New York State Board for Engineering, Land Surveying, and Geology – Board Meeting Summary – 9-19-16

A New York State Society of Professional Engineers (NYSSPE) representative attended the New York State Board for Engineering and Land Surveying board meeting on September 19, 2016. The following is a summary of the meeting.

Meeting Albany, New York City and Syracuse via video-teleconference

SED Staff and a quorum of Board Members in attendance

(Guests present: Emily Whalen and Thomas Buchanan representing NYSAPLS, Mark Kriss representing NYSSPE)

Minutes of prior meeting reviewed and accepted

LEGISLATIVE COMMITTEE
Noted that the selection of a new chair is in process and that the 2016 NYS Legislative Session is presently in recess.

Two recent legislative developments reported:

1- Chapter 260 Laws 2016 – Approved by Governor Cuomo
Amends NYS law to permit conversion of geology firms organized as general business corporations or limited liability companies to professional corporations or professional service limited liability companies

2- Chapter 299 Laws 2016 – Approved by Governor Cuomo
Provides for expedited consideration of professional licensure application by SED for spouses of military relocating to NYS

[Read more…]

NYSSPE NYC Lobby Law Update September 2016 and FAQ

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The above NYSSPE legislative video discusses the 2013 revisions made to the New York City Lobby Law, which may be implemented in the near future. Many engineering companies are concerned that these revisions may hamper their ability to communicate effectively with officials, as they broaden the definition of lobbying.

Click here for a full FAQ on lobbying for architects and engineers and please  comment below this video with your thoughts on this issue, so we at The New York State of Professional Engineers, can consider your opinions and experiences on this issue when we make our decisions moving forward.

CLARIFICATION ON 9-30-16

To be clear the New York City law is presently in effect and in a number of respects parallels the state law.  However, the laws do have material differences.  An engineer or architect must comply with each law on a stand alone basis.  Each law must be independently analyzed to determine whether a lobbying registration requirement (or restriction) is triggered.  This can result in the need for filing in both jurisdictions or solely in one jurisdiction. Efforts are underway to amend the laws to offer an integrated approach statewide.  NYSSPE is assisting in this effort. Currently in New York City architects, engineers, and their respective firms are only required to register with the NYC Clerk’s Office if they anticipate earning or incurring more than $10,000 for lobbying activity.  The New York State threshold is $5,000.  An amnesty program in New York City has recently expired. The statewide amnesty program expires on September 30, 2016. More information about the statewide program can be found at: http://www.jcope.ny.gov/pubs/eblast/Final%20Lobbying%20amnesty%20extension%20eblast%206.30.16.pdf and at: http://www.jcope.ny.gov/Application%20Requesting%20Amnesty%206_29_16.pdf [Read more…]

NYSSPE on the Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprise (MWBE) Goals in New York State

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The above NYSSPE legislative video discusses a recent push by the governor’s office to increase the  Minority and Women Owned Business Enterprise (MWBE) goals for state projects in New York State.  We have received many comments on this issue from both MWBE and non-MWBE entities.  This video covers some of the benefits and possible pitfalls to an MWBE goal that is too high and too low. [Read more…]

NYSSPE Commends the Attorney General for the 50-Count Indictment over Forged Superstorm Sandy Engineering Reports

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The New York Attorney General Eric T. Schneiderman recently announced a 50-count indictment charging Matthew Pappalardo (not a NYS licensed engineer) and his former employer, HiRise Engineering, P.C. with allegedly altering engineering reports prepared in connection with the assessment of structural damage of residential properties resulting from Superstorm Sandy.

NYSSPE commends Attorney General Schneiderman on his action and hopes this is the beginning of more aggressive action against engineering malpractice which NYSSPE believes is happening throughout the State.  In this specific case, there were several NYSSPE members whose reports were altered. [Read more…]

Qualifications-Based Selection (QBS) for Engineering Services

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The video above showcases clips from a session on Qualification Based Selection (QBS) at the 2016 National Society of Professional Engineers conference in Dallas Texas.  The session was given by Jeffrey Hancock, PE of SMH Consultants, and this video was created by NYSSPE and published with his permission.

Qualification Based Selection (QBS) is a two-step competitive professional selection process.  The process is based on evaluating the experience, capabilities, and technical skills of an engineer or engineering firm in relation to the needs of a specific project.

Forty-six states including New York have implemented QBS law, and numerous localities have also adopted laws based on the federal guidelines.

The New York State Society of Professional Engineers (NYSSPE) is a proponent of QBS and will continue to be a voice for QBS in New York State.

