Monday, March 11, 2013

Disqualification of applicant unable to meet Civil Service Commission’s hearing requirements not unlawful discrimination under the State’s Human Rights Law


Disqualification of applicant unable to meet Civil Service Commission’s hearing requirements not unlawful discrimination under the State’s Human Rights Law

A candidate for the position of a Nassau County police officer filed an Article 78 petition challenging the Nassau County Civil Service Commission’s decision disqualifying him for the position.

Although Supreme Court granted the candidates petition and annulled the Commission’s determination, the Appellate Division reversed the lower court’s ruling and dismissed the candidate’s petition “on the merits.”

The Commission had appealed two rulings by Supreme Court:

The first was procedural: was the candidates Article 78 petition timely. The Commission contended that it was untimely, arguing that the Article 78 action was commenced more that four months after its determination disqualifying the candidate.

The Appellate Division disagreed with the Commission, holding that the candidate’s petition was timely. Noting that CPLR 217(1) specifies that the limitations period begins to run when "the determination to be reviewed becomes final and binding upon the petitioner," the court explained that "An administrative determination becomes final and binding when the petitioner seeking review has been aggrieved by it."

Here, said the Appellate Division, the candidate “was not aggrieved until he was notified that he was disqualified from further consideration” for failing to meet its hearing requirements.

The second issue concerned the Commission’s exercise of its discretion when it adopted a more stringent audio logy standard than that established by the State’s Municipal Police Training Commission.

The Appellate Division ruled that the Commission had acted within the scope of its discretionary power when it adopted a resolution which modified the Municipal Police Training Commission standards and did not contravene the procedure for the adoption of "rules" in doing so.

As the appointing authority has wide discretion in determining the fitness of candidates, the disqualification of the petitioner for failing to meet those modified audiological, the court concluded that the modified standard was not arbitrary and capricious.

In addition court noted that the Commission’s determination that the candidate failed to meet the modified Municipal Police Training Commission hearing standards constituted an individualized finding that his disability prevents him from performing the functions of a police officer in a reasonable manner “such that his disqualification did not constitute unlawful discrimination under the State’s Human Rights Law.
The decision is posted on the Internet at:
http://www.nycourts.gov/reporter/3dseries/2013/2013_01404.htm

Handbooks focusing on State and Municipal Public Personnel Law continue to be available for purchase via the links provided below:

The Discipline Book at http://thedisciplinebook.blogspot.com/

Challenging Adverse Personnel Decisions at http://nypplarchives.blogspot.com

The Disability Benefits E-book: at http://section207.blogspot.com/

Layoff, Preferred Lists at http://nylayoff.blogspot.com/

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

Copyright© 1987 - 2017 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.

_____________________

.