senate Bill S4824

Allows employers to suspend a police officer without pay pending disciplinary charges

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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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actions

  • 25 / Apr / 2013
    • REFERRED TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT
  • 10 / Jun / 2013
    • COMMITTEE DISCHARGED AND COMMITTED TO RULES
  • 10 / Jun / 2013
    • ORDERED TO THIRD READING CAL.1204
  • 11 / Jun / 2013
    • PASSED SENATE
  • 11 / Jun / 2013
    • DELIVERED TO ASSEMBLY
  • 11 / Jun / 2013
    • REFERRED TO CODES
  • 08 / Jan / 2014
    • DIED IN ASSEMBLY
  • 08 / Jan / 2014
    • RETURNED TO SENATE
  • 08 / Jan / 2014
    • REFERRED TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT
  • 20 / May / 2014
    • 1ST REPORT CAL.884
  • 21 / May / 2014
    • 2ND REPORT CAL.
  • 28 / May / 2014
    • ADVANCED TO THIRD READING
  • 03 / Jun / 2014
    • SUBSTITUTED BY A7018

Summary

Allows employers to suspend a police officer without pay pending disciplinary charges.

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Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A7018
Versions:
S4824
Legislative Cycle:
2013-2014
Law Section:
Town Law
Laws Affected:
Amd §155, Town L
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Cycles:
2011-2012: S5336A, A7761A
2009-2010: S5656, A8507

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S4824

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the town law, in relation to the
employer's ability to suspend a police officer without pay pending
disciplinary charges

PURPOSE: This Legislation would make Town Law consistent with Civil
Service Law and Village Law by limiting the period of suspension of a
police officer without pay pending a hearing on disciplinary charges
to thirty days.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS:

§ 1 - amends section 155 of the Town Law, to require that a town board
shall have the power to suspend, without pay, pending the trial of
charges, any member of such police department in accordance with
section 75(3) of the Civil Service Law.

§ 2 - provides for an immediate effective date.

EXISTING LAW: Section 75 of the Civil Service Law is the default
provision governing the prosecution of disciplinary charges against
the majority public employees in New York State, including police
officers. Many police collective bargaining agreements contain
provisions replacing § 75 with alternative disciplinary procedures
agreed to by the employer and the representative employee
organization. police officers discipline not covered by collective
bargaining agreements can fall under different procedures depending
upon the statute that covers where they are employed.

JUSTIFICATION: Unfortunately, the disciplinary procedures set forth in
these statutes differ significantly. One of the ways in which they
differ is the time period for which an officer may be suspended
without pay prior to the hearing on the charges against the officer.

- Civil Service Law § 75(3) allows for suspension without pay for a
period not to exceed 30 days.

-Village Law § 8-804 limits prehearing suspension without pay to 30
days

-Town Law § 155 allows for suspension without pay pending the trial of
charges for an indefinite period of time.

Police officers employed by Towns face indeterminate suspension
without pay pending disciplinary hearings, which other similarly
situated public employees do not face.

The 30-day limitation provided for by Civil Service Law
75(3)provides for more consistent public policy without unduly
hampering an employer's authority in disciplinary proceedings. Under
all the aforementioned disciplinary procedures, the administration of
disciplinary charges is totally within the control of the municipality
(employer), including who the hearing officer is, when the
disciplinary hearing is to be conducted, when the transcript is
prepared, when and by whom the transcript is review on behalf of the


municipality and when the municipality makes its final determination
based on the hearing officer's recommendation.

By providing a 30-day limitation on pre-hearing suspension without
pay, the municipality realizes that it will resume paying the
officer's salary after 30 days thus providing the municipality the
impetus to keep the process moving in a timely manner. Under Town Law
§ 155 there is no such impetus and has the potential for abuse.

There are good and valid reasons why suspension without pay is limited
to 30 days under various provisions of law and therefore should be
extended to police officers covered by Town Law.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY:
2009 Session: S.5656 referred to Local Governments - no further action
2010 Session: S.5656 referred to Local Governments - no further
action, Same as bill A.8507 passed Assembly in 2009 and 2010 Sessions
2012 Session vetoed by Governor VM 121 - From veto message: "...it
would constrain the ability of a town police department to effectively
manage its workforce when allegations of misconduct arise."; the
sponsor believes that this veto is mistaken or possibly ill-informed,
given that the administration of disciplinary charges are completely
in the control of the employer.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None.

EFFECTIVE DATE: Immediately.

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

                                  4824

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                             April 25, 2013
                               ___________

Introduced  by  Sen.  SAVINO -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Local Government

AN ACT to amend the town law, in relation to the employer's  ability  to
  suspend a police officer without pay pending disciplinary charges

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

  Section 1. The second undesignated paragraph of  section  155  of  the
town  law,  as amended by chapter 310 of the laws of 1962, is amended to
read as follows:
  Any member of such department found guilty upon  charges,  after  five
days'  notice  and an opportunity to be heard in his defense, of neglect
or dereliction in the performance of official duty, or of  violation  of
rules  or  regulations  or  disobedience,  or of incompetency to perform
official duty, or of an  act  of  delinquency  seriously  affecting  his
general  character  or  fitness  for office, may be punished by the town
board having jurisdiction, by reprimand, by forfeiture  and  withholding
of  salary  or  compensation  for  a specified time not exceeding twenty
days, by extra tours or hours of duty  during  a  specified  period  not
exceeding  twenty days, by suspension from duty for a specified time not
exceeding twenty days and the  withholding  of  salary  or  compensation
during  such suspension, or by dismissal from the department. Such board
shall have the power to suspend,  without  pay,  pending  the  trial  of
charges,  any member of such police department IN ACCORDANCE WITH SUBDI-
VISION THREE OF SECTION SEVENTY-FIVE OF THE CIVIL SERVICE LAW.   If  any
member  of such police department so suspended shall not be convicted of
the charges so preferred, he shall be entitled to full pay from the date
of suspension. The conviction of a member of such police  department  by
the  town  board  shall be subject to review by the supreme court in the
judicial district in which such town is located in the  manner  provided
by  article  seventy-eight of the civil practice law and rules, provided
that the proceeding is commenced within thirty days  from  the  determi-
nation of such conviction by the town board.
  S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD10496-01-3

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