About the Employer
Welcome and About This Handbook
Disclaimer of At-Will Employment & Non-Contract
Section 2: Employment Policies
Equal Employment Opportunities (EEO) and Affirmative Action Plan
Employment of Person with Disabilities
Prohibition of Discrimination Based on Reproductive Health Decision Making
Employment Screening Process
Transfers and Promotions
Section 3: Benefits
Introductions to Benefits
Health Insurance Opt-Out Policy
Health Insurance for Retirees
Continuation/Conversion of Health Insurance
Sick Leave Bank
Donation of Sick Leave
Section 4: Time Away From Work
Family Military Leave
Employee Blood Donation Leave
Outside Organization & Community Involvement
Political Contributions & Holding Public Office
False Statements and/or Omissions
Awareness of Questionable, Improper, or Illegal Conduct/Activity
Complaints & Reporting Process
Penalties for Violations of Code and/or Regulations & Laws
Whistleblower Policy for the Authority
Alcohol & Drug Testing
Absence from Work/Tardiness
Smoking & Use of Tobacco
Code of Ethics
Media & Public Contacts
Lost, Damaged & Stolen Property
Defense & Indemnification of Directors, Officers & Employees
Section 9: Discipline, Termination, Layoff, Resignation
Dispute Resolution Process
Open Door Policy
Full Disclosure Policy
Section 10: Confidentiality Agreement & Receipt of Handbook
Confidentiality Agreement & Receipt of Handbook
NewYork Paid Family Leave
Workers Compensation, Disability, Unemployment Insurance
Section 5: Hours of Work
Recording Work Hours
Section 6: Compensation
Compensation, Salary, C.O.L.A.
Non-Discrimination in Compensation
Section 7: Safety and Health
Harassment-Free Workplace and Reporting Procedure
Safety and Accident Prevention Policy
Hazard Communication - "Workers Right to Know"
Personal Protective Equipment
Infectious Disease Outbreak
Section 8: On the Job
Training and Development
Personal Telephone Calls/Telephone Use/Use of Computers & Electronic Equipment
Travel & Miscellaneous Expense Reimbursement
Standards of Conduct
Conflicts of Interest
Employment of Relatives
Confidential Information and Personal Liability
- Meet or exceed Federal, State, and local regulatory requirements
- Meet or exceed Federal, State, and local safety requirements
- Operate transparently and with accountability to both partners and the general public
- Practice environmental stewardship throughout all operations
- Provide value-added services to communities through competitive rate structures
- Manage the Authority's assets in a prudent and fiscally responsible manner
- Explore and utilize technology in the operation of its infrastructure
- To ensure customer service excellence and professionalism when dealing with tenants, customers, suppliers, partners, contractors, and employees of the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority
- To provide safe and secure facilities for its employees, tenants, customers, and the general public
- To provide responsible environmental stewardship to ensure, protect, and conserve its natural environment.
Welcome to the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority (OBPA).
The OBPA has developed this Handbook, which provides you with information about working conditions, employee benefits, and some of the policies affecting your employment. This Handbook also describes many of your responsibilities as an employee and outlines the programs developed by OBPA to benefit employees.
You are responsible for reading, understanding, and complying with the provisions of all policies and procedures described in this Handbook.
The information within this handbook pertains to Management, Management Supervisory, and/or Confidential employees.
Management, Management Supervisory, and/or Confidential employees are designated as follows:
- Executive Director
- Airport Manager
- Director of Operations
- Deputy Executive Director
- Director of Economic Development
- Business Developer
- Chief Financial Officer
- Accounting Manager
- Senior Account
- Administrative Assistant
- Confidential Secretary
The policies described in this Handbook are intended to foster a safe, comfortable, and productive working environment, ensure efficiency and profitability, to protect the interests of the OBPA's customers and ensure a high quality of service, to preserve its position as a responsible part of the community, and to comply with applicable law. The OBPA reserves the right to revise, supplement, or rescind any policies or portion of the Handbook from time to time as it deems appropriate, in its sole and absolute discretion. Employees will be notified of any changes. No individual supervisor or manager has the authority to change policies at any time. Only the Board of Directors has the authority to adopt changes to this Handbook, which will be in writing. If you have any questions regarding these policies, please ask your Manager/Supervisor or any member of the OBPA management staff for assistance.
This Handbook supersedes all previous employee handbooks and any inconsistent manuals, memos, policies, or other statements that may have been issued from time to time on subjects covered in this Handbook. This Handbook is effective October 7, 2021.
Except as provided otherwise in an applicable employment contract, employment with the OBPA is on an at-will basis. This means that either the employee or the OBPA may terminate the employment relationship at any time for any reason not expressly prohibited by law. Although not required, the OBPA does request adequate advance notice of intent to resign your employment.
Further, no representative of the OBPA, other than the Board of Directors, has the authority to enter into an agreement of employment for any specified period of time or to make any agreement contrary to the foregoing.
This Handbook, and any other employment policies, are NOT intended to create a contractual relationship with you. Any benefits, working conditions, and/or privileges of employment with the OBPA in which the employee participates may be altered or eliminated at any time and any of the policies or work rules, may be added, altered, or eliminated at any time at the discretion of the OBPA and do not constitute a contract of employment or guarantee of employment.
Section 2: Employment Policies
The OBPA provides equal employment opportunities to all employees and applicants for employment without regard to race, color, creed, religion, sex, gender, national origin, age, disability, marital status, citizenship, veteran's status, sexual orientation, gender identity, predisposing genetic characteristics, domestic violence victim status, familial status, or any other legally protected status.
This policy applies to all employment actions including hiring, transfers, promotions, demotions, terminations, compensation and benefits administration, participation in OBPA-sponsored training, education and social programs, layoffs, recalls and termination of employment.
The OBPA is committed to complying with all applicable provisions of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA). The OBPA's policy is not to discriminate against any qualified employee or applicant with regard to any terms or conditions of employment because of such individual's disability or perceived disability as long as the employee can perform the essential functions of the job with or without reasonable accommodations. The OBPA will provide reasonable accommodations, as defined by the ADA, provided that such accommodation does not constitute an undue hardship on the OBPA. Employees with a disability who believe they need a reasonable accommodation to perform the essential functions of their job should contact Human Resources.
Requests for accommodation may be made by the employee or representative either orally or in writing to Human Resources, who, in tum, may ask the employee for his/her input for the type of accommodation believed necessary or the functional limitations caused by this disability. The OBPA may also require information describing the impairment; the nature, severity, and duration of the impairment; the activity or activities that the impairment limits; and the extent to which the impairment limits the employee's ability to perform the activity or activities. When appropriate, the OBPA may also require information and documentation from appropriate medical professionals.
Any questions regarding the OBPA ADA policy should be directed to the Human Resources.
employment because of or on the basis of the employee's or his/her dependent's reproductive health decision making, or require an employee to sign a waiver or other document which purports to deny an employee the right to make their own reproductive health care decisions. For purposes of this policy "reproductive health decision making" includes, but is not limited to, a decision to use or access a particular drug, device, or medical service. In addition to reporting any alleged violations of this policy to the Authority, employees may also choose to pursue legal remedies by initiating a civil action in court for damages, injunctive relief, reinstatement, and/or liquidated damages.
No employee will be subject to retaliation or discipline by the Authority as a result of making or threatening to make a complaint to the Authority, a co-worker, or a public body, that rights guaranteed under applicable law have been violated; causing to be instituted any proceeding alleging violations of applicable law; or providing information to, or testifying before, any public body conducting an investigation, hearing, or inquiry into any alleged violation by the Authority of applicable law, rule, or regulation.
Any employee who believes that he or she has been subject to discriminatory or retaliatory behavior in violation of this policy should report it immediately to Human Resources.
Additionally, at all times an employee's employment is not for any specific period of time and may be terminated at will, with or without cause and without prior notice.
At the end of the Initial Employment Period, the employee and supervisor must meet to discuss the employee's performance. Provided that job performance is "satisfactory," the employee will continue in his/her employment as an at-will employee.
Applicants for employment are expected to provide complete and accurate information regarding their background as it relates to their application for employment, including criminal convictions, education, credentials, qualifications, and employment history. The OBPA reserves the right to investigate an employee's background at any time should the OBPA have reason to believe there has been an omission or falsification.
If the OBPA discovers that an employee has intentionally omitted or provided false information on their employment application, during the hiring process, or while an employee is attempting to secure or advance employment, the employee may be subject to reassignment or discipline, up to and including termination, regardless of when the omission or falsification is discovered.
References for employees and former employees will be given only by Human Resources and will be limited to date of hire, job title and date of termination, unless written authorization is provided for the release of additional information.
Subpoenas, Court Orders, and other legal requests for information from employee files will be honored and the OBPA will inform staff members of such requests.
Updating your records is very important. The information in your file is used for pay, benefit, emergency contact and performance appraisal/promotional consideration purposes.
To ensure that these records are accurate, it is important that you keep the OBPA informed of the following changes:
- Name change (copy of new social security card required)
- Address change
- Telephone number change
- Emergency contact and phone number
- Educational accomplishments
- Change of beneficiaries
- Change in dependents (marriage, divorce, birth, death, children's eligibility).
Such changes should be communicated to Human Resources as soon as possible.
A successful organization utilizes the best available employees in all positions. In many cases, its staff will be qualified and prepared to assume positions where vacancies are created by expansion and attrition. The OPBA is committed to giving qualified employees preferences over others when filling these vacancies. Promotion from within will not always be feasible and in some situations, the OBPA will be required to recruit from outside sources to acquire different experience and technical knowledge or to satisfy other business needs.
Notice of Job Openings
Normally, notices for positions will be posted throughout the OBPA for five days and externally for a minimum of four days over a two-week period. The external two-week period must
include two consecutive Sundays. Job postings will include the position title and summary of responsibility, basic qualifications, location of position, and job title of the supervisor. The OBPA reserves the right to by-pass posting these requirements in circumstances where training, development, excess staffing or other critical or exigent business considerations so require.
In most cases, a full-time employee should be in a position for a minimum of one year and part-time employees for a minimum of three months before he/she applies for a new position. Only those who meet the minimum qualifications outlined in the posting will be considered. Applications for promotions and transfers leading to promotions will normally be considered before applications for laterals and demotions.
A "promotion" is defined as a position with a higher grade level. A "qualified transfer" is a request for a job that offers a career opportunity that is not available in your present line of progression. All promotional decisions are based upon the candidate's ability to perform the required work, quality and quantity of work already performed, and length of service with the OBPA.
