New York State Court of Claims

New York State Court of Claims
JONES v. NEW YORK STATE OFFICE OF TEMPORARY AND DISABILITY ASSISTANCE, MR. DAVID A. HANSELL, COMMISSIONER and ALBANY COUNTY DEPT. OF SOCIAL SERVICES, MR. VINCENT W. COLONNO, COMMISSIONER and ACDSS, Employees, JULIANNE SCHWEIGARDT, Safety Net Supervisor, LISA P., worker No. 22233, Safety Net Supervisor, GINA CATALDO, ACDSS Fair Hearing Representative, SHERRY P., Employment Unit, # 2009-015-220, Claim No. 116771, Motion Nos. M-76718, M-76744

Synopsis

Claim dismissed for lack of subject matter jurisdiction.

JONES v. NEW YORK STATE OFFICE OF TEMPORARY AND DISABILITY ASSISTANCE, MR. DAVID A. HANSELL, COMMISSIONER and ALBANY COUNTY DEPT. OF SOCIAL SERVICES, MR. VINCENT W. COLONNO, COMMISSIONER and ACDSS, Employees, JULIANNE SCHWEIGARDT, Safety Net Supervisor, LISA P., worker No. 22233, Safety Net Supervisor, GINA CATALDO, ACDSS Fair Hearing Representative, SHERRY P., Employment Unit

Case information

UID: 2009-015-220
Claimant(s): CRAIG O. JONES
Claimant short name: JONES
Footnote (claimant name) :
Defendant(s): NEW YORK STATE OFFICE OF TEMPORARY AND DISABILITY ASSISTANCE, MR. DAVID A. HANSELL, COMMISSIONER and ALBANY COUNTY DEPT. OF SOCIAL SERVICES, MR. VINCENT W. COLONNO, COMMISSIONER and ACDSS, Employees, JULIANNE SCHWEIGARDT, Safety Net Supervisor, LISA P., worker No. 22233, Safety Net Supervisor, GINA CATALDO, ACDSS Fair Hearing Representative, SHERRY P., Employment Unit
Footnote (defendant name) :
Third-party claimant(s):
Third-party defendant(s):
Claim number(s): 116771
Motion number(s): M-76718, M-76744
Cross-motion number(s):
Judge: FRANCIS T. COLLINS
Claimant's attorney: Craig O. Jones, Pro Se
Defendant's attorney: Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo, Attorney General
By: Joan Matalavage, Esquire
Assistant Attorney General
Albert F. Dingley, Senior Attorney
Albany County Dept. of Social Services
Third-party defendant's attorney:
Signature date: October 26, 2009
City: Saratoga Springs
Comments:
Official citation:
Appellate results:
See also (multicaptioned case)

Decision

Claimant, proceeding pro se, filed a claim against the New York State Office of Temporary and Disability Assistance, the Albany County Department of Social Services, and several individually named employees, alleging the improper denial of public assistance benefits. In their pre-answer motions for dismissal [Motion Nos. M-76744 and M-76718], defendants argue that this Court lacks jurisdiction to hear the claim, which seeks review and reversal of an administrative decision. The Court agrees.

"As a court of limited jurisdiction, the Court of Claims has no jurisdiction to grant strictly equitable relief" (Madura v State of New York, 12 AD3d 759, 760 [2004], lv denied 4 NY3d 704 [2005], citing Ozanam Hall of Queens Nursing Home v State of New York, 241 AD2d 670, 671 [1997] and Psaty v Duryea, 306 NY 413 [1954]). The threshold question in determining the subject matter jurisdiction of the Court of Claims is "[w]hether the essential nature of the claim is to recover money, or whether the monetary relief is incidental to the primary claim" (Matter of Gross v Perales, 72 NY2d 231, 236 [1988]; see also Berrian v State of New York, 45 AD3d 995 [2007]; Hoffman v State of New York, 42 AD3d 641, 642 [2007]; Guy v State of New York, 18 AD3d 936 [2005]). Here, the claim plainly seeks review of the administrative determination denying the claimant's application for public assistance benefits. In response to these motions, claimant indicated in a letter to the Court dated May 26, 2009 that he does not oppose the motions. Accordingly, the motions to dismiss the claim pursuant to CPLR 3211 are granted, and the claim is dismissed.

October 26, 2009

Saratoga Springs, New York

FRANCIS T. COLLINS

Judge of the Court of Claims

The Court considered the following papers:

Motion No. M-76718

  1. Notice of motion dated May 14, 2009;
  2. Affidavit of Joan Matalavage sworn to May 14 2009 with exhibit;
  3. Letter dated May 26, 2009 from Craig O. Jones.

Motion No. M-76744

  1. Notice of motion dated May 28, 2009;
  2. Affidavit of Albert F. Dingley sworn to May 28, 2009 with exhibit;
  3. Letter dated May 26, 2009 from Craig O. Jones.