The Future is Now!

Top 5 Transfer Standings Circular #4 2020/21

January 21, 2021

Local 891 Member,

You may click here for the top five standing from Circular #4 -2020/21:

Please contact Rating and Transfer Committee Chairman Robert Calamia at 718.455.9731 ext. 269 or via email at if you have questions or concerns. The effective date of transfer is January 10, 2020.


Vacancy / Transfer List Results

January 14, 2021

Local 891 Member,

You may click here for the list of the Local 891 members who were awarded a Transfer from the recent Vacancy/Transfer List. Congratulations to those who were awarded a transfer. Please contact Rating and Transfer Committee Chairman Robert Calamia at 718.455.9731 ext. 269 or via email at if you have questions or concerns. Official notification and the top five standings will be sent once they become available. The transfer will occur on February 5, 2021.


Covid – 19 Vaccinations

January 8, 2021

Local 891 Member,

Local 891 continues to advocate for our members to be offered the COVID-19 vaccine as soon as feasible. We will share any information about when that will occur as soon as we know. The vaccine will not be mandatory.



Thank you & Video Link

November 16, 2020

Greetings Everyone,

Thank you again for your dedication and service.  We salute you.

Please find the video link to share with members here.

Wishing you a safe and joyous season forward!

In Service,

Una-Kariim A. Cross
Director of Professional Learning 
NYC Department of Education
Office of the First Deputy Chancellor
52 Chambers St. | Tweed Courthouse
New York, NY 10007

Business Manager/President Troeller Honored by EmblemHealth and LaborPress

November 3, 2020

Local 891 Member,

EmblemHealth and LaborPress has recognized the work that the Leaders and Members of Local 30, Local 94, Local 32BJ and Local 891 have done during these difficult times. Please join in a special webinar honoring all those that have kept our buildings open!

On November 12, 2020, LaborPress and EmblemHealth are planning a special webinar honoring: IUOE Local 94 Business Manager Kuba Brown, IUOE Local 30 Business Manager William Lynn, IUOE Local 891 Business Manager Robert Troeller and SEIU Local 32BJ Vice President Shirley Aldebol. This event is part of our Heroes of Labor series. These union leaders and their members are heroes as they keep the doors open to buildings during COVID-19 pandemic – maintaining, operating, and managing buildings and schools in New York City. This important webinar will take place online: Thursday, November 12th at 2PM.

To register go to:

To view the attached flyer click here.



Transfer List

November 2, 2020

Local 891 Member:

On Thursday, October 29, 2020, DSF sent out the vacancy list. Please read the cover letter very carefully and be guided by the instructions! One additional day was added to the transfer period due to the holiday next week.

Note that all Level II assignments require that you include a current copy of your Stationary Engineer License and if you have Stepped Up to Level II with an Approved Educational Equivalent, a copy of your degree as well.

Every time we have a transfer list, there is an average of twelve to fifteen people disqualified. Please do not let this happen to you! Review your application carefully. The top five reasons for disqualification are:

Failure to sign the application (Requires an original hand signature)
Late postmark date (No later than Friday, November 13, 2020)
No license(s) or copy of Degree attached
Expired License
Hand delivery of an application is not acceptable (Applications must be mailed)


Local 891 Video



PPE Supplies Survey

October 15, 2020

Local 891 Member,

Many CEs have expressed their concerns with the changes DSF has made to the supply survey. I know that each of you are in different situations in terms of your relationship with your Principal and the percentage of students attending in-person instruction. For this reason I suggest you only consider the supplies in your possession when completing the survey. Ignore those items that turned over the the school. If the Principal is in possession of a majority of the PPE supplies and you want to include their supply in the survey send them an email asking for the amounts they have left and add those amounts to your totals.



Random Covid Testing

October 2, 2020

Local 891 Member,

In regard to Random Covid Testing in the schools, Custodian Engineers are under no obligation to participate and cannot be pressured or forced to do so. I see no reason you wouldn’t participate. If you are asked to be tested and chose to do so you must complete the consent form. Your staff is not involved in the testing.

Have a nice weekend,

Next Certified Pool Operator Course

October 1, 2020

Local 891 Member,

The next Certified Pool Operator (CPO)- 16-hour course, will be held on Monday and Tuesday, October 26th & 27th, 2020 from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm both days.

We will also follow up with another Certified Pool Operator Course on Monday and Tuesday, November 30th and December 1st, 2020, also from 8:00 am to 4:00 pm.

