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NYC Council Passes Anti-Sexual Harassment Package

Yesterday, the City Council passed several bills as part of its Anti-Sexual Harassment Package, most of such legislation will affect private employers. Please take special note of 632-a, which requires employers to conduct mandatory annual interactive training and to maintain records of such training–it applies to all companies with 15 or more employees. When further information is available on this anti-sexual harassment training, we will update the industry.
Please see below brief summaries of the bills. Click the bill number for a link to the full text.

City Council Intro No. Summary
657-A This legislation makes the NYC Human Rights Law, with respect to sexual harassment provisions, to apply to all employers, regardless of the number of employees.
660-A This legislation amends the policy statement of the New York City Human Rights Law to include sexual harassment as a form of discrimination that the New York City Commission on Human Rights (“CHR”) shall have the power to eliminate and prevent.
663-A This legislation extends the statute of limitations for filing gender-based harassment claims under the city human rights law from one year to three years.
630-A This legislation requires CHR to design an anti-sexual harassment rights and responsibilities poster that all NYC employers are required to post in a conspicuous/ common location. The poster will be available online for employers. The bill also requires an information sheet on sexual harassment to be distributed to employees at time of hire.
632-A This legislation mandates that all private employers with 15 or more employees conduct annual anti-sexual harassment training for all employees, including supervisors and managerial employees. CHR will be responsible for creating an online interactive training module to be posted on their website for access by employers. An employee who has received anti-sexual harassment training at one employer within the required training cycle is not required to receive additional anti-sexual harassment training at another employer until the next cycle.
693 This legislation amends the division of labor services employment report, required by city contractors, to include employment practices, policies, and procedures as they relate to preventing and addressing sexual harassment.
614-A This legislation requires CHR to conspicuously post on their website online resources about sexual harassment.
612-A This legislation mandates that all city agencies conduct annual anti-sexual harassment training for all employees, including supervisors and managerial employees.
613-A This legislation requires the New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) to conduct an ongoing assessment of risk factors (developed by the U.S. Equal Employment Opportunity Commission Select Task Force on the Study of Harassment in the Workplace) associated with sexual harassment to help provide a fair and safe work environment for all city workers. The law sunsets January 31, 2022.
653-A This legislation mandates annual reporting on workplace sexual harassment incidents within city agencies. The administering agency is DCAS. A report is due to the mayor, council, and CHR. CHR will post it to its website.
664-A This legislation requires DCAS to develop a climate survey to be administered on a voluntary basis at all city agencies to determine the general awareness and knowledge of the city’s equal employment opportunity (“EEO”) policy, including but not limited to sexual harassment policies and prevention. The survey will be followed by a report to the mayor and speaker.
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DOB Denied by ECB Judge

As the Industry has heard, DOB recently initiated a program to issue ECB violations to licensed plumbers for “negligence, incompetence, lack of competence and/or disregard of the code,” citing failure to pass inspections that they themselves requested. A finding of guilt on an ECB violation could be used in a later proceeding to suspend the person’s license. (It would then be almost impossible to defend the suspension proceeding since the underlying violation had already been adjudicated between DOB and the licensee.)

Recently, ECB determined that the issuance of such a violation was invalid for two reasons. First, ECB was not the appropriate forum under the Code to take action against a licensee and second, DOB never promulgated a standard of what percentage of requested inspections that did not pass rose to the level of negligence, incompetence, lack of competence or disregard of the Code.

Click here to view a copy of the redacted ECB decision.

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Local Law 152 (Intro 1088) and Local Law 150 (Intro 738)

Important laws recently passed by New York City Council include Local Law 152 (Intro 1088) and Local Law 150 (Intro 738).

LL 152 requires that, commencing January 1, 2019, owners of buildings with gas piping systems have such systems periodically inspected for damage, illegal hookups, etc.

LL 150 bars individuals from performing work on gas piping systems after January 1, 2020, unless such individuals are (1) licensed master plumbers, (2) hold a gas qualification or (3) hold a limited gas qualification and perform work under the personal and immediate supervision of a gas qualification holder.

See below links for the full text of these important laws.

Local Law 152 – Intro. 1088
Local Law 150 – Intro. 738

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DOB Service Update

November 2016 Service Update from NYC DOB

The New York City Department of Buildings has issued the following Service Update entitled “Manhattan Gas Emergency Work Notification”
Please click here to download a pdf version.

Manhattan Gas Emergency Work Notification

Effective Tuesday, November 22, 2016, Gas Test and Gas Finish self- certifications will no longer be allowed for work done in Manhattan. A physical inspection by the Department of Buildings will now be required. This will also apply for all emergency work requiring Gas Finish inspections in Manhattan. All other emergency work will continue to be accepted as a self-certification in DOB NOW: Inspections.

How to Report and File a Gas Emergency Work Notification

A Licensed Master Plumber (LMP) must submit a gas Emergency Work Notification (EWN) to the LAA Unit by emailing DOBEWN@buildings.nyc.gov.

The appropriate utility should also be notified per the instructions below. The sender will receive an auto-reply email response from the Department and can commence emergency work. The auto-reply email must be posted at the site until the LAA Unit provides an Emergency Work Issuance Notice.

The EWN email must include:

  • Subject Line
    • Address of the emergency
    • Licensee’s name and license number
    • A brief description of the emergency
  • The body of email should note:
    • What system is affected
    • Description of the emergency condition

Utility Notification

  • National Grid – EWN submission to the LAA Unit should include egr@sharepoint.ngrid.com in the ‘To’ section of the email
  • Con Edison –The DOB EWN auto-reply must be uploaded to the Con Edison Project Center.

The LAA Unit will provide an Emergency Work Issuance Notice which includes the EWN number within 24 hours of the next normal business day. The Emergency Work Issuance Notice must then be posted at the site.

Subsequent Filing Requirements

An LAA application for a permit must be filed with the Department in accordance with Section §28-105.4.1 after receiving the Emergency Work Issuance Notice but before the expiration date of the notice.

Final Inspection Request in DOB NOW: Inspections

When the LMP is ready for a Gas Finish inspection, the Department requires the inspection request be submitted through DOB NOW: Inspections using the LAA application number related to the EWN.

The request for the Gas Finish inspection must include the following to avoid rejections or failed inspections:

  • In the comments section, include ‘emergency work gas leak EWN#’
  • Upload a scanned copy of the EWN approval from the LAA Unit and a sealed Statement of Emergency Work completed on the licensee’s letterhead with a statement that there was a gas test performed by the utility and that the utility has re-energized the gas.
  • Email the appropriate borough Plumbing Unit.

Sign-Off Request in DOB NOW: Inspections

After the Department has performed the Gas Finish inspection, the Licensed Master Plumber must submit the sign-off request.

The request for sign-off must include the following to avoid rejections:

  • Select the Emergency Work checkbox on the sign-off request form
  • Enter the EWN number in the EWN# field.

Sign-Off Approval
The LAA will be signed off upon approval by the Plumbing Unit.

POST UNTIL: February 1, 2017

Bill de Blasio, Mayor
Rick D. Chandler, P.E. Commissioner

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