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New York State Plan

About the New York State Plan [New York State Plan Website]

The New York State Plan for Public Employee Safety and Health (PESH), by authority under Section 27(a) of the New York Labor Law, is responsible for promoting the health and safety for more than 2 million State and Local government employees in the State. The New York Plan received initial plan approval on June 1, 1984 and certification on August 16, 2006. The New York Department of Labor has been designated as the agency responsible for administering the plan throughout the State. The Commissioner of Labor has full authority to enforce and administer all laws and rules protecting the safety and health of all employees of the State and its political subdivisions. In addition to the plan's enforcement responsibilities, PESH provides free on-site consultation and training services to public sector agencies, upon request.

The PESH Program consists of one central office in Albany, New York and nine district offices located throughout the State: Albany, Binghamton, Syracuse, Utica, Rochester, Buffalo, White Plains, Garden City and New York City.

Jurisdiction

The New York State Plan applies to all public sector employers in the State, including: State, County, Town, and Village governments, as well as Public Authorities, School Districts, and Paid and Volunteer Fire Departments.

Federal OSHA maintains jurisdiction over all private sector workplaces; federal agencies; maritime employers such as shipyards, marine terminals, and longshoring; military facilities; Indian sovereignty workplaces; and the U.S. Postal Service.

Regulations and Standards

States must set job safety and health standards that are "at least as effective" as Federal OSHA standards. States may promulgate standards that are more stringent than the comparable federal standards or promulgate standards covering hazards not addressed by federal standards.

The PESH Program has adopted all Federal OSHA standards and regulations applicable to public sector employment, with the exception of the Recordkeeping Rule, 29 CFR 1904. New York promulgated and adopted an alternative approach to recordkeeping requirements, under section 801 and administrative instructions 901, with respective URL's listed below:

Recordkeeping Forms:

In addition, the New York Plan provides the Commissioner with the authority for the development of alternative and/or State-initiated standards to protect the safety and health of public employees, in consultation with the Hazard Abatement Board, or on his/her own initiative. The procedures for adoption of alternative standards contain criteria for consideration of expert technical advice and allow interested persons to request development of any standard and to participate in any hearing for the development or modification of standards.

As of October 1, 2007, PESH has been engaged in the rulemaking process for two State-initiated standards, as required by legislation passed by the State's Senate and Assembly and signed by the Governor. These two standards and their respective URL web links are as follows:

Enforcement Programs

PESH maintains the Field Operations Manual (FOM) (PDF) which provides policy guidance for its enforcement program. The Enforcement Branch conducts unannounced mandatory inspections which results in a "Notice of Violation and Order to Comply" for hazards and/or violations of OSHA standards. Abatement periods to comply with the violations are established and verification of abatement is required. Violations not complied during the abatement period are subject to a penalty, not exceed $200 per day until compliance is achieved.

Voluntary and Cooperative Programs

PESH offers a number of voluntary and free cooperative programs focusing on reducing injuries, illnesses and fatalities in the public sector, including workplace hazard assessment surveys, training and outreach seminars. All consultation services are conducted separate and apart from enforcement activities. PESH has also created Strategic Work Groups for identified high hazard jobs that work with employers to lower the incidence of injuries to employees. Currently, such groups have focused on the fire service, highway repair and construction, nursing homes and light rail services.

New York State also has an agreement with OSHA, under Section 21(d) of the OSH Act to provide free onsite consultation services to the private sector. For more information on this service, please contact the Onsite Consultation Program at (518) 457-2810.

Policies and Procedures

PESH's Program Directives and Forms

Informal Conferences and Appeals

Under the Plan, public employers and employees may seek formal administrative review of New York Department of Labor citations, including penalties and the reasonableness of abatement periods, by petitioning with the New York Industrial Board of Appeals (IBA) no later than 60 days after the issuance of the citation. The IBA is the independent State agency authorized by Section 27(a) (6) (c) of the New York Act to consider petitions from affected parties for review of the Commissioner of Labor's determinations. A contest does not automatically stay a notice of violation, penalty or abatement date; a stay must be granted by the IBA. Judicial review of any decision of the IBA may be sought pursuant to Article 78 of the New York Civil Practice Law.

Prior to contest, employers, employees and other affected parties may seek informal review of citations, penalties and abatement dates by the Department of Labor by requesting an informal conference in writing within 20 working days from the receipt of the citation. If the informal conference does not produce agreement, the affected party may seek formal administrative review with the IBA.

Public employees or their authorized representatives have the additional right under 12 NYCRR Part 805 (PDF) to contest the abatement period by filing a petition with the Commissioner within 15 working days of the posting of the citation by filing a petition with the Department of Labor, or later if good cause for late filing is shown. If the Commissioner denies the employee contest of abatement period under Part 805 (PDF) in whole or in part, the complaint will automatically be forwarded to the IBA for review. Under the IBA rules, public employees or their representatives may request permission to participate in an employer-initiated review process as "intervenors." The plan includes an April 28, 2006, assurance that should an employee or employee representative request intervenor status in an employer-initiated case, the State will appropriately inform the IBA of its support for the request. Should an employee's or employee representative's request for participation be denied, the State will seek immediate corrective action to guarantee the right to employee party status in employer-initiated cases.

The period fixed in the plan for contesting notices of violation is 60 calendar days, which is significantly longer than the 15 working day period allowed under the Federal OSHA program. However, New York has provided assurance, by Counsel's opinion of March 3, 1984, that it has the authority under Article 78 of the New York Civil Practice Law to obtain judicial enforcement of an uncontested order to comply upon expiration of the abatement period, regardless of whether the 60 day contest period has expired. New York has also assured that should the State Labor Department's interpretation be successfully challenged, appropriate legislative correction would be sought.

Other Resources

The New York State Plan Website contains information pertaining to: Publications, Posters and Forms, including the PESH Act, Job Safety and Health Poster, Complaint Form (PESH 7) and Petition for Modification of Abatement (PMA - Form SH 971).

Contact Information

New York Department of Labor
  • Peter Rivera, Commissioner
  • (518) 457-2746
  • (518) 457-5545
Division of Safety and Health
  • Public Employees Safety and Health (PESH) Bureau
  • Governor W. Averell Harriman State Building Campus
  • Building 12, Room 158
  • Albany, New York 12240
  • (518) 457-1263
  • (518) 457-5545

    Division of Safety and Health (DOSH)
    • Eileen Franko, Acting Director
    • (518) 457-3518
    • (518) 457-5545
    Public Employees Safety and Health Bureau
  • Normand Labbe, Program Manager
  • (518) 457-1263
  • Normand Labbe

Disclaimer

OSHA makes every effort to ensure that the information on this page is accurate and up to date, but changes in state law and procedures affecting the information on this page are beyond OSHA's control. Contact state program staff directly to verify important information.


*Accessibility Assistance: Contact OSHA's Directorate of Cooperative and State Programs at (202) 693-2200 for assistance accessing PDF materials.

All other documents, that are not PDF materials or formatted for the web, are available as Microsoft Office® formats and videos and are noted accordingly. If additional assistance is needed with reading, reviewing or accessing these documents or any figures and illustrations, please also contact OSHA's Directorate of Cooperative and State Programs at (202) 693-2200.

**eBooks - EPUB is the most common format for e-Books. If you use a Sony Reader, a Nook, or an iPad you can download the EPUB file format. If you use a Kindle, you can download the MOBI file format.

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