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Administrative Rules of the Unified Court System & Uniform Rules of the Trial Courts


Rules of the Chief Administrative Judge


PART 116. Community Dispute Resolution Centers Program
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116.1 Definitions
116.2 Application
116.3 Eligibility
116.4 Application procedures
116.5 Approval
116.6 Payment
116.7 Program evaluation
116.8 Records retention

Section 116.1 Definitions

(a) "Center" means a community dispute center which provides conciliation, mediation, arbitration or other forms and techniques of dispute resolution.

(b) "Mediator" means an impartial person who assists in the resolution of a dispute.

(c) "Grant recipient" means any organization that administers a community dispute resolution center receiving funds pursuant to this Part.

(d) "Chief Administrator" means the Chief Administrator of the Courts or his designee.

Historical Note
Sec. filed Feb. 2, 1982 eff. Jan. 1, 1982.

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Section 116.2 Application

(a) The provisions of this Part shall apply to the funding of community centers organized to expeditiously resolve minor disputes, especially those matters that would otherwise be handled by the criminal justice system.

(b) Funds available for disbursement pursuant to this Part shall include those funds appropriated by the State Legislature for said purposes, and shall also include funds received by the State from any public or private agency or person, including the Federal government, to be used for the purposes of this Part.

Historical Note
Sec. filed Feb. 2, 1982 eff. Jan. 1, 1982.

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Section 116.3 Eligibility

To be eligible for funding pursuant to this Part, a center must meet the following conditions:

(a) It must be administered by a nonprofit organization organized for the resolution of disputes or for religious, charitable or educational purposes.

(b) It must provide neutral mediators who have received at least 25 hours of training in conflict resolution techniques.

(c) It must provide dispute resolution services without cost to indigents and at nominal or no cost to other participants.

(d) It shall, whenever reasonably possible, make use of public facilities at free or nominal cost.

(e) It must provide, during or at the conclusion of the dispute resolution process, a written agreement or decision, subscribed to by the parties, setting forth the settlement of the issues and future responsibilities of each party, and must make such agreement or decision available to a court which has adjourned a pending action pursuant to section 170.55 of the Criminal Procedure Law.

(f) It may not make monetary awards except upon consent of the parties, and such awards may not exceed $1,500, except that where an action has been adjourned in contemplation of dismissal pursuant to section 215.10 of the Criminal Procedure Law, a monetary award not in excess of $5,000 may be made.

(g) It may not accept for dispute resolution any defendant who is named in a filed felony complaint, superior court information, or indictment, charging:

(1) a class A felony; or

(2) a violent felony offense as defined in section 70.02 of the Penal Law; or

(3) any drug offense as defined in article 220 of the Penal Law; or

(4) a felony upon the conviction of which defendant must be sentenced as a second felony offender, a second violent felony offender, or a persistent violent felony offender pursuant to sections 70.06, 70.04 and 70.08 of the Penal Law, or a felony upon the conviction of which defendant may be sentenced as a persistent felony offender pursuant to section 70.10 of the Penal Law.

(h) It must provide to parties, in advance of the dispute resolution process, a written statement relating:

(1) their rights and obligations;

(2) the nature of the dispute;

(3) their right to call and examine witnesses;

(4) that a written settlement or a written decision with the reasons therefor will be rendered; and

(5) that the dispute resolution process will be final and binding upon the parties.

(i) It must permit all parties to appear with representatives, including counsel, and to present all relevant evidence relating to the dispute, including calling and examining witnesses.

(j) It must keep confidential all memoranda, work products or case files of a mediator, and must not disclose any communications relating to the subject matter of the resolution made during the resolution process by any participant, mediator or any person present at the dispute resolution.

Historical Note
Sec. filed Feb. 2, 1982; amds. filed: Oct. 3, 1985; Oct. 16, 1986 eff. Nov. 1, 1986. Amended (f), (g).

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Section 116.4 Application procedures

Applications for funding pursuant to this Part shall be submitted to the Chief Administrator, and shall include the following information:

(a) a description of the organization administering the center, including a description of any sponsoring organizations;

(b) an itemized description of the annual cost of operating the proposed center, including the compensation of employess;

(c) a description of the geographic area of service, the service population and the number of participants capable of being served on an annual basis;

(d) a description of the facilities available in which the proposed center is to be operated;

(e) a detailed description of the proposed program for dispute resolution, including the types of disputes to be handled and the cost, if any, to the participants;

(f) a statement of the present availability of resources to fund the center;

(g) a description of the applicant's administrative capacity to operate the center, including the educational, training and employment background of every member of the staff of the center;

(h) a list of civic groups, social services agencies and criminal justice agencies available to accept and make referrals, written statements from these groups and agencies indicating an intent to accept and make referrals, and a description of how the program will be publicized to make potential referring agencies, the courts and the public aware of its availability;

(i) a description of the past history of the operation of the center, including specific information for the past two years concerning the program, area of service, staff, source of funding, expenditures, referring agencies, number and types of disputes handled, and number and types of disputes resolved;

(j) a list of all other available dispute resolution services and facilities within the proposed geographical area;

(k) documentation that the center meets the eligibility requirements set forth in section 116.3 of these rules; and

(l) such other information as may be required by the Chief Administrator.

Historical Note
Sec. filed Feb. 2, 1982 eff. Jan. 1, 1982.

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Section 116.5 Approval

(a) The Chief Administrator shall select centers for funding pursuant to this Part and shall determine the amount of funds to be disbursed for each center within available appropriations.

(b) No funds provided by the State shall be disbursed for any center in an amount greater than 50 per centum of the estimated annual cost of operating the program as determined by the Chief Administrator.

(c) In determining the centers for which funds may be disbursed, the Chief Administrator shall consider:

(1) the need for the program in that geographical area;

(2) the structure and scope of the proposed program;

(3) the cost of operation;

(4) the availability of sources of funding;

(5) the adequacy and cost of facilities;

(6) the ability of the applicant to administer the program;

(7) the qualifications of the personnel staffing the center;

(8) the effectiveness of the program; and

(9) any other consideration which may affect the provision of dispute resolution services pursuant to this Part.

(d) A center may be rejected if the Chief Administrator determines that it will be unable to comply with any of the conditions set forth in section 116.3 of these rules.

(e) Nothing herein shall require the Chief Administrator to approve funding for any applicant.

Historical Note
Sec. filed Feb. 2, 1982 eff. Jan. 1, 1982.

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Section 116.6 Payment

Payment of funds pursuant to this Part shall be made pursuant to contract entered into between the Unified Court System and the grant recipient.

Historical Note
Sec. filed Feb. 2, 1982 eff. Jan. 1, 1982.

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Section 116.7 Program evaluation

(a) The Chief Administrator shall monitor and evaluate each program receiving funds pursuant to this Part.

(b) Each grant recipient shall provide to the Chief Administrator on a periodic basis as determined by the Chief Administrator the following information concerning its program:

(1) amount of, and purpose for which, all monies were expended;

(2) number of referrals received by category of cases and the source of each referral;

(3) number of parties serviced;

(4) number of disputes resolved;

(5) nature of the resolution of each dispute, including the type of award and amount of money awarded, if any;

(6) number of cases in which the parties complied with the award, including the nature of the dispute and award in each such case;

(7) number of returnees to the resolution process, including the nature of the dispute and award in each such case;

(8) duration of each hearing;

(9) estimated cost of each hearing; and

(10) any other information as required by the Chief Administrator.

(c) The Chief Administrator shall have the power to inspect at any time the operation of any center receiving funds pursuant to this Part to determine whether the center is complying with the provisions of this Part and the terms of its contract, including the examination and auditing of the fiscal affairs of the program.

(d) The Chief Administrator may halt the disbursement of funds pursuant to this Part at any time he determines that the program is not adequately providing services pursuant to this Part or that any of the provisions of this Part are being violated.

Historical Note
Sec. filed Feb. 2, 1982 eff. Jan. 1, 1982.

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Section 116.8 Records retention

(a) All financial records of the grant recipient and center pertaining to funding received pursuant to this Part, shall be retained for a minimum of four years after the expiration of the contract entered into with the Unified Court System pursuant to this Part.

(b) A copy of the written agreement or decision subscribed to by the parties, setting forth the settlement of the issues and future responsibilities of each party, referred to in section 116.3(e) of this Part, shall be retained for a period of six years after execution.

(c) A fact sheet or summary of each case from which the center may compile the information required for program evaluation pursuant to section 116.7 of this Part, shall be retained for a period of six years after termination of the case.

(d) No other time requirements for records retention shall apply unless otherwise contracted by the parties.

Historical Note
Sec. filed March 30, 1983 eff. March 16, 1983.