The Civil Service Law provides for a Classification and Compensation Division in the Department of Civil Service, and a Director of Classification and Compensation. The Director is responsible for ascertaining and recording the duties and responsibilities of positions in the classified service of the State, classifying such positions, and allocating salary grades for competitive, non-competitive and-in his/her discretion-labor class positions. All positions, with the exception of part-time, exempt and some temporary and labor class positions, are assigned (allocated) to a salary grade as specifically set forth in the Civil Service law. All positions in the same title, unless unallocated, are in the same salary grade. With the exception of the professional service of SUNY, members of the Division of State Police, and positions in the Division of Military and Naval Affairs and a few smaller organizations, all positions in State government are under the jurisdiction of the Classification and Compensation Division. Positions with similar duties having the same qualifications and requiring the same examination are generally classified under the same title.

Civil Service Law Section 117,118

Most classification actions are initiated by applications to the Director of Classification and Compensation. An agency appointing officer may request the classification and salary allocation of a new position or the reclassification (change in title) or reallocation (change in salary grade) of an existing position or title. An employee may also apply for the reclassification or reallocation of his or her own position and/or title but may not, however, request the establishment of a new position. In the event that an employee or an appointing officer disagrees with a classification determination, an appeal of the determination may be brought to the Civil Service Commission. The appeal must be filed within 60 days of the receipt of the determination.

Civil Service Law Section 120

An employee whose position is reclassified does not automatically receive permanent status in the new title. The individual may have to qualify through the competitive examination process. Judgments are made on an individual case-by-case basis depending upon the changes in duties and responsibilities that supported the change in title and/or grade level.

Civil Service Law Section 121.3122

In those cases where a permanent employee's position is reclassified to a lower grade level, the affected employee's salary will not be reduced as a result of the action and, in a similar situation, the salary of a permanent incumbent of an unallocated position will not be reduced when that position is allocated to a salary grade.

Civil Service Law Section 121.2

Upward reclassification
  • Apply promotion and compare salary to job rate of the new grade.
    • New salary is below job rate – effective date of reclassification and service criteria specific to the bargaining unit determine when the employee will be eligible to receive a performance advance.
    • New salary is equal to or greater than job rate – employee retains job rate credit from prior grade.
Downward reclassification
  • A permanent employee will retain the salary of the higher grade but future payments such as performance advances, job rate, longevity (if applicable) and promotion percentage will be based on the lower grade.