Amendment of Rules of Practice and Procedure

Proposed Rules: Closed to Comments

Comment By: 
Wednesday, July 25, 2018


Statement of Basis and Purpose of Proposed Rule


Sections 12-309(a)(7) and 12-309(b)(6) of the New York City Administrative Code authorize the Office of Collective Bargaining’s (“OCB”) two constituent boards, the Board of Collective Bargaining and the Board of Certification, respectively, “to adopt rules and regulations for the conduct of its business and the carrying out of its powers and duties”.  The proposed changes modify the OCB’s procedural rules, which are found in Title 61 of the Rules of the City of New York, to incorporate new procedures for using modern technology, eliminate unnecessary requirements or references to outmoded technology, make clarifications to reflect how the Rules have been interpreted or to include existing practices, and make understanding the Rules and practice before the OCB more user-friendly. 




Listed below are the most substantive proposed changes.  Particularly significant among the proposed changes is the addition of rules providing for the filing and service of pleadings and other documents electronically through the OCB’s e-filing system.  This new system will simplify filing and service for petitioners by, among other things, eliminating the requirement that petitioners serve all parties named in the e-filed action by shifting the burden of service to the OCB. 


 The proposed rule:


 1. Adds new procedures incorporating modern technology:


·    Modernizes all notice posting requirements to allow for posting of notices and other communication with employees through methods such as e-bulletin boards and email;


·       Provides for the filing and service of pleadings and other documents electronically through the OCB’s e-filing system;


·        Permits filing with the Board and service on parties by email, for matters not initiated via the e-filing system.


2. Eliminates unnecessary requirements or references to outmoded technology:


·        Eliminates the requirement that parties file three copies of every document, in addition to the original, with the OCB;


·        Eliminates facsimile as an acceptable method of filing and service;


·        Eliminates references to only in-person representation elections as representation elections are now conducted by mail, telephone and via a web-based platform.


3. Clarifies the Rules to reflect how they have been interpreted and to include existing practices:


·   Codifies the practice of accepting submission of proof of interest electronically in representation cases;


·     Clarifies the description of when a petition can be timely filed after the expiration of a collective bargaining agreement;


·       Clarifies the provisions governing Amendments to Certification Petitions to reflect the Board’s history of case processing and interpretation of its meaning;


·     Clarifies that the Director’s recommendation for the creation of an impasse panel will be conveyed to the parties in writing only;


·    Conforms the description of the waiver required with a Request for Arbitration to the language of the 2012 statutory amendment;


·        Clarifies the parties’ obligation to designate an agent for service;


·        Clarifies that any objections to the OCB Executive Secretary’s deficiency letter must be filed within 10 business days after service of the deficiency letter;


·       Clarifies that supporting briefs must be submitted with a parties’ responsive pleading, unless prior permission to submit it later is granted;


·      Provides that if an injunctive relief petition is served in person, it must also be served by email;


·        Permits the filing of a Motion to Dismiss in lieu of an answer with permission of the Director;


·        Permits filing of an Amicus Curiae brief with permission of the Director.


·    Incorporates additional protected classes to the certification requirements for employee organizations, to conform to changes in the Administrative Code.


4. Makes understanding the Rules and practice before the OCB more user-friendly:


·        Conforms most response times in representation case processing to 20 business days;


·       Harmonizes filing and service deadlines so that they are calculated, with minor exceptions, using business days and not calendar days;


·       Eliminates the requirement to submit an affidavit in support of only one type of representation petition;


·        Includes cross-references to other relevant sections of the rules;


·        Clarifies the definitions of Filing, Service, Proof of Service and when service is complete;


·      Clearly differentiates between filing and service through the e-filing system versus more traditional methods of effecting filing and service;


·    Eliminates the requirement that parties add five calendar days prior to computing time periods prescribed by the Rules where service was completed by mail.


·        Includes minor plain language changes throughout.



Public Hearing

Amendment of Rules of Practice and Procedure of the Office of Collective Bargaining

Public Hearing Date: 
Wednesday, August 1, 2018 - 10:30am

Abigail R. Levy, Deputy General Counsel

OCB Board Room
100 Gold Street Suite 4800
New York, NY 10038