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Putnam County

Personnel Department


DISTINGUISHING FEATURES OF THE CLASS This is a one-year traineeship position used to appoint individuals to an entry-level Probation Officer, Probation Officer (Spanish-Speaking) or Probation Officer (Community Liaison) position in a probation department responsible for the care of adults and juveniles subject to probation supervision or intake services which require them to meet certain standards of conduct. A Probation Officer Trainee is responsible for participating in a continuous in-service training program regarding the investigative, supervision, counseling and coaching duties and responsibilities of a Probation Officer and, under close and on-going supervision, performs such duties and exercises such responsibilities in a limited nature. When a Probation Officer Trainee participates in a traineeship for a Probation Officer (Spanish-Speaking) or a Probation Officer (Community Liaison) position, he/she is required to satisfy the additional requirements for these positions and be capable to learn the specialized work they perform. Probation Officer Trainee work is performed under the direct supervision of a probation professional. Upon successful completion of the one-year traineeship the incumbent is appointed to the position of Probation Officer or specified parenthetical without further examination. A Probation Officer Trainee is a Peace Officer pursuant to Criminal Procedure Law, section 2.10 and may be authorized to carry a firearm in the performance of his/her duties. Performs related work as required.

TYPICAL WORK ACTIVITIES: (Illustrative only)


  • Participates in an in-service training program regarding the investigation, supervision, counseling and coaching duties and responsibilities of a Probation Officer and develops goals and objectives to ensure the successful completion of the training program;
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, gathers, verifies, reviews and analyzes social, medical, mental health, substance abuse, sex offender, legal and other documentation and by interviewing defendants/respondents, victims, law enforcement personnel and other case related individuals to conduct pre-plea/pre-sentence/pre-disposition investigations;
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, prepares reports regarding persons awaiting disposition of the courts;
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, conducts risk and need assessments and evaluating results for pre-trial, investigation, and supervision purposes;
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, promotes risk reduction by providing direction and support to help the probationer change factors that promote and maintain delinquent behavior; coaches probationers to select new patterns of thinking, feeling and behaving and develop new attitudes and skills which help sustain a constructive and law-abiding relationship with the broader community and reduce the likelihood of becoming re-involved in criminal or delinquent behavior;
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, prepares progress reports on probationers and periodically reviews case histories to determine the degree of adjustment;
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, prepares a final case report once a case is closed;
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, prepares violation reports; 
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, prepares case/supervision plans and explaining conditions of sentencing to probationers;
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, monitors probationers’ compliance with conditions of probation;
  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional, performs drug/alcohol screenings and collects DNA samples from probationers;
  • May develop and maintain professional relationships with other social and law enforcement agencies and cooperates with them in matters of mutual interest such as assisting probationers with life adjustments;
  • May arrange for medical, mental health, substance abuse treatment or other services according to individual probationer’s needs or court orders;
  • May testify in court or at violation hearings;
  • May use a firearm in performing duties and exercising authority pursuant to departmental policy;
  • Performs a variety of related activities as required.


  • Under the direct supervision of a probation professional:
  • Reviews local probation department programs, literature, forms, instructions, etc. for accessibility to minority probationers;
  • Identifies programs, policies and practices which may impede effective service delivery to minority communities;
  • Participates in special studies, assignments and research projects related to the impact of probation department policies and service delivery on minority communities;
  • Prepares written reports with recommendations regarding the impact of probation department actions, decisions and requirements of service delivery to minority communities;
  • Establishes and maintains relationships with minority groups and organizations regarding probation service delivery to minority communities;
  • Conducts special outreach and recruitment activities to minority communities;
  • Serves as department resource concerning minority issues;
  • Performs a variety of related activities as required.

Typical Work Activities are intended only as illustrations of possible types of work that might be appropriately assigned to an incumbent of this title. Work activities that do not appear above are not excluded as appropriate work assignments, as long as they can be reasonably understood to be within the logical limits of the job.

