C.L. "Butch"
Otter
Governor
Lawerence
Denney
Secretary of
State
Lawrence
Wasden
Attorney
General
Brandon D
D Woolf
State
Controller,
Secretary
SCO > Board of Examiners > Board of Examiners Minutes
MINUTES
STATE BOARD OF EXAMINERS
November 23, 1998 – 8:45 a.m.
JRW East Conference Room


The regular meeting of the State Board of Examiners was held November 23, 1998 at 89:45 a.m. in the JRW East Conference Room.

Members present:
      Governor Philip E. Batt, Chairman of the Board
      Secretary of State Pete T. Cenarrusa
      Attorney General Alan G. Lance
      State Controller and Secretary of the Board J. D. Williams

Sub-Committee members present:
      David High, Office of Attorney General
      Darrell Manning, Office of Governor
      H. W. Turner, Office of State Controller
      Ben Ysursa, Office of Secretary of State

Visitors present:
      Pam Ahrens, Department of Administration
      Miles Browne, Department of Administration
      Linda Caballero, Department of Health and Welfare
      Dwight Bower, Department of Transportation
      Craig Potcher, Department of Correction
      Rick Thompson, Department of Administration
      Joanna Guilfoy, Department of Administration
      Rebecca Fry, Department of Administration


CONSENT AGENDA
    BUREAU OF HAZARDOUS MATERIALS

1. Incident #980609 – Request for authorization to issue deficiency warrants in the amount of $232.26 for reimbursement of response costs incurred when assisting the Idaho Criminal Investigations Bureau in responding to a methamphetamine lab in Pocatello, Idaho on June 3, 1998, pursuant to Idaho Code § 39-7110.


2. Incident #980613 – Request for authorization to issue deficiency warrants in the amount of $2,088.13 for reimbursement of response costs incurred in a hazardous substance incident near Tamerac, Idaho on June 6, 1998, pursuant to Idaho Code § 39-7110.

3. Incident #980617 – Request for authorization to issue deficiency warrants in the amount of $607.22 for reimbursement of response costs incurred when assisting the Idaho Criminal Investigations Bureau in responding to a methamphetamine lab in Pocatello, Idaho on June 4, 1998, pursuant to Idaho Code § 39-7110.

4. Incident #980719 – Request for authorization to issue deficiency warrants in the amount of $726.29 for reimbursement of response costs incurred when assisting the Idaho Criminal Investigations Bureau in responding to a methamphetamine lab in Horseshoe Bend, Idaho on July 10, 1998, pursuant to Idaho Code § 39-7110.

5. Incident #980622 – Request for authorization to issue deficiency warrants in the amount of $372.20 for reimbursement of response costs incurred in a hazardous substance incident in Boise, Idaho on June 18, 1998, pursuant to Idaho Code § 39-7110. The paramedics expense of $872.58 is deferred and under advisement.

6. Incident #980726 – Request for authorization to issue deficiency warrants in the amount of $2,048.38 for reimbursement of response costs incurred when assisting the Idaho Criminal Investigations Bureau in responding to a methamphetamine lab in Kooskia, Idaho on July 10, 1998, pursuant to Idaho Code § 39-7110.


7. STATE CONTROLLER'S OFFICE
    Request for authorization to pay 35.5 hours compensatory time for Dave Davies, IT Systems Analyst, accrued as of November 2, 1998. Mr. Davies is involved on high priority projects and his vacation leave balance is close to maximum allowed.


8. DEPARTMENT OF LANDS
    Request for authorization to pay 94 hours overtime for Michael R. Denney, Supervising Resource Manager, accrued this summer while on assignment as a member of the National Fire Prevention Team.


9. DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE
    Request for authorization to reimburse Mr. Kenneth Crane $540.00 extra labor costs for the packing, loading and unloading in his promotional transfer from the Department of Lands office in Idaho Falls to Boise, pursuant to State Moving Policy, X. The Board of Examiners had previously approved moving expenses up to $5,000 and Mr. Crane's expenses came to less than $1,500.00.


