RECORD OF THE PROCEEDINGS

OKANOGAN COUNTY BOARD OF COMMISSIONERS

January 4, 2016



Executive Session RCW 42.30.110 (1)(g)
Commissioner Hover moved to go into executive session at 9:05 a.m. inviting Tanya Craig and Debi Hilts in Human Resources to discuss the performance of a public employee for 30 minutes. Motion was seconded all were in favor, motion carried.


Continued Discussion Judicial Assistant/Jury Management Position
Leah McCormack, Laurie Thomas, Tanya Craig, Cari Hall, Debi Hilts, Sandy Ervin, Judge Henry Rawson, Dennis Rabidou

Commissioner DeTro explained the boardís wish to further discuss the Judicial Assistant/Jury Management Position as it relates to resolution 138-2016 which authorized the position at 20 hours per week with benefits paid in accordance with personnel manual. He stated he believes it is the intent of the board to come to a compromise the decision. He recused himself from any further discussion due to involve with current litigation.

Thomas stated the position as it has been approved, due to the judges insistence that the Clerks office. Mr. Rabidou is correct about this that it is about the person the position was tailored to work for the person. It is costing the county more than it should. Ms. Ervin is not the only one who can do the work. She explained the impacts the SC explained. Elections supervisor is a grade 15, people are capable of learning. The judges had over 2 years to train other staff to do the work with the end dates authorized by the commissioners.

If Sandy is forced to resign cases would be built up and unheard. It is a threat. He took advantage of the new board by saying the impact would only be $800 or so. It would be true if the position stayed in TCI but not true if moved into the general fund. Please do not compound this by adding this position. To?? A problem was identified as Ms. Ervin has worked the last two days. It is a huge problem as we have to pay retirement because of the 20 hours. Retirement eligibility is based on the position being half time. Commissioner Hover asked what the determining factor is. The DRS rules in statute states that if the position requires 70 hours per month and last at least 5 months and is an eligible situation that requires the county to contribute. At 16 hours per week is not eligible for benefits, but because the position was reauthorized at 20 hours the position is eligible for retirement and we must pay.

Mr. Rabidou stated Auditor Thomasís summary was not correct. There was no pressure in the original agreement with the board in June, with much discussion beforehand that was well thought out. He wonít comment on the other issues she spoke about.

Judge Rawson stated he did not view it as emergent but rather a responsibility of the court. Constitutional rights go both ways, right to jury trial is very important and so they took a deliberative process and met with HR at the time, this is not done in haste, he wanted to make it real clear and it was not as emergent as relayed.

County updates PERS worksheet periodically and isnít sure if it will affect the situation until it is turned in. Thomas stated the position was in effect in the budget and whether it was on a form or not is irrelevant. Mr. Rabidou sated if the county has not submitted it then it isnít with DRS yet. Thomas stated it is. Commissioner Hover asked if this could be a full time county position. If the resignation happened would the courts look for another individual to do the exact job and what pay grade would the individual come into the position at. Mr. Rabidou replied after evaluation, it would be judicial assistant at grade 18 step 1. Of course they would evaluate the county policy and if it were a part-time position then they would evaluate e the benefits and either hire

Extraordinary skills that already have access and knowledge of the judicial systems. The possibility of finding someone like Ms. Ervin to do the work would be impossible. Commissioner Hover stated the process should run well, but what is that position worth and what is the net worth of that position. His thought is not about the money he wants to know what the position is worth so he can run a scenario by the courts that might work or might now work. What is the position worth? MR. Rabidou would the board like his opinion on that? Commissioner Branch stated if the benefits and salary together, what is it worth. Judge Rawson stated there is some institutional history there, dealing with employees in the Clerkís office and their inability to function as expected. He doesnít know what the number is. Mr. Rabidou stated he wasnít trying to dodge the question but he could not answer it. Treasurer McCormack stated the position at 16 hours per week not only do jury management but do what is in the job description. Is the need other than jury management or is the position used for other work. Judge Rawson stated jury management involves paying them, dealing with their requests for exemptions, and there is a lot involved with mailing the notices. Questionnaires are reviewed personally by the judges and cannot be discounted. The other tasks are as assigned. Laurie stated she discussed this with Darla Schreckengast and she said her staff is grade 13 doing the jury management for DC. The license department clerks are lower grades. It doesnít take a grade 18 to do the jury work. These skills can be taught to other people who are willing to work for less than a grade 18. She believes the attempt in 2016 with the resolution that placed the position back in the Clerkís office and with the changes there with the addition of a Chief Deputy and could handle the work and would do other things that need to get done like closing cases. Commissioner DeTro stated

Ms. Ervin stated DC stated they do not do the administration side of things she does. Every year the prospective juror are uploaded and juror actually call the number to Sandy and then the calls have to be forwarded. DC wants to handle their own jury management all aspects of it. The administrative duties Ms. Ervin does is uploading the jury lists. Commissioner Hover stated he is not going to change jobs right from the start, rather he will take the year to understand the situations. He believes the court is asking the BOCC to knowing violate our personal policy. No, he is asking for an exception to the policy. Commissioner Hover stated a full time 18 step 5 makes $25.04 per hour including $9999 for medical benefit package and a half time at 20 hours who is allowed 50% insurance 17.54 per hour doing the same tasks, a 16 hour no benefits, makes 10.5 with all three doing the same job. Look at the disparity and rates paying them. The Auditor had expressed part time employees left because of the benefits. How about if the amending the policy so that 16 hour part time employees be paid the full time rate of $25.04 which would include wages to which the employee would cover the benefit cost from the hourly wage.

