Personnel Policy Board
Chair Miller explained that members of the Board had questions concerning the matrix being proposed by Robert Bjorklund to rate positions, more particularly whether we should use a matrix that can be primarily applied effectively by Mr. Bjorklund. Further, she explained that he did not believe the contract reflected payment for the development of a new matrix. Keithe Nelson informed the members that when Mr. Bjorklund reviewed our current system for rating positions, he discovered that the factors are unreliable and outdated. He explained that the matrix being proposed by Mr. Bjorklund is better suited for use by the courts in part because it recognizes attorney work product operations as a major component to the judiciary.
Mr. Nelson stressed the fact that the Board needs to support the recommendations of the consultant and the decisions that have been made to date if the study is to survive. He commented that the success of the previous study was a result of the support and commitment it received by the chair and members of the Supreme and District Court Personnel Policy Boards. He said that his concerns are shared by the Consultant Robert Bjorklund.
Judge Simonson stated that we've been working with Robert Bjorklund in the past and questioned why, all of a sudden, do we not trust his recommendations and the matrix he has proposed.
Justice Maring responded that if the new matrix is better and more reliable, we need to use it. Her concern is whether or not we should use this matrix if Bjorklund is the only consultant that can apply it accordingly.
Mr. Nelson explained that Robert Bjorklund indicated that the instrument is ours to use for the purposes we purchased it for. Mr. Bjorklund explained to Keithe that if irreconcilable differences would arise between him and the Supreme Court, another consultant could be contracted with to use this instrument on our behalf.
However, he said the Board would have to accept the fact that the results may be different due to a new consultant's interpretation of how the tool is to be applied. Mr. Nelson cautioned members against considering that as an option because no one can apply the tool as effectively as the developer.
A motion stating that the board should commit themselves to the use of the proposed matrix and that the memo of understanding be amended to include language specifying the use of the new matrix to rate the positions was presented by Judge Simonson, second by Rita Hannesson. Motion passed. Dion Ulrich dissented . It was his position the Board members should have been more involved in the decision making of which matrix was chosen.
Judge Simonson commented that he understood Dion's position, however, Robert Bjorklund does a good job and the Board needs to support his recommendations.
Mr. Nelson commented that in order for the study to succeed, it needs to be supported by the Board.
Justice Maring commented that it is not the support of Bjorklund's recommendation and quality of work, but rather how it came about.
Penny Miller suggested that the Memo of Understanding be amended immediately to reflect the language set forth in Judge Simonson's motion in order that Robert Bjorklund can resume his work on the project.
The meeting adjourned at 12:45 p.m.