10. DIVISION OF VOCATIONAL REHABILITATION
    Request for authorization to provide a lump sum payment of unused vacation time for employees of Divisions of Vocational Education and Vocational Rehabilitation affected by the State Board of Education's recent decision to grant 7.4 hours annual leave time per pay period with an accrual cap of 240 hours. This affects the leave schedules for the following non-classified, Fair Labor Standards Act exempt employees:
      Vocational Rehabilitation Pay Out Amt
      Roger Button 386.58 Sue Payne 2,294.78
      Arnold Cantu 439.18 Dick Sloneker 827.45
      Paul Gorringe 1,611.75 Larry Smith 2,227.75
      Michael Hauser 1,294.76 Barry Thompson 2,772.02
      Sam David Hawkes 1,014.60 Marie G. Wissel 1,347.54
      Kenneth Jones 1,283.48 Total 20,549.62
      Tim Kopczynski 2,389.86
      Rob Leth 60.72 Vocational Education Pay Out Amt
      John Miller 1,180.11 Kirk C. Dennis 742.56
      Chris Niemeier 1,419.06 Donald H. Eshelby 1,556.11
      J. Richard Winn 1,876.90
Total 4,175.57

11. MILITARY DIVISION
    Request for authorization to extend the 1385 hour limitation on temporary employees who were hired to work in disaster recovery for the Bureau of Disaster Services, pursuant to Idaho Code §67-5302(31). It normally takes from two or three years to close out a disaster. This request only encompasses employees who are working on disaster recovery and when the disaster is closed out, their appointment will be terminated.


OFFICE OF ATTORNEY GENERAL

12. Request for execution of the Building Lease Agreement for the Idaho Food Quality Assurance Institute, which was established by the Idaho Legislature in 1996 pursuant to Title 67, Chapter 83, Idaho Code. (Requires Board of Examiners signatures)

    13. Notification that Ms. Sue Flammia, of the firm of Flammia & Solomon, has been appointed to represent the Department of Health and Welfare, Bureau of Child Support, in child support suits, pursuant to Idaho Code § 67-1409.


    14. Notification that Mr. Richard Skinner, of the firm of Skinner Fawcett, has been appointed to represent, as bond counsel, the Idaho Water Resources Board, pursuant to Idaho Code § 67-1409.


    15. Notification that Mr. Merlyn W. Clark, of the firm of Hawley, Troxell, Ennis & Hawley, has been appointed to represent the Idaho Department of Health and Welfare in the Wikse v. Dept. of Health & Welfare, Case No. CV-OC-98-03123D, pursuant to Idaho Code § 67-1409.


    16. Notification that Mr. Dennis L. Cain, of the firm of Beer & Cain, has been appointed to represent the Office of Attorney General in the Linda D. Whipple, Unemployment Insurance Claim, pursuant to Idaho Code § 67-1409.


    17. Notification that Mr. Craig W. Mosman, of Mosman Law Offices, has been appointed to represent the Department of Correction in the Crawford v. Correction, Case No. 25033, pursuant to Idaho Code § 67-1409.


    18. Notification that Mr. Frank P. Kotyk, of Cantrill, Skinner, Sullivan & King, has been appointed to represent the Department of Transportation in the Dachlet v. State of Idaho, et al., Case No. CV-PI-94-00017, pursuant to Idaho Code § 67-1409.


    19. Notification that Mr. Robert G. Hamlin, of Hamlin & Sasser, P.A., has been appointed to represent the Real Estate Commission in the Nordling v. Jones, et al., CIV-98-0418-S-BLW, pursuant to Idaho Code § 67-1409.


    Governor: The meeting of the State Board of Examiners will come to order. We have a Consent Agenda before us. Is there a motion?

    Attorney General: Mr. Chairman, I would move for the adoption of the Consent Agenda.

    Secretary of State: Second.

    Governor: That is one through 19. Is there discussion? There being none, all in favor will indicate by saying aye.

    Governor: Aye
    Secretary of State: Aye
    Attorney General: Aye

    Opposed, nay. The Chair votes aye. The ayes have it. The motion is carried.


    REGULAR AGENDA

    20. DEPARTMENT OF ADMINISTRATION - Pam Ahrens, Director; Rick Thompson, Fiscal Officer
      (Sub-Committee members recommend approval to lift the cap on bonuses for 154 IT classifications, and commensurable classifications for non-classified positions, with the provision that they do not give more than $6,000 without specific Board of Examiners approval, and that a plan be filed with the Division of Financial Management for communication purposes. This would be reviewed January 1, 2000.)
      On behalf of the Information Technology Resource Management Council (ITRMC) request for authorization for the temporary removal of the $1,000 bonus cap for the IT related classifications (154 classified and non-classified listed in the attachment).

    Governor: Regular Agenda. Department of Administration, number 20.

    State Controller: Governor, we have a proposal from the Department of Administration representing the ITRMC, the Information Resource Management Council, regarding bonuses for specified information technology positions. There is a very well written letter in the file justifying. Also the director, Pam Ahrens, is here. She may want to respond to this. As you are aware from our prior conversations, this is a major problem in state government right now, being competitive for these information technology positions. A lot of this is being compounded by the Year 2000 situation but there are also a lot of other factors involved. It would probably be a good idea to listen to the director for a moment on this.

