|All city employees are covered by an Alaska Municipal League Joint Insurance Association (AMLJIA) workers' compensation insurance policy. That policy is effective from July 1, 2011 until July 1, 2012 and covers work-related accidents and occupational diseases up to the Alaska statutory limits for each occurrence. Proof of coverage is posted in all areas of employment, including the city hall, the community hall, and the water treatment plant. RUBA staff verified that the city is current in its payments to AMLJIA and that adequate funds have been allocated in the city budget for payments over the remainder of the fiscal year.
The city implements a well-established personnel management system with the city administrator and the city council's personnel committee continually reviewing personnel matters. A personnel policy handbook was formally adopted by the city in 2005 and is required to be read by every employee. The handbook covers a broad range of topics, including recruitment, selection, the hiring process, transfers, promotions, under-fillings, demotions, work hours, pay, benefits, leave, holidays, career development, conduct, grievances, and performance reviews. The personnel policy also requires a 90-day probationary period for new hires in which an employee is provided orientation and is closely observed by the supervisor. At the end of the probationary period, copies of a performance report completed by the supervisor are to be given to the employee and filed in the employee's personnel file. While the probationary period has historically been applied to all city employees and officials, the council is scheduled to amend this provision at its April 27, 2011 regular meeting. The amendment will exempt elected officials from the probationary period in accordance with recent recommendations by a Public Employees Retirements System (PERS) auditor.
Chapter IV, Section 1 of the City of Saxman Personnel Policy requires that formal utility employee performance evaluations be conducted not only at the end of the 90-day probationary period, but annually. The city administrator/clerk does keep the personnel committee apprised of all personnel-related issues, though annual written performance evaluations are not completed.
Comprehensive written job descriptions, however, have been adopted by the city for each utility operator and clearly define position titles, certification requirements, supervisors, qualifications, work hours, and duties. These job descriptions are included in the utility staffs' personnel folders, along with Employment Eligibility Verification Form I-9s, W-4s, new hire packets, copies of certifications, and disciplinary warning memos.
The city continues to budget for and provide training opportunities to utility staff as needed and available. The city administrator/clerk has attended personnel management, business administration, financial planning, and municipal clerk training courses and is active in the Sanitation Deficiency System (SDS) program. The city administrator/clerk has also expressed interest in attending a 32-hour RUBA Financial Management class if available this summer. Utility operators are consistently provided the opportunity to undertake certification trainings and examinations and remain in contact with Alaska Native Tribal Health Consortium (ANTHC) engineers for onsite training with new equipment. In the city's FY11 budget, approximately $13,000 is allocated to city officials and staff for travel costs, of which $1,000 is specifically for the utility operators. |