senate Bill S2550

Relates to the hiring of certain legislative employees

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Bill Status


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor
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  • 25 / Jan / 2011
    • REFERRED TO INVESTIGATIONS AND GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS
  • 04 / Jan / 2012
    • REFERRED TO INVESTIGATIONS AND GOVERNMENT OPERATIONS

Summary

Relates to the hiring of certain legislative employees; requires certain non-partisan legislative employees to be hired from a list developed through a competitive examination; includes payroll, accounting, district office operations, supplies, technology, postal services, document printing and distribution, research, media services including the operation and scheduling of recording sessions, personnel services, financial analysis and reporting, state budget analysis and reporting.

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Bill Details

Versions:
S2550
Legislative Cycle:
2011-2012
Current Committee:
Senate Investigations And Government Operations
Law Section:
Legislative Law
Laws Affected:
Add §8-a, amd §§7-a & 7-b, Leg L
Versions Introduced in 2009-2010 Legislative Cycle:
S2596

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S2550

TITLE OF BILL:
An act
to amend the legislative law, in relation to hiring of certain
non-partisan legislative employees

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL:
To allow for the hiring of administrative and non-policy staff of the
Legislature through a qualifications and exam based process rather
than a political process.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS:
The legislation requires the establishment of a list of employee
titles for employees who work outside of the offices of the Members
of the Legislature and outside of Committee staff. Job descriptions
and qualifications would then be determined for the employees (who
work outside of Member or Committee offices).

Examples of positions effected include positions in payroll, postal
services, accounting, printing, technology, media services, research,
financial analysis and reporting, and state budget analysis and
reporting.

Exams would then be developed for these positions by the leaders of
the Legislature, in consultation, where the leaders deem necessary
with the Department of Civil Service. If a position's qualifications
and exams cannot be agreed upon by the Legislative leaders, the
Commissioners of the Department of Civil Service will make the
determination of the qualifications of the job description and
qualifications.

The legislation continues existing employees but requires incumbent
office holders to take and pass, by the end of the third year after
the examination for his or her job is offered, take and score in the
top three for the job he or she holds.

The legislation authorizes employees to join a collective bargaining
association.

EFFECTS OF PRESENT LAW WHICH THIS BILL WOULD ALTER:
Currently employees of the Legislature are hired without an organized
and specific set of qualifications.

JUSTIFICATION:
This legislation would make a substantial number of employees of the
NYS Legislature apolitical. Currently employees in positions which
are non policy oriented are still hired without examination and
without any minimum formal requirements for their job. There is no
Republican or Democratic way to maintain a payroll, install office
furniture, maintain bill files, research factual questions and

issues, and analyze a budget. These jobs are...or should be
non-political.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
S.2596 of 2009: Referred to Investigations & Government Operations

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS:
The sponsor contends this bill would save the State money since hiring
people based upon qualifications rather than political activity or
connections will inherently lead to a more effective and
functional legislature.

EFFECTIVE DATE:
Immediately.

view bill text
                    S T A T E   O F   N E W   Y O R K
________________________________________________________________________

                                  2550

                       2011-2012 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                            January 25, 2011
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sens.  BONACIC,  KRUEGER,  RANZENHOFER -- read twice and
  ordered printed, and when printed to be committed to the Committee  on
  Investigations and Government Operations

AN  ACT  to  amend the legislative law, in relation to hiring of certain
  non-partisan legislative employees

  THE PEOPLE OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK, REPRESENTED IN SENATE AND  ASSEM-
BLY, DO ENACT AS FOLLOWS:

