Tuesday, September 18, 2007

I have received an ECB Violation. What is the ECB?

Q: I have received an ECB Violation. What is the ECB?

A: ECB stands for 'Environmental Control Board'. ECB Violations are commonly issued by the NYC Department of Buildings and NYC Fire Department for violations of the Building Code or Building Laws.

An example of a common FDNY-issued ECB Violation might be: "Failure to provide Equipment Use Permits for Rooftop Condenser HVAC Units"

Below is a description of the Environmental Control Board from the ECB's Website:
"The Environmental Control Board (ECB) is an administrative tribunal, which means that it is a decision-making body that hears disputes like a court, but with a few important differences. ECB only hears cases in which people are charged with violating New York City's quality-of-life laws - the laws that protect the health, safety, and cleanliness of our environment and neighborhoods. Quality-of-life violations are not criminal offenses. For this reason, ECB issues only monetary penalties and/or orders to correct violations when it finds people in violation of the City's quality-of-life laws.

ECB is like a court in many ways. Like a court, ECB conducts hearings to resolve quality-of-life violations. At these hearings, parties can present evidence in order to prove or disprove alleged violations. Cases are heard by lawyers with specialized training called Administrative Law Judges (ALJs), who act as impartial decision-makers. However, ECB is less formal than a court. Legal counsel is not required, and most people choose to represent themselves. Cases are not presented in a courtroom and the ALJs do not wear robes."