    Governor: Ms. Ahrens.

    State Controller: She is accompanied by Miles Browne who is the henchman from the Information Technology Council.

    Pam Ahrens: Good morning, Governor, members of the Board of Examiners. First let me say that I am here as the chairman of the Information Technology Resource Management Council and there are other Council members here as well in support of this request and would certainly be prepared to answer questions. J. D., of course. Linda Caballero, Director of the Department of Health and Welfare; Dwight Bower, Director, Department of Transportation; Craig Potcher is with the Department of Correction and handles their information systems. Also from the Department of Administration are Rick Thompson; our Deputy Attorney General Joanna Guilfoy; and Rebecca Fry, Human Resource Officer. You know Miles Browne.

    The request is that the $1,000 bonus cap as defined in the Idaho Code be removed for one year and the list of classifications that we would like to apply that to, 154, are listed for you. There are about 850 employees that fit within that cap. I don't need to tell you that the state is experiencing HR crisis in the recruitment retention of IT staff and this situation is impacting state government's ability to provide services. According to some national consultants there are over 200,000 unfilled jobs in the nation in IT and that for those jobs in that classification their salaries are raising on a yearly basis about 20%, which is compared to about 4% for other classifications. The loss of state government IT professionals is occurring at an alarming rate and we have lost in the last twelve months 116 individuals, and just within the last few months, 21. The loss is creating a serious adverse impact on our ability to provide services to our citizens, let alone the Year 2000 project. We believe that this shortage is going to go on for quite some time. To give you a bit of an example we have provided you some pie charts with the experience the Department of Health and Welfare and the Department of Correction has had over the last few months.

    As you know, Governor, we met on August 12, 1997 with all of your directors to discuss some strategies on how to alleviate the problem. We have implemented some of those strategies. One of those is the Information Technology Resource Management Council training program that we have going. It is a concept of growing our own. We have conducted 303 classes, and about 1,300 students have participated. The IPC has removed the hiring situation so that now we can hire off of resumes. We have numerous other strategies we will pursue. This one request is one of many. We are going to have to continue to be very aggressive with our recruitment and not just wait for people to come in off the street. We are going to have to go find the folks to continue. Council believes that this request enables state agencies to award multiple bonuses throughout the year for such recognition as milestones, project completion and longevity, to provide a mechanism by which to increase the employee's salary without increasing the base, provide greater flexibility in recruiting quality candidates and provide greater flexibility and incentive for retention of quality candidates. The temporary removal of the cap would be under the following guidelines. This request would be for IT related classifications only as listed in the attachment. The temporary exemption would be for one year only and a complete accounting and report would be submitted to the Board of Examiners at the end of this year regarding the usage of the bonuses. In summary, it is just one of many things we are going to have to do to have qualified staff for information technology. With that, sir, I would entertain if you would like to hear from the directors of other departments.

    Governor: Thank you, Pam. I think that we have all received a lot of information concerning this problem and I certainly share your view that we cannot continue to let our best people get pirated away. That is within our ability. We cannot cover everything but I think we have to put up a fight for these folks. Sears alone has been taking a lot of our good ones. So I would certainly agree that we need this. What do you think, Pete?

    Secretary of State: Governor, I agree. The Sub-Committee has studied this and I can vote along with the Sub-Committee's recommendation.

    Attorney General: Governor, Pam, does this classification cover in-house information technology specialists? As an example, within the Office of the Attorney General?

    Pam Ahrens: Governor, Mr. Attorney General, yes, it would. I think we talked about that in the other classifications and obviously your folks are non-classified. You have the list of classifications. There are over 154 different classifications.

    Governor: Of course, there is the difficulty of defining it to the extent that it won't be abused.

    Attorney General: Mr. Chairman, my concern was that if we fix some of these folks and we don't fix everybody in the same business, they are just going to be raiding one from the other. People in the Office of the Governor who are computer literate may very well jump ship, the AG's Office…

    Governor: The whole thing is dangerous ground and that is the only reluctance I have to get into it because you extend the definition far enough everybody is going to complain that runs a computer.

    Pam Ahrens: May I make a comment to that line. Our major concern is not losing these people to state government, and defining state government as an enterprise-wide all the state government, all the elected officials, as you would in a corporate environment. These are people who also need career ladders if they go from one agency to another, but they stay with us as an employer. That is what we are after. We are not always going to be able to keep them in each department, but one of the complaints sometimes in state government is that there is no career ladder. What we are talking about is keeping these people that would be cross trained from one agency to the other and staying with state government.

