HB 201/LM (BR 307) - R. Weston, J. Jenkins, T. Burch, L. Clark, R. Crimm, T. Firkins, M. Marzian, C. Miller, D. Owens, S. Riggs, J. Wayne
AN ACT relating to fire department merit boards in a consolidated local government.
Create new sections of KRS Chapter 67C to establish fire department merit boards in consolidated local governments (CLG); define terms; require a CLG to establish a fire department merit system and board as prescribed; exclude chief and assistant chief from oversight of board; require the CLG legislative council to annually appropriate funds for the board; provide for the appointment of a five-member merit board; establish criteria for qualification of members and provide for staggered four-year terms for members; require vacancies to be filled for unexpired terms only; permit removal of members for cause; prohibit members from serving in other public offices while serving; prohibit receipt of gifts, money, or things of value; prohibit more than three members from the same political party; require oath; provide for the election of fire department representatives to the board; require the board to meet within 30 days of creation and adopt operating procedures and by-laws; require only a majority of the quorum who are present to take action in nondisciplinary actions; require four members to be present to take action on disciplinary matters; require the board to meet at least every two months and for minutes of each meeting to be kept; require the board to employ secretary; require all orders and minutes to be signed by the chairman and all records and minutes to be subject to the Kentucky Open Records Law; require the mayor to certify within 30 days the prescribed fire department personnel information as of the date of the ordinance creating the board; qualify all current active duty fire department members, except probationary employees, to continue service without further exams or qualifications; require such members to be deemed permanent employees; require probationary members to complete a one-year probationary period which can be extended for an additional six months; provide for coverage of members affected by promotional probationary periods; exclude chiefs, assistant chiefs and others previously excluded from civil service from the oversight of the board; provide for a leave of absence from classified service for a member to accept a noncovered promotional position and for the return of such employee to the same classified service; prohibit members from receiving or soliciting for any political party or candidate for public office; prohibit any member from using personal influence or authority to secure appointments or promotions; prohibit employees from signing or promising to sign dated resignations in advance of an appointment or promotion; prohibit action against an employee for nonpayment to political purpose; prohibit exam questions relating to opinions, beliefs, affiliations, or services; prohibit members from being involved in or promoting political or religious controversies or prejudices while in uniform; establish protection of all members' rights; require the board to create rules and regulations for all covered personnel; require rules to be published, distributed, and posted within three days of adoption; require the employment of a chief examiner; require the chief to provide medical records of any disability of applicants for promotions; require 90-day prior notice of promotional exams; provide for the grading of promotional tests to include preference points for seniority as prescribed; provide for the availability and review of promotional eligibility lists, compilation of test results, and notification of applicants; provide for the filling of promotional vacancies from the five candidates with the highest score from the eligibility list; require the board to provide for justification of nonpromotions; require certified promotion lists to remain valid for two years and promotional vacancies to be filled within 60 days of the vacancy; provide that the action of the chief is valid, except in cases of dismissal, demotion, or suspension of more than 40 hours of a non-probational employees, which shall be reviewed and heard by the board; outline procedures for the board review and permit the board to set aside the action of the chief; permit suspensions of less than 40 hours for a non-probationary employee to be reviewed by the board or a hearing officer; require board rules to apply and submission of report, recommendations, and notice of findings from hearing officer; permit exceptions to the hearing officer's recommendations within 15 days; require all final orders of the board to be in writing and within 30 days of receipt of the hearing officers recommended order; permit appeal to the Circuit Court; grant the board the power to issue subpoenas; require the use of the Kentucky Rules of Civil Procedure; provide that existing promotional eligibility lists to remain in effect until their normal expiration date.
Jan 5-introduced in House
Feb 6-to Local Government (H)
Feb 9-posted in committee
Feb 13-reported favorably, 1st reading, to Calendar
Feb 14-2nd reading, to Rules; posted for passage in the Regular Orders of the Day for Thursday, February 15, 2007
Feb 16-3rd reading, passed 97-0
Feb 20-received in Senate
Feb 22-to State & Local Government (S)
Mar 7-taken from committee; 1st reading; returned to State & Local Government (S)
Mar 8-taken from committee; 2nd reading; returned to State & Local Government (S)