Replaces previously released version in its entirety


12.8. Must a type of trial be conducted to determine whether an Offerer has violated § 139-j of the State Finance Law? (Last Updated: 3/16/2006)

The State Finance Law requires a Governmental Entity to establish a process for reviewing and investigating any allegations of violations and sets forth the minimum elements that must be incorporated into this process.  Upon notification of any allegation of the violation of the provisions of State Finance Law §139-j (3), the Governmental Entity’s ethics officer, inspector general, if any, or other official of the procuring Governmental Entity responsible for reviewing or investigating such matters shall immediately investigate such allegation and, if sufficient cause exists to believe that such allegation is true, shall afford the Offerer due process by giving reasonable notice that an investigation is ongoing and providing for an opportunity to be heard in response to the allegation.

Section 139-j of the State Finance Law does not require a Governmental Entity to conduct an actual trial with regard to investigating alleged violations.  The important issue is to make sure that the Governmental Entity incorporates the elements of due process with regard to any investigation and subsequent findings.  At the very least, a Governmental Entity must provide the Offerer with notice, an opportunity to be heard and a final determination in writing.  A Governmental Entity may choose to follow procedures it may already have in place which address instances where a party wishes to be heard regarding an unfavorable decision of a Governmental Entity.  Governmental Entity staff should be made aware of the necessity of affording the Offerer due process where there is an alleged violation.

See §139-j (10)(a) of the State Finance Law.


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