|The city has paid for a workers’ compensation insurance policy through Alaska Public Entity Insurance valid until July 1, 2104. In accordance with state statute proof of coverage is posted in three conspicuous places of employment, including at the city offices and utility work sites.
The city’s personnel policies are outlined in Chapter XI of its municipal code. The chapter explains the personnel policies apply to all municipal employees, and identifies the city manager or his/her designee as the personnel director; the city clerk has been assigned this role. The policies address: the maintenance of personnel records, position classification, employee conduct and general responsibilities, outside occupations, safety, travel and training, city vehicle and equipment use, job applications, promotions, non-discrimination, qualification testing, resident and veteran preferences, nepotism, employees with disabilities, work hours and holidays, pay periods, leave, probationary periods, performance evaluations, termination, grievances, and other essential personnel matters. The city manager is authorized by ordinance to develop and enforce drug and alcohol policies and testing procedures. The city clerk reports that its personnel-related ordinances have been reviewed by the city’s attorney.
RUBA staff observed that personnel-related ordinances, as well as some other ordinances, have not been codified and that the paperwork for certain outdated/unenforced/repealed local laws remain in the code books at the city office. This seems to present confusion as to which laws are the most current. RUBA staff has agreed to work with the city staff to compile a complete, consistent, and up-to-date version of the code in order to streamline city staff’s and the public’s ability to reference the existing laws of the city.
RUBA staff reviewed a three-page written job description for the Water/Wastewater Worker I position. The document gives a general overview of the position, specifies essential functions, and identifies the knowledge, skills, and abilities this employee must have, as well as their required education, experience, licenses, and certifications. The job description also identifies the employee’s working environment.
A standardized ‘Performance Appraisal’ form is used in the evaluation of all employees. The form uses a rating rubric and point system to qualify the employee’s quality, productivity, job knowledge, reliability, availability, independence, creativity, and initiative, adherence to policy, interpersonal relationships, and judgment. It provides space for listing specific areas of improvement needed, recommendations for professional development, and frequency of absences. The appraisals are completed while considering the employee’s actual job description.
As noted previously, the employee hiring process is outlined in Chapter XI of the municipal code. As part of that process, the city posts notices of any job openings that identify the position, its duties, wage, benefits, and qualifications, and the deadline for application. Standardized job applications are issued for each position and include space for the applicant to provide all necessary information.
Each employee has a personnel file that contains and Employment Eligibility Form I-9 and evaluations. Not all employees have their original applications included in their files because they have been working for the city for decades and were hired at a time when formal applications where not necessary.
In accordance with the code, new employees serve in probationary status for their first three months of employment, and are only promoted to permanent status after successfully completing a performance evaluation for the probationary period. New employees are given job training and orientation. The city spent approximately $2,900 on specifically water/wastewater related travel and training in CY13 and allocates $3,500 for CY14.|