Lottery will be used to grant seats at Paladino hearing

Jun 7, 2017

If you want to attend the hearing for Buffalo School Board member Carl Paladino in Albany later this month, it will be decided through a lottery.

Buffalo School Board member Carl Paladino.
Credit WBFO News file photo

The New York State Education Department (NYSED) issued logistics for the June 22 hearing that will review whether or not Paladino violated school board rules for publicizing information about the teacher contract talks discussed during the board’s private executive session.

But NYSED said due to very limited seating in the hearing room, seats will be “granted through a lottery.” Those seats will be granted for the duration of the hearing and are non-transferable.  

The hearing will review the Buffalo School District’s petition calling for the removal of Paladino.  The Education Department says while the hearing is open to the public, there is “extremely limited seating available in the hearing room due to space limitations.”

But NYSED is responding to the great public interest it has received. The public is being invited to view the hearing from a live feed that will be providing from the hearing room in the Chancellor’s Hall at the State Education Building located in Albany. However, it will not be recorded or broadcast.    

NYSED said “no broadcasting or recording, that includes video or audio, will be permitted. Only still photographs will be allowed as long as it does not disrupt the hearing.  The public will not be allowed to bring in signs or placards. 

If you would like to request a seat you must email NYSED, JuneHearing@nysed.gov, by 5 p.m. on June 14th. Individuals granted seating through the lottery will be notified by email by 5 p.m. on June 19. Individuals must show a government-issued ID and sign in to enter.

NYSED said these hearing restrictions are in compliance with the Civil Rights Law §52. “The proceedings may not be televised or broadcast and no motion pictures may be taken (1979 Op. Atty. Gen. 58),” stated  

Emily DeSantis, Assistant Commissioner for Public Affairs NYS Dept. of Education.

The following information was also stated by NYSED on rules for the hearing:

Doors to the viewing room will open at 8:15 a.m. each day of the hearing.

Hearing Room Seats

Members of the public granted seats in the hearing room must arrive at the State Education Building by 8:30 a.m. each day of the hearing. The hearing will start promptly at 9:00 a.m. each day. Members of the public that arrive after 9 a.m. will not be granted access to the room until there is a break in the proceeding. No photography, visual or audio recording will be permitted in the hearing room. As is standard practice at the State Education Building, no signs or placards will be allowed in the viewing room.  Members of the public granted seats in the Hearing Room should use the S. Swan Street entrance to the building, which is located by the Regents Room.

Media Protocols 

Space will be reserved in the hearing room for members of the media who RSVP in advance.  In the event that more reporters would like to attend than seating allows, seats will be given in the order RSVPs are received. Reporters planning to attend the first day of the hearing on June 22 must RSVP to NYSEDcommunications@nysed.gov by 5 p.m. on June 20. For each subsequent hearing day that reporters wish to attend, they must RSVP by 2 p.m. on the business day prior to the hearing day they wish to attend.  For example, to attend the June 23 hearing, reporters must RSVP by 2 p.m. on June 22. To attend the June 26 hearing, reporters must RSVP by 2 p.m. on June 23.

Reporters must show government-issued ID, sign in and be seated in the hearing room by 8:45 a.m. each day of the hearing. The hearing will start promptly at 9:00 a.m. each day. Reporters that arrive after 9 a.m. will not be granted access to the room until there is a break in the proceeding. No broadcasting or audio or video recordings will be permitted in the hearing room. Still photography will be permitted as long as such activity does not cause distractions or otherwise interfere with the administration and advancement of the hearing. Reporters should use the S. Swan Street entrance to the building, which is located by the Regents Room.