Chair Hagerty called the meeting to order at 10:00 a.m.
Minutes It was moved by Petra Hulm, seconded by Judge McEvers, to approve the minutes of
February 18, 2011 meeting. The motion carried.
Proposed Salary Ranges for 2011-2012 Amy Klein presented the Board with the proposed pay ranges for July 2011 through June 2012.
The changes reflect a 3% increase in all pay grades and steps based on the provision in Senate
It was moved by Rod Olson, seconded by Ross Munns, to approve the proposed salary
ranges and forward it to the Supreme Court for consideration. The motion carried
Comments to Proposed Policies The Absenteeism and Tardiness, Time to Vote, Annual Leave, Sick Leave, and Family and
Medical Leave Act policies were circulated to employees for comment. One comment was
It was moved by Rod Olson, seconded by Judge McEvers, to approve the proposed changes
and include the policies in the packet to be forwarded to the Supreme Court. The motion
Legislative Changes The following are legislative changes for the Board’s review and consideration:
Filling Classified Position Vacancies The Filling Classified Position Vacancies policy has been drafted to incorporate the changes in
Senate Bill 2279 relating to veterans’ preference. Sections have been eliminated to reflect that
applicants qualifying for disabled veteran’s preference are not entitled to employment. Disabled
veterans will still receive their eligible points but would not automatically move to the top of the
rank. There was also a change to reflect that a veteran’s spouse may receive preference if the
veteran has 100% disability or has an extra-schedular rating that brings the rating to 100%. The
proposed changes are reflected in the draft policy.
Ms. Holewa noted the legislative changes are fully supported by the North Dakota Department of
Veterans Affairs and suggested the changes be incorporated into our policy.
It was moved by Ted Smith, seconded by Petra Hulm, to approve the proposed changes
and send the policy out for comment with a short narrative explaining the changes. The
motion carried unanimously.
Family Medical Leave The proposed changes to the Family Medical Leave policy have been drafted to include Senate
Bill 2213 changing family sick leave from 40 hours to 80 hours.
In response to a question asking how much it would cost the state to make the change, it was
noted the cost would be minimal because family medical leave is taken out of the sick leave an
employee earns. Making the change will lessen the liability on the state because an employee
would be using up more sick leave.
It was moved by Judge McEvers, seconded by Ross Munns, to approve the proposed
changes and send the policy out for comment. The motion carried unanimously.
Personnel Records The Personnel Records policy has been drafted to include the changes made in Senate Bill 2232
relating to personal information. The changes include adding a personal cell phone number and
the public employee identification number as personal information that may not be released
without the employee’s consent.
Ms. Holewa questioned if the employee identification number should be visible in the personnel
file. This would require the Accounting Department to do a lot of redacting.
It was moved by Ted Smith, seconded by Kari Landsem, to approve the proposed changes
and send the policy out for comment. The motion carried unanimously.
Honor Guard Leave The Honor Guard Leave policy is a newly proposed policy based on Senate Bill 2060. The
proposed policy would allow an employee up to 24 hours of leave per calendar year to participate
in an honor guard for a funeral service of a veteran.
It was moved by Ross Munns, seconded by Kari Landsem, to approve the draft policy and
send the policy out for comment.The motion carried unanimously.
Code of Conduct Amy Klein said Senate Bill 2233 states “a person who has knowledge of or reasonable cause to
suspect that a child is abused or neglected, based on images or sexual conduct by a child
discovered on a workplace computer, shall report the circumstances to the department.” Ms.
Klein suggested this is already covered under subsection F.7., Duty to Report, of our proposed
Code of Conduct policy.
Judge McEvers suggested language be included in the Code because it is a class B misdemeanor
if someone fails to report.
Petra Hulm said the language in the current policy states any violation of the law. Thus, our
Code of Conduct is broad and if we list one violation, we may have to list all others.
Ms. Klein suggested an alternative to adding language in the policy is training the employees
annually on this policy as well as others and then have the employee sign an acknowledgment
form. That also would give the employee the opportunity to ask any questions.
Ted Smith said the language in the bill states it must be reported to the Department of Human
Services. He inquired if it is possible to ask DHS to make our HR Department the designee for
the courts so it fits in with our policy reporting. Chair Hagerty asked Ms. Klein to contact DHS
and report back to the Board at the next meeting.
Review Requests for Reclassification Two employees currently classified as secretaries requested to be reclassified as electronic court
recorders. Each of the employee’s Job Data Questionnaires reflects that the employee’s job
duties more appropriately fit in the electronic court recorder classification. Recording court
proceedings is a primary duty and encompasses more than 50% of their daily duties. Because the
secretary and electronic court recorder classifications are in the same pay grade, no change would
be made to the pay grade.
It was moved by Judge McEvers, seconded by Kari Landsem, to approve the classification
change. The motion carried unanimously.
Review Electronic Court Recorder Training and Certification Plan At the December meeting, the Board discussed the training and certification of digital court
recorders in North Dakota. The Board directed the Digital Recording Workgroup to develop a
proposal specific to the court’s needs. The Workgroup’s proposal is now before the Board.
The Board recognized the Workgroup’s efforts and planning on the program. Chair Hagerty
referred the Board to the questions at the end of the memo.
Question 1: Who is responsible for tracking the training and testing? It was suggested the unit
administrators track the training and testing of the recorders. It was also suggested that
documentation be filed in the employee’s personnel file.
Question 2: Who will score the exams? It was suggested that because we need a standard
template, LeeAnn Barnhardt would be the best person to score the exams.
Question 3: What happens if someone does not pass the exam within two years? Is there a
process for granting an extension? The Board does not believe an extension should be granted if
someone does not pass the exam within two years.
Question 4: Will recorders be required to recertify and should certification be tied to a step
increase of any kind? The Board agreed that recertification should not be required but continuing
training on a regular basis is highly encouraged. The Board also agreed that certification should
not be tied to a step increase. It was noted that court reporters who gain the real-time
certification receive a step increase, however, they pay for their own testing and the training must
be done on their own time. Also, once a court reporter is certified, they are required to be
available outside of their district if a real-time reporter is needed.
Question 5: Should “back-up” recorders be required to attend training and be certified? The
Board concluded that “back up” recorders should be required to attend training. While
certification is not required, it is highly encouraged.
With regard to the general principals, in an effort to encourage ongoing training, it was suggested
a requirement for continuing education hours over a period of two or three years be established.
With regard to the recommended steps, it was the general consensus of the Board that the steps
are correct, but the timeline may be too ambitious.
Chair Hagerty will follow up with the Digital Recording Workgroup.
There being no other business, the meeting adjourned
The next meeting is scheduled for August 19, 2011. Ted Smith indicated he will not be present
at that meeting.