When you are interested in a position which is posted, contact Human Resources for an application. Human Resources will screen all applicants for eligibility and will refer final candidates to the supervisor listed on the posting. Should an employee fail to meet the standards required after accepting a new position within the OBPA, there is no guarantee his/her former or a comparable position will be available.
Section 3: Benefits
The OBPA sponsors group health insurance benefits, a retirement plan and the opportunity for educational growth and advancement for eligible employees. In addition, the OBPA offers dental and vision care to employees. Contributions are the same for all employees.
The OBPA reserves the right to amend or terminate any of these benefits, or to require employee contributions toward any benefits, at the OBPA discretion.
The use of any benefit time cannot go into the negative without prior approval.
All policy statements in this Handbook that describe various insurance benefits, retirement and pension plans are merely brief summaries of the plans. Details of each plan and what your opportunities are in the plan are contained in individual plan summary booklets or documents. These booklets or documents are provided to employees who participate in the plans.
Any specific benefit agreements negotiated at time of hire will supersede standard Authority policies provided they are documented and signed by the Executive Director or Board of Directors.
If any statement in this Handbook or in a plan summary dealing with medical, dental, vision or retirement is in conflict with an official plan document, the official plan document will control.
In order to receive the opt-out provision, the employee will provide written proof of non Authority Health Plan coverage by August 15th of each Health Insurance Year (Opt-out form attached).
To receive an opt-out payment, an employee must not be covered under the Authority provided health insurance plan during any period of the future Health Plan Year. Opt-out payments will be made quarterly.
Employees meeting the above years of service requirement who retire prior to their Medicare eligible age may opt to maintain coverage under the Authority's employee health insurance plan after retirement. The Authority will be responsible for seventy-five percent of the cost related to the plan while the retiree will be responsible for the remaining twenty-five percent of the plan cost. Retirees participating in the plan will be required to make monthly payments to the Authority for their share of the plan cost. The Authority reserves the right to cancel insurance for any retiree delinquent in payments and re-enrollment will not be allowable. Retirees will have the option of choosing individual, two-person, or family coverage as allowed by the plan. The Authority reserves the right to choose the type of health insurance plan it deems most beneficial. Retirees may opt out of coverage with prior written notice. This benefit is only available until a retiree becomes Medicare eligible.
Spouses and/or dependents may continue coverage under the plan at full cost to the spouse and/or dependent after a retiree becomes Medicare eligible or after the death of a retiree.
Upon reaching Medicare eligibility, a retiree may choose to obtain coverage under the Authority's Medicare supplement insurance program. All costs associated with coverage under the plan will be the responsibility of the retiree. Retirees participating in the plan will be required to make monthly payments to the Authority. The Authority reserves the right to cancel insurance for any retiree delinquent in payments and re-enrollment will not be allowable. Future changes to Medicare may result in changes or elimination of this benefit.
Employees retiring with less than twenty (20) years of service as defined above will have the option of maintaining coverage under either the Authority's employee health insurance plan or the Medicare supplement insurance program, as applicable, at full cost to the retiree.
Nothing in this policy is intended to conflict with provisions of any applicable federal or state law. If there is a conflict, the provisions of applicable federal or state law will apply.
- New Year's Day
- Martin Luther King's Birthday
- President's Day
- Memorial Day
- Independence Day
- Labor Day
- Columbus Day
- Veteran's Day
- Thanksgiving Day
- Day After Thanksgiving
- Christmas Day
Employees must work the day before and the day after a holiday to receive holiday pay, unless specifically excused by your supervisor for such absence. Holidays that fall on a Saturday will be recognized on Friday and holidays falling on Sunday will be recognized on Monday.
The importance of vacation as a period of rest and relaxation is well recognized by the OBPA. Whenever possible, the Authority will try to accommodate a vacation request; however, it cannot allow a significant number of employees within a department to be off at the same time. Seasonal workloads may limit available vacation times in various departments. Where vacation time is limited, you will be notified by your Supervisor or the Executive Director.
Management/Confidential employees will earn the following vacation accrual based upon their years of service. The vacation accrual will be earned on a bi-weekly payroll period basis and will be effective on the date of hire for each employee. Vacation allowances earned will not be capped by OBPA. This accrual chart became effective July 1, 2018.
Internal audit procedures require full-time employees who handle liquid assets to take off one full consecutive week of vacation during the calendar year. During this vacation, the employees are not permitted to enter their own department.
Other Management/Confidential employees (and other vacation taken by employees described in the above paragraph) may take their vacation in one (1) day, or a minimum of one-hour intervals. All vacation days must be authorized by the Executive Director and scheduled as far in advance as
possible. Vacation must be taken at a time that does not conflict with OBPA work requirements. Employees with the greater length of service will be given the first opportunity to schedule their vacations.
Vacation and Termination
Upon severance of employment, accrued vacation earnings will be provided to employees regardless of the employee providing proper working notice (two weeks). Payment of accrued vacation earnings will also be paid to those who are terminated or resign in lieu of terminations for rule infractions. OBPA reserves the right to escort the employee off the premises immediately (with pay) for the duration of the notice period due to the sensitive nature of the work performed. This requires approval of the supervising manager and the Executive Director.
- Unused vacation may be accumulated from one year to the next in accordance with policy.
- Unused vacation days shall be eligible for vacation buy-back annually with buy-back requests submitted in writing by December 1st of the applicable year. Such payment shall be made on or about December 31st of the applicable year. For example, if there are five (5) days, forty
- (40) hours of unused vacation available as of December 1st : for buy-back, the annual salary shall be divided by 2,080 to determine the applicable hourly rate and multiplied by the requested buy-back hours, and payment shall be made on or about December 31. This program shall be limited to 50 percent of an employee's unused vacation balance annually. If an employee is requesting more than one hundred (100) hours of vacation buy-back, this request must be approved by the Executive Director (or in the case of the Executive Director's request, the Board of Directors)
- Leave of Absence - Vacation leave accrues while an employee is on a paid leave of absence but does not accrue while an employee is on an unpaid leave of absence. For the purpose of this policy, paid leave is defined as leave during which an employee is using credited, unused vacation and/or sick leave. An employee who has taken an unpaid leave of absence during the preceding benefit year is credited with prorated vacation leave based on the time worked during the preceding year.
Personal Leave time must be authorized by your Supervisor or the Executive Director and scheduled in increments of one or more hours. Personal leave balances are not eligible for compensation in any form upon resignation/termination of employment.
Personal leave is not permitted during the initial 4 months of an employee's employment unless emergency circumstances exist requiring the advance approval of your Supervisor or the Executive Director.
There is no provision for cash payment for unused sick leave upon separation from Authority service. However, an employee who retires directly from Authority service may use up to 200 days of unused sick leave for retirement service credit (NYS Retirement Section 4lJ) on a day-to-day basis and to offset the cost of health insurance in retirement. For the latter, the value of unused sick leave is converted to a monthly credit which is applied toward paying any contribution the employee or his/her surviving spouse makes for health insurance until credit is exhausted. At that time, the cost is the retiree's or surviving spouse's responsibility. Sick leave not used is forfeited except for the above applications towards retirement and health insurance.
On average, you should not have more than six unexcused and/or unexplained absences/ instances of tardiness every six months. The OBPA considers any absences above this standard to be excessive and subject to disciplinary action. Sick days are provided as an insurance against illness and not as a benefit.
Sick days may be used for a personal illness or the illness of a dependent or family member. Sick time may also be used to cover the short-term Disability waiting period of seven (7) days. You may not receive sick pay for absences exceeding 13 days (104 hours) in the first three quarters of the calendar year. Under certain circumstances, you may use your vacation and/or personal days to avoid a loss of pay. If the sick day(s) occur in the fourth quarter and you have exhausted all of your paid time off, it may be possible to borrow against your 13 sick days (104 hours) from the upcoming calendar year. Consult Human Resources or the Executive Director.
If you are absent due to an illness, the portion of the day worked will be paid and any hours lacking may be supplemented utilizing one-half or one sick day from your sick day allowance. The sick time paid will be based on your regular schedule.
When you are unable to work because of illness, you must notify your supervisor not later than fifteen (15) minutes after the workday begins. You should continue to call in to your supervisor until you are able to return to work or have a doctor's statement indicating when you are expected to return to work. The OBPA will consider you to have quit without notice if you are absent for three consecutive workdays without calling in except in the case of exceptional medical circumstances.
Use of sick time allowances may not exceed the available sick allowance balance (or become negative) at any time without approval from the Executive Director. Personal leave or vacation leave may be substituted for unavailable sick time to insure full pay each payroll period. If unusual circumstances do exist, the employee may request their sick allowance be used and borrowed from future time accrued only with the written permission of the Executive Director or Human Resource Manager. There is no provision for cash payment for unused sick leave upon separation of employment from OBPA for any reason.
Each newly hired MC is automatically a member of the bank for his/her first year. After the first year, to remain a member of the bank, the individual must donate one day. Any individual may donate one day to the bank and become a member.
Upon request by any participant, the number of unused days in the Sick Leave Bank will be reported to the individual.
In the event the Sick Leave Bank falls below 20 days during the fiscal year, all participants will be given the opportunity to donate one or more days to the bank. Then at the beginning of the following year, all individuals, to remain a member, will be provided with the opportunity to donate one or more sick leave days to the bank to rebuild it.
Days in the sick leave bank shall be for serious illness on the part of the participating individual; it does not cover elective surgery. It is understood serious illness due to pregnancy is to be treated as any other serious illness which would otherwise quality an individual for sick leave use from the bank. Doctor's verification is required.
In order for a participating individual to withdraw from the bank, a period of two working days must pass following the exhaustion of one's sick leave. If an individual uses at least four days, the first two days then will be granted as paid sick leave.
A committee of the Executive Director, Deputy Executive Director, and one other Management/Confidential employee will review each request and determine if the request qualifies for Sick Leave Bank usage.
Section 4: Time Away From Work
Notification Requirements - When an employee receives notice to report for jury duty or grand jury
duty, the employee must immediately submit a copy of the notice/subpoena to the employee's Supervisor or Office Manager.
Compensation for Exempt and Non-Exempt Employees- OBPA pays employees in full for jury duty less any fees received from the court system.
Verification of Service - An employee must provide written verification from the court noting the date(s) and time served as a juror in order to receive payment.
Return to Work-An employee who is excused from court for the entire day must rep9rt to work for the employee's scheduled work hours. Employees who are dismissed early from jury duty (before 12:00 noon) need to report back to work.
Accrual of Benefits - The OBPA will continue to provide health, dental and life insurance benefits for an eligible employee during time spent as a juror or witness. All employee contributions, if any, must be paid on a timely basis in order to maintain the continuous coverage of benefits. Benefit time off and holiday benefits also continue to accrue.
