Crane in front of 461 Dean Street, Brooklyn. Photo credit: Google Maps

The crane operator operated a tower crane without a license. On April 14, 2016, Wayne Miller, a hoist operator, was working with JF Stearns Comp. LLC, a construction company, located at 461 Dean Street in Brooklyn. The Department of Buildings asked Miller to operate a tower crane without proper confirmation and without proper renovation.

At the OATH hearing, Wayne argued that he was not violating any section of the Building Code and stated that he only needed a Class A Operating License.

The administrative judge allowed Buildings to change the subpoena to clarify that Wayne was accused of failing to update his license. The amendment did not add any additional infringements, was in line with the original infringement, did not address subsequent incidents and had adequately informed the petitioner of the actual allegation. The ALJ upheld the amended subpoena and fined Wayne $ 1,600.

Wayne filed a motion for the fine to be waived. The Appeals Division, First Division, agreed with the OATH decision that Wayne violated both sections of code and upheld the $ 1,600 fine. The court ruled that Wayne could only operate the types of cranes that the Department of Buildings recorded was qualified or certified to operate.

Miller v NYC OATH, 120 NYS3d 625 (1st Dep’t 2020).

By: Victoria Agosta (Victoria is a former CityLaw intern and student at New York Law School, grade 2022.)