The class is limited to 10 attendees at a time to maintain current social distancing protocols. If necessary we will schedule more classes to accommodate those whose certifications are about to expire.

Some members have inquired about S-12, S-13 classes. If you need these Certificates of Fitness and are interested please let us know but again we will be limited to 10 attendees at a time.

Please submit all requests and questions to the Education Committee at

Frank Byrne

Meeting with City Hall / OLR / Local 94 / Local 32BJ

September 18, 2020

Local 891 Member,

Yesterday I participated in a phone-based conference with the First Deputy Mayor, The Commissioner of Labor, Local 94, Local 32BJ, DOE and DSF officials. The union leaders expressed our ongoing mutual concerns regarding so many aspects of their ill-conceived plans regarding custodial operations.

I pressed them on the need for DCAS to quickly finish the final appeals and certify the new CE list from the recent exam. We also expressed our frustrations with NYCSSS and the inability to provide us with the needed workforce and the need for additional staff members. I told them they cannot be ordering CEs to pick up supplies and must develop an appropriate delivery system.

We demanded clarification of how feeding and the subsequent cleanup will be structured. As well as pointing out they need to clarify to Principals and other teaching staff the need to understand our resources are stretched and they can’t expect us and our staff to take on other duties.

We are awaiting official response but I’m not too optimistic as we have made most of these and other concerns known all along. I will let you know when I hear back from them.

Please take the time necessary to enjoy your weekend as much as possible.


School Year Re-Opening Opening Circular

August 26, 2020

Local 891 member,

I’ve been warning you for months that you would face unreasonable expectations if they decide to reopen the schools in September. I didn’t imagine they would propose anything so absurd. We are carefully reviewing Circular No. 1 – 2020/21 regarding the Re-Opening Plan and will determine whether to file a grievance. DO NOT PUT THIS WORK IN YOUR ANNUAL PLAN.

You should schedule your current staff to work as many hours each day as they are willing to work. Let DSF, the DoE and the City worry about any budget shortfalls.

If you determine that you need more workers request additional helpers through NYCSSS by submitting a Personnel Action Form attachedhere.

Do not use any disinfectant supplies that require the use of a NIOSH Approved respirator unless one is supplied.

Stay safe!

Extremely Unrealistic Expectation!

August 3, 2020

Local 891 Member:

I know you are extremely dedicated and always try to do the best job possible. Unfortunately, we have all heard of the unrealistic expectations that are being placed upon you and your staff should schools reopen. If the students and staff return in September, even at a greatly reduced capacity, you cannot possibly do everything they expect to get done each and every day.

I urge you not to make promises you cannot keep. Do not include DSF’s daily sanitizing protocols in your Annual Plan. Be sure to establish a plan that fits within your base budget, as required in our contract. In these uncertain times, be sure to state “all services are predicated on there being no reductions to the available funding.”

I hope you are getting some rest and enjoying some time with your family.

Stay safe!

New York Magazine Article

August 3, 2020

Local 891 Member:

Last week I had mentioned ongoing advocacy on your behalf.

Please read the New York Magazine article by  clicking here regarding the reopening of schools.

Stay safe!

COVID-19 Reasonable Accommodations Questions

July 17, 2020

Local 891 Member,

In yesterday’s email, there was an error with my phone number. The correct number is listed below.

If you have any question regarding the Covid-19 Reasonable Accommodation email that was sent from the DOE, please contact your Borough Chairperson or me via email at, call the Local 891 office (718) 455-9731 or you can call my cell phone at (917) 887-1350.


Contractor Permit Submittals Update 6/3/2020

Local 891 Member,

Please read the following email from Maria Addamo, Custodial Payroll, regarding the submission of Contractor Permits.

If you have any questions contact Local 891 Payroll/Permits Committee Chairperson Andrew Foti at or
(917) 280-2082

Subject: Contractor Permits

Good morning,

During this time, we would like to ensure that all 2020 contractor permits have been entered. We are assuming that all permits from 7/1/2019 to 12/31/2019 have been entered prior to the pandemic. Would it be possible to send a correspondence to your Local 891 members advising that we are now accepting contractor permits issued prior to the NYC Pause order in March? Please remind your members of the temporary protocols in place for contractor permit submission. We are aware that contractor permit costs are included when calculating a building’s 113 budget for a fiscal year. As we approach the start of FY21, we would like to make every effort to accurately represent contractor costs in NYC public school buildings.

