New York Correction Law § 177. Labor of inmates in state and local correctional facilities




1. The labor of inmates in the state correctional facilities, after the necessary labor for and manufacture of all needed supplies for said institutions, shall be primarily devoted to the state, the public buildings and institutions thereof, and the manufacture of supplies for the state, and public institutions thereof, and secondly to the political subdivisions of the state, and public institutions thereof;  

2. The labor of inmates in local correctional facilities after the necessary labor for and manufacture of all needed supplies for the same, shall be primarily devoted to the counties, respectively, in which said local correctional facilities are located, and the towns, cities and villages therein, and to the manufacture of supplies for the public institutions of the counties, or the political subdivisions thereof, and secondly to the state and the public institutions thereof;

3. However, for the purpose of distributing, marketing or sale of the whole or any part of the product of any correctional facility in the state, other than by said state correctional facilities, to the state or to any political subdivisions thereof or to any public institutions owned or managed and controlled by the state, or by any political subdivisions thereof, or to any public corporation, authority, or eleemosynary association funded in whole or in part by any federal, state or local funds, the sheriff of any such local correctional facility and the commissioner of corrections and community supervision may enter into a contract or contracts which may determine the kinds and qualities of articles to be produced by such institution and the method of distribution and sale thereof by the commissioner of corrections and community supervision or under his or her direction, either in separate lots or in combination with the products of other such institutions and with the products produced by inmates in state correctional facilities.  Such contracts may fix and determine any and all terms and conditions for the disposition of such products and the disposition of proceeds of sale thereof and any and all other terms and conditions as may be agreed upon, not inconsistent with the constitution.  However, no such contract shall be for a period of more than one year and any prices fixed by such contract shall be the prices established pursuant to section one hundred eighty-six of this article for like articles or shall be approved by the department of corrections and community supervision and the director of the budget on presentation to them of a copy of such contract or proposed contract, and provided further that any distribution or diversification of industries provided for by such contract shall be in accordance with the rules and regulations established by the department of corrections and community supervision or shall be approved by such department on presentation to it of a copy of such contract or proposed contract.

4. No product manufactured in whole or in part by inmates in any correctional facility of the state or of a political subdivision thereof, shall be sold, or otherwise disposed of for profit, by any officer, or administrative body, of such institution, or by any officer, or administrative body of the state, or of a political subdivision thereof, except to the state itself or to a political subdivision thereof, the government of the United States or to any state of the United States, or to an officer or administrative body of the state, or of a political subdivision thereof, or to or for a public institution owned or managed and controlled by the state or by any political subdivision thereof, or to a public corporation, authority, or eleemosynary association funded in whole or in part by federal, state or local funds.  In no case shall said products be purchased for the purpose of resale or for their disposition for profit in a manner not herein provided for in the first instance.

5. The commissioner shall be authorized to enter into agreements to sell food and drink products made at the food production center of the department to food kitchens, homeless shelters and other eleemosynary organizations funded in whole or in part by federal, state or local funds and to counties for governmental purposes.  All proceeds from such sales shall be deposited into an account which shall only be used for the continued operation of the food production center.  The charge for these products, included in the agreements between the commissioner and these eleemosynary organizations, shall not exceed the costs associated with the production and transportation of the products for sale.  The commissioner may, in his or her discretion, and by whatever means he or she deems appropriate, notify such organizations of the availability of such products for sale.

6. Notwithstanding any other provision of law, an inmate may be permitted to leave the institution under guard to voluntarily perform work for a nonprofit organization.  As used in this section, the term “nonprofit organization” means an organization operated exclusively for religious, charitable, or educational purposes, no part of the net earnings of which inures to the benefit of any private shareholder or individual.


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