Notification - Advance notice of the date of military service is required and, where possible, a 30- day advance notice is required, unless giving notice is impossible, unreasonable, or precluded by military necessity.
Benefits during Leave - During military leave, an employee retains any the OBPA sponsored benefits that are tied to seniority, provided they were eligible for such benefits during employment. The employee is also allowed to participate in the health insurance plan and other OBPA-sponsored benefits that are not determined by seniority, provided they were eligible for such benefits at the time of employment. Additionally, if an employee leaves his/her position to perform military service, employee retains the right to elect to continue his/her existing employer-based health plan coverage for the employee and dependents for up to twenty-four (24) months while in the military. Even if an employee chooses not to continue his or her coverage during their military service, the employee has the right to be reinstated in the OBPA health plan when reemployed generally without any waiting periods or exclusions except for service-connected illnesses or injuries.
Return from Leave - In accordance with government regulations, an employee retains certain rights relating to reinstatement, seniority, status, length of service promotions, and compensation upon return from military duty. If an employee is separated from uniformed service with a dishonorable or bad conduct discharge, the employee's rights to reemployment and other protections under federal regulation end. An employee returning from a leave of absence of greater than thirty (30) days may be required to document re-employment eligibility.
Military reservists will receive the difference between their military and OBPA pay for a maximum of four (4) weeks for annual training. In the event you are called to active duty or volunteer for active
duty, you will be compensated for the difference between your military pay and OBPA pay for up to six (6) months. Upon expiration of required military service, you may return to your former or comparable position with no loss of years of service provided you ask to return to work within 90 days of your honorable discharge and are still qualified to perform the duties of your former position. As a reservist, you will not be requested to use your vacation time for training. If you enlist in the military service while employed with the OBPA, you will be provided with a paid leave for your pre induction physical.
Compensation for Exempt Employees - In accordance with federal regulations, an exempt employee who is on military leave for any partial workweek is paid the employee's regular salary for those workweeks. Any military pay received is deducted from the employee's salary. For military obligations, you will receive the difference between military pay and OBPA pay, when military pay is less than your OBPA pay.
Compensation for Non-Exempt Employees - For military obligations, you will receive the difference between military pay and OBPA pay, when military pay is less than your OBPA pay.
Up to 5 days spouse, child, parent, sibling
Up to 3 days mother-in-law, father-in-law, grandparent, grandchild
Up to 1 day aunt/uncle, niece, nephew, cousin, brother-in-law, sister-in-law
If you need additional bereavement time or time off to care for an estate or another member of the family, arrangements should be made through your supervisor and the Human Resources Department. The same bereavement benefits outlined above are provided in a comparable basis for employees in a committed domestic partner relationship or same-sex domestic partner relationships
As a Public employer. you may voluntarily opt into New York Paid Family Leave at any time.
A public employer is defined as the State, any political subdivision of the State, a public authority or any government agency or instrumentality.
Paid Family Leave coverage for non-represented employees can be determined by the Public Employer. A labor union may collectively bargain with a public employer to provide Paid Family Leave benefits to represented employees.
Policy Statement- In compliance with New York Paid Family Leave (NYPFL), the OBPA will provide eligible employees paid, job-protected family leave during any 12-month period for specified family reasons as described below.
Eligibility - Employees working 20 or more hours per week become eligible after 26 consecutive weeks of work, and employees who work less than 20 hours a week become eligible on the 175th day of work. If you and your spouse work for the same employer, NYPFL can be denied to one of you, if being requested for use during the same time period, to care for the same family member, or to bond with the same child.
Basic Leave Entitlements - An eligible employee shall be granted paid leave in any 52-consecutive week period under any of the following circumstances:
- To provide care for the employee's child during the first 12 months following birth (paid family leave only begins after birth and is not available for prenatal conditions);
- Placement of a child with the employee for adoption or foster care and/or to care for the child during the first 12 months following placement.
- For a qualifying exigency as interpreted under the federal FMLA for a spouse, domestic partner, child, or parent on active military duty (or notified of a call or order to active duty); or
- To care for a family member with a serious health condition. A family member includes a spouse, domestic partner, child, parent (biological, foster, or adoptive), a legal guardian, or other person who stood in loco parentis to the employee when the employee was a child, parent-in-law, grandparent, and grandchild.
NYPFL cannot be used for one's own serious health condition or military event. However, for short term disabilities-including pregnancy and other medical conditions-the employee may be able to collect state disability benefits.
Serious Health Condition- A serious health condition means an illness, injury, impairment, or physical or mental condition that involves: inpatient care in a hospital, hospice, or residential health care facility; or continuing treatment or continuing supervision by a health care provider for a condition that either prevents the qualified family member from working, attending school, performing other daily activities or is otherwise incapacitated due to a chronic serious health condition.
Continuing treatment by a health care provider includes, but is not limited to:
- A period of incapacity of more than three consecutive, full days combined with at least two visits to a health care provider; or
- One visit to a health care provider and a regimen of continuing treatment; or
- Incapacity due to a chronic health condition
Voluntary cosmetic treatments are not eligible conditions unless inpatient care is required or complications develop. Ordinarily, unless complications arise, the common cold, flu, ear aches, upset stomach, minor ulcers, headaches, other than migraines, routine dental or orthodontia problems, periodontal disease, etc. do not qualify as serious health conditions. In addition, routine medical examinations do not qualify for NYPFL. This list is not all inclusive.
Cost - Employees are responsible for 100% of the premium based on a percentage of the employee's weekly wage capped at New York State's current average weekly wage. This "weekly wage" is reviewed and re-determined July 1st each year by New York State.
Length of Paid Leave and Benefits - NYPFL provides partial wage replacement to employees for a limited amount of time, and will be phased in over a number of years. The maximum benefit rate and length of paid leave will be determined by New York State.
Notification Requirements - When the need for paid family leave is foreseeable, an employee must submit a written request to their supervisor at least 30 days prior to the requested start date of the leave. If an employee is unable to provide 30 days' notice (due to, for example, lack of knowledge, a change in circumstances, or a medical emergency), notice must be provided as soon as he or she become aware of the need for leave. Such notice must normally comply with the Authority's call-in procedures (See Attendance Policy). The employee must indicate the anticipated length of the leave and provide sufficient information about the reason for absence to allow the Authority to determine if the leave may qualify for NYPFL.
Certification - Medical certification from a health care provider is required for leave requests due to a family member's serious health condition or the birth of a child. Documentation from the appropriate agency is required to support a leave request due to the adoption or foster placement of a child.
Use of Leave - NYPFL is only available in full day increments, but it can be taken intermittently. An employee is responsible for making reasonable efforts to schedule leave for planned medical treatment so as not to unduly disrupt business operations.
Workers' Compensation - An employee that is not working and collecting workers' compensation is not eligible for NYPFL.
Interrelationship of NYPFL and NYS Disability Benefits - NYPFL and NYS Disability benefits cannot be collected at the same time. If an employee is eligible for both, the combined total in any 52- week period may not exceed 26 weeks. A female employee who is going to have a baby would be
allowed to take the period of incapacitation defined by her physician, followed by 8 weeks of NYPFL. An employee who opts to take NYPFL first may do so, but since they will no longer be disabled after the 8 weeks of NYPFL, they would not be eligible for paid NYS Disability benefits at the conclusion of NYPFL.
Interrelationship of NYPFL and Federal FMLA - In certain instances, the NYPFL and FMLA will overlap. Where leave is taken for a reason specified in both the FMLA and NYPFL, the leave can be counted simultaneously against the employee's entitlement under both regulations as long as the employer provides the employee with notice of this designation. For example, an employee who takes a leave for the purpose of caring for a newborn or adopted child may have their leave counted simultaneously against their 12-week entitlement under FMLA and their entitlement under the NYPFL.
Benefits During Leave - An employee will not lose any employment benefit that accrued prior to the start of the NYPFL leave. For the purpose of this policy, the following applies to employee benefits during a NYPFL leave:
- Use of Paid Leave - An employer may not require an employee to use their available paid time off benefits (e.g., vacation or sick) before using NYPFL. However, an employee may choose to take Paid Family Leave and use accrued paid time off benefits to supplement his or her wages. The combination of all benefits paid to the employee may not exceed the employee's regular weekly earnings.
- Accrual of Paid Leave Benefits - An employee continues to accrue vacation and sick leave during any portion of a NYPFL
- Insurance Benefits - An employee's group medical will continue at the same level, terms, and conditions as if the employee was working and the employee will be responsible for their portion of the insurance premium, if any. Failure to pay the employee portion of the insurance premium may result in the termination of coverage.
- Employment Restrictions - While on NYPFL, an employee may not work for another employer during the same work hours that he or she is normally scheduled to work for the OBPA.
- Early Return or Extension of Leave - If an employee intends to return to work earlier than anticipated or extend the leave beyond the time originally requested, the supervisor and Human Resources Department must be notified at least two business days from the date the employee became aware of the need to shorten/extend the leave.
- Return-to-Work Date - If the employee's leave request indicated a specific return-to work date, he or she should contact their Supervisor and the Human Resources Department at least two weeks prior to this date. If the return-to-work date was not known at the time leave was granted, the Supervisor and the Human Resources Department must be notified as soon as a return-to-work date has been established. Failure to return to work when scheduled may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
- Job Restoration - An employee shall be restored to the position held when the leave began or to an equivalent position with equivalent benefits, pay, and other terms and conditions of employment, provided he or she returns to work within the time period allowed under the NYPFL regulations.
- Fraud - An employee who fraudulently obtains NYPFL is subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
Workers' Compensation benefits are available to all employees for job-related injuries. This benefit provides you with income and coverage for hospital and physicians' costs, etc. If you are injured on the job, you must report the injury to your supervisor and Human Resources immediately. You will be required to complete an incident report. Failure to report an injury on a timely basis may affect your eligibility for benefits and is considered a major offense in accordance with the OBPA Disciplinary Policy.
Ultimately, the Workers' Compensation Board is responsible for determining an employee's eligibility for benefits. If deemed eligible, an employee is covered for the period of disability specified by the employee's health care provider and the Workers' Compensation Board.
Short Term Disability Benefits
Employees may be eligible for short-term disability benefits pursuant to a State-mandated short-term disability program which replaces some of a worker's income if they are injured in off duty activities and unable to work. For employed workers, there is a 7-day waiting period for which no benefits are paid. Benefit rights begin on the eighth consecutive day of disability.
Unemployment insurance benefits provide short-term financial assistance to individuals who have lost their jobs due to no fault of their own and are ready, willing, and able to work.
Eligibility for unemployment insurance is determined by the appropriate State Department of
Section 5: Hours of Work
The OBPA complies with applicable laws that require the OBPA to maintain records of the hours worked by employees.
