2017 Annual Report of the State Reporter



      1. Introduction. The New York State Law Reporting Bureau (LRB) was established under article 14 of the Judiciary Law to officially report New York court decisions. The LRB operates under the direction of a State Reporter appointed by the Court of Appeals, with a designated Judge of the Court - currently Judge Leslie E. Stein - serving as the Court's liaison to the LRB. All of the decisions of the Court of Appeals and the Appellate Division and selected decisions of the lower courts are edited and published in print and online versions of the New York Official Reports, which include the New York Reports, the Appellate Division Reports and the Miscellaneous Reports. Motion decisions of the Appellate Division and Appellate Term and additional lower court opinions are published only online. This is a report of the LRB's activities in 2017.

      2. Style Manual published. The 2017 Edition of the Official Reports Style Manual, approved by the Court of Appeals, was published in December, replacing the 2012 Edition. Chief Judge Janet DiFiore provided a foreword. The 2017 Edition leaves largely intact the rules that users are familiar with, but updates citation formats and examples, adds new examples, clarifies some existing rules, and supplements others to provide greater guidance.

      3. Committee on Opinions. Following the retirement of Associate Justice David B. Saxe, Associate Justice Rosalyn H. Richter was appointed to serve as the Appellate Division, First Department's member of the Committee on Opinions. The Committee reviews decisions of the State Reporter rejecting opinions submitted for publication in the Miscellaneous Reports when those rejections are appealed by the authoring judge. The Committee is established pursuant to section 7300.7 of the Rules Concerning Publication of Opinions in the Miscellaneous Reports (22 NYCRR) and comprises one Justice from each of the departments of the Appellate Division. The Presiding Justice of each department designates that department's representative on the Committee on Opinions.

      4. Publishing activity. The LRB published in print and electronically 59,325 opinions, memoranda, abstracts and appellate motions in 2017 - an increase of 8.7% from 2016. The Official Reports are published in print and online pursuant to a five-year commercial publishing contract, currently held by Thomson Reuters West; consequently, Thomson Reuters Westlaw is the sole online commercial source of the complete New York Official Reports through December 31, 2020. A free, public access version of the Official Reports is also available on the Law Reporting Bureau website at http://www.nycourts.gov/reporter/.

      A. Print publication. During 2017, the LRB prepared for publication two volumes of the New York Reports, 3d Series; 11 volumes of the Appellate Division Reports, 3d Series; and four volumes of the Miscellaneous Reports, 3d Series, for a total of 17 bound volumes, as planned. Two soft-cover interim volumes of the New York Reports, 3d Series, also were published.

      In addition, 52 weekly advance sheets and six bi-monthly Cumulative Tables and Index pamphlets were issued. These advance sheets contained 11,808 full opinions, memorandum decisions, and abstracts of opinions not published in print; 21,543 pages of opinions, memoranda and abstracts; and 13,093 headnotes, allocated as follows:

Report
# Opinions/
Memoranda
# Opinions/
Memoranda Pages
# Headnotes
NY3d 90 Opinions
66 Mems
1,362 Opinion
488 Mem
160 Opinion
75 Mem
AD3d 280 Opinions
8,981 Mems
2,201 Opinion
13,195 Mem
453 Opinion
9,744 Mem
Misc 3d 500 Opinions
1,891 Abstracts
4,097 Opinion
200 Abstract
770 Opinion
1,891 Abstract

      Compared to the prior year, the number of opinions, memoranda and abstracts increased 11.9%; pages increased 11%; and the number of headnotes increased 4.1%.

      B. Electronic publication. All decisions published in print also are published electronically. In addition, the LRB publishes the following decisions only electronically:

      5. Selection of lower court opinions. During 2017, a total of 5,984 Appellate Term and trial court opinions were submitted for publication consideration, an increase of less than 1% compared to 2016. One hundred sixty-eight opinions published on websites or in legal newspapers, or otherwise brought to our attention, were solicited from the authoring judges for publication.

      Of the opinions submitted, the LRB accepted 448 for publication in the Miscellaneous Reports and 5,297 for online publication, for a total of 5,745 acceptances, an increase of approximately 1.1% compared to 2016.

      6. Website usage. Usage of the LRB website remained strong in 2017. A total of 960,732 visitors accessed the site, making 3,401,676 visits. Compared to the prior year, visitors decreased by 15.58% and visits decreased by 14.48%. The visits resulted in 30,613,048 page views, a decrease of approximately 13.49%, from 2016. In contrast to the decreases in these three usage metrics, repeat visitors remained constant at 22% of total visitors and there was a 23% increase in the average visit duration.

      Users downloaded a total of 7,086 copies of the LRB's Electronic Resources User Guide (a tutorial in the use of the Official Reports on Westlaw and the legal research and writing tools provided on the LRB website).

      The LRB's Twitter account (@NYOfficialRpts) grew from 175 to 395 Followers.

      7. Style Manual.

      A total of 3,642 copies of the printed Official Reports Style Manual were distributed to judges, court staff and others in 2017. An additional 15,978 copies were downloaded from the LRB website.

      8. Product development. The LRB enhanced its online services and website in 2017.

      9. Personnel. The LRB staff numbered 29 at the close of 2017.

      10. Facilities.

      11. Equipment. The LRB acquired the following new equipment to replace obsolete/outdated assets and disposed of unnecessary equipment:

      12. Editorial and office technology. The LRB employed various computer solutions to improve the efficiency and effectiveness of office and editorial functions. In addition, the LRB developed programs and adapted internal processes to accommodate current and prospective conversion of appellate court documents to Microsoft Word format.

      13. Continuing Legal Education (CLE). LRB attorneys attended and presented various CLE programs in 2017.

      14. Professional and volunteer activities. LRB staff members participated in various professional activities, community events and charitable causes.

      Professional activities:

      Volunteer activities:

      15. Visits and visitors. Among visits made in 2017:

      16. Organization. Of significance in 2017: