Please note that we are no longer accepting applications for this examination / job!

Civil Service Job: Yes

Filing Date:

Applications received by mail must be postmarked no later than Friday, January 17, 2014

Exam Date:

Examinations will be held on Saturday, March 8, 2014


$21.21 - $23.58 per hour -Management and Confidential Plan-(2013 Salary)

Information on the SECRETARY TO COUNTY ATTORNEY# 69192 O.C. position

Vacancy:   Eligible List may be used to fill vacancies which may occur within the Cattaraugus County Attorney’s Office, Little Valley, NY

Fee Required: The State Civil Service Law requires our office to collect a processing fee from each applicant.  The amount of the fee is fifteen dollars ($15) per applicant for Each examination applied for, payable at the time of filing of the application form, by check (personal or certified) or money order, payable to the “Cattaraugus County Treasurer”.  Cash Will Not Be Accepted.  Applicants whose personal checks are returned for insufficient funds will not be considered as candidates for this exam or subsequent exams until such time as restitution is made.  Applicants must record the Examination Number(s) and Title(s) on their checks.  Refunds of fees will not be issued to applicants who are disqualified for not meeting the minimum qualifications for admittance to the examination, who file their application after the final filing date or who do not appear for testing on the scheduled test date.  Therefore, Do Not Apply for an examination if you are not sure that you meet the minimum qualifications.  Application fees shall be waived for candidates that are unemployed and primarily responsible for the support of a household or are receiving public assistance.  Please contact this office for an Application Fee Waiver Request and Certification Form, or download from our website at:

Residency:  Preference in appointment may be given to successful candidates who have been, at the time of examination and for at least one month prior thereto, a resident of Cattaraugus County.

Duties: This is important work involving responsibility for the performance of varied legal document preparation and clerical tasks requiring the exercise of independent judgment and an understanding of the procedures and policies of the Office of the County Attorney.  The work is performed under general supervision, with unusual problems being referred to a supervisor before action is taken.  A Secretary to the County Attorney does related work as required.

Minimum Qualifications: : Graduation from high school or possession of a high school equivalency diploma and either: 


(A)        Graduation from a regionally accredited or New York State registered college or institute with an Associate’s Degree or higher in secretarial sciences, paralegal studies, or closely related field and two years of clerical legal experience in a law office.  Said experience must have included the use of word processing equipment as well as the clerical production of legal forms and documents; or

(B)         Four years of experience as defined in (A); or

(C)         An equivalent combination of training and experience as defined by the limits of (A) and (B) above. -*

 *- COMMENT:  Pursuant to County Law, Section 501, Subdivision 5, the Board of Supervisors may create the position of Confidential Secretary to the County Attorney in the exempt class of the Civil Service.  The New York State Civil Service Department construes this provision to limit one such position to the exempt class.  Accordingly, this position involving duties identical to the position of Secretary to the County Attorney (Exempt Class) is allocated to the competitive class of the Classified Service.

Subject of Examination: This examination will consist of a written test as described below.  Candidates must also qualify in a performance test in keyboarding to be held at a later date.

SUBJECT OF WRITTEN TEST designed to test for knowledges, skills, and/or abilities in such areas as:

1. Grammar/Usage/Punctuation--Level 2 - The grammar and usage questions test for the ability to apply the basic rules of grammar, usage, and sentence structure. The punctuation questions test for a knowledge of the correct placement of punctuation marks in sentences. You will be presented with sets of four sentences from each of which you must choose the sentence that contains a grammatical, usage, or punctuation error.

2. Keyboarding Practices--Level 2 - These questions test your knowledge of preferred practices in such areas as letter format, capitalization, hyphenation, plurals, possessives, word division, word and figure style for numbers, and common proofreading marks. In addition, you will be given a passage to proofread and asked questions about how to correct the errors in the passage.

3. Legal terminology, documents and forms - These questions test for the ability to recognize definitions of specific common legal terms or the term which fits a certain description. The questions are presented in various forms such as simple definitions, examples of terminology, and the use of this terminology within documents and forms related to the legal field.

4. Office record keeping - These questions test your ability to perform common office record keeping tasks. The test consists of two or more "sets" of questions, each set concerning a different problem. Typical record keeping problems might involve the organization or collation of data from several sources; scheduling; maintaining a record system using running balances; or completion of a table summarizing data using totals, subtotals, averages and percents. You should bring with you a hand-held battery- or solar-powered calculator for use on this test. You will not be permitted to use the calculator function of your cell phone.

5. Office Practices--Level 2 - These questions test for a knowledge of generally agreed-upon practices governing the handling of situations which secretaries encounter in their work, as well as a knowledge of efficient and effective methods used to accomplish office tasks. The questions will cover such topics as planning work flow; setting priorities; dealing effectively with staff, visitors, and callers; filing and retrieving information; safeguarding confidentiality; using office equipment; and making procedural decisions and recommendations which contribute to a well-managed office.

6. Spelling--Level 2 - These questions test for the ability to spell words that are used in written business communications.

STUDY GUIDE: The New York State Department of Civil Service has not prepared a test guide for this examination. However, candidates may find information in the publication "How to take a written test" helpful in preparing for this test. This publication is available on line at:

Candidates are ALLOWED to use quiet, hand-held, solar or battery powered calculators.  Devices with typewriter keyboards, spell checkers, personal digital assistants, address books, language translators, dictionaries or any similar devices are prohibited.


The typing performance test uses a standard keyboard and is given on a personal computer (PC). No prior knowledge of the software is required. The test is five minutes long and is preceded by a three-minute practice session. You are to enter as much of the passage as you can during the time available. You will be tested on keying speed and accuracy. To pass, you must enter the text at a rate of at least 35 words per minute, with at least 96% accuracy. For example, if you enter the text at 35 words per minute, the maximum allowable number of errors is 7. All in-between speeds are rounded in the candidate’s favor. You will have a maximum of two attempts to be successful on the typing performance test.

WAIVING THE  PERFORMANCE TEST: The keyboarding test will be waived for candidates serving permanently or contingent permanently in a competitive class civil service position which requires a typing speed at or above the typing speed required for this examination.  The performance test may also be waived, if when applying for the examination, you provide proof that, within the last four years, you have been successful on a performance test, which must have been administered by the NYS Department of Labor Job Service, NYS Department of Civil Service, or any New York State municipal or local civil service agency, at the rate of at least thirty-five (35) words per minute corrected.  The waiver must contain the candidate’s name, social security number, the number of words typed, both corrected and uncorrected, and the date of examination.

Complete Job Description & Qualifications

Download the following file for the complete job description and qualifications for the SECRETARY TO COUNTY ATTORNEY# 69192 O.C. position.

PARTICIPATION IN MULTIPLE EXAMINATIONS: If you have applied for both State and Local government examinations, you must take all your examinations at the State examination center. You will be advised by letter when and where to report for your examinations.

If you have applied for another local government examination with another local civil service agency, call or write each civil service agency to make arrangements. You must notify all government civil service agencies with whom you have filed an application of the test site at which you wish to take your examination.

SATURDAY SABBATH OBSERVERS - HANDICAPPED PERSONS: If special arrangements for testing are required, please indicate this on your application(s).

CANDIDATES PLEASE NOTE: Your application for this test is part of the examination process. Applications must be completely filled out with all pertinent information stated. The Commission does not refer to other applications on file for additional information. Applications which do not show training and/or experience to meet the minimum qualifications will be disapproved. Vagueness and ambiguity will not be resolved in your favor.

VETERANS: Disabled and non-disabled war veterans who are eligible for additional credits must submit an application for veterans' credits. Candidates who wish to claim veterans' credits on an examination should request an application and information sheet from the Cattaraugus County Civil Service Commission. Veterans' application forms will also be available upon request at the examination center. The completed forms must be received before the eligible list for the examination is established in order to utilize additional credits.

Effective January 1, 2014, War-time Veterans who previously used non-disabled veterans credits for appointment or promotion and are subsequently certified by the Veteran's Administration as a disabled veteran may again be eligible for additional exam credits. To apply for subsequent disabled veteran credits, complete the Veteran Credit application and check the applicable box, additionally you are required to follow the directions below regarding Disabled Veterans credits.

Effective January 1, 1998, the State Constitution was amended to permit a candidate currently in the armed forces to apply for and be conditionally granted veteran's credit in examinations. Any candidate who applies for such credit must provide proof of military status to receive the conditional credit. No credit may be granted after the establishment of the list. It is the responsibility of the candidate to provide appropriate documentary proof indicating that the service was in time of war, as defined in Section 85 of Civil Service Law, and that the candidate received an honorable discharge or was released under honorable conditions in order to be certified at a score including veteran's credits.

In conformance with Section 85-a of the Civil Service Law, children of firefighters and police officers killed in the line of duty shall be entitled to receive an additional ten points in a competitive examination for original appointment in the same municipality in which his or her parent has served. If you are qualified to participate in this examination and are a child of a firefighter or police officer killed in the line of duty in this municipality, please inform this office of this matter when you submit your application for examination. A candidate claiming such credit has a minimum of two months from the application deadline to provide the necessary documentation to verify additional credit eligibility. However, no credit may be added after the eligible list has been established.


Applications for SECRETARY TO COUNTY ATTORNEY# 69192 O.C. will be accepted up to Friday, January 17, 2014, and may be obtained by downloading from the following links.

Application Forms

Cattaraugus County an Equal Opportunity Employer

This job was filed for Attorney's Office

Filed under: Open Competitive Examination