senate Bill S4470

2013-2014 Legislative Session

Enacts the "Higher Education Employment Protection Act"

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Archive: Last Bill Status - In Committee


  • Introduced
  • In Committee
  • On Floor Calendar
    • Passed Senate
    • Passed Assembly
  • Delivered to Governor
  • Signed/Vetoed by Governor

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Actions

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Assembly Actions - Lowercase
Senate Actions - UPPERCASE
Jan 08, 2014 referred to labor
May 21, 2013 reported and committed to finance
Apr 03, 2013 referred to labor

Votes

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May 21, 2013 - Labor committee Vote

S4470
9
3
committee
9
Aye
3
Nay
4
Aye with Reservations
0
Absent
0
Excused
0
Abstained
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Co-Sponsors

S4470 - Bill Details

See Assembly Version of this Bill:
A6635
Current Committee:
Senate Labor
Law Section:
Labor Law
Laws Affected:
Amd ยง590, Lab L
Versions Introduced in Previous Legislative Sessions:
2011-2012: S7393, A6673
2009-2010: A613A

S4470 - Bill Texts

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Enacts the "Higher Education Employment Protection Act"; provides that an offer of employment or assignment made to a part-time faculty employee by a higher education institution which is contingent on enrollment, funding, or programmatic changes shall not constitute reasonable assurance of continued employment.

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BILL NUMBER:S4470

TITLE OF BILL: An act to amend the labor law, in relation to
unemployment insurance benefits for professional employment by certain
education institutions

PURPOSE: This legislation amends the Labor Law to provide that
part-time professional employment in an instructional, research, or
principal administrative capacity with SUNY, CUNY and any public
community college is exempt from those provisions which make
eligibility for unemployment benefits contingent upon the presence or
absence of reasonable assurance of continued employment.

SUMMARY OF PROVISIONS: Subdivision 10 of section 590 of the labor law
is amended by adding language that says any provisions which make
eligibility for benefits contingent upon the presence or absence of
reasonable assurance of continued employment, shall not apply to
part-time professional employment in an instructional, research or
principal administrative capacity with SUNY, CUNY, and any public
community colleges and entitlement of claims shall be determined in
the same manner as is applicable to claimants not employed by
education institutions.

JUSTIFICATION: Unemployment insurance is a benefit that is supposed
to cover workers during times of unemployment when they have no
income. Under current law however, many part-time faculty working in
colleges and universities in New York State are unable to receive
employment insurance when they have become unemployed between
semesters because the college or university holds that they have a
"reasonable assurance" of continuous employment under the provisions
of subdivision 10 of section 590 of the Labor Law. Yet, these
employees who generally work 30 weeks a year are seasonal workers,
like actors, construction workers, diamond, cutters, and furriers, all
of whom are eligible for benefits during periods they are not
employed. These employees have no "reasonable assurance" that they
will have a job when the next semester starts as that decision rests
entirely with the employer and is often based on contingent factors
such as enrollment, funding, and programmatic changes. In many cases,
these employees, are not notified by the college or university that
there is no position for them Until they Are. very close to the start
of the next semester. In fact, current law provides an incentive for
colleges and universities to wait as long as possible to officially
disclose to part-time faculty that they will not be employed for the
upcoming semester to avoid paying unemployment insurance costs, for
those employed between semesters. Part-time faculty are treated
unfairly under the current law as they are only eligible for
unemployment insurance benefits from the time they are officially
notified they are not renewed by the college or university for the
next semester. It is only at this time that they can file a claim to
be eligible for benefits even though they may have been out of work
for months before this notification and have absolutely no control
over their employment. Both the California and Washington State
Legislatures have passed legislation that assures the ability of
part-time professional, employees to collect benefits during periods
when they are not working. This measure will help to ensure that
part-time faculty members are treated equitably under the current law
as other workers who have no reasonable assurance of future


employment. It is certainly reasonable and just to afford these
benefits to part-time faculty who have no control over their contract
employment and therefore have "no reasonable assurance" of employment.

LEGISLATIVE HISTORY: S. 7393 of 2012 Session

FISCAL IMPLICATIONS: To be determined.

EFFECTIVE DATE: This act shall take effect immediately.

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

                                  4470

                       2013-2014 Regular Sessions

                            I N  S E N A T E

                              April 3, 2013
                               ___________

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

AN ACT to amend the labor law, in  relation  to  unemployment  insurance
  benefits for professional employment by certain education institutions

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

  Section 1. This act shall be known and may be  cited  as  the  "Higher
Education Employment Protection Act."
  S  2.  Subdivision  10  of  section 590 of the labor law is amended by
adding a new paragraph (d) to read as follows:
  (D) IN THE CASE OF COLLEGES OR UNIVERSITIES ASSIGNED THE NORTH  AMERI-
CAN INDUSTRY CLASSIFICATION CODE 611310 OR 611210 FOR SERVICES PERFORMED
IN  A  PRINCIPAL,  ADMINISTRATIVE,  RESEARCH OR INSTRUCTIONAL CAPACITY A
PERSON IS PRESUMED NOT TO HAVE REASONABLE ASSURANCE UNDER AN OFFER  THAT
IS CONDITIONED ON ENROLLMENT, FUNDING OR PROGRAMMATIC CHANGES. IT IS THE
EMPLOYER'S  BURDEN  TO PROVIDE SUFFICIENT DOCUMENTATION TO OVERCOME THIS
PRESUMPTION. REASONABLE ASSURANCE MUST BE DETERMINED ON  A  CASE-BY-CASE
BASIS  BY  THE TOTAL WEIGHT OF EVIDENCE RATHER THAN THE EXISTENCE OF ANY
ONE FACTOR. PRIMARY WEIGHT MUST BE GIVEN TO THE CONTINGENT NATURE OF  AN
OFFER  OF  EMPLOYMENT  BASED ON ENROLLMENT, FUNDING AND PROGRAM CHANGES.
PROVIDED, HOWEVER, THAT IN ANY UNEMPLOYMENT INSURANCE PROCEEDING A WRIT-
TEN LETTER FROM AN EMPLOYER TO AN EMPLOYEE WHICH MAKES EMPLOYMENT CONDI-
TIONAL SHALL NOT BE PRIMA FACIE EVIDENCE OF REASONABLE ASSURANCE  TO  BE
USED TO DENY A CLAIM FOR UNEMPLOYMENT.
  S 2. This act shall take effect immediately.



 EXPLANATION--Matter in ITALICS (underscored) is new; matter in brackets
                      [ ] is old law to be omitted.
                                                           LBD00713-01-3

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