Unions Unhappy with Proposed Changes to City of Duluth Hiring Process

By KBJR News 1

Unions Unhappy with Proposed Changes to City of Duluth Hiring Process

February 27, 2012 Updated Feb 27, 2012 at 10:29 PM CDT

DULUTH, MN (Northland's NewsCenter) - The Duluth City Council is closer to an agreement to make the City's hiring process more efficient and up-to-date.

It will be at least another couple weeks before the council makes a decision, and this is an item the City Administration has been working for months.

A Workforce Recruitment Task Force was put together last summer to discuss barriers to hiring and how to modernize and quicken the process of hiring.

Administration had used those recommendations to draft a new civil service code, which is meant to manage the hiring process without bringing each step to the Civil Service Board making the process faster.

Unions working with the City have come out in opposition to the proposed changes saying they go above and beyond streamlining the hiring process and, in turn, weaken the system and cut down transparency.

"The City's proposal in my mind seeks to pull a shade over that window, especially with regard of the approval process that the Civil Service Board currently enjoys," said Civil Service Board Chair Marshall Stenersen.

An amendment by Councilor Emily Larson that gives the Civil Service Board back some power was adopted Monday, which means the council will vote on the hiring process resolution at the next council meeting.

There was also a separate resolution passed unanimously Monday naming the new public safety building training room in honor of Ellen Louise Pence.

Councilor Sharla Gardner explained how Pence was internationally known for her work with the "Domestic Abuse Intervention Program," known as the Duluth Model, which was then followed closely around the world.

Posted to Web by Jena Pike