To ensure that accurate records are kept and that employees are paid in a timely manner, employees must accurately record all hours worked including any overtime hours worked.
Employees are also required to accurately record any approved benefit time or other leave
Employees are prohibited from performing any work "off the clock."
Paychecks are distributed bi-weekly on Thursdays. You may make arrangements for Direct Deposit into a checking and/or savings account(s) at all ACH receiving financial institutions.
Non-exempt positions are subject to the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act which requires that the OBPA retain records of the time worked by employees in these positions.
Time records should be submitted to the Accounting/Payroll Clerk. All-time records must be signed off and approved by your manager/supervisor and submitted no later than I 0:00 AM on Monday; those not received on time may be unable to be processed until the following pay period.
Falsification of employee time records may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
Your pay is subject to the following standard deductions:
- State and Federal Withholding Tax
- Social Security and Medicare Tax
- New York State Disability Insurance
- New York State Paid Family Leave
If questions on pay or if you discover any error in your pay, please inform the Accounting/ Payroll Clerk immediately.
A full-time employee is regularly scheduled to work 40 or more hours per week. Fulltime employees are eligible for the group benefits package applicable to full-time status.
A part-time employee normally works on a regular schedule with an average of less than one thousand (1,000) hours per year (approximately 19 hours per week). Part-time employees are not entitled to the group benefit package, vacation, and holiday entitlement (see vacations & holidays).
A temporary employee is normally hired to work a part of full-time schedule for a period which is not expected to exceed nine (9) months. As a temporary employee or an employee who works on a call-in basis, you are not entitled to the group benefits or any vacation entitlements.
Section 6: Compensation
- Pay employees equitably according to the relative value of the work they perform
- Pay competitive salaries, establish, and maintain competitive salary structures which attract, retain, and motivate people; and
- Provide an incentive for employees to accomplish the OBPA business objectives, and to strive for and assume increased responsibility in higher level positions.
In order to accomplish those objectives, the OBPA has a formal compensation program which consists of job descriptions, job evaluation systems, and periodic wage surveys.
The job description is a written summary of the responsibilities, accountabilities, and hiring criteria associated with your position. Job descriptions relate to content, not individual performance; and the duties referred to therein reflect minimum, not maximum requirements.
The job description for each position is evaluated by Human Resources, and results are discussed with department managers. Positions are rated on experience and educational requirements, financial accountability, complexity, and other job-related factors. Points are assigned to each factor, and the total corresponds to a grade level.
Each position and grade level has a minimum and maximum rate of pay. The OBPA conducts wage and benefits surveys with NYS Civil Service and/or salary surveys on a regular basis.
These surveys are evaluated to adjust the salary ranges and to ensure that its wages, benefits, and policies are fair and competitive.
The annual adjustment factor may be set annually by the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority Board of Directors at the November Board Meeting.
The salary adjustment to individual salaries will be added to the base salary and paid in equal bi weekly amounts effective from January 1st of each calendar year.
Salary comparisons will be made periodically, once every three to five years, with other agencies. Salaries must be adjusted to maintain equity and fairness in compensation in order to retain and attract skilled employees.
For those in non-exempt positions, you will be paid time and one-half for all hours worked in excess of forty (40) hours per week. Other overtime considerations are listed below:
... Management/Confidential salaried non-exempt employees would receive overtime NOT comp time
- Sick days, personal days, vacation days, and holidays are not considered days worked as no work is actually performed. Since no work is actually performed, the above days do not count as days worked when computing overtime hours.
- You will be compensated at time and one-half for all hours worked during a Saturday, Sunday, holiday, or interrupted vacation day unless you were scheduled to work one of these days as part of your regular work week. If an employee agrees to work on a Saturday in exchange for hours off during the week, then the Saturday hours will be paid at straight time.
Section 7: Safety and Health
Employees are prohibited from bringing any firearms or other weapons on to the OBPA property, any job sites or into OBPA-owned vehicles.
Employees who are exposed to or become aware of any behaviors in violation of this policy are to report it immediately to their Manager/Supervisor. Reports of workplace violence will be investigated by the Authority.
Violation of this policy will result in disciplinary action, up to an including termination
All employees are expected to maintain a productive work environment that is free from harassing or disruptive activity. No form of harassment will be tolerated including harassment for the following reasons: race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital status, citizenship, veteran's status, sexual orientation, gender identity, predisposing genetic characteristics, domestic violence victim status, familial status, or any other legally protected status.
Any of the above conduct, or other offensive conduct directed at an individual because of their race, color, creed, religion, sex, national origin, age, disability, marital status, citizenship, veteran's status, sexual orientation, gender identity, predisposing genetic characteristics, domestic violence victim status, familial status or any other legally protected status is prohibited.
All employees should understand that submission to, or acceptance of, any form of harassment is not a term or condition of employment. No employee is required to submit to, or accept, any form of harassment in order to maintain their position, promotional opportunities, benefits, or to meet any other condition of employment.
Any employee who believes that he or she has been a victim of harassment, or who believes that the actions of another employee or non-employee constitute unwelcome harassment, has a responsibility to immediately report it to their supervisor/manager or the Executive Director. The Manager/ Supervisor that receives a report of prohibited harassment under this policy or who becomes aware of alleged harassing behavior must immediately report this to the CFO or Executive Director. If the alleged harassing behavior is attributed to the CFO and Executive Director, an employee or supervisor should report the behavior to a Board Member. The Authority will conduct a thorough investigation into all complaints of harassment. Information will be shared only with those on a need-to-know basis. At the sole discretion of the OBPA, employees are subject to suspension pending the results of investigation.
Any person(s) found, after investigation, to have engaged in harassment, will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination. Retaliation against an employee who, in good faith, makes a complaint of harassment will not be tolerated and will itself be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
Any employee found to have made a bad faith, false complaint under this policy may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
The OBP A is committed to maintaining a workplace free from sexual harassment. Sexual harassment is a form of workplace discrimination. All employees are required to work in a manner that prevents sexual harassment in the workplace. This policy is one component of the OBPA's commitment to a discrimination-free work environment. Sexual harassment is against the law and all
employees have a legal right to a workplace free from sexual harassment and employees are urged to report sexual harassment by filing a complaint internally with the OBPA. Employees can also file a complaint with a government agency or in court under federal, state, or local antidiscrimination laws.
- The OBPA policy applies to all employees, applicants for employment, interns, whether paid or unpaid, contractors and persons conducting business, regardless of immigration status, with the OBPA.
- Sexual harassment will not be tolerated. Any employee or individual covered by this policy who engages in sexual harassment or retaliation will be subject to remedial and/or disciplinary action (e.g., counseling, suspension, termination).
- Retaliation Prohibition: No person covered by this policy shall be subject to adverse action because the employee reports an incident of sexual harassment, provides information, or otherwise assists in any investigation of a sexual harassment complaint. The OBPA will not tolerate such retaliation against anyone who, in good faith, reports or provides information about suspected sexual harassment. Any employee of the OBPA who retaliates against anyone involved in a sexual harassment investigation will be subjected to disciplinary action, up to and including termination. All employees, paid or unpaid interns, or non-employees working in the workplace who believe they have been subject to such retaliation should inform Human Resources or the Executive Director. All employees, paid or unpaid interns or non-employees who believe they have been a target of such retaliation may also seek relief in other available forums, as explained below in the section on Legal Protections.
- Sexual harassment is offensive, is a violation of its policies, is unlawful, and may subject the OBPA to liability for harm to targets of sexual harassment. Harassers may also be individually subject to liability. Employees of every level who engage in sexual harassment, including managers and supervisors who engage in sexual harassment or who allow such behavior to continue, will be penalized for such misconduct.
- The OBPA will conduct a prompt and thorough investigation that ensures due process for all parties, whenever management receives a complaint about sexual harassment, or otherwise knows of possible sexual harassment occurring. The OBPA will keep the investigation confidential to the extent possible. Effective corrective action will be taken whenever sexual harassment is found to have occurred. All employees, including managers and supervisors, are required to cooperate with any internal investigation of sexual harassment.
- All employees are encouraged to report any harassment or behaviors that violate this policy. The OBPA will provide all employees a complaint form for employees to report harassment and file complaints.
- Managers and supervisors are required to report any complaint that they receive, or any harassment that they observe or become aware of, to Human Resources or the Executive Director.
- This policy applies to all employees, paid or unpaid interns, and non-employees and all must follow and uphold this policy. This policy must be provided to all employees and should be posted prominently in all work locations to the extent practicable (for example, in a main office, not an offsite work location) and be provided to employees upon hiring.
- Training will be provided annually to keep employees informed and aware of this Policy.
What Is "Sexual Harassment"?
Sexual harassment is a form of sex discrimination and is unlawful under federal, state, and (where applicable) local law. Sexual harassment includes harassment on the basis of sex, sexual orientation, self-identified or perceived sex, gender expression, gender identity and the status of being transgender.
Sexual harassment is unlawful when it subjects an individual to inferior terms, conditions, or privileges of employment. Harassment need not be severe or pervasive to be unlawful, and can be any harassing conduct that consists of more than petty slights or trivial inconveniences. Sexual harassment includes unwelcome conduct which is either of a sexual nature, or which is directed at an individual because of that individual's sex when:
- Such conduct has the purpose or effect of unreasonably interfering with an individual's work performance or creating an intimidating, hostile or offensive work environment, even if the reporting individual is not the intended target of the sexual harassment;
- Such conduct is made either explicitly or implicitly a term or condition of employment; or
- Submission to or rejection of such conduct is used as the basis for employment decisions affecting an individual's employment.
A sexually harassing hostile work environment includes, but is not limited to, words, signs, jokes, pranks, intimidation, or physical violence which are of a sexual nature, or which are directed at an individual because of that individual's sex. Sexual harassment also consists of any unwanted verbal or physical advances, sexually explicit derogatory statements or sexually discriminatory remarks made by someone which are offensive or objectionable to the recipient, which cause the recipient discomfort or humiliation, which interfere with the recipient's job performance.
Sexual harassment also occurs when a person in authority tries to trade job benefits for sexual favors. This can include hiring, promotion, continued employment or any other terms, conditions, or privileges of employment. This is also called "quid pro quo" harassment.
Any employee who feels harassed should report so that any violation of this policy can be corrected promptly. Any harassing conduct, even a single incident, can be addressed under this policy.
Examples of Sexual Harassment
The following describes some of the types of acts that may be unlawful sexual harassment and that are strictly prohibited:
- Physical acts of a sexual nature, such as: touching, pinching, patting, kissing, hugging, grabbing, brushing against another employee's body or poking another employee's body;
- Rape, sexual battery, molestation or attempts to commit these assaults.
