senate Bill S6893

Amended

Relates to the membership and duties of the board of trustees and the oversight of the executive director and key library executive personnel of the Queens Borough Public Library

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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

  • 26 / Mar / 2014
    • REFERRED TO CITIES
  • 23 / May / 2014
    • AMEND AND RECOMMIT TO CITIES
  • 23 / May / 2014
    • PRINT NUMBER 6893A
  • 05 / Jun / 2014
    • AMEND AND RECOMMIT TO CITIES
  • 05 / Jun / 2014
    • PRINT NUMBER 6893B

Summary

Relates to the membership and duties of the board of trustees and the oversight of the executive director and key library executive personnel of the Queens Borough Public Library.

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Bill Details

Versions:
S6893
S6893A
S6893B
Legislative Cycle:
2013-2014
Current Committee:
Senate Cities
Law Section:
Queens County
Laws Affected:
Amd §3, add §§3-A, 4-a, 9-b & 9-c, Chap 164 of 1907

Sponsor Memo

BILL NUMBER:S6893

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend chapter 164 of the laws of 1907
relating to the incorporation of the Queens Borough Public Library, in
relation to the membership and duties of the board of trustees and the
oversight of the executive director and key library executive
personnel

PURPOSE OR GENERAL IDEA OF BILL: Alters the terms by which the Queens
Borough Public Library Trustees serve from five years to two, provides
for the removal of Trustees for cause by the appointing authorities,
and requires that Trustees either be residents of the borough of
Queens or own or operate a business in the borough of Queens. Also,
reforms the committee structure by which the Board of Trustees
oversees the executive director and other library personnel.

SUMMARY OF SPECIFIC PROVISIONS: Section 1 of the bill amends Section
164 of the laws of 1907 relating to the Queens Borough Public Library
altering the length of term per trustee to two years and creating a
process whereby a trustee can be removed from the board for cause with
the consent of both appointing parties.

Chapter 164 of the laws of 1907 is also amended by adding sections
4-a, 9-b, and 9-c. Sections 9-a and 9-b require the alteration of the
committee structure by which the board of trustees oversees the Queens
Borough Public Library. These sections require the creation of an
audit committee to oversee the library's accounting and financial
reporting process, the creation of a labor committee to address labor
issues and the contracting out of services, the abolishment of the
administrative committee, and the creation of an executive committee
to take on the essential functions or duties of the administrative
committee.

JUSTIFICATION: Recently, a number of issues have come to light
regarding the Queens Borough Public Library's ("QBPL") executive
director's salary, gaudy spending and the lack of proper oversight by
the Board of Trustees. Good governance and a well administered Board
of Trustees is crucial to an efficient and transparent library system.
The reforms detailed in this bill will improve the Board's oversight
and governance of the institution moving forward by restructuring the
board of trustees and its main governing committee. The bill also
requires several "best practice" reforms that include the creation of
an audit committee and a labor relations committee, the requirement
that key QBPL staff file financial disclosure forms, limiting the
outside employment of key QBPL staff and requiring QBPL Board of
Trustee approval of key QBPL staff before they are hired.

PRIOR LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: New Bill.

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: None to the State.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately after it
becomes law.

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

                                  6893

                            I N  S E N A T E

                             March 26, 2014
                               ___________

Introduced  by Sen. GIANARIS -- read twice and ordered printed, and when
  printed to be committed to the Committee on Cities

AN ACT to amend chapter 164 of the laws of 1907 relating to the incorpo-
  ration of the Queens  Borough  Public  Library,  in  relation  to  the
  membership  and  duties  of the board of trustees and the oversight of
  the executive director and key library executive personnel