    State Controller: Governor, in respect to the situation the Attorney General has mentioned, as elected officials we don't have to follow the Personnel Commission's classifications. I think in most cases we try to because why invent the wheel. That has already been done. We have a request following this for a project related bonus system that was approved by the legislature, and part of the reason we are doing this even though we think this proposal will pass, is some of the people we are recommending giving bonuses to do not fall into these classifications. We didn't use that particular classification or these people had other classifications but yet were in an integral part of the Year 2000 conversion. So I think in the situation Al has raised we would have to come in on an individual case and say this person falls within this classification as defined by that particular elected officials. So I think there are some safety valves built in.

    Governor: Darrell is pointing out here that if we want to be sure of what we are talking about under 20 in the second paragraph, the 154 classified and non-classified listed in the attachment, we could limit the motion to that if that is what we want.

    Ben Ysursa: Governor, members of the Board of Examiners, the Sub-Committee discussed this item and the intent of our recommendation was that comparable positions in the non-classified positions would also be covered by this. Sometimes the Secretary of State, or Controller's, or Attorney General's Office, or other non-classified certainly have information technology people in there who are probably at the similar classifications but maybe not exact. The intent of the Sub-Committee was to treat them all the same.

    Governor: I think that wisdom would have us stay on the side of caution here and limit the scope as much as we can to this original motion. We can always add to it later. If you open the doors too wide you may be sorry. What is the proposed motion?

    Attorney General: The Sub-Committee's recommendation is outlined on the agenda that I have. $6,000 cap.

    Governor: In the best of worlds nobody should be limited. That is, the managers should have the discretion to reward what they need to keep their good people but we do have a personnel system and a classified system that needs to be kept in its integrity as much as possible. Back before we started the Hay Plan there really wasn't wide discretion with bonuses if I recall correctly but there was the ability to give substantial and frequent raises to your favorites without any real basis. And that was abused to a great degree before they put the Hay Plan in.

    State Controller: One thing you might consider if you would broaden this a little bit to include related positions in the non-classified positions. It is going to be reviewed in a year. There will be a report come to the Board of Examiners in a year and it can be reviewed and see what has been done.

    Governor: What is your desire, Al?

    Attorney General: Well, Governor, I can certainly understand the need. I have the same problem in the Office of the Attorney General dealing with attorneys. I think we are in a unique situation with the Year 2000 sneaking upon us, banks threatening to shut down and all sorts of things happening. I think it is exaggerated but the fact of the matter is people are paying big money to these computer wizards to anticipate the problem so I could go along with the Sub-Committee's recommendation of putting a cap of $6,000 per bonus per year.

    Governor: As written here?

    Attorney General: Yes, sir.

    Governor: The Chair would entertain a motion.

    Attorney General: I would so move.

    Secretary of State: I will second it.

    Governor: Is there further discussion? All will signify by saying aye.

    Governor: Aye
    Secretary of State: Aye
    Attorney General: Aye

    Opposed no, the ayes have it. The Chair votes aye.

    21. STATE CONTROLLER'S OFFICE
      Request for authorization to grant bonuses not to exceed $6,000 in accordance with House Bill No. 822, to provide one-time bonuses upon the satisfactory completion of the Year 2000 project by various divisions in the office.

    Governor: Number 21.

    State Controller: Governor, number 21 is a request from our office to grant bonuses not to exceed $6,000 pursuant to authority given to our office by the legislature in Section 8 of our appropriation bill for this current fiscal year upon satisfactory completion of the Year 2000 projects, and only to employees who have served in the office for more than a year. We are at that point now. We think we are pretty close with the satisfactory completion of the projects and our recommendation is that there are about 30 employees we are looking at who have had a major contribution. We got it done way ahead of schedule, way under budget. We have some very talented, dedicated employees. Most of the critical team has stuck with us. We have lost several of our newer programmers to Sears, primarily, but they have stuck with us and we feel they deserve this.

    Governor: Is this strictly IT people or are some supervisory people and adjunct people?

    State Controller: I don't believe there are any supervisory people involved. I think there are four employees in the Payroll Division and three employees in the Accounting Division that were specifically allocated to the Year 2000 problems for payroll or accounting to work with the folks in the Computer Center Division. The language in the appropriation bill gives us the discretion for any employees.

    Governor: What appropriation bill?

    State Controller: Our office last year.

    Secretary of State: House Bill 822.

