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Statute

Local Finance Law §160.05

  * §   160.05.  Financial  restructuring board for local governments. 1.
There shall be a financial restructuring  board  for  local  governments
which shall consist of ten members: the director of the budget who shall
be  chair of the board, the attorney general, the state comptroller, and
the secretary of state, each of whom may designate a  representative  to
attend  sessions  of  the  board  on  his or her behalf, and six members
appointed by the governor, one of whom upon the  recommendation  of  the
temporary  president  of the senate, one of whom upon the recommendation
of the speaker of the assembly, and four other members appointed by  the
governor,  one  of  whom  shall have significant experience in municipal
financial and restructuring matters. In making  such  appointments,  the
governor  shall  consider  regional diversity. Appointees shall serve at
the pleasure of his or her appointing authority. The  appointee  of  the
governor  who  has  been  designated as having significant experience in
municipal  financial  and  restructuring  matters  shall  receive   fair
compensation  for his or her services performed pursuant to this section
in an amount to be determined by the director  of  the  budget  and  all
members  shall  be  reimbursed  for all reasonable expenses actually and
necessarily incurred by him or her in the  performance  of  his  or  her
duties.  The board shall have the power to act by an affirmative vote of
a majority of the total number of members and shall render its  findings
and  recommendations  within  six  months of being requested to act by a
fiscally eligible municipality. The provisions of section  seventeen  of
the  public  officers law shall apply to members of the board. No member
of the board shall be held liable for the performance of any function or
duty authorized by  this  section.  The  work  of  the  board  shall  be
conducted  with  such staff as the director of the budget, the secretary
of state, the attorney general and  the  state  comptroller  shall  make
available. All proceedings, meetings and hearings conducted by the board
shall be held in the city of Albany.
2.  A  "fiscally  eligible  municipality" shall mean any county, city,
excluding a city with a population greater than one  million,  town,  or
village  that  the  board,  on  a  case  by case basis, determines would
benefit from the services and  assistance  which  the  board  has  legal
authority  to  offer. In evaluating whether a municipality is a fiscally
eligible municipality, the board shall consider the average  full  value
property  tax  rate of such public employer and the average fund balance
percentage of such public employer and such other criteria as the  board
deems  relevant.  For purposes of this section, "full value property tax
rate" shall mean the amount to be raised by tax  on  real  estate  by  a
local government in a given fiscal year divided by the full valuation of
taxable  real estate for that same fiscal year as reported to the office
of the state comptroller; "average full value property tax  rate"  shall
mean  the  sum  of  the  full value property tax rates for the five most
recent fiscal years divided by five;  "fund  balance  percentage"  shall
mean the total fund balance in the general fund of a local government in
a  given  fiscal year divided by the total expenditures from the general
fund for that same fiscal year as reported to the office  of  the  state
comptroller; and "average fund balance percentage" shall mean the sum of
the fund balance percentages for the five most recently completed fiscal
years divided by five.
(a)  If  the average full value property tax rate of such municipality
is greater than the average full value property tax rate of seventy-five
percent of counties, cities, towns,  and  villages,  with  local  fiscal
years ending in the same calendar year as of the most recently available
information,  the  board  must find that such municipality is a fiscally
eligible municipality. The office of the state  comptroller  shall  make
publicly  available  the  list  of counties, cities, towns, and villages
that have an average full  value  property  tax  rate  that  meets  such
criteria  in  each local fiscal year. If a municipality has not reported
to the office of the state  comptroller  the  information  necessary  to
calculate  its  average  full value property tax rate, such municipality
may not be deemed a fiscally eligible municipality and the provisions of
this section shall not apply.
(b) If the average fund balance percentage  of  such  municipality  is
less  than five percent, the board must find that such municipality is a
fiscally eligible municipality. The  office  of  the  state  comptroller
shall  make  publicly available the list of counties, cities, towns, and
villages that have an average fund balance percentage  that  meets  such
criteria  in  each local fiscal year. If a municipality has not reported
to the office of the state  comptroller  the  information  necessary  to
calculate its average fund balance percentage, such municipality may not
be  deemed  a  fiscally eligible municipality and the provisions of this
section shall not apply.
3. (a) Upon the request of a fiscally eligible municipality, by
resolution of the governing body of such municipality with the
concurrence of the chief executive of such municipality, the financial
restructuring board for local governments may undertake a comprehensive
review of the operations, finances, management practices, economic base
and any other factors that in its sole discretion it deems relevant to
be able to make findings and recommendations on reforming and
restructuring the operations of the fiscally eligible municipality. As
part of such recommendations, the board may propose that such
municipality agree to fiscal accountability measures, as determined by
the board, including, but not limited to, multi-year financial planning.
It may also identify cost-saving measures, recommend consolidation of
functions or agencies within such municipality or between such
municipality and other municipalities, consistent with existing law,
identify and make available, to the extent otherwise permitted by law,
grants and loans on such terms and conditions as it deems appropriate,
and make such other recommendations as the board may deem just and
proper but in no event shall the sum of all awards made by the board to
a single fiscally eligible municipality be greater than five million
dollars. If such award is a loan, it may not be for a term longer than
ten years. In the event a grant or loan is made, the board may condition
such award on the fiscally eligible municipality submitting a report or
reports on such actions taken by the fiscally eligible municipality
pursuant to the board's recommendations, and the board shall require
that the eligible municipality must adopt and implement all the board's
recommendations as a condition to receiving an award or awards. Before
making final recommendations, the board shall consult with the fiscally
eligible municipality. Such recommendations shall not be final and
binding on a fiscally eligible municipality unless it formally agrees to
abide by and implement such recommendations in which event such
recommendations and the terms provided thereunder shall be final and
binding on such municipality.
b) Notwithstanding paragraph t of subdivision ten of section
fifty-four of the state finance law and irrespective of whether there
has been a determination or finding of fiscal eligibility under this
section, upon the request of any county, city, excluding a city with a
population of greater than one million, town, or village which (1) has
elected to engage in multi-year planning with the assistance of an
external financial advisor, and (2) has been identified as experiencing
fiscal stress, the financial restructuring board for local governments
may determine that all or part of the cost to the county, city, town, or
village for such external advisor shall be subject to reimbursement from
monies appropriated to such board for the making of grants and loans.
4. The board may hold hearings and shall have authority to require the
production  of  any information that it deems necessary to undertake its
comprehensive review. The board  shall  post  on  a  publicly  available
website all recommendations and findings made pursuant to this section.
5.  The  board shall also be authorized to resolve an impasse pursuant
to subdivision four-a of section two hundred nine of the  civil  service
law.
* NB Effective September 22, 2013

Civil Service Law §209 (4-a)

  * 4-a. (a)  Notwithstanding  anything  in  subdivision  four  of  this
section  to  the contrary, a public employer that is a fiscally eligible
municipality, as defined in section 160.05 of the local finance law, and
is  otherwise  subject  to  subdivision  four  of  this  section,   upon
resolution  of  its  governing  body  with  the concurrence of its chief
executive  officer,  and  a  public  employee  organization  subject  to
subdivision  four of this section may, jointly, stipulate and agree that
an impasse exists, at any time, with respect to collective  negotiations
between  the  parties for a collective bargaining agreement and, in lieu
of commencing a proceeding under subdivision four of this  section,  may
jointly  request  that  the  financial  restructuring  board  for  local
governments, established in section 160.05 of  the  local  finance  law,
resolve such impasse. A joint request pursuant to this subdivision shall
be irrevocable.
(b)  The  financial  restructuring  board  for local governments shall
render a just and reasonable determination of the matters in dispute  by
an affirmative vote of a majority of the total number of its members. In
arriving  at  such  determination,  it  shall  specify the basis for its
findings, taking into consideration, in addition to any  other  relevant
factors,  those factors set forth in subdivision six of this section. In
all matters regarding public disclosure of its proceedings and findings,
it shall  be  treated  the  same  as  the  panel  convened  pursuant  to
subdivision four of this section. It shall render a determination within
six months of being formally requested by the parties to convene.
(c)  Each  party  before  the  financial restructuring board for local
governments may be heard either in  person,  by  counsel,  or  by  other
representatives,  as  they  may  respectively designate and may present,
either orally or in writing, or both,  statements  of  fact,  supporting
witnesses and other evidence, and argument of their respective positions
with respect to each case. The board shall have authority to require the
production  of  additional  evidence,  either oral or written, as it may
desire  from  the  parties.  All  proceedings,  meetings  and   hearings
conducted by the board shall be held in the city of Albany.
(d)  The  determination of the financial restructuring board for local
governments with respect to the conditions of employment presented to it
pursuant to this section shall be final and binding upon the parties for
the period prescribed by such board, but in no event shall  such  period
exceed  four  years from the termination date of any previous collective
bargaining agreement or if there is no  previous  collective  bargaining
agreement  then  for  a period not to exceed four years from the date of
determination by the board. Such determination shall not be  subject  to
the approval of any local legislative body or other municipal authority,
and shall only be subject to review by a court of competent jurisdiction
in the manner prescribed by law.
* NB Effective September 22, 2013

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