FULL PERFORMANCE KNOWLEDGES, SKILLS, ABILITIES AND PERSONAL CHARACTERISTICS Working knowledge of interviewing and investigative techniques and practices related to probation work; working knowledge of laws pertaining to probation work and the functions and procedures of family and criminal courts; working knowledge of methods of differential supervision of probationers including the application of cognitive behavioral interventions and motivational techniques; working knowledge of effective assessment, case planning and management; working knowledge of special offender populations such as domestic violence offenders, sex offenders, DWI offenders, youthful offenders, juvenile offenders, Persons in Need of Supervision and juvenile delinquents; working knowledge of juvenile and adult risk and needs assessment instruments; working knowledge of the provisions of the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) regulations and policies relating to confidentiality of case record information; working knowledge of tools used to monitor compliance with conditions of probation, such as drug and alcohol screenings, DNA sampling kits and electronic monitoring devices; working knowledge of the powers of a Peace Officer; working knowledge of the geography of the jurisdiction employed in; working knowledge of factors related to crime and delinquency; working knowledge of the rules of evidence, arrest laws and custody procedures; working knowledge of social sciences, including sociology, psychology and demography; working knowledge of community resources; working knowledge of employment, training and treatment options available to probationers; working knowledge of firearm safety; skill in the use of firearms where authorized; ability to administer accurate and thorough assessments; ability to understand and follow oral and written instructions; ability to analyze and organize data and prepare records and reports; ability to conduct effective case planning; ability to refer a probationer to the right types of services within the county probation department and the broader community; ability to promote and monitor change and take appropriate action to sustain growth or help the probationer initiate appropriate behavioral patterns; ability to establish and maintain effective working relationships with others; ability to counsel probationers regarding social, emotional and vocational problems; ability to understand and interpret complex written technical information including statutes, regulations and operational procedures; ability to communicate effectively both orally and in writing; ability to administer drug, alcohol testing and collect DNA samples as needed; ability to understand and empathize with the needs and concerns of others; ability to maintain composure and make rational judgments under stressful conditions; ability to safely and effectively use a firearm if so authorized.


Good knowledge of grammar, vocabulary, syntax and pronunciation in Spanish; ability to speak Spanish at a proficiency level deemed appropriate by the department worked in.


Working knowledge of programs, literature, forms, instructions etc. related to probation services delivered to the minority community served; working knowledge of demographic, socio-economic, cultural and other minority issues related to the probation services delivered; working knowledge of community resources available to the respective minority community; working knowledge of modern principles and practice related to effective outreach to the minority community served; ability to establish and maintain working relationships with the respective minority community and other agencies/organizations providing them with services.


Bachelor’s degree or higher with at least thirty (30) credit hours in the social or behavioral sciences.


One (1) year of permanent competitive class service as a Probation Assistant plus Bachelor’s degree or higher with at least thirty (30) credit hours in the social or behavioral sciences.


  1. Completion of a major course of study which included a minimum of twenty-four (24) semester credit hours in Native American, African-American, Asian or Hispanic Cultural Studies from a regionally accredited college or university or one accredited by the New York State Board of Regents; or
  2. Two (2) years of close cultural association[1] with Native Americans, African-American, Asian or Hispanics, or a work association in a criminal justice setting which requires advocacy for or interaction with Native Americans, African Americans, Asians or Hispanics.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENT for Probation Officer (Spanish Speaking) Traineeship: When considered for appointment a candidate must be able to demonstrate proficiency in Spanish at the level deemed appropriate for the department worked in.  The Spanish language proficiency of the permanent appointees will be further evaluated during the post-appointment probationary term.

PLEASE NOTEYour degree must have been awarded by a college or university accredited by a regional, national, or specialized agency recognized as an accrediting agency by the U.S. Department of Education/U.S. Secretary of Education.

SPECIAL REQUIREMENT: Where required, possession of a current driver’s license or the ability to otherwise meet the transportation requirements of the position.

Social science includes areas of study concerned with humans living in relation to other humans in a social environment and such as anthropology, criminal justice, economics, geography, history, political science, psychology and sociology. 

Behavioral science is a subset of social science characterized by observation of the behavior of living organisms and focused on human social behavior such as psychology, sociology, anthropology, counseling, criminal justice, gerontology, human behavior, social work/social welfare and vocational rehabilitation.

[1] Close cultural association is defined as involvement in cultural activities, or cultural groups, or participation in advocacy groups, or involvement in religious or political groups or organizations. Work or volunteer experience that involves supervision or case management of minority persons is not considered as close cultural association for the purposes of meeting these minimum qualifications.

NOTE: Individuals whose duties and responsibilities include the use of a firearm must also complete training pursuant to Criminal Procedures Law, Section 2.30(3).

* The class specifications including the minimum qualifications for positions in Probation Departments are established by rule and regulations of the Division of Criminal Justice Services. These class specifications are found in Title 9 NYCRR Part 347, Appendix H-10, Standard Specifications for Professional Probation Positions.

**This position is allocated to the competitive class pursuant to the Executive Law Section 257(1).



Competitive Class**

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Putnam County Personnel Department

Please visit us, call, write, or email us with any questions or concerns.
  • Address:

    Donald B. Smith
    County Government Campus
    110 Old Route 6, Building 3
    Carmel, NY 10512

  • Phone:

    845-808-1650 x46104

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    8:00am - 5:00pm
  • Summer Hours
    (mid-June through mid-September)
  • Monday through Friday
    8:00am - 4:00pm

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Putnam County Office Building

40 Gleneida Avenue
Carmel, New York 10512

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