Commissioner DeTro asked if MR. Rabidou would like to read his comments. Mr. Rabidou thanked the board for being flexible with their time. Most important asset to the organization is its people. It requires resources and flexibility. This is a 41.04.180 recognizes the concept and authority at hand. He further discussed consistency not rigid or inflexible rules. Issues of fairness that created challenging discussion by the board, pay increases for some but not others, acceptations to insurance rules were handed out were passed out but not to the Clerk of the Board for the record. He explained a pay raise that was provided and it was his job to explain to other employees why they didnít get a raise and other did. Communication was key in explaining why things happen the way they do. It is not a financial issue and never was. The two governing bodies are responsible for fiscal responsibility. The exemption has been granted since June 2014. We have discussed why the exception was made. The capabilities the county was getting that saved them money. It is evident based on the summary provided yesterday. The board adopted the necessary funds in TCI needed for the position this year. Budgeted at full cap benefits at 16 hr a week. A proposed resolution was mentioned by Judge Rawson.

Any potential resolution be reviewed by the Auditorís staff. Commissioner Hover asked if the court was unwilling to consider the commissionerís proposal. Mr. Rabidou stated the board review the draft resolution. The judge asked for the RCW that shows a 20 hour position must participate in retirement system. Commissioner Hover stated his constituents have voted for him asked him to be lawful in his decisions. How many part time employees are not allowed the same consideration. There are also the unions. Mr. Rabidou asked where the BOCC is breaking the law, and so he wanted to make sure the new board understands. This has been an agreed upon. Going forward, the BOCC doesnít have to change its policy and state moving forward it would be their choice not to make acceptations. It is not an error, it was done with the right authority, and if someone can show him the RCW. Albert Lin asked Mr. Rabidou to allow the board to make its decision. Commissioner Branch stated the issue about making an exception to the policy and what will be brought up later. Any department could come and say they did this even if they see value in it. Understand that is what really slows them down with this decision. He doesnít see a legal challenge where we have done anything illegal, but rather is a compromising position as they deal with future employees. They have to respond right or wrong. He doesnít see anything illegal and believes the same consideration if the table was turned.

Judge Rawson would like to wrap up soon. They submitted a proposed resolution the board to review. He isnít sure the policy decision will be made today. The courts would like the status quo followed is what they are asking for at this point. He isnít prepared to respond to the boardís questions, but rather would like the board to review the courts proposal. Auditor Thomas relayed that either resolution

Proposed for 6 months to continue the position in TCI.

Treasurer stated 6 months is good as the finance committee will be reviewing budget June 1, each resolution prior had ending dates on them. She commended the commissioners for their attempt at a compromise. Commissioners

Judge Rawson stated he is needed at a hearing right now and left the meeting. Mr. Rabidou stated the proposal would be to authorize the position status quo and it be reviewed in 6 months. Commissioner Branch commented on the proposal

Commissioner Branch moved to adopt the proposed resolution to include a sunset at six months. Auditor Thomas would like language added to or sunset review or the continuance of the position and rescind resolution 138-2016. Mr Rabidou stated it was not in the preview of the Commissioners to end the employment of the courts. Commissioner Branch stated it says if we view it after additional information the position could end. The complaint they are getting is that the situation just continues and is an ongoing position for 6 months. He stated favoritism is being made to one employee. MR. Rabidou stated he knows the board is new and doesnít relish this type of conversation. Interesting who the complaints are coming from, it is an easy explanation for those making complaint. Canít we just move forward? Commissioner Hover stated that is why the board would like to put an end date in the resolution. The board wants to talk to the courts. Auditor Thomas clarified that the position is not fully funded in the TCI as there is a difference of $850, and a line item adjustment will be necessary to address the retirement.

Ms. Craig clarified the end date is not used for other employees. But because of the exception the board is asked to make is whey the end date should be in there. Mr. Rabidou stated the position is budget for the whole year and would not be necessary to have an end date in the resolution he understands the boards wish for it to be there. Commissioner Branch would like review to mean something. The auditor reiterated the exception to the rule should have an end date, but a problems with that is that SC instead of saying the position is slated to end this date what are we going to do about it what decision need to be made and it doesnít appear those decisions are being made and it should have some teeth in it with an end date. She tends to say what she thinks and is blunt she doesnít sugar coat things. Thank you for doing your job and being here for the discussion. Commissioner Branch stated the items to include in the draft resolution to state the effective date January 1, 2017 with review on May 16, 2017 for position ending June 30, 2017 after review. Motion was seconded, Commissioner DeTro abstained, motion carried.

The group exited.

Motion Executive Session RCW 42.30.110 (1)(i)
Commissioner Hover moved to go into executive session at 11:55 a.m. for 10 minutes inviting DPA Albert Lin to discuss current pending litigation. Motion was seconded, all were in favor, motion carried.



Commissioners signed two letters to the following: Eric Johnson WSAC re: endorsement of the appointment of Commissioner Branch to LSC for WSAC and a letter to USFS Robin Demario re: endorsement of the appointment of Commissioner Hover to Resource Advisory Committee.

Commissioners adjourned at 5:00 p.m.