Personnel Policy Board
February 25, 2002
I. Opening Business
II. New Business
B. The Board inquired the purpose behind changing the language identifying the minimum qualification of the job from what is currently being used. Bob explained that the inclusion of the language "or an equivalent combination of education, training and/or experience necessary to successfully perform the essential functions of the work" is standard language that exists in every job description. He said that qualifier simply states that in the absence of the specified education, the employer will accept less education if the applicant has more experience or they can demonstrate that they can do the job. He said adding that language does not preclude the employer from setting the minimum threshold of what the minimum requirement is, it is there to simply protect the employer from ADA and the ability to throw out good applicants simply because they do not have the minimum education requirements but have extensive experience.
The Board, after considering Bob's comments, requested that the additional language be removed from the job description but that it be raised to the Supreme Court and allow them to determine whether it or not it should be reincorporated.
Judge Geiger inquired why all the secretary II positions were incorporated into one classification. He said that doing so assumes that the complexity of the job duties of a secretary to a judge, a secretary in the juvenile court or in the district court office are all the same and that those positions have fewer responsibilities are benefitting from those positions that are more complex. Bob responded that any number of positions may be different but if the nature of the qualifications, the nature of the work and the rating of the position is the same, they are kept together as a classification, e.g. secretary II. He said if a position included in that classification, such as a secretary to a judge, is performing at a much higher rate then the others in that classification that would have to be recognized. However, the information that was gathered from the position questionnaires, the supporting material that was included and the interviews did not reflect that and therefore a new position description and title was not developed.
Justice Maring stated that the minimum qualification for the judicial secretary is incorrect, and due to the diversity of the job duties of the judicial secretary to the justices versus a judicial secretary to the central legal staff, there should be a separate job description for them. She indicated that the minimum qualification, as stated in the memo from the Justices, for a judicial secretary to a justice and a judicial secretary to the chief justice should be changed to an associate's degree and four years of secretarial experience with a court, law office or closely related field. Since the qualifications differ from what is currently required, Penny stated that she will bring the question before the Supreme Court for clarification. In the meantime, Bob stated he would develop two new job descriptions. Bob commented that the Board needs to review the qualification requirement for other secretarial positions since it may be different from what is currently being proposed.
The Board informed the consultant that certain positions require travel, and the job descriptions will need to be modified to reflect that requirement.
Since certain districts have employees residing in another state they may possess an out of state drivers license. The Board agreed to change the language in the job descriptions to require that the employee possess a valid drivers license rather then a state specific license.
The Board questioned Bob as to what identifies the amount of weight in the physical requirement section of the job description. Bob said the standard rule of thumb is that the amount of force a person exerts 50% of their time moving objects determines the weight.
For consistency purposes in the career ladder series, the Board agreed to change the experience requirement of the assistant law librarian to two years.
The Board unanimously agreed to remove the language in each job description referencing the number of job classifications in each series.
As relates to the minimum experience, the Board discussed the necessity of court experience versus experience in the profession especially as it relates to certain jobs in the career ladder series, e.g. network analyst. The question arose whether it was necessary for a network analyst to have experience in a court setting in order to advance to a higher level or if experience in the profession was sufficient. The point being is experience in a court actually necessary in order to do the job? After extended discussion, the Board unanimously agreed to stray from the consultant's recommendation on the experience requirement for the network analyst and program analyst to coincide with current practice and advancement through the series.
A motion was made by Dion Ulrich, seconded by Rita Hanneson, to modify the minimum qualifications for a network analyst III position to reflect that three out of the five years of experience be in a court setting as is stated in the current job description, the motion carried.
Members reviewed the amendment made to the network analyst II job description by Keithe Nelson. The amendment removed he language allowing the position to have control over the scheduling of meetings and the calendar. A motion was made by Dion Ulrich, seconded by Rita Hannesson, to leave the language as originally proposed. The motion carried with one dissent, Justice Maring. Her dissent was made because the motion conflicted with Mr. Nelson's amendment.
The Board reviewed the restructuring proposal submitted by a working committee made up of directors and court officers of the juvenile court. The proposal was a product developed as a result of a request from the Personnel Board two years ago to review the job descriptions of the directors and court officers. Carla Kolling explained that the work product was reviewed by the Board in June of 2000, however due to the upcoming analysis of the pay and classification system, the Board withheld taking any action until the study was complete.
The Board, by unanimous consensus, approved the proposal as submitted. The Board requested Greg Wallace to provide the method by which the directors will determine which court officer II will be eligible for advancement.
The Board discussed implementing a graduated salary plan since Bob determined through his study and market analysis that our structure is more competitive on the lower end of the pay grades and less on the higher. Implementing a graduated system would widen the pay range spread on the higher pay grades. It was the consensus of the Board to withhold from deviating from the 50% spread in all ranges.
The Board requested Susan Sisk to prepare a graph reflecting where employees fall within the new pay grade based on their current salary and where they fall based on market. The Board also requested that Susan prepare a fiscal note if employees are brought in at their identified step and another based on employees being brought in at the minimum of their pay grade plus the next higher step.
The Board discussed developing a policy that would provide supervisors an opportunity to hire above entry level. Future discussions will follow.
The meeting adjourned at 5:00 o'clock p.m.
Director of Human Resources and Development