Thanking you in advance for your continued support.


Please view the email addresses for my staff and the building codes they are responsible for.

Bronx and Staten Island:      Gail Moore,  Email address:

Brooklyn 1-88:                          Miaolian (Lillian) Lin, Email address:

Queens 113 – Q999:            Miaolian (Lillian) Lin, Email address:

Brooklyn K89 –K999:          Milagreta Ramsumare, Email address:

Queens 1 – Q112:                 Cheryl Seaton, Email address:

Manhattan:                                Cheryl Seaton, Email address:




NYC Council Introduced and Voted on the Following Intros

(That is the Council’s term for Bills)

May 15, 2020

Local 891 Member,

Yesterday, the New York City Council held a remote stated meeting, during which a number of bills were voted on and introduced. Actions that might be of interest to you are detailed below:
The bills voted on include:
* Pre-considered Int. No. 1940-A– in relation to license, permit, consent and registration renewal extensions, and requiring at least 45 days notice for renewal following the COVID-19 emergency.
* Passed unanimously.
This bill will now be delivered to the mayor for his signature.
* Preconsidered Int. No. 1941 – in relation to requiring health insurance coverage for surviving family members of municipal employees who died as a result of a complication related to the coronavirus disease, COVID-19
* This bill would require health insurance coverage to be extended to the surviving family members (surviving spouse, domestic partner and children) of municipal employees who have died as a natural and proximate result of a complication of the coronavirus disease, COVID-19.
* Introduced by CM Miller, the Public Advocate, and nine other CMs.
* This preconsidered bill has already been heard at a May 5th hearing of the Committee on Civil Service and Labor.
* Preconsidered Res. No. 1322– calling on the New York State Legislature to pass, and the Governor to sign, legislation automatically classifying the deaths of all municipal employees who died from COVID-19 as line-of-duty deaths.
* Introduced by CM Miller, eight other CMs, and Public Advocate Williams.
* This preconsidered bill has already been heard at a May 5th hearing of the Committee on Civil Service and Labor.

I have attached a copy of the agenda from the hearing to this email. If you have any questions on any of the legislation voted on or  ntroduced, or would like us to monitor any additional legislation for you, please let us know.



Business Manager/President Troeller Appointed by Mayor to Advisory Council

May 12, 2020

Local 891 Member,

The following is taken in part from an article from

Local 891 Business Manager President Robert Troeller has been appointed by Mayor Bill de Blasio to a panel of education leaders and advocates to guide the city’s reopening plans which will begin meeting Wednesday.

The 45-member Education Sector Advisory Council is made up of parents, higher education officials, charter and religious school representatives, nonprofit and union leaders, and more.

The council is one of sixthat the mayor hopes will inform the city’s COVID-19 recovery and reopening in more fair and equitable ways. They will meet weekly.

It’s very, very important that we think about everything that makes up life in this city,” he said at a recent press conference. The councils will “help us understand what is needed to get this restart right.”

Gov. Andrew Cuomo has appointed his own advisory council, partnering with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, to “reimagine” education in the state. That move sparked outrage here, especially afterno current New York City educators were named to the group though the school system is the largest in the state, as well as the country.

Here are all the members of de Blasio’s education council.

For the complete list of panel members and to read the article click here


Contractor Permit Submittals Update

May 11, 2020

Local 891 Member,

Please read the following email from Maria Addamo, Custodial Payroll, regarding the submission of Contractor Permits. Please submit copies of Contractor Permits that apply to the time frame below to the person that handles your building code.

If you have any questions contract Local 891 Payroll/Permits Committee Chairperson Andrew Foti at payroll@local891.comor (917) 280-2082.

Subject: Contractor Permits

Good afternoon,

As per our discussion, please view the email addresses for my staff and the building codes they are responsible for.

Bronx and Staten Island
Gail Moore, Email address:

Brooklyn 1-88
Miaolian (Lillian) Lin, Email address:

Queens 113 – Q999
Miaolian (Lillian) Lin, Email address:

Brooklyn K89 –K999
Milagreta Ramsumare, Email address:

Queens 1 – Q112
Cheryl Seaton, Email address:

Cheryl Seaton, Email address:

My staff has informed me that the number of permits being forwarded to them for data entry has subsided. That being said, would it be possible to send a follow-up email to Local 891 members reminding them of the temporary protocols in place for contractor permit data entry? Additionally, I would like to open up submissions to include post 3/26/2020 and future contractor activities. I am not privy to any information regarding our return to 65 Court Street and would like to keep any backlog to a minimum.