  Section  1.  Legislative  findings.  The  legislature hereby finds and
declares that unnecessary duplication of services between the senate and
assembly is a waste of taxpayer resources and otherwise fails to promote
a form of government which is based on  competency  and  ability  rather
than  political  patronage.  The legislature declares that the state and
its people would be better served if the administrative functions of the
legislature were consolidated and implemented in a  non-partisan  manner
based solely on objective criteria.
  S  2.  The  legislative  law is amended by adding a new section 8-a to
read as follows:
  S 8-A. NON-PARTISAN HIRING OF CERTAIN EMPLOYEES OF THE LEGISLATURE. 1.
THE SPEAKER OF THE ASSEMBLY, MINORITY LEADER OF THE ASSEMBLY,  TEMPORARY
PRESIDENT  OF  THE SENATE AND MINORITY LEADER OF THE SENATE (HEREINAFTER
REFERRED TO AS "THE LEADERSHIP") SHALL, WITHIN NINETY DAYS OF THE EFFEC-
TIVE DATE OF THIS SECTION, JOINTLY DEVELOP A LIST OF ALL EMPLOYEE TITLES
WHICH ARE NOT HIRED UPON THE RECOMMENDATION OF A MEMBER SPECIFICALLY  TO
SERVE IN THAT MEMBER'S OFFICE OR ON THE COMMITTEE STAFF OF ANY COMMITTEE
THAT  MEMBER  IS  THE  CHAIRPERSON  OR  RANKING MINORITY MEMBER OF. SUCH
EMPLOYEE TITLES SHALL  INCLUDE  THOSE  EMPLOYEES  WHO  PERFORM  SERVICES
INCLUDING,  BUT  NOT  LIMITED  TO,  PAYROLL, ACCOUNTING, DISTRICT OFFICE
OPERATIONS, SUPPLIES, TECHNOLOGY, POSTAL SERVICES, DOCUMENT PRINTING AND
DISTRIBUTION, RESEARCH, MEDIA SERVICES INCLUDING THE OPERATION AND SCHE-
DULING OF RECORDING SESSIONS, PERSONNEL SERVICES, FINANCIAL ANALYSIS AND
REPORTING, STATE BUDGET ANALYSIS AND REPORTING.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD01888-01-1

S. 2550                             2

  2. WITHIN ONE HUNDRED EIGHTY DAYS OF THE ADOPTION OF THE LIST PROVIDED
FOR IN SUBDIVISION ONE OF THIS SECTION, THE  SPEAKER,  TEMPORARY  PRESI-
DENT,  AND  MINORITY  LEADERS  SHALL TOGETHER OR THROUGH REPRESENTATIVES
DETERMINE THE JOB DUTIES OF EACH  TITLE  AND  PREPARE  OR  CAUSE  TO  BE
PREPARED  MINIMUM  PROFESSIONAL  QUALIFICATIONS AND COMPETITIVE EXAMINA-
TIONS WHICH SHALL BE UTILIZED TO HIRE CANDIDATES FOR EACH SUCH  POSITION
UPON  SUCH  POSITION'S  BECOMING VACATED. TO THE EXTENT REQUESTED BY THE
SPEAKER, TEMPORARY PRESIDENT, AND EITHER OR BOTH MINORITY  LEADERS,  THE
DEPARTMENT  OF  CIVIL  SERVICE  SHALL ASSIST WITH THE DEVELOPMENT OF THE
QUALIFICATIONS AND EXAMINATIONS. IN THE EVENT AT LEAST THREE OF THE FOUR
MEMBERS OF THE LEADERSHIP CANNOT AGREE ON THE LANGUAGE OF  THE  EXAM  OR
THE  MINIMUM  QUALIFICATIONS,  THE DEPARTMENT OF CIVIL SERVICE SHALL, BY
VOTE OF THE MAJORITY OF THE MEMBERS OF COMMISSIONERS, AFTER  A  HEARING,
MAKE A REASONABLE DETERMINATION OF THE EXAMINATION LANGUAGE AND/OR MINI-
MUM QUALIFICATIONS AS THE CASE MAY BE.
  3. ANY PERSON HIRED TO FILL ANY VACATED POSITION SHALL BE HIRED FROM A
LIST  OF THE TOP THREE SCORES OF THOSE WHO MEET THE MINIMUM PROFESSIONAL
QUALIFICATIONS. SUCH PERSON SHALL BE HIRED BASED ON A VOTE OF THE MAJOR-
ITY OF THE LEADERSHIP. EXAMS SHALL BE GIVEN  AT  LEAST  TWICE  ANNUALLY.
HIRING  SHALL  BE  DONE  ON A NON-PARTISAN MANNER. EMPLOYEES, ONCE HIRED
SHALL BE RETAINED EXCEPT FOR THE ABOLITION OF THE POSITION OR FOR CAUSE.
TO THE EXTENT OTHERWISE PROHIBITED BY LAW, ANY EMPLOYEE  HIRED  PURSUANT
TO THE PROVISIONS OF THIS SECTION OR OTHERWISE HOLDING A TITLED POSITION
COVERED  BY THIS SECTION SHALL BE EXPRESSLY AUTHORIZED TO JOIN AND ENJOY
THE PROTECTIONS OF A COLLECTIVE BARGAINING ORGANIZATION PROVIDED SUCH AN
ORGANIZATION OTHERWISE QUALIFIES TO REPRESENT SUCH EMPLOYEE PURSUANT  TO
APPLICABLE  STATE  LAW  AND  HAVE THEIR SALARIES AND BENEFITS NEGOTIATED
THEREBY.
  4. ANY INCUMBENT WHOSE JOB TITLE IS CONTAINED ON THE LIST PROVIDED FOR
IN THIS SECTION SHALL SIT FOR COMPETITIVE EXAMINATION. ANY INCUMBENT  IN
A  JOB TITLE SHALL BE DEEMED TO MEET THE MINIMUM PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICA-
TIONS SHALL BE RETAINED, UNLESS DISCHARGED FOR CAUSE. PROVIDED,  HOWEVER
THE  INCUMBENT  MUST, BY THE END OF THE THIRD YEAR AFTER THE EXAMINATION
FOR HIS OR HER JOB IS FIRST OFFERED, TAKE THE EXAM AND EARN  A  POSITION
IN  THE  TOP  THREE  AGAINST  THE OTHER INDIVIDUALS WHO SAT FOR THE EXAM
WHICH THE INCUMBENT SAT FOR OR HIS OR HER JOB SHALL TERMINATE AT THE END
OF THE THIRD FULL YEAR AFTER THIS SECTION SHALL HAVE BECOME A LAW.
  5. ANY PREFERENCE UNDER THE CIVIL SERVICE LAW GRANTING PREFERENCES  OR
ADDITIONAL  EXAMINATION POINTS AVAILABLE TO OTHER PUBLIC POSITIONS SHALL
EXIST FOR THESE POSITIONS.
  S 3. The second undesignated paragraph of section 7-a of the  legisla-
tive  law,  as amended by chapter 746 of the laws of 1974, is amended to
read as follows:
  Such library shall be  suitably  furnished,  equipped  and  maintained
under  the  direction of the legislative librarian, within the amount of
any moneys available therefor by appropriation, subject to joint  rules,
if any, that may be adopted by the senate and assembly in relation ther-
eto.  There shall be, for such library, a legislative librarian and such
assistant librarians and other employees as may be provided for  in  the
legislative appropriation bill. Such librarian, assistant librarians and
other  employees  shall  be  chosen  [by  the temporary president of the
senate and speaker of the assembly] IN ACCORDANCE WITH  SECTION  EIGHT-A
OF  THIS ARTICLE.   One of the assistant librarians shall be assigned by
the legislative librarian to have charge of the legislative  correspond-
ents'  room  in  the  capitol.  [The legislative librarian and assistant
librarians heretofore chosen by the president of the senate and  speaker