- Unwanted sexual advances or propositions, such as:
- Requests for sexual favors accompanied by implied or overt threats concerning the target's job performance evaluation, a promotion or other job benefits or detriments;
- Subtle or obvious pressure for unwelcome sexual activities.
- Sexually oriented gestures, noises, remarks or jokes, or comments about a person's sexuality or sexual experience, which create a hostile work environment.
- Sex stereotyping occurs when conduct or personality traits are considered inappropriate simply because they may not conform to other people's ideas or perceptions about how individuals of a particular sex should act or look.
- Sexual or discriminatory displays or publications anywhere in the workplace, such as:
- Displaying pictures, posters, calendars, graffiti, objects, promotional material, reading materials or other materials that are sexually demeaning or pornographic. This includes such sexual displays on workplace computers or cell phones and sharing such displays while in the workplace.
- Hostile actions taken against an individual because of that individual's sex, sexual orientation, gender identity and the status of being transgender, such as:
- Interfering with, destroying or damaging a person's workstation, tools or equipment, or otherwise interfering with the individual's ability to perform the job;
- Sabotaging an individual's work;
- Bullying, yelling, name-calling.
Sexual harassment can occur between any individuals, regardless of their sex or gender. New York Law protects employees, paid or unpaid interns, and non-employees, including independent contractors, and those employed by companies contracting to provide services in the workplace.
Harassers can be a superior, a subordinate, a coworker or anyone in the workplace including an independent contractor, contract worker, vendor, client, customer, or visitor.
Where can sexual harassment occur?
Unlawful sexual harassment is not limited to the physical workplace itself. It can occur while employees are traveling for business or at employer sponsored events or parties. Calls, texts, emails, and social media usage by employees can constitute unlawful workplace harassment, even if they occur away from the workplace premises, on personal devices or during non-work hours.
Unlawful retaliation can be any action that could discourages a worker from coming forward to make or support a sexual harassment claim. Adverse action need not be job-related or occur in the workplace to constitute unlawful retaliation (e.g., threats of physical violence outside of work hours).
Such retaliation is unlawful under federal, state, and (where applicable) local law. The New York State Human Rights Law protects any individual who has engaged in "protected activity." Protected activity occurs when a person has: made a complaint of sexual harassment, either internally or with any anti-discrimination agency; testified or assisted in a proceeding involving sexual harassment under the Human Rights Law or other anti-discrimination law; opposed sexual harassment by making a verbal or informal complaint to management, or by simply informing a supervisor or manager of harassment; reported that another employee has been sexually harassed; or encouraged a fellow employee to report harassment.
Even if the alleged harassment does not tum out to rise to the level of a violation of law, the individual is protected from retaliation if the person had a good faith belief that the practices were unlawful. However, the retaliation provision is not intended to protect persons making intentionally false charges of harassment.
What is Not Retaliation?
A negative employment action is not retaliatory merely because it occurs after the employee engages in protected activity.
Employees continue to be subject to all job requirements and disciplinary rules after having engaged in such activity.
Reporting Sexual Harassment
Preventing sexual harassment is everyone's responsibility. The OBPA cannot prevent or remedy sexual harassment unless it knows about it. Any employee, paid or unpaid intern or nonemployee who has been subjected to behavior that may constitute sexual harassment is encouraged to report such behavior to Human Resources or the Executive Director. Anyone who witnesses or becomes aware of potential instances of sexual harassment should report such behavior to Human Resources or the Executive Director or any member of the Board. Reports of sexual harassment may be made verbally or in writing. A form for submission of a written complaint will be provided and all employees are encouraged to use this complaint form. Employees who are reporting sexual harassment on behalf of other employees should use the complaint form and note that it is on another employee's behalf.
Employees, paid or unpaid interns, or non-employees who believe they have been a target of sexual harassment may also seek assistance in other available forums, as explained below in the section on Legal Protections.
The availability of this reporting procedure does not preclude individuals who believe they are being harassed from promptly advising the offender that his or her behavior is unwelcome and requesting that it be discontinued.
False Accusations: Any employee, paid or unpaid intern, or non-employee of the OBPA who knowingly makes a false accusation against another individual as to allegations of harassment including sexual harassment, workplace violence or discrimination as set forth in this policy, will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
All supervisors and managers who receive a complaint or information about suspected sexual harassment, observe what may be sexually harassing behavior, or for any reason suspect that sexual harassment is occurring, are required to report such suspected sexual harassment to Human Resources or the Executive Director.
In addition to being subject to discipline if they engaged in sexually harassing conduct themselves, supervisors and managers will be subject to discipline for failing to report suspected sexual harassment or otherwise knowingly allowing sexual harassment to continue.
Supervisors and managers will also be subject to discipline for engaging in any retaliation.
Complaint and Investigation of Sexual Harassment
All complaints or information about suspected sexual harassment will be investigated, whether that information was reported in verbal or written form. Investigations will be conducted in a timely manner and will be confidential to the extent possible.
An investigation of any complaint, information or knowledge of suspected sexual harassment will be prompt and thorough, commenced immediately and completed as soon as possible. The investigation will be kept confidential to the extent possible. All persons involved, including complainants, witnesses and alleged harassers will be accorded due process, as outlined below, to protect their rights to a fair and impartial investigation.
Any employee may be required to cooperate as needed in an investigation of suspected sexual harassment. The OBPA will not tolerate retaliation against employees who file complaints, support another's complaint or participate in an investigation regarding a violation of this policy.
While the process may vary from case to case, investigations should be done in accordance with the following steps:
- Upon receipt of complaint, Human Resources or the Executive Director will conduct an immediate review of the allegations, and take any interim actions (e.g., instructing the respondent to refrain from communications with the complainant), as appropriate. If complaint is verbal, encourage the individual to complete the "Complaint Form" in writing. If he or she refuses, prepare a Complaint Form based on the verbal reporting.
- If documents, emails, or phone records are relevant to the investigation, take steps to obtain and preserve them. Request and review all relevant documents, including all electronic communications. Interview all parties involved, including any relevant witnesses.
- Create a written documentation of the investigation (such as a letter, memo, or email), which contains the following: A list of all documents reviewed, along with a detailed summary of relevant documents; A list of names of those interviewed, along with a detailed summary of their statements; A timeline of events; A summary of prior relevant incidents, reported or unreported; and the basis for the decision and final resolution of the complaint, together with any corrective action(s).
- Keep the written documentation and associated documents in a secure and confidential location. Promptly notify the individual who reported and the individual(s) about whom the complaint was made of the final determination and implement any corrective actions identified in the written document. Lastly, inform the individual who reported of the right to file a complaint or charge externally as outlined in the next section.
Legal Protections and External Remedies
Sexual harassment is not only prohibited by the OBPA but is also prohibited by state, federal, and, where applicable, local law.
Aside from the internal process at the OBPA, employees may also choose to pursue legal remedies with the following governmental entities. While a private attorney is not required to file a complaint with a governmental agency, you may seek the legal advice of an attorney.
In addition to those outlined below, employees in certain industries may have additional legal protections. State Human Rights Law (HRL) The Human Rights Law (HRL), codified as N.Y. Executive Law, art. 15, § 290 et seq., applies to all employers in New York State with regard to sexual harassment, and protects employees, paid or unpaid interns, and non-employees, regardless of immigration status. A complaint alleging violation of the Human Rights Law may be filed either with the Division of Human Rights (DHR) or in New York State Supreme Court. Complaints with DHR may be filed any time within three years of the harassment. If an individual did not file at DHR, they can sue directly in state court under the HRL, within three years of the alleged sexual harassment. An individual may not file with DHR if they have already filed a HRL complaint in state court.
Complaining internally to the OBPA does not extend your time to file with OHR or in court. The three years is counted from date of the most recent incident of harassment. You do not need an attorney to file a complaint with OHR, and there is no cost to file with DHR. DHR will investigate your complaint and determine whether there is probable cause to believe that sexual harassment has occurred. Probable cause cases are forwarded to a public hearing before an administrative law judge. If sexual harassment is found after a hearing, DHR has the power to award relief, which varies but may include requiring your employer to take action to stop the harassment, or redress the damage caused, including paying of monetary damages, attorney's fees, and civil fines. OHR's main office contact information is: NYS Division of Human Rights, One Fordham Plaza, Fourth Floor, Bronx, New York 10458. You may call (718) 741-8400 or visit: www.dhr.ny.gov. Contact DHR at (888) 392-3644 or visit dhr.ny.gov/complaint for more information about filing a complaint. The website has a complaint form that can be downloaded, filled out, notarized, and mailed to DHR. The website also contains contact information for DHR's regional offices across New York State.
Civil Rights Act of 1964
The United States Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC) enforces federal antidiscrimination laws, including Title VII of the 1964 federal Civil Rights Act (codified as 42
U.S.C. § 2000e et seq.). An individual can file a complaint with the EEOC anytime within 300 days from the harassment. There is no cost to file a complaint with the EEOC. The EEOC will investigate the complaint, and determine whether there is reasonable cause to believe that discrimination has occurred, at which point the EEOC will issue a Right to Sue letter permitting the individual to file a complaint in federal court.
The EEOC does not hold hearings or award relief, but may take other action including pursuing cases in federal court on behalf of complaining parties. Federal courts may award remedies if discrimination is found to have occurred.
In general, private employers must have at least 15 employees to come within the jurisdiction of the EEOC. An employee alleging discrimination at work can file a "Charge of Discrimination." The EEOC has district, area, and field offices where complaints can be filed. Contact the EEOC by calling 1-800-6694000 (TTY: 1-800-669-6820), visiting their website at www.eeoc.gov or via email at firstname.lastname@example.org. If an individual files an administrative complaint with DHR, DHR will file the complaint with the EEOC to preserve the right to proceed in federal court.
Many localities enforce laws protecting individuals from sexual harassment and discrimination. An individual should contact the county, city, or town in which they live to find out if such a law exists. For example, employees who work in New York City may file complaints of sexual harassment with the New York City Commission on Human Rights. Contact their main office at Law Enforcement Bureau of the NYC Commission on Human Rights, 22 Reade Street, 181 Floor, New York, New York; call 311 or (212) 306-7450; or visit www.nyc.gov/html/cchr/html/home/home.shtml. Contact the Local Police Department if the harassment involves unwanted physical touching, coerced physical confinement or coerced sex acts, the conduct may constitute a crime.
Other Types of Harassment
The OBPA also prohibits discrimination or harassment on the basis of race, color, religion, national origin, age, disability, marital status, sexual orientation, creed, gender identity or any other category protected by law.
