Wednesday, July 15, 2015

Advisory opinions of the New York City Corporation Counsel



Advisory opinions of the New York City Corporation Counsel
2015 NY Slip Op 05887, Appellate Division, First Department

In this action a
trustee [Trustee] on the Police Pension Fund (PPF) Board of Trustees sought a court order prohibiting the New York City Corporation Counsel from providing statutory interpretation and legal direction to the New York City Police Pension Fund Medical Board regarding the application of Administrative Code of City of NY §13-254. §13-254 sets out a mechanism for a police officer retired on disability to be reexamined by the Medical Board with an eye toward returning to City employment, either at the pensioner's own request or by application of the Board of Trustees.

The Appellate Division said that the Medical Board is the Corporation Counsel’s client and that such a communication falls well within his broad duty to "conduct all the law business of the city and its agencies,” rejecting Petitioner's argument that such communication was barred by attorney-client privilege attaching to either the Board of Trustees or Trustee individually.

Further, said the court, the Board of Trustees is empowered to differ with its counsel on matters of statutory interpretation and reach its own position on such questions, citing Seiferheld v Kelly, 16 NY3 561.

In the words of the court, "… the trustees should weigh the advice of the City's Law Department in deciding the question, but the decision is theirs, subject to appropriate judicial review."

The decision is posted on the Internet at:

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/

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