Tuesday, October 11, 2005

EMPLOYEES OF CAMDEN COUNTY

Let me say first, "I am not a lawyer."

I am giving you this information
because I am told that the Information
is reliable. You must check it out with
a lawyer. Repeat, check it out. Before
reading it. There is also a question
whether "you can change the terms
and condition of employment after the
fact."

English translation, can they change
after you are already on the job. This
policy was approved by Mr. Rainer,
Mr. Herrin, Mr. Rhodes and Mr. Berry.
I suggest you remember these names.
You never know when you might need
the information. I wish I could do more
but I am only one vote.

Good Luck, Your Friend
Sandy Feller


Here is Georgia Law:
45-20-l.
(a) It is the purpose of this article to
establish in the state a system of
personnel administration which will
attract, select, and retain the best
employees based on merit, free from
coercive political influences, with
incentives in the form of equal
opportunities for all; which will
provide technically competent and
loyal personnel to render impartial
service to the public at all times and
to render such service according to
the dictates of ethics and morality;
and which will remove unnecessary
and inefficient employees. It is
specifically the intent of the General
Assembly to promote this purpose by
allowing agencies greater flexibility in
personnel management so as to
promote the overall effectiveness
and efficiency of state government. To
this end, and in accordance with Code
Sections 45-20-2 and 45-20-6, all
positions filled after July 1, 1996, shall
be included in the unclassified service
of the state merit system, except as
provided in Code Section 15-11-24.3.
It is also specifically the intent of the
General Assembly that employees in
the classified service prior to
July 1, 1996, shall continue to be covered
employees in the classified service and
shall remain subject to the rules and
regulations of the state merit system so
long as they remain in covered positions
or as otherwise provided by law. It is
further specifically the intent of the
General Assembly that state government
operate within a framework of consistent
personnel policies and practices across
all state agencies and entities and that
the state's most valued resource, its
employees, be managed in a manner
to promote work force productivity and
sound business practices.
(b) In order to achieve these purposes,
it is the policy of the state that
agencies treat all employees, whether
included in the classified or unclassified
service, in accordance with the following
principles:
(1) Assuring fair treatment of applicants
and employees in all aspects of personnel
administration without regard to race,
color, national origin, sex, age, disability,
religious creed, or political affiliations.
This 'fair treatment' principle includes
compliance with all state and federal
equal employment opportunity and
nondiscrimination laws;
(2) Recruiting, selecting, and advancing
employees on the basis of their relative
ability, knowledge, and skills, including
open consideration of qualified applicants
for initial employment;
(3) Providing equitable and adequate
compensation based on merit,
performance, job value, and
competitiveness within applicable labor
markets;
(4) Training employees, as needed, to
assure high quality performance and to
provide work force skills needed to
maintain and advance the state's goals
and objectives;
(5) Retaining employees on the basis of
the adequacy of their performance,
correcting inadequate performance where
possible and appropriate, and separating
employees whose performance is
inadequate; and
(6) Assuring that employees are protected
against coercion for partisan political
purposes and are prohibited from using
their official authority for the purpose of
interfering with or affecting the result of
an election or nomination for office. .
(c) With respect to employees in the
unclassified service, it shall be the
responsibility of the state merit system
to perform the following functions:
(l) Establish and maintain a state-wide
system of pay ranges for all job classes;
(2) Define common job classes, establish
associated minimum qualifications for
those classes and assign those classes to
appropriate pay ranges;
(3) Develop and maintain a common
employment application form to be used
by all applicants for state emploYment,
which form may be supplemented as
necessary by agencies in seeking
information about agency job classes;
(4) Serve as the central contact point for
all potential employees in order to
streamline state-wide recruiting for
applicants, to provide for a state-wide
applicant data base, to refer applicants to
agencies, and make applicant data
available to agencies for review and
consideration;
(5) Upon request, develop, validate, or
develop and validate applicant screening
devices being utilized by agencies;
(6) Upon request, administer screening
devices on behalf of agencies;
(7) Make employment related training
available to agencies and allow agencies
the opportunity to provide input into the
nature and scope of said training programs;