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

  Section  1.  Section  3 of chapter 164 of the laws of 1907 relating to
the incorporation of the Queens Borough Public Library,  as  amended  by
chapter 561  of the laws of 2002, is amended to read as follows:
  S 3. The corporation shall organize by the adoption of by-laws and the
election  of officers. The by-laws shall provide for the terms of office
of the trustees of the corporation, not to exceed  the  period  of  five
years,  PROVIDED,  THAT  TRUSTEES  APPOINTED ON OR AFTER JANUARY 1, 2015
SHALL BE APPOINTED FOR A PERIOD OF TWO YEARS, excepting that the  mayor,
comptroller, public advocate and speaker of the city council of the city
of  New  York  and  the president of the borough of Queens, shall at all
times be members of the board ex-officio AND SUCH EX-OFFICIO MEMBERS MAY
DESIGNATE A REPRESENTATIVE TO SERVE EX-OFFICIO IN HIS OR HER PLACE.  The
trustees shall hereafter be  chosen  and  vacancies  occurring  in  such
office  filled by an appointment which shall alternate between the mayor
of the city of New York and the president  of  the  Borough  of  Queens;
PROVIDED,  HOWEVER, THAT TRUSTEES MUST BE EITHER A RESIDENT OF QUEENS OR
OWN OR OPERATE A BUSINESS IN  QUEENS;  AND  PROVIDED  FURTHER  THAT  THE
APPOINTING  PARTY  SHALL  NOTIFY  THE  OTHER APPOINTING PARTY OF WHO WAS
APPOINTED. THE APPOINTING PARTY SHALL BE AUTHORIZED TO REMOVE A  TRUSTEE
WHOM  SUCH PARTY APPOINTED IF, IN ACCORDANCE WITH THE BY-LAWS ADOPTED BY
THE CORPORATION, THERE IS  REASONABLE  CAUSE  FOR  SUCH  REMOVAL.    THE
APPOINTING  PARTY  SHALL NOT BE REQUIRED TO OBTAIN A RECOMMENDATION FROM
THE BOARD TO REMOVE A TRUSTEE WHICH SUCH PARTY  APPOINTED.    A  TRUSTEE
SUBJECT  TO  REMOVAL  SHALL  HAVE AN OPPORTUNITY TO SUBMIT A RESPONSE OR
APPEAL TO ANY CAUSE FOR REMOVAL TO THE APPOINTING PARTY AND THE APPOINT-
ING PARTY SHALL REVIEW THE REASON FOR REMOVAL AND ANY RESPONSE SUBMITTED

 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD14219-04-4

S. 6893                             2

TO THE PARTY PRIOR TO THE REMOVAL OF SUCH PERSON. WHEN THE BOARD  RECOM-
MENDS  REMOVAL,  THE  TRUSTEE  SUBJECT  TO  REMOVAL  MAY  APPEAL TO BOTH
APPOINTING PARTIES AND EITHER APPOINTING PARTY MAY  REMOVE  THE  TRUSTEE
WHERE  SUFFICIENT  CAUSE  IS  FOUND.  WHEN ONE OF THE APPOINTING PARTIES
RECOMMENDS REMOVAL OF A TRUSTEE, SUCH APPOINTING PARTY MUST PROVIDE  THE
SUBJECT  TRUSTEE  WITH  NOTICE  AND  AN OPPORTUNITY TO APPEAL, PROVIDED,
HOWEVER, THAT THE TRUSTEE SUBJECT TO REMOVAL BY AN APPOINTING  BODY  MAY
SUBMIT  A  WRITTEN APPEAL TO BOTH APPOINTING PARTIES FOR REVIEW AND BOTH
PARTIES MUST AGREE ON REMOVAL FOR SUCH REMOVAL TO  BE  EFFECTIVE.    The
corporation  shall  have  power from time to time to make such rules and
regulations as the trustees thereof shall judge proper  for  the  accom-
plishment  of  the objects of the corporation, for the election of offi-
cers, for  prescribing  their  respective  functions  and  the  mode  of
discharging  the  same,  for  imposing  and  collecting  dues, fines and
contributions, for regulating the times  and  places  of  meetings,  and
generally  for  the management and direction of the affairs and concerns
of the said corporation. The trustees shall have absolute control of the
expenditure of all moneys appropriated by the city of New York  for  the
maintenance  of  libraries  conducted,  or to be conducted by the corpo-
ration in the borough of Queens, and shall have the power to appoint and
fix the salaries of such officers  and  employees  as  they  shall  deem
necessary, who, unless employed under special contract, shall hold their
offices  during  the  pleasure  of  the  trustees,  but no trustee shall
receive compensation as such, and the authority of the  trustees  to  so
make  and  regulate  expenditures  for  maintenance,  and their right to
select, employ, fix salaries and discharge employees, shall be  absolute
under  this act, any acts of the legislature of the state of New York to
the contrary notwithstanding.
  S 2. Chapter 164 of the laws of 1907 relating to the incorporation  of
the  Queens  Borough  Public  Library  is  amended  by  adding three new
sections 4-a, 9-b and 9-c to read as follows:
  S 4-A. A. THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR AND KEY LIBRARY  EXECUTIVE  PERSONNEL
SHALL COMPLY WITH FINANCIAL DISCLOSURE REQUIREMENTS WHEN PUBLIC MONEY IS
USED  TO  FUND STAFF SALARIES. FOR THE PURPOSES OF THIS SECTION, "PUBLIC
MONEY" SHALL MEAN MONEY FROM THE STATE OR COUNTY OR A TOWN, VILLAGE,  OR
CITY.  THE  BOARD  OF  TRUSTEES  SHALL ADOPT BY-LAWS REQUIRING MANDATORY
ANNUAL FINANCIAL DISCLOSURES FROM THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR AND  OTHER  KEY
LIBRARY EXECUTIVE PERSONNEL.
  B.  THE  BOARD  OF  TRUSTEES SHALL ADOPT BY-LAWS LIMITING THE TYPE AND
EXTENT OF EMPLOYMENT THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR AND ANY KEY  LIBRARY  EXECU-
TIVE  PERSONNEL  MAY ENGAGE IN OTHER THAN HIS OR HER EMPLOYMENT WITH THE
LIBRARY. SUCH BY-LAWS SHALL REQUIRE THE EXECUTIVE DIRECTOR AND  THE  KEY
LIBRARY  EXECUTIVE  PERSONNEL TO REPORT ANY EMPLOYMENT OTHER THAN HIS OR
HER EMPLOYMENT WITH THE LIBRARY TO  THE  BOARD  OF  TRUSTEES  AND  SHALL
REQUIRE THE BOARD TO APPROVE SUCH EMPLOYMENT.
  C.  THE  BOARD  OF TRUSTEES SHALL ADOPT BY-LAWS REGARDING THE APPROVAL
FOR HIRING AND ESTABLISHING POLICIES FOR THE COMPENSATION OF KEY LIBRARY
EXECUTIVE PERSONNEL.
  S 9-B. THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES SHALL APPOINT:
  A. AN AUDIT COMMITTEE WHICH SHALL OVERSEE THE LIBRARY'S ACCOUNTING AND
FINANCIAL REPORTING PROCESSES AND ANNUAL  AUDITS.  THE  AUDIT  COMMITTEE
SHALL  RETAIN  AN  AUDITOR,  REVIEW THE SCOPE AND PLANNING OF ALL AUDITS
WITH THE AUDITOR AND REVIEW AND DISCUSS THE RESULTS. THE AUDIT COMMITTEE
SHALL CONSIDER THE AUDITOR'S PERFORMANCE  AND  INDEPENDENCE  AND  REPORT
ANNUALLY ON THE AUDITOR'S ACTIVITIES TO THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES.