    State Controller: Yes. In Section 8 it says, "It is legislative intent that the moneys provided by this appropriation for the retention of employees deemed to be critical to the completion of the Year 2000 project be distributed in the form of one-time bonuses upon the satisfactory completion of the Year 2000 project, and shall not be distributed to employees who have been employed by the State Controller for less than one (1) year immediately prior to the distribution." And we feel that they have met that. Their loyalty in staying with us has really benefited the state.

    Governor: I don't have a problem with the ones that are going to get pirated off somewhere else. But I am not sure that applies to all of them.

    State Controller: Those other employees are just as valuable and…..

    Governor: Well, maybe I think all of mine are just as valuable and everybody else does.

    State Controller: They were specifically allocated for the Year 2000 project as it related to payroll or accounting. Those same skills are also in great demand. We are in a headquarters town and what they are doing here – the Boise Cascades, Hewlett Packards and Simplots are doing in their corporate headquarters also. But that is our recommendation.

    Secretary of State: But not to exceed $6,000. It may be less.

    State Controller: Oh, yes. It is actually going to allocated on percentage of effort. We have tried to allocate by percentage of effort in this.

    Attorney General: J.D., what is the total dollars?

    State Controller: $100,000. Part of it was allocated - $85,000 was allocated to the Computer Service Center, $8,000 to EIS and $7,000 to Accounting.

    Secretary of State: That stays within the budget?

    State Controller: Yes. That is how it was computed. That is how we got to $100,000.

    Governor: Why are we required to act on that if it is in the budget?

    State Controller: Because of other language in the Code we felt to err on the side of caution, we better bring it to the Board. There is a specific limit on $1,000 bonuses in the Code without an exemption by the Board.

    Governor: The Code is set up to how much? The new language.

    State Controller: There is no limit. We came up with the $6,000 idea as part of the ITRMC thinking on what should be done so we would be in sync with the rest of the state on this.

    Secretary of State: As long as you stay within the budget and the legislature appropriates it, this is the maximum, and it could be less.

    State Controller: Yes, in fact, most are less than that.

    Governor: This is a one shot deal? They are going to average about 3 – you have 30 of them?

    State Controller: There is $100,000. They have worked very hard.

    Attorney General: I don't have a problem.

    Governor: I need a motion.

    Secretary of State: I will so move.

    Attorney General: Second

    Governor: All in favor will indicate by saying aye.

    Governor: Aye
    Secretary of State: Aye
    Attorney General: Aye

    Opposed, nay. The ayes have it.

    State Controller: That completes the agenda except for the Informational Agenda.


    INFORMATIONAL AGENDA

      STATE INSURANCE FUND

    23. Estimate of the State Insurance Fund expenses to be paid by sight draft for the month of October 1998.
          Estimated expenditures for workers $7,500,000.00
          compensation claim costs, dividends
          and premium refunds
      Fund expended in September 1998.
          Workers Compensation Claim Costs $6,121,532.12
          Policy Refunds 255,718.91
          Total $6,377,351.03

    24. Estimate of the Petroleum Storage Tank Fund expenses to be paid by sight drafts for the month of October 1998.
          Estimated expenditures for $750,000.00
          Petroleum Storage Tank Fund
      Fund expended in September 1998 for the Petroleum Storage Tank Fund:
          Payroll $ 51,766.20
          Operations 9,070.48
          Continuing Appropriations 47,711.05
          FSTF Claim Costs 369,869.56
          Total $478,417.29

    25. Estimate of the State Insurance Fund expenses to be paid by sight draft for the month of November 1998.
          Estimated expenditures for workers $7,500,000.00
          compensation claim costs, dividends
          and premium refunds
      Fund expended in October 1998.
          Workers Compensation Claim Costs $6,176,851.73
          Commissions 567,142.55
          Policy Refunds 298,050.15
          Total $7,042,044.43

    26. Estimate of the Petroleum Storage Tank Fund expenses to be paid by sight drafts for the month of November 1998.
          Estimated expenditures for $750,000.00
          Petroleum Storage Tank Fund
      Fund expended in September 1998 for the Petroleum Storage Tank Fund:
          Payroll $ 75,903.69
          Operations 6,513.30
          Capital Outlay 300.00
          Continuing Appropriations 23,679.18
          FSTF Claim Costs 190,671.89
          Total $297,068.06


    WHEREUPON THE MEETING OF THE STATE BOARD OF EXAMINERS was adjourned, subject to the call of the Chairman.


                              ___________________________________Governor Philip E. Batt
                              Chairman of the Board



    ________________________________
    J. D. Williams, Secretary to the Board
    and State Controller
      Page last updated on 07/12/2006 03:48:38 PM