[HISTORY: Adopted by the Suffolk County Legislature 10-4-1977 by Res. No. 919-77 as amended 1-24-1978 by Res. No. 52-78; 4-25-1978 by Res. No. 359-78; and 7-31-1981 by Res. No. 625-81 (Ch. 585 of the 1985 Code). Subsequent amendments noted where applicable.]
Public service of a high quality is essential to the continued development of Suffolk County. It is the principal means by which the County will achieve its maximum potential. For this reason, it is necessary to attract and retain persons of high qualifications and abilities to the career service. One of the fundamental processes by which this objective may be obtained is by sound administration of an adequate position classification and salary plan.
It is the purpose of these rules to establish as the policy of Suffolk County a system which provides equal pay for equal work and increases in pay in proper proportion to increase of ability, increase in output and increase of quality of work.
As used in this chapter, the following terms shall have the meanings indicated:
- The assigning of classes to the appropriate salary grades.
- ANNIVERSARY DATE
- The date of an employee's original employment date with the