DESCRIPTION OF PROCEDURE:
A. All employees of the Authority are covered by this procedure.
B. This procedure will be implemented for all accidents, defined as follows:
- Any accident which involves an employee of the Authority conducting business that causes injury or illness requiring first aid and/or medical treatment;
- Any incident or "near miss" involving an employee which does not cause any injuries will be considered an accident if, under a different set of circumstances (time, location, etc.), the same incident poses the threat of serious injury to employees (e.g., a scaffold system collapses during the lunch hour and no employees are injured due to their absence from the scaffold); and
- Any vehicle accidents involving an employee of the Authority while conducting Authority business.
C. For the purpose of this procedure, a major accident will be any accident involving a single employee hospitalization and/or fatality.
- Immediately report all accidents to their immediate supervisor or other responsible party as appropriate and assist in preparing the Accident Investigation Report
- Notify your immediate supervisor or other responsible party as appropriate if unsafe condition(s) exist
- Assist in implementing corrective action(s) to prevent future accidents
- Immediately report all accidents to the Authority's Chief Financial Officer or CFO's delegated employee
- Ensure that the examining medical facility is fully appraised of the site condition and/or hazard which caused the medical emergency (i.e., if appropriate, supply medical personnel with MSDS for chemical exposures)
- Immediately investigate all accidents occurring directly under their control, and complete and sign an Accident Investigation Report for each accident and/or injured person. (A copy of the Accident Investigation Report follows this procedure)
- Forward copies of all accident investigation reports and other accident-related documentation to the Authority's Chief Financial Officer
- Assist in selecting and implementing corrective action(s) to prevent future accidents
- Ensure injured employees receive proper written medical clearance prior to returning to work
B. Chief Financial Officer
- Immediately report major accident status to the Authority's Legal Counsel
- Review and maintain records of all accident investigation reports received
- Prepare and submit required reports for outside agencies based on Accident Investigation Report with assistance from responsible supervisor and affected employee as needed
C. Authority Health and Safety Consultant
- Provide training on accident investigation and analysis
- Develop corrective measures to prevent future accidents
- Periodically review all accident reports, to assist in safety program development and rev1s10n
A. All employees will be trained concerning accident reporting through the distribution and review of this Policy
B. All employees will be trained, as needed, regarding their responsibilities within this Policy
C. Supervisors will receive additional training as necessary concerning accident investigation methods
D. Training will be provided annually to keep employees informed of changes in this Policy
A. Reportable injuries will be recorded on the OSHA 200 Log
B. Accident investigation reports will be maintained by the Chief Financial Officer for annual review
C. Accident investigation reports will be maintained for five years after the year of occurrence
Recent changes to Hazard Communications regulations include the "Globally Harmonized System of Classification & Labeling of Hazardous Chemicals" (GHS). Full implementation of the new requirements for labeling and for MSDS sheets is required by June 1, 2016. All employees must be aware of the nine (9) revised pictorials now used globally on labels for hazardous chemicals on their job sites. Employees must also be aware that the format for the MSDS sheets has been revised to global standards and compliant information sheets are now called "SDS" sheets.
Its written hazard communication program includes proper container labeling, the maintenance of Safety Data Sheets (SDS) for all handling and exposure of hazardous chemicals, appropriate use of personal protective equipment at the appropriate time, and ongoing employee education
Detailed information regarding hazardous materials in its workplace can be found in the office and on premise.
Wear all personal protective equipment required and supplied by your Manager/Supervisor for the jobs or tasks you perform. This may include eye and face protection, hand protection, head protection, hearing protection, high visibility outerwear and respiratory protection - depending on your job description. Employee compliance is mandatory.
Employees who violate safety policies are subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination from employment.
The Executive Director is authorized to approve exceptions to this vehicle policy in relation to unusual work situations, travel status, early departure, or late return from official Authority business. Personal miles and or errands are not permitted in a company vehicle.
Vehicle accidents are costly to the Authority, but more importantly, they may result in injury to you or others. It is the driver's responsibility to operate the vehicle in a safe manner and to drive defensively to prevent injuries and property damage. As such, the Authority endorses all applicable state motor vehicle regulations relating to driver responsibility. The Authority expects each driver to drive in a safe and courteous manner pursuant to the following safety rules. The attitude you take when behind the wheel is the single most important factor in driving safely.
All of the OBPA drivers must possess a valid driver's license issued by the jurisdiction in which they operate. In addition, all of the OBPA drivers must obey the rules of the road in the jurisdiction in which they are driving on the OBPA's behalf, including speed limits, obeying traffic signals, observing weather conditions, and obeying all safety restraint rules. Operating a OBPA vehicle while ignoring these driving rules shall be grounds for discipline, up to and including termination. Ignorance of a driving rule shall not be considered a valid defense.
Human Resources or the Executive Director must be notified immediately by the employee if an employee's license is suspended or revoked for any reason. Drivers are prohibited from operating a OBPA vehicle upon notification of a license suspension or revocation for any reason.
Drivers must report any summons received while operating an OBPA motor vehicle.
Employees must report receipt of any ticketing to Human Resources or the Executive Director immediately upon receipt.
In addition, the OBPA has the discretion at any time to review the Motor Vehicle Record of any employee driving the OBPA-owned vehicles and revoke driving privileges or restrict driving privileges to certain types of vehicles.
The OBPA-owned vehicles are to be driven by authorized employees only. Use of the OBPA owned vehicles by other drivers, including family members, is strictly prohibited.
During a closing, exempt/salaried employees will receive their normal pay.
On rare occasions, weather conditions may prevent employees' ability to make it to a job site or main office. OBPA employees must be responsible for their own personal safety and should obey any travel restrictions posted by local officials. To the extent a travel ban prohibits an employee's ability to make it to work, they generally may use available benefit time, provided they have contacted their Supervisor, CFO or Executive Director.
Section 8: On the Job
All work areas, especially those within public view, should be presentable and cleared of cans, cups, and other materials. There should be nothing on your desk or in your area which promotes other business, as this may offend other customers.
Presenting a professional image to its customers includes appropriate, business-like attire. Extreme styles or those associated with leisure or after-hours dress are considered inappropriate professional attire. Discretion should be used with fragrances and other beauty products. Styles do change from year to year, but the image presented to OBPA customers should not.
Personal hygiene is a sensitive matter to everyone. Good personal hygiene includes clean and neat hair, neatly groomed beards and mustaches, daily bathing, and regularly laundered/dry-cleaned clothing. Individuals not properly attired or having unacceptable personal hygiene may be asked to return home to correct the problem.
One goal of the OBPA is to provide a safe working environment for all employees.
Employees shall wear appropriate Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) appropriate to the task to which they are assigned. Garments should be properly fitted and maintained in a neat, clean, and serviceable condition and at all times must be worn in a manner that promotes employee safety.
Employees of OBPA are expected to project a professional, friendly, and conservative image.
The following standards should be adhered to at all times:
- Good hygiene habits are required at all times.
- Hair should be clean, neat, and worn conservatively. Hair color is limited to the natural colors. Orange, purple, blue, and green are not appropriate for the workplace.
- Nails must be neat, clean and must not interfere with job functions. If nail polish is used, it must be in good condition with no chipping.
- Due to close contact with customers, the use of deodorant is required. Must be conservative on colognes and perfumes.
- Make-up should be applied naturally; no extremes in make-up are permitted such as black lipstick.
- Clothing should be clean and look professional. Clothing must not be ripped or tom. It is the employee's responsibility to make sure that clothing is clean and pressed.
- Other than earrings, all visible piercings must be removed while you are at work. Tongue piercing and ear plugs are to be covered.
- Mustaches, beards, and sideburns are permitted, but must be neatly trimmed.
- If you have any visible tattoos then you MAY BE required to cover the visible tattoo (depending on the location and/or message).
- Short shorts or short skirts, leggings, cargo shorts, T-Shirts of any kind. (Unless for a special event approved by the Executive Director) are not acceptable forms of dress.
- Shoes must fit properly for the job you are performing. Crocks and flip flops are not acceptable.
- Clothing that is imprinted with illustrations or messages that may be offensive to co-workers, customers, or the public is strictly prohibited.
A. On-the-Job Training
- On-the-job training is intended to help employees become more effective in their present positions. Supervisors are generally responsible for providing on-the-job training. Employees are encouraged to discuss with their supervisor any on-the-job training and development they think will help with their present job responsibilities and duties.
- The Authority also maintains for employee use a library of books, reports, and audio and video tapes, on various topics which are used for training and development.
B. External Training
- External training may be used by the Authority to assist employees with ongoing education, technical training, certification of skills, and to develop additional skills associated with their job responsibilities. When appropriate, employees may be selected to attend conferences and seminars sponsored by the Authority or external organizations. Employees are encouraged to discuss with their supervisor any external training that could help with their present job responsibilities and duties.
- Upon request, employees may be allowed time off from work to attend conferences or seminars for training directly related to their profession or professional duties. Such time off is subject to prior approval and shall not interfere with the proper conduct of
Authority functions. This policy neither limits nor guarantees the amount of time that may be approved for such purposes.
C. Tuition Reimbursement Program
- Under established policy, the Authority encourages all employees to participate in specialized work-related training and educational programs. Such courses, to be eligible for tuition reimbursement, must be aimed at improvement of an employee's on-the-job performance or preparation for future advancement of new duties. Subject to the employee's application and course completion with a satisfactory grade, the tuition expenses may be paid in advance or reimbursed.
Electronic equipment such as phones, computers, mobile hotspots, tablets, etc. if provided by OBPA are the sole property of the company. Electronic communication systems that may be provided by OBPA include, but are not limited to, e-mail, voice mail, telephones, computers, scanners, software, internet access, and faxes. These tools are important resources that enhance the OBPA's business. These tools are provided to employees to improve communications and relationships between employees and vendors, suppliers, clients, and business partners, and to assist in gathering information from internal and external resources for business purposes.
In using OBPA's electronic communication systems, each employee must act with professionalism and comply with all laws and applicable policies of the company. Unacceptable use includes, but is not limited to, the following:
- Conducting illegal activities, including violating copyright laws.
- Accessing, distributing, creating, downloading, or storing materials which are harassing, discriminatory, or abusive or offensive, including but not limited to, pornographic or obscene materials (including jokes), hate mail, or threats of violence.
- Representing personal opinion as that of the company or making statements on behalf of the company without authorization.
- Using the company's electronic communication systems for personal use without obtaining prior approval.
- Connecting a personal computer or device or network to the company's network.
- Personal use of the company's electronic communication systems during working time. For purposes of this policy, "working time" means time that an employee is or should be engaged in performing his or her work tasks for the company and does not include authorized break times.