Thanking you in advance for your continued support.




Safer Cleaning, Sanitizing and Disinfecting Strategies

April 29, 2020

Local 891 Member,

Please review the informative link here regarding safer cleaning, sanitizing and disinfecting strategies to reduce and prevent Covid-19 transmission. Following the information are useful resources for cleaning and disinfecting.

As a reminder, I realize that you may not be able to open the link on your DOE computer but you can on your personal devices.



April 27, 2020

Local 891 Member,

You should not Lay-Off or reduce the hours of any custodial helper without first contacting Committee Chairperson, Marvin Rodriguez at He will guide you through the proper procedures. No one should be losing their income needlessly during these difficult times.



April 23, 2020

Local 891 Member,

Your employment is secure. Unfortunately, many of our family members could end up unemployed. This is an important update for you and any family members who may have obtained a mortgage through Union Plus.

Are your family members concerned about missing a house payment because they’re disabled, laid off, furloughed, locked out or on strike?

If they have a Union Plus Home Mortgage, they’re protected by a unique mortgage assistance program administered through the AFL-CIO Mutual Benefit Plan.

Union Plus Mortgage Assistance provides interest-free loans and grants to help make mortgage payments when you’re disabled, unemployed, furloughed, locked out or on strike.  The program has provided over $11.2 million in assistance to union members.

If rates drop very low, as they did earlier in the week, you and your eligible family members might seek a refinance through Union Plus.

Additionally, rates are low and it might be a great time to refinance. For additional information or to apply for a Union Plus mortgage, please contact:

Christine Dawson
Union Plus Mortgage Consultant
NMLSR ID 536805
Wells Fargo Home Mortgage
Cell 516-445-0521

Be Safe,

COVID-19 and Family Members

March 26, 2020

Local 891 Member,

I have received several questions regarding the Department’s recommendations for members 70 years of age and older, those with compromised immune systems and those with underlying illnesses to stay home and take other precautionary measures to reduce their exposure to COVID-19.

The Guidance memo details permitted leave based on your own condition, not the condition of a family member. While you certainly could choose to take precautions regarding any family member, you would need to use your personal time.

Remember that if you have a compromised immune system or an underlying medical condition you will need to provide documentation from your physician. If you are 70 or older, just send them an email that you decided to stay home base on the guidance memo. Continue to take all the necessary precautions to mitigate the chances of getting sick.

Stay safe,


March 24, 2020

Good Morning,

Please be advised you can not order your staff to stay home. You could certainly strongly advise your staff to check with their physician and stay home if so advised. They will need a note to be covered under the NYCSSS COVID-19 leave policy. Any custodial staff member who wishes to be out under the NYCSSS COVID-19 policy must follow the NYCSSS guidelines that were emailed you yesterday. The staff member must notify you and submit their documentation letter to NYCSSS at You can email it for them.

Once documentation is submitted to and approved by NYCSSS you will no longer enter that person’s hours. NYCSSS will enter that custodial employee’s hours for the duration of the approved absence based on their usual work hours. Follow up with NYCSSS to ensure the absence was approved. Otherwise, an employee who does not get approval can still be paid by you using their accrued time if they wish.

Be Safe,

March 19, 2020


DATE: March 9, 2020

TO: BCO Directors (Via Email) Principals (Via Principals’
Weekly) Payroll Secretaries/Timekeepers (Via Email)

FROM: Francine Perkins-Colón

SUBJECT: Timekeeping Procedures for Absences Related to the 2019 Novel

In accordance with policy issued by the New York City Department of Citywide Administrative Services (DCAS) and adapted for the Department of Education, the following timekeeping procedures are enacted for absences that are or will be documented as related to the 2019 Novel Coronavirus virus (COVID-19) under specific circumstances as outlined below.


Absences on or after February 2, 2020 shall be excusable and not charged to either sick or annual leave banks when the absence is a result of one of the following:

1) A confirmed case of COVID-19 where the employee is under quarantine or isolation in accordance with a directive issued by the New York City Department of Health and Mental Health (DOHMH) or other state or federal health agency.

2) Where an employee is symptomatic and under investigation for COVID-19 infection and required to remain absent as directed by DOHMH or other state or federal health agency.