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NYSSPE Legislative Update July 2016 – Spring Legislative Session Summary

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Anthony Fasano PE, Executive Director of the New York State Society of Professional Engineers (NYSSPE) speaks with Mark Kriss, Esq., NYSSPE legislative counsel, in a legislative video summary of the 2016 spring legislative session. This summary provides the final results of the three main issues covered in our previous NYSSPE legislative videos: parking garages, fingerprinting, and NYC Design-Build. The following information describes the outcome of each topic further in detail, and provides the time stamps for the location of each topic in the video.

Parking Garage Inspections (0:29):

NYSSPE assisted in the passing of a bill which will require regular inspections for parking garages in New York. The intent of this bill is to protect the public health and safety of individuals at risk to parking garage collapses. This bill has passed both houses and NYSSPE expects that this bill will be signed by the governor.

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New York State Board for Engineering, Land Surveying, and Geology – Board Meeting Summary – New York City – 5-23-16

STATE BOARD FOR ENGINEERING, LAND SURVEYING AND GEOLOGY

Monday, May 23, 2016 Present: Chair – A. Lopez, Vice Chair – H. Palmer, L. Campolieta, K. Giles, R. Goldman, W. Kelly, D. Mowers, M. Noviello, J. Neubeck, E. Ramabhushanam. Extended Member – E. Haas Board Members absent: R. Figler, D. Franzi Department Personnel: J. Blair – Executive Secretary, M. Culotti – Sr. Administrative Analyst, A. Friedman -Associate in Professional Education

Guests: Emily Whalen and Thomas Buchan representing NYSAPLS, Mark Kriss representing NYSSPE, Robert Henkel Call to Order – Open Session Chair Lopez called the Open Session to order at 9:55 am.

Approval of Minutes of the Previous Meeting

On a motion by Member Noviello, Seconded by Member Giles, the minutes of the February 19, 2016 Open meeting were reviewed and unanimously approved.

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LEGISLATIVE UPDATE: Brief Summary of Recent Legislative Session

Last week, we posted three legislative videos on significant legislative proposals drawing the Society’s attention and energy in Albany.  The session ended late last week, so we wanted to give you a brief summary of the results, which were all positive for professional engineers in New York.  We will also be sending out a summary video next week.

Fingerprinting for Engineers – This legislation would require fingerprinting of licensed professionals (including engineers).  The legislation did not pass either house.  (The bill was primarily aimed at a number of the health care professions where false identities have been used to gain access to drugs, but engineers would have been included.)

Design Build in New York City – NYSSPE is in favor of Design Build so as long as the proper safeguards are in place.  That being said, legislation was introduced at the request of NYC to permit NYC agencies to employ design build on projects in the City.  We opposed the bill strongly because we had concluded that the legislation failed to include safeguards needed to insure both quality assurance and public safety.  The bill did not pass either house.  Further, we have a commitment on the part of the sponsor of the bill in the Assembly (Assemblyman Benedetto) to work with us to address the weaknesses in the bill which we have identified. [Read more…]

NYSSPE Legislative Update June 2016 – Design Build NYC Legislation Update

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Anthony Fasano PE, Executive Director of New York State Society of Professional Engineers (NYSSPE) speaks with Mark Kriss, Esq., NYSSPE legislative counsel in our third June/July legislative video update on the proposed Design Build (in New York City) legislation.

It is important to note that, in general, NYSSPE is in favor of Design Build, as long as it is done in a way that there are proper safeguards in place to protect the public.  Design Build is a complex area and there are many parameters to be aware of.  You can view a comprehensive FAQ on Design Build in New York here.
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NYSSPE Legislative Update June 2016 – Parking Garage Inspections Legislation

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Anthony Fasano PE, Executive Director of the New York State Society of Professional Engineers (NYSSPE) speaks with Mark Kriss, Esq., NYSSPE legislative counsel in our second June/July legislative video update on the proposed parking garage inspection legislation.

Kriss discussed that the impetus for this bill was the partial collapse of a parking garage the same day a Broome County Executive was in the garage.  This prompted local politicians to reach out to NYSSPE President Larry O’Connor for assistance in investigating how often these parking garages need to be inspected, and currently there are no requirements.  This proposed bill which NYSSPE helped to craft, has already passed the assembly, and requires buildings to have inspections every five years. This parking structure situation is a good example to engineers of what we do at NYSSPE.  We try to help improve the safety and welfare of the public through the proper legislative channels.

Note: NYSSPE facilitates posting on this blog, but the views and accounts expressed herein are those of the author(s) and not the views or accounts of NYSSPE, its officers or directors whose views and accounts may or may not be similar or identical. NYSSPE, its officers and directors do not express any opinion regarding any product or service by virtue of reference to such product or service in this blog.