In order to ensure system security, employees are required to adhere to the following:
- Refrain from downloading attachments sent by unknown parties, as they may contain viruses that could harm the system.
- Refrain from attempting to evade an Internet firewall and/or proxy server by accessing the Internet directly, whether by modem or another service provider, unless the employee has prior approval of management.
- Immediately run computer protection programs when directed to do so by management.
- Refrain from interfering or disabling any computer protection programs.
- Immediately report any actual or potential security violations to management.
Employees must report any theft, damage, malfunction, or misuse of any of the company's electronic communication systems to their Manager/Supervisor.
All information transmitted by, received from, or stored in the company's electronic communications systems is the property of the company. OBPA reserves the right to monitor and inspect, without notice, all matters on or within all of the company's electronic communication systems, including but not limited to, any and all computers, e-mail, and internet activity, to ensure their appropriate use. Employees should maintain no expectation of privacy with respect to any of the company's electronic communication systems.
Institutions today must operate with the highest standards of ethical conduct. Employees of the OBPA must conduct affairs on behalf of the OBPA with competence and integrity. The public expects OBPA employees to live by a set of standards which include honesty, fidelity, confidentiality, and fairness consistent with the Public Authority Accountability Act of 2005, Subsection 74 of the Public Officer's Law (Exhibit A), and provisions of the Office of State Inspector General (OSIG).
To assist you, this Code of Conduct has been prepared for you and adopted by its Board of Directors. This Code is distributed to and applies to all employees of the OBPA. It is designated to provide assistance in understanding the principles of conduct which must be adhered to in order to fulfill the legal, moral, and ethical obligations each person assumes as an employee and/or manager of the OBPA when working with customers, potential customers, and individuals associated in the business world. Read this Code of Conduct carefully and completely. If you do not understand any portion of it, please consult your supervisor or Human Resources immediately.
- The confidential nature of account relationships has been breached
- Fiduciary responsibilities are handled in a less than appropriate manner
- Business is done with the OBPA on the basis of gift receiving or giving or to curry favor with special interest groups
- The OBPA name is used by an OBPA representative to enhance his/her personal interests when dealing with others in their political, investment, or retail purchasing activities
Any transactions involving a member of the employee's family, or a close personal relationship which are not in the normal course of business must be referred to your supervisor or other OBPA official of senior rank. All such transactions must conform to OBPA policy and must be conducted on terms not more favorable than those extended to others.
In the event of a potential conflict of interest involving the Executive Director, its nature and extent shall be fully disclosed immediately to either the Chairperson or the Personnel Committee of the OBPA's Board of Directors.
Additionally, if any employee is unsure as to whether a potential conflict of interest exists due to inadvertent situations or actions caused by business or personal relationships with customers, suppliers, business associates, or competitors of OBPA, that individual is to immediately disclose the circumstances to his/her supervisor.
In this regard, employees are prohibited from:
- Self-dealing or otherwise trading on their positions with the OBPA; and/or
- Accepting from someone, doing, or seeking to do business with the OBPA, a business opportunity not available to other persons or that is made available because of the employee's official position with the OBPA.
The Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority directors/officers and employees shall be governed and comply with Section 74 of the Public Officer's Law. A copy is attached as Exhibit A. Any employee who suspects a violation of Public Officer's Law Section 74 shall report the suspected violation to the Executive Director and the Chairperson of the Authority's Board. Any employee reporting a suspected violation of this policy shall not suffer any adverse consequences in his or her employment and shall be protected under Public Officer's Law Section 75-b. A copy is attached as Exhibit B.
If employees become related or otherwise involved, and if the relationship begins to compromise the managerial and/or auditing practices of the OBPA, one employee will be reassigned to another department. If no other position is available, the employee with the shorter length of services will be requested to resign.
No Board Member or employee charged with purchasing material, supplies, or items; awarding public works contracts; hiring or contracting for any such services utilized by the Authority in the conduct of its business shall vote to accept the bid or authorize the hiring of or purchase from a relative. Additionally, Board members who possess knowledge of such a business relationship, or a prospect thereof, shall disclose same at the next regular monthly public session of the Board. The failure to provide such disclosure shall be grounds for termination of the contract or employment, as the case may be.
Board Members, supervisors, management team members, or employees of the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority shall not accept any gifts whatsoever, regardless of their value.
Employees may not disclose, release, or make available without written authorization from the Executive Director any Confidential Information to any person, inside or outside the Authority, other than where necessary to otherwise carry out the assigned responsibilities of the job. Employees are also expected to continue to keep Confidential Information confidential after leaving employment with the Authority. Once again, employees who improperly disclose Confidential Information will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.
All employees are prohibited from disclosing confidential information, data, or records pertaining to or concerning the affairs of the OBPA, its customers or potential customers, employees, and vendors outside the OBPA. Within the OBPA, disclosure of such information, data, or records is to be limited to a "need to know" basis to those OBPA representatives whose duties require and permit them to make accurate and informed decisions. Such individuals are responsible for maintaining confidentiality.
OBPA employees, directors, and their associates may be held personally liable for using confidential information (obtained while serving as a director or employee) for personal benefit. They may also be subject to governmental or OBPA administrative action. The OBPA's business and customer information and any related files are confidential and cannot be disclosed to unauthorized persons (including competitors) without permission.
For purposes of this policy, "Confidential Information" means all sensitive and proprietary information relating to the Authority and its affiliates including, but not limited to, information of a commercial or strategic nature (e.g., bid-related information, procurement strategies, bidding strategies, financial information, sales and marketing activity and plans, business plans, inventions, proprietary processes or methods of work, customer information, and proprietary information), disclosed to or known by you as a consequence of or through your employment with the Authority (including information conceived, originated, discovered or developed by you), which information is not otherwise generally known or is public knowledge.
Employees may have outside business interests and employment so long as such interests do not interfere with an employee's job performance at the OBPA. Although this policy does not prohibit dual employment, the OBPA does consider itself to be its employees' primary employer.
Employees will not be granted paid or unpaid time off to work another job.
Employees may not perform any duties for another employer or pursue an outside business interest while on the clock for the OBPA. Use of the OBPA equipment is prohibited for outside employment or interests unless approved by the Executive Director. Employees may not solicit for or promote outside employment or business interests while on the clock for the OBPA. Employees are prohibited from outside employment or business interests with any customer that does business with the OBPA or from benefiting in any way due to their affiliation with the OBPA. Employees may not work in a business that would be in direct competition with the OBPA.
Employees who observe any violations of this policy should report it to their Manager/ Supervisor or to the Executive Director.
Any employee who violates this policy may be subject to disciplinary action up to and including termination.
- The Executive Director is to report to the Board of Directors or the Chairperson of the Board of Directors.
- Employees are to report to the Executive Director, any manager, any Human Resources representative, auditor, or the Office of State Inspector General.
Failure to do so may result in termination. This Code has been adopted under the premise than an individual with knowledge of questionable activity who fails to report such activity shall be deemed to be in violation of this policy.
In order to operate efficiently and provide a safe and productive work environment, the OBPA has adopted the following standards of conduct. In all instances, employees shall conduct themselves in a professional and ethical manner to fellow co-workers, customers, prospective customers, and the general public.
The following list is not all inclusive but, rather, is intended to illustrate types of conduct that are unacceptable.
- Absenteeism or tardiness
- Careless or poor work performance
- Violation of any safety policy or procedure
- Theft, misappropriation, or deliberate destruction of the OBPA or a customer's property, equipment, or vehicles
- Falsification of employment application, personnel records, time records, or other OBPA business records
- Sleeping on the job
- •Using company time to conduct personal business
- Harassment of other employees or customers
- Reporting to work under the influence of illegal drugs or alcohol
- Threats or acts of workplace violence
- Possession of firearms, fireworks, explosives, or any other weapon while on OBPA property or while on the job
- Breach of confidentiality
- Violation of any the OBPA policy or procedure
Section 2. Each member, officer, or employee is responsible to report any violation of the Code (whether suspected or known) to the Authority's Compliance Officer or Executive Director. Reports of violations will be kept confidential to the extent possible. No individual, regardless of their position with the Authority will be subject to any retaliation for making a good faith claim, and any employee who chooses to retaliate against someone who has reported a violation shall be subject to disciplinary action in accordance with the Authority's Disciplinary Policy, which may include termination of employment. Regardless, any claim of retaliation will be taken and treated seriously, irrespective of the outcome of the initial complaint and will be treated as a separate offense.
Section 3. The Compliance Officer is responsible for immediately forwarding claims to the Executive Director for investigating and handling the claim in a timely manner.
Section 4. The Executive Director will report all findings to the appropriate Committee of the Board. This policy is not intended to exclude or limit in any manner an individual's existing rights and protection under Federal and State law.
Drivers will report all motor vehicle accidents regardless of the severity to the corporate office immediately or as soon as the driver is able. A determination will be made after the notification and accident investigation, as to when and whether the driver will be able to resume driving duties.
NO driver involved in a motor vehicle accident is to resume driving duties without prior authorization of the corporate office.
Employees in violation of DOT guidelines may be disciplined or terminated.
Failure to comply with the above policy may lead to disciplinary action including termination.
The full Drug-Free Workplace Policy is posted in each facility.
It is the policy of the OBPA to comply with the Drug-Free Workplace Act of 1988 and the OBPA is committed to providing employees with a work environment that is free of the problems associated with the use and possession of illegal drugs and alcohol.
"Illegal drugs" include all controlled substances under federal or state law not prescribed for current personal treatment by a licensed medical professional, and all other substances not prescribed for the employee by a licensed medical professional, the use of which is capable of creating adverse
effects on a person's physical, emotional or mental state, including, but not limited to, all types of narcotics, hallucinogens, depressants and stimulants.
All employees are prohibited from using, selling, purchasing, dispensing, distributing, possessing, or manufacturing alcohol or illegal drugs, or attempting to do any such act, on Authority property, including in Authority vehicles, or during working hours, and from reporting to work or performing any work with alcohol or illegal drugs in their system. If you are taking a prescription or over-the-counter medication which impacts your ability to safely perform your job duties, you should provide your Manager/Supervisor with a note from your health care provider specifying any work restrictions.
Further prohibited is the use, sale, possession, distribution, dispensation, formulation, manufacture, or transfer of illegal drugs on non-working time to the extent such use impairs an employee's ability to perform his/her job or affects the reputation of the OBPA to the general public or threatens its integrity.
The OBPA reserves the right to search the Authority's premises and property, including work areas and vehicles on the Authority's property, at any time.
Additionally, any employee who tests positive for alcohol and/or drugs and is required to receive treatment is subject to all costs associated with this treatment, first through employee health insurance coverage, then personally.
Violations of this policy will result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination from employment. Although any violation of this policy will subject an employee to disciplinary action, up to and including termination, the following are examples of incidents which may warrant immediate termination:
- Use or being under the influence of alcohol and/or intoxicants, illegal drugs or controlled substances during work hours or while on the job at the premises of the Authority or its customers;
- Failure to notify the Authority of any incident involving an alleged moving violation or conviction which is alcohol or drug related; or
- Sale or purchase, or attempted sale or purchase, possession or transfer of intoxicants or illegal drugs or controlled substances during work hours, or while on the job at the premises of the Authority or its customers.
Time will be recorded for work beyond the standard eight-hour day; however, no payment will be made for such time. Management employees may be required to work over the regular eight hour day to meet workload and schedule demands.
In order to maintain a productive work environment, employees are expected to work all scheduled work hours and to keep unscheduled absences to a minimum. Poor attendance, tardiness, and early departures place a burden on the OBPA's other employees, and its customers.
Leaving the Premises -An employee must obtain prior approval from the employee's Manager/Supervisor to leave premises during working hours due to a non-work-related reason and will not be paid for this time unless the employee uses benefit time. An employee who leaves premises during the workday due to business reasons must notify the employee's Manager/Supervisor in accordance with this policy.
Disciplinary Action - Violations of this policy may result in disciplinary action, up to and including termination. Further, any employee who falsifies the reason for absence, who has a record of excessive absences or early departures, or who develops a pattern of absenteeism, may be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
This policy also applies to all vaping devices and electronic cigarettes.
Employees who become aware of any violation of this policy including but not limited to, illegal behavior, theft, dishonesty, mistreatment of employees, are expected to report this to their Manager/Supervisor or to the Executive Director. Employees who violate this policy may be subject to discipline, up to and including termination. The OBPA has a strict no retaliation policy protecting employees who undertake their duty to report any incidents which may be reasonably interpreted as violations of this policy. However, if the OBPA discovers that an employee makes a report which is not in good faith with malicious intent towards a fellow employee, this may be grounds for disciplinary action, up to and including termination.
in areas where machinery is being operated or other potentially hazardous work areas. Employees are asked to discourage visits by family members and friends.
From time-to-time persons outside its workplace, especially insurance company investigators or representatives of the media may ask employees for comments or information relating to its activities and business. Employees are not authorized to make statements to investigators or the media on behalf of the Authority without receiving express authorization to do so from the Executive Director. Employees should direct all inquiries which seek a statement on behalf of the OBPA to the Executive Director.
The employee will make arrangements with the OBPA to pay the amount owed if property for which he/she is responsible is lost, damaged, or stolen. If the employee and the OBPA cannot agree on a payment plan, the OBPA will take whatever legal steps are available to recover the value of the loss from the employee.
Employees may not post any information on these bulletin boards without the express authorization of their Human Resources. All requests to place information on bulletin boards should be made directly to your Human Resources.
Human Resources maintains bulletin boards to provide Authority employees with information concerning State and Federal laws, as well as other information and notes regarding changes in policies. All job openings will be posted on these boards.
Solicitation and distribution activities are to be performed between employees on scheduled breaks, and the distribution of any materials is limited to break areas.
Non-employees and employees who are not scheduled to work may not solicit or distribute materials on OBPA property at any time.
The Authority will provide for his/her defense or provide reasonable attorney's fees. Likewise, the Authority will indemnify employees in the amount of any judgment or settlement obtained against them, provided that the injury or damage did not result from intentional wrongdoing on their part. Directors or employees who are involved in any such lawsuit should notify the Executive Director or Chief Financial Officer immediately.
Following is the internal policy at the Authority relative to all employee which has been in effect since 1983, modified and updated in 2009 and again in 2011 through the CSEA/OBPA Labor Management Committee process:
As an employee reaches milestone years of service starting at 5 years of service (5, 10, 15, 20, 25, 30, 35, etc.), the employee shall be publicly recognized by the Executive Director and the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority Board of Directors through the presentation of a certificate of appreciation. The presentation shall be made at either the January or July meeting of the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority Board of Directors, immediately following the date upon which the milestone was achieved.
In line with past practice, employees reaching 10, 15, and 20 years of service shall be presented with a $50 gift at the employee's option.
Employees reaching 25, 30 and 35 years of service shall be presented with a $100 gift of the employee's choice.
At retirement, an employee shall be publicly recognized with a token of appreciation chosen by the Board and presented by the Executive Director and the Ogdensburg Bridge and Port Authority Board of Directors. This presentation will be made at the first scheduled meeting following the employee's retirement date.
Section 9: Discipline, Termination, Layoff, Resignation
Employees who voluntarily leave OBPA employment are expected to provide the organization with a minimum of two weeks working notice.
Employees who have been reimbursed by the OBPA for tuition within the preceding twelve months are expected to make arrangements for repayment.
When unsatisfactory performance has been noted by a supervisor either at the employee's annual review or in respect to specific practices, etc., the employee may be placed on a performance improvement program. The purpose of this program, which may include a limited review period, is to increase the quantity and quality of contact between the employee and the supervisor and to improve performance to the desired level. At any point during a performance improvement program, management may take appropriate action regarding job assignment or termination.
Violation of any OBPA work rule may result in disciplinary action, up to and including discharge from employment. While the OBPA is committed to the practice of corrective discipline, it reserves the right to take whatever disciplinary action is appropriate under the circumstances. It is the hope that with training, reinforcement, and communication the following disciplinary procedure will not be necessary.
Except that no notice need be given to any employee before he/she is discharged if the cause of such discharge is dishonesty, or being under the influence of non-prescribed drugs or illegal substances, or possession for selling of nonprescribed drugs or illegal substances, or unprovoked physical abuse or bodily harm to another employee of the OBPA during working hours or on duty, business or property, or in OBPA equipment or on OBPA premises or on OBPA time. The above are illustrative of intolerable offenses.
Nothing in this policy is intended to negate any established at-will employee relationship.
Please reference Disciplinary policy, procedures, and due process.
Open communications between employees and management helps foster such an environment.
The OBPA expects all employees to treat each other in a fair manner, and with dignity and respect.
Managers/Supervisors are responsible for ensuring the above policy is enforced and are expected to address any concerns raised by employees and where appropriate conduct a prompt and thorough investigation.
If at any time an employee believes that he or she is not being treated consistently with other similarly situated employees, the employee should report the matter to his/her Manager/Supervisor and a resolution will be sought if possible. Employees must realize; however, they may not be apprised of all the facts surrounding the need for certain treatment, and such disclosure may not be available because of privacy concerns. Nevertheless, every employee is entitled to have disputes . heard and reviewed. If an employee is not satisfied with resolution at the Manager/Supervisor level, he/she may elevate the issue to the next level of management for review. Specifically, Human Resources or the Executive Director in that order.
The OBPA will not tolerate any form of retaliation against an employee for participating in this process.
Any employee who, as a result of a complaint above, is determined to have violated any of the OBPA policy, or who engages in retaliation against an employee who has utilized this process, will be subject to disciplinary action, up to and including termination from employment
Involuntary separation refers to separation initiated by the OBPA without the employee's consent for reasons other than cause or inefficiency which is defined as unacceptable performance or conduct that leads to separation in accordance with the OBPA Disciplinary Policy.
To be eligible for severance pay, an employee must complete five years of continuous service. Upon completion of five years, severance determination date shall be same as hiring date. Severance pay allowance shall be one week of pay for each full year of service for years one through ten, and two weeks of pay for each year of service for years beyond ten years.
Should an employee require a confirmation of employment for banking purposes, the employee must sign an authorization allowing the OBPA to provide such information.
It is believed that most matters will be satisfactorily resolved between you and your supervisor; but if for any reason you are not satisfied with your supervisor's response, you are encouraged to discuss the matter with successive levels of management. If the issue is not resolved at those levels, you may review the matter with the Executive Director.
- being hired as employees (so long as they are not hired into or transferred into positions where they directly or indirectly supervise or are supervised by another close family member);
- bidding on public works contracts;
- supplying materials, supplies, or other items; and
- providing services, professional services and/or personal services.
However, no Board Member or employee charged with purchasing material, supplies, or items; awarding public works contracts; hiring or contracting for any such services utilized by the Authority in the conduct of its business shall vote to accept the bid or authorize the hiring of or purchase from a relative. Additionally, Board members who possess knowledge of such a business relationship, or a prospect thereof, shall disclose same at the next regular monthly public session of the Board. The failure to provide such disclosure may be grounds for termination of the contract or employment, as the case may be.
Section 10: Confidentiality Agreement & Receipt of Handbook
- I acknowledge that, in connection with my employment with the OBPA, I will be provided and have access to Confidential Information. "Confidential Information" means all sensitive and proprietary information relating to the OBPA and its affiliates including, but not limited to, information of a commercial or strategic nature (e.g., bid-related information, procurement strategies, bidding strategies, financial information, sales and marketing activity and plans, business plans, inventions, proprietary processes or methods of work, customer information, trade secrets and proprietary information), disclosed to or known by you as a consequence of or through your employment with the OBPA (including information conceived, originated, discovered or developed by you), which information is not otherwise generally known or is public knowledge.
- I agree that I will not disclose, release, or make available without written authorization from the Executive Director any Confidential Information to any person, inside or outside the Authority, other than where necessary to otherwise carry out the assigned responsibilities of the job. I further agree that I will continue to keep Confidential Information confidential after leaving employment with the Authority.
- I understand that this Employee Handbook describes important information about the OBPA and that my signature below will confirm that I have received the Handbook, and that I have read and will comply with the policies contained in this handbook and revisions made to it. I further understand that I should consult with my Manager/Supervisor regarding any questions I have about the policies contained in the Handbook.
- I have entered into my employment relationship with the Authority voluntarily and acknowledge that there is no specified length of employment. Accordingly, either I or the OBPA can terminate the relationship at-will, with or without cause at any time. I acknowledge that no supervisor or employee has the authority to enter into an employment agreement - express or implied - providing for employment other than at-will. Additionally, I acknowledge that this Handbook is not a contract of employment.
- Since the information, policies, and benefits described in this handbook are necessarily subject to change, I understand that revisions to the Handbook may occur. I also understand that such revisions may supersede, modify, or eliminate existing policies. Only the Board of Directors has the authority to adopt revisions to the policies in this Handbook. All such changes will be communicated through official notices.
- Furthermore, I understand that nothing contained in this Handbook is intended to infringe on my rights under applicable federal, state, or local laws.
The effective date of this Handbook is October 7, 2021.
Employee Name: _