S. 2550                             3

of the assembly, and in office when this section as hereby amended takes
effect, shall continue to serve until their successors shall be chosen.]
The  salaries  and  compensation of the legislative librarian, assistant
librarians and other employees shall be payable from moneys appropriated
in the legislative appropriation bill. During a vacancy in the office of
legislative librarian, the assistant librarian who shall have been long-
est  in  the  service  of  the state as a legislative employee, shall be
employed as acting legislative librarian with the powers and  duties  of
such  librarian,  and  shall receive during such period the compensation
herein prescribed for the legislative librarian.  Such  librarian  shall
have charge of the legislative library, but the two houses of the legis-
lature  may,  by  joint  rules,  regulate  the  use  of  the library and
prescribe the powers and duties of the  legislative  librarian  and  the
assistant librarians.
  S  4. Subdivision 1 of section 7-b of the legislative law, as added by
chapter 875 of the laws of 1935 and as designated by chapter 867 of  the
laws of 1984, is amended to read as follows:
  1.  There  shall  be a legislative emergency health station, available
for the use of members and employees of both houses of the  legislature,
and  official  reporters of the senate and assembly duly designated upon
certificate  of  the  legislative  correspondent's  association,  to  be
located on the third floor of the state capitol, conveniently accessible
to  the  legislature, and such emergency health station shall be open at
all times while the legislature is in  session.  Such  emergency  health
station  shall  be  suitable and adequately equipped to administer first
aid, within the amount of moneys available  therefor  by  appropriation,
subject  to  joint  rules, if any, that may be adopted by the senate and
assembly in relation thereto and maintained under  the  direction  of  a
nurse  registered under the laws of the state. The nurse provided for in
this section shall be chosen [by the temporary president of  the  senate
and the speaker of the assembly and shall serve until his or her succes-
sor  shall  be chosen in like manner] IN ACCORDANCE WITH SECTION EIGHT-A
OF THIS ARTICLE.  The salary and compensation of  such  nurse  shall  be
payable  monthly  from  moneys appropriated for compensation of officers
and employees of the senate and assembly.
  S 5. This act shall take effect immediately.

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