the absence of a three name eligible list in excess of the probationary period for the position.

The Court also noted that Haynes did not become a “probationary employee” by operation of law and could be removed without notice and hearing.

In contrast, the Court of Appeals reversed a lower court and held that a provisional employee does have a right to a permanent appointment. In LaSota v. Green, 53 NY2d 491 ruling that unlike Haynes, LaSota, a provisional for more than nine months and first on the eligible list, obtained a permanent appointment by operation of law when he was retained as a provisional after the establishment of the list. 

The distinction here was that in LaSota there was no mandatory list while in Haynes the list consisted of more than three candidates interested in the position. 

Accordingly, in LaSota the provisions of Civil Service Law Section 65.4 rather than 65.3, applied. 

Thus the LaSota determination, although extending Roulett [see 40 AD2d 611], is consistent the determination in Haynes. The Court took special note of the nine-month limitation on provisional appointments contained in Section 65.2 of the Civil Service Law.

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