(8) In consultation with agencies,
establish state-wide model standards and
processes and best practices criteria which
agencies shall use in developing internal
processes for classification, compensation,
pay for performance, and performance
management, including processes involved
in defming job classes, establishing and
applying associated minimum qualifications,
assigning jobs to appropriate state-wide
pay ranges, developing and applying
applicant screening methods, and
measuring worker effectiveness;
(9) Audit agencies' processes as referred to
in paragraph (8) of this subsection and
report findings annually to the Governor
and the General Assembly in conjunction
with an annual report on the overall status
of the state work force;
(10) Serve as consultant to agencies on work
force planning and effective work force
strategies, provide technical support
assistance, and direct services to agencies as
requested; and
(11) Maintain and make available to the
public at large a state-wide central registry
of employment vacancies and job
announcements in state government as
provided to the state merit system by
agencies.
(d) With respect to employees in the
unclassified service, it shall be the
responsibility of the employing agency
to perform the following functions:
(1) Within state-wide human resource
standards, processes, and best practices
criteria, define agency unique job classes,
establish and apply associated
qualifications for those job classes, and
assign those job classes to pay ranges on
an appropriate state-wide compensation
plan;
(2) Allocate agency positions to defmed
job classes;
(3) Recruit and screen applicants for job
vacancies;
(4) Develop and administer appropriate
job applicant screening devices to ensure
the integrity of the hiring process; and
(5) Develop agency unique policies to ensure
compliance with all applicable
employment related state and federal laws.
(e) Subsections (c) and (d) of this Code
section shall not apply to the legislative
or judicial branches, to the board of
regents, or to any agency which employed
no classified employees as of July 1, 1996.
(f) Each agency shall develop an annual
work force plan according to state-wide
criteria and guidelines and shall provide
a report of such plan annually to the state
merit system for incorporation into the
state-wide work force plan to be
submitted to the Governor and the
General Assembly. (g) In the event
agencies do not use a competitive civil
service examination to fill some or all of
their unclassified positions, it is expressly
the intent of the General Assembly that
appropriate consideration be given to
veterans as defined under Article IV,
Section III, Paragraph II of the
Constitution of Georgia and Article 2
of Chapter 2 of this title in the filling of
job vacancies in this state. Guidelines
defining consideration practices shall
be developed at the state level. Agencies
shall specify agency policies and practices
to implement appropriate consideration
of military veterans in filling agency job
vacancies.
(h) The rules of statutory construction
contained in Chapter 3 of Title 1,
relating to general provisions concerning
the construction of statutes, as now or
hereafter amended, shall apply to this
article
Here is what Georgia law says about
counties that have created a civil service
system. 36-1-21.
(a) The governing authority of any county
is authorized to provide by ordinance or
resolution for the creation of a civil service
system for employees of the county, other
than elected officials or persons appointed
to positions for specified terms. .
(b) Subsequent to the creation of a civil
service system, the county governing
authority which created the system may
provide by ordinance or resolution that
positions of employment within
departments subject to the jurisdiction
of elected county officers or subject to
the jurisdiction of other commissions,
boards, or bodies of the county shall be
subject to and covered by the civil
service system upon the written
application of the elected county
officer, commission, board, or body
having the power of appointment,
employment, or removal of employees
of the officer, department, commission,
board, or body. Once positions of
employment are made subject to the
civil service system, such positions
shall not be removed thereafter from
the coverage of the civil service system.
(c) A civil service system created
pursuant to the authority of this Code
section shall be administered in such
manner and pursuant to such rules
and regulations as may be provided
for by resolution or ordinance of the
county governing authority which
created the system.
Note the "SHALL NOT BE REMOVED
THEREAFTER FROM THE COVERAGE
OF THE CIVIL SERVICE SYSTEM"
at the end of (b).

One might infer that by the adoption
of the personnel policies by resolution
in 2001 (which incorporated guidelines
for hiring and firing) the county created
a civil service system, and cannot
unring the bell.

P.S. Please print this out and put
away in a safe place.

Thanks,

Sandy Feller
County Commissioner
District 4

"Working for the future without forgetting the past"