Albany, New York


The New York State Department of Corrections (DOCs) operates over 70 facilities that are subject to local, state and federal environmental and health and safety regulations as well as DOCs policies. Many of the facilities are similar to small cities since they typically isolated from centers of populations, maintain thousands of living quarters, manufacturing operations, wastewater and water treatment facilities, farms, waste generation etc.  

The responsibility of managing the environmental requirements and ensuring compliance on a continual basis rests with a centralized staff located in Albany, New York and selected personnel located at the facilities, whom are typically responsible for other facility operations (boiler room, water treatment, etc.)  Due to budget and time constrains, public image, and the potential for missing regulatory deadlines, DOCs set a goal of implementing an electronic Environmental Management System by 2006 to identify and manage environmental requirements throughout it’s facilities and ensure compliance. Through a rigorous review process, DOCs selected HRP to develop and implement the system for the DOCs facilities.  

Initially, HRP and DOCs met to review the EMS goals and visited selected facilities to identify relevant operations and identify regulatory programs and DOCs procedures that effected the operations. Based on the review, it was agreed that the EMS would include the following aspects within the EMS: waste (solid, medical, hazardous, solid, universal) management; water (wastewater, stormwater and drinking); air; community right-to-know; chemical and petroleum storage; emergency planning; pesticides; and MSDSs. 

The system will be installed on DOC’s intranet and accessed by users with varying security rights located at facilities and includes the following elements:

  • Help area, including a summary of regulatory requirements and hotlinks to relevant websites and information.
  • Establishment of standard compliance activities and procedures.
  • Review of existing documents and procedures at each facility to identify existing or potential compliance gaps due to management procedures.
  • Inserting compliance tacks/procedures for each facility and developing a compliance calendar including all relevant compliance activities and an e-mail notification system.
  • Installation of a Material Safety Data Sheet management system that allows facilities to assess.
  • Insertion of facility documents. 

The system is being developed and installed in phases based on a schedule agreed upon by the client and HRP. Initial reaction by DOCs has been very positive.