Public Records Information
Settled in 1624, New York is the 3rd largest state by population with over 19 million residents. The state of New York served as a major trading port by the Dutch and soon after by the English. The city of New York is the largest city in the U.S. and has held that title since 1790. Today, New York’s largest economy is the financial and investment industries followed by real estate and business services.
The New York Freedom of Information Law was implemented by the Committee on Open Government. The committee is composed of 11 members, 5 from government and 6 from the public. This law was enacted in 1974 and revised in 1977 and amended in 1982, 2005 and 2008. New York's Freedom of Information Law directs the committee to furnish advice to agencies, the public and the news media as well as issuing regulations and reporting its observations and recommendations to the Governor and the Legislature.
New York's government includes the Governor as well as 150 Assembly members and 62 members of the state Senate. Similar to other states, New York consist of a 3 branch government. The executive branch which includes the governor and officials independently elected. The judicial branch is the state's court system and the legislature is made of the state's senate and assembly. There are 62 counties in the state of New York which are subdivided into 932 towns and 62 cities. Each town is contained within a single county, different towns in separate counties may have the same name. In some cases there is a city and a town by the same name in the same county. New York's cities and its departments provide local government administrative services, law enforcement, fire, rescue and other offices to serve its citizens. The top elected official of a city is the mayor wich oversees the city's police and budget among other duties. Cities also deal with the zoning and urban development, vital statistics, city clerk and custodian of records, tax assessor, public works and other local divisions.
New York, "The Empire State", obtained statehood on July 26, 1788. It is the 27the largest and 3rd most populated state in the USA. The State capitol is Albany. New York is the birthplace of presidents: Martin Van Buren, Millard Fillmore, Theodore Roosvelt and Franklin Delano Roosvelt. State symbols include; the state bird: the Eastern Bluebird, flower: the Rose and tree: the Sugar Maple. The state song is "I Love New York" The Statue of Liberty is located on Liberty Island in New York. Other landmarks include the Empire State Building, Ellis Island, Rockefeller Center and Grand Central Terminal. The World Trade Center (WTC) was a complex of seven buildings in Lower Manhattan in New York City that was destroyed in the September 11, 2001 terrorist attacks. The site is currently being rebuilt with six new skyscrapers and a memorial to the casualties of the attacks.
The New York Committee for Open Government advises and oversees public requests for information and records. The Freedom of Information statutes give residents of New York government transparency where any member of the public can look into the state’s affairs, meetings and planning. These laws outline the state, county or local government duties in providing records requested by any member of the general public. The open records and meetings statutes also known as the Freedom Of Information Law (FOIL) covers government agencies, commissions, committees, public corporations and other government entities within the state. Exceptions apply to certain areas of the government such as the legislature, courts or any information containing personal or confidential data. Private companies and entities do not fall under the authority of the open records and meeting laws.
Members of the public are not required by any agency to provide reasons for making their requests. Anyone for any reason can make FOIL request of a particular department. Request are often made by citizen groups overseeing their government affairs in efforts curtail overspending of tax revenues, or to look into future development and planning. News reporters in New York and their organizations make requests to uncover stories of corruption, accountability or any other newsworthy issues. Companies working with New York state and local governments can also in part fall under transparency laws. General public demands for information from various New York divisions are also often made for personal purposes.
Court Records Information
Court record searches with online access is made possible by the New York electronic data access system. Information form courts contain records of divorces occurring in NY. Cases of criminal and civil trials that are pending or recorded at courthouses can be viewed by any member of the public. Cases can be electronically tracked to keep you up to date with trial proceedings. Bankruptcy court cases involving list of assets and liabilities are provided by each venue separately and available procedures with easy to follow instructions are offered by all districts.
The New York supreme court has mandatory jurisdiction in civil, general and capital criminal, administrative agency, juvenile, original proceeding cases, has discretionary jurisdiction in civil, criminal, administrative agency, juvenile, disciplinary, and original proceeding cases.
The state’s appellate divisions have mandatory jurisdiction in civil, criminal, administrative agency, juvenile, lawyer disciplinary, original proceeding, and interlocutory decision cases.
The Supreme court has discretionary jurisdiction in civil, criminal, juvenile, original proceeding, and interlocutory decision cases, has jurisdiction in tort, contract, real property rights, and miscellaneous civil cases.
The New York appellate terms of the supreme court has mandatory jurisdiction in civil, criminal, juvenile, and interlocutory decision cases, has discretionary jurisdiction in criminal, juvenile, and interlocutory decision cases, exclusive marriage dissolution jurisdiction. The appellate terms of the supreme criminal court has jurisdiction over felony, traffic, and miscellaneous criminal cases.
The county courts have jurisdiction over tort, contract, real property rights ($0/$25,000), and miscellaneous civil cases, trial court appeals jurisdiction. The county criminal courts have jurisdiction over felony, DWI/DUI, general criminal, and criminal appeals.
The court of claims has jurisdiction over tort, contract, and real property rights involving the state and no jury trials. The surrogates court has jurisdiction over estate cases, adoptions and has jury trials in estate cases. The New York family court has jurisdiction over guardianship, and domestic relations (except marriage dissolution). The family court has exclusive domestic violence jurisdiction and exclusive juvenile jurisdiction and no jury trials.
District courts have jurisdiction over tort, contract, real property rights ($0 to $15,000), small claims up to $3,000), and administrative agency appeals. Criminal divisions have jurisdiction over felony, misdemeanor, traffic, ordinance violation cases, preliminary hearings and has jury trials except in traffic cases.
City court has jurisdiction over tort, contract, real property rights ($0/$15,000), and small claims up to $3,000. Criminal divisions in city courts have jurisdiction over felony, misdemeanor, and DWI/DUI, traffic, ordinance violations and handles preliminary hearings with jury trials for the highest level misdemeanors.
Civil court of the city of New York has jurisdiction over tort, contract, real property rights ($0/$25,000), small claims up to $3,000, miscellaneous civil, and administrative agency appeals cases and has jury trials. The criminal court of the city of New York hears misdemeanor, DWI DUI, moving traffic, ordinance violation, and miscellaneous traffic cases, handles preliminary hearings and has jury trials for the highest level misdemeanor.
Town and village justice courts have jurisdiction over contract, tort, real property rights and small claims ($0/$3,000) cases, misdemeanors, miscellaneous criminal and traffic. The town and village justice courts handle preliminary hearings and have jury trials in most cases.
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