The Lima City Council Human Resources Committee continued the tedious process of reviewing civil service rules Monday and made several changes.
Councilors began reviewing the rules in October after deciding to expedite the civil service process. The Civil Service Board rules dictate the procedure for hiring all certified personnel in the city.
The board discussed the possibility of holding all future meetings in council chambers, but took no immediate action on the subject after several concerns were brought forth. While civil service board members said they were open to considering council chambers as a designated meeting place, they said they have easier access to Civil Service Board secretary Andy King’s files, which they said made their job easier.
Lima Public Works Director Howard Elstro told the committee that the council chambers was handicapped accessible, which could eliminate potential problems in the future. He recommended that the committee consider that the Civil Service Board at least hold its regular monthly meetings in council chambers.
Councilors eliminated civil rule 4.4.3, which called for a $1 filing fee for employment applications for certified positions.
City Law Director Tony Geiger asked for the change.
“I ask that we either get rid of the fee or adjust it to be worth the time,” Geiger said.
Geiger said that the $1 fee collected did not balance out the cost for the paperwork involved in collecting the fee. Committee members agreed to eliminate the fee because they did not want people to pay a fee to file job applications with the city.
The committee also eliminated rule 4.4.4, which banned applicants from retrieving original applications. Committee made the change so applicants could make updates and changes to pertinent information if they added training or experience during the application process.
The committee also struck rule 8.1.2, which banned employees transferred from one position to another from getting pay raises without approval from City Council. Geiger told committee members that the rule was no longer used.
The committee skipped over sections five, six, and seven during the meeting and saved them for future discussion. Those sections contain the sections that will be more argued, including the Rule of 10, which in effect qualified 10 people for employment of a position. Committee chair Paige Townsend said the rule was implemented in an attempt to allow for more diversity among candidates. There has been discussion by the committee to possibly get rid of the rule or change it to speed up the process.