3) Where an employee has been in close contact, as per the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines (e.g. within 6 feet for a prolonged period of time) with an individual who has a laboratory confirmed case of COVID-19 and needs to undergo testing and/or self-monitoring requiring absence from work, as certified by their doctor, DOHMH or other state or federal health agency.

4) Where an employee has recently returned to New York from other countries/areas designated by the CDC or DOHMH requiring absence for self-monitoring.

5) Any other case where an employee has specifically been ordered or directed to be quarantined, isolated, or absent for self-monitoring by the DOHMH related to COVID-19 including any quarantines recognized by DOHMH from other public health agencies.

Employees in these categories will not have absences charged to their sick or annual leave banks for the duration of the period they need to be out per the guidelines of the applicable agency. Thereafter time will be charged to leave balances. Employees who have exhausted their sick or annual leave days may be advanced days in accordance with collective bargaining agreements, the NYC DOE Rules and Regulations governing administrative employees, and the Chancellor’s Regulations.

Please note that absences due to regular illness or general flu like symptoms will be treated according to the standard sick leave/time policy unless they qualify, with appropriate documentation, as set forth above.

If/as there are any updates to COVID-19 excused absences, this memo will be updated accordingly.

Timekeeping Codes and Procedures

Timekeeping Codes
The following codes are to be used to record excused absences due to COVID-19

Cybershift Code:

EIS Codes:
Code Absence Description Applicable Employee Group

31QCV Quarantine for Corona Virus Education Administrators
41QCV Quarantine for Corona Virus 10 month Pedagogical Titles
(e.g. Teachers, Guidance Counselors, School Secretaries, 10 month APs,etc.)
52QCV Quarantine for Corona Virus Education Paraprofessionals
61QCV Quarantine for Corona Virus EBank Hourly titles
71QCV Quarantine for Corona Virus CSA 12 month titles, except EAs

All such excused absences require documentation of meeting the criteria as set forth above. Such documentation may include directives from the applicable health agency, medical documentation from a doctor, and/or documentation of travel.

Timekeeping Entry
In order to help monitor these absences, for these codes only, timekeepers are both asked and authorized to enter them immediately upon a person’s report of being absent, even if receipt of such documentation is pending, if the individual attests or there is a good faith indication that the absence was in accordance with the above guidelines. In part, this is necessary because absences of this nature may make it difficult to provide documentation immediately and because tracking such absences is an important part of monitoring the spread of COVID-19. The failure of an employee to provide said documentation at the earliest opportunity will result in absences being charged to their sick or annual leave bank retroactively.


March 18, 2020

Local 891 Member,

We simply don’t know what measures the City or State might take next to slow the spread of COVID-19. The members of our Union are often called to respond to school buildings under emergency conditions. Always be prepared. Carry your Department of Education ID, be professional and prepared to explain yourself at all times.



March 17, 2020

Local 891 Member,

I wanted to share with you comments made yesterday by Mayor de Blasio during his press conference on the Coronavirus. At 5:25 to 6:14 in the video, the Mayor mentions the work we are doing. See Mayors Comments Here. If this link is blocked type into your personal device  Again the work you are doing is being noticed!

March 3, 2020

Local 891 Member,

The following In-Service courses are being offered by the Local 891 Education & Training Fund.

Certified Pool Operator – 16-hour course. The class will be held on Tuesday and Wednesday, May 12 & 13,  8:00 am to 4:00 pm both days.

S-12 (Sprinkler) and S-13 (Standpipe) are scheduled for Monday, April 20 from 8:00 am to 12:00 pm.

In May and June of 2017 many members took part in CPR/AED training from the American Red Cross. Those certificates expire this year. I have arranged for another date; Monday, May 4, 2020 to update your CPR/AED training. This training begins at 8:00 am. Please contact the committee to schedule and let us know if you are recertifying or attending for the first time.

Please submit all requests and questions to the Education Committee at


Frank Byrne

Click here for pictures from Local 891’s Cocktail Reception at Russo’s on the Bay.

January 24, 2020

September 13, 2019

Local 891 Member,

I.U.O.E. General President James T. Callahan swore in the newly elected Officers to their three year terms as well as the recently hired Custodian Engineers into Local 891. This was the first time (as long as anyone can remember) that the General President of the I.U.O.E. was present at an 891 meeting.

New York State Senator John Liu spoke about his admiration and appreciation of Local 891

Thank you for the tremendous turnout! Both General President Callahan and Senator Liu were impressed by the attendance last night.