S. 6893                             3

  B. AN EXECUTIVE COMMITTEE WHICH SHALL BE COMPRISED OF A REPRESENTATIVE
CROSS-SECTION  OF  THE  BOARD  OF  TRUSTEES. THE BOARD OF TRUSTEES SHALL
ABOLISH THE ADMINISTRATIVE COMMITTEE  AND  ANY  ESSENTIAL  FUNCTIONS  OR
DUTIES  OF  SUCH COMMITTEE SHALL BE TRANSFERRED TO THE EXECUTIVE COMMIT-
TEE.
  C. A LABOR RELATIONS COMMITTEE TO ADDRESS LABOR ISSUES AND OVERSEE THE
CONTRACTING OUT OF SERVICES.
  S  9-C.  THE  BOARD  OF TRUSTEES SHALL ESTABLISH BY-LAWS PROHIBITING A
PERSON WITH A CONFLICT OF INTEREST FROM BEING PRESENT AT OR  PARTICIPAT-
ING  IN  ANY  DELIBERATIONS  OR  VOTING ON THE MATTER GIVING RISE TO THE
CONFLICT. THE BY-LAWS SHALL ALSO PROHIBIT THE PERSON WITH  THE  CONFLICT
FROM  IMPROPERLY  INFLUENCING THE DELIBERATION OR VOTING ON SUCH MATTER.
ANY CONFLICTS OF INTEREST BROUGHT TO THE ATTENTION OF THE BOARD OF TRUS-
TEES OR THE AUDIT COMMITTEE SHALL BE DOCUMENTED IN THE  MINUTES  OF  ANY
MEETING AT WHICH SUCH CONFLICT WAS DISCUSSED.
  S  3. The board of trustees of the Queens Borough Public Library shall
engage an outside consultant with the requisite expertise to conduct and
complete a comprehensive executive compensation study within ninety days
of the date this act shall have become a law. Such study shall  include,
but not be limited to, a review of acceptable fringe benefits, including
car allowances and tuition reimbursements.
  S 4. This act shall take effect immediately.

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