Ulster County, NY
 
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the County Legislature of the County of Ulster as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Defense and indemnification — See Ch. 28.
098a Exhibit A
[Adopted 8-8-2007 by L.L. No. 14-2007]

§ 98-1 Legislative intent and purpose.

[Amended 9-9-2009 by L.L. No. 7-2009]
A. 
This Legislature finds and determines that it would promote the safety of the people of Ulster County and the security of County property to investigate the character of prospective applicants for employment with the County of Ulster by reviewing such applicants' criminal history report.
B. 
This Legislature further finds and determines that the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services is capable of conducting fingerprint-based searches of the criminal history reports it maintains but that it requires either statute or local law to grant it authority to conduct fingerprint and criminal history checks. Subdivision 8-a of § 837 of the New York State Executive Law authorizes the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services to charge a fee when, pursuant to statute, it conducts a search of its criminal history records and returns a report thereon in connection with an application for employment.
C. 
This Legislature further finds that the office of the Ulster County Personnel Director performs the duties of a municipal civil service commission of the County of Ulster pursuant to the terms of § 15 of the New York State Civil Service Law and the Administrative Code of the County of Ulster, and the Ulster County Personnel Director administers civil service law with respect to offices and employment in the classified service of such County pursuant to § 17 of the Civil Service Law, and the Ulster County Personnel Director, pursuant to § 50 of the New York State Civil Service Law, is directed to ascertain the fitness of applicants for positions in the competitive class of the civil service and may refuse to examine an applicant, or may refuse to certify an eligible applicant, who has been guilty of a crime. In addition, the Ulster County Personnel Director is responsible for the administration of personnel matters with respect to offices and employment in the unclassified service of such County.
[Amended 8-17-2010 by L.L. No. 3-2010]
D. 
This Legislature finds that the Ulster County Sheriff or his/her deputies or designees have the equipment and expertise to prepare and process fingerprints.
E. 
Accordingly, the purpose of this article is to provide authority for fingerprinting and criminal history record checks of prospective employees of the County of Ulster where such authority does not exist by statute or any other state or federal law. This article shall be administered by and/or through the office of the Ulster County Personnel Director with the assistance of the Ulster County Sheriff.
[Amended 8-17-2010 by L.L. No. 3-2010]
F. 
This Legislature finds and determines that, due to their unique nature, several categories of service at Ulster County Community College would be unduly burdened by the full implementation of this article. In particular the areas which are burdened are as follows:
(1) 
The Continuing and Professional Education Department at Ulster County Community College that engages in excess of 200 short-term presenters, lecturers, and instructors over the course of any given year who, despite their short-term service, do not meet New York State Department of Labor criteria to be retained as independent contractors. Many of the above-mentioned individuals come from a variety of governmental, corporate, and community programs to share their expertise and enhance the offerings of continuing education; many others travel from outside of the region or from out of state to offer one- or two-day weekend workshops or provide professional training for area businesses, some of whom may teach for three or fewer hours, one time only. Up to 40% of all advertised continuing education courses may be cancelled.
(2) 
Ulster County Community College in its credit-bearing program frequently requires a large number of adjunct faculty who teach one or two courses for one semester and may not return again for a full year.
(3) 
College work-study students, whose work at Ulster County Community College is part of their financial aid package, student aides, and student interns, who comprise a significant number each semester, all of whom, despite being enrolled students, must also be entered as employees.

§ 98-2 Employees subject to fingerprinting and background checks; exemptions.

[Amended 9-9-2009 by L.L. No. 7-2009]
A. 
All prospective employees shall be subject to fingerprinting and background checks who are candidates for the following positions for County service as set forth in the Ulster County Civil Service Rules:
(1) 
All positions which are, now or in the future, designated as classified service in the competitive class, noncompetitive class, labor class, and exempt class.
(2) 
All positions which are, now or in the future, designated as unclassified service except those designated as elected officials, Commissioners of Elections, District Attorney, Sheriff, County Clerk, County Executive and County Comptroller.
[Amended 8-17-2010 by L.L. No. 3-2010]
B. 
Ulster County Community College.
(1) 
The following categories of staff at Ulster County Community College shall be exempt from the requirement of being fingerprinted and having criminal background checks completed:
(a) 
Matriculated students who are classified as work-study, student aides, or interns; and
(b) 
Individuals engaged by the Continuing and Professional Education Department who are not engaged to offer programs for school-aged youth or engaged in security duties and who do not meet the standards to be compensated as independent contractors and who are providing noncredit course content for 15 or fewer contract hours during any given semester.
(2) 
The adjunct faculty hired to teach credit-bearing or non-credit-bearing courses whose service at Ulster County Community College is interrupted for a semester or more will not be required to be refingerprinted and undergo a criminal background check for a three-year period.
(3) 
The SUNY Ulster Dean of Continuing Education shall, each semester, certify the application of exemptions made pursuant to this article in form substantially in conformance with that attached hereto as Exhibit A.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Exhibit A is included as an attachment to this chapter.

§ 98-3 Administration.

A. 
The Ulster County Personnel Director shall be responsible for the administration of this article and shall adopt policies and procedures for the purpose of performing fingerprinting and criminal history review of prospective employees of the County of Ulster who are subject to background checks and fingerprinting.
[Amended 8-17-2010 by L.L. No. 3-2010]
B. 
The Ulster County Personnel Director shall enter into an agreement with the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services to receive the criminal history reports of prospective applicants for employment in the civil service of the County of Ulster. Subsequent to the effective date of the agreement referred to above, all prospective applicants for employment within the classes of the civil service of the County of Ulster as set forth in this article shall be fingerprinted for the purpose of procuring a criminal history report from the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services.
[Amended 8-17-2010 by L.L. No. 3-2010]
C. 
In order to determine the kind of past conduct which may preclude a person from employment with the County of Ulster, the following criteria shall aid in determination:
(1) 
Whether the person has been convicted of any offense denominated a felony or misdemeanor by and in violation of the laws of the United States or any of its territories or possessions or another state or of the State of New York or any political subdivision of this state.
(2) 
Whether a person has been found by any court or administrative tribunal of the United State of any of its territories or possessions or another state or of the State of New York or any political subdivision of this state to have practiced any fraud, deceit or misrepresentation in the conduct of any occupation, business or profession.
D. 
The criteria set forth in Subsection C of this section shall constitute sufficient legal basis for obtaining the criminal history of said person.
E. 
Fingerprint cards for all prospective employees shall be prepared by the Ulster County Sheriff's Department together with any applicable fee to be paid by the prospective employee. The appointing authority may waive the applicable fee for any prospective employee, and in that event the fee shall be paid by the County and be chargeable against the respective department's budget. The fingerprint card and applicable fee will be delivered to the Ulster County Personnel Director who shall forward the same to the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services for processing.
[Amended 8-17-2010 by L.L. No. 3-2010]
F. 
The criminal history record processed by the New York State Division of Criminal Justice Services concerning prospective employees shall be submitted to the Ulster County Personnel Director or his/her designee and the appointing authority of the prospective employee for review and consideration of the contents of those records and a decision regarding the candidate's fitness for the position applied for.
[Amended 8-17-2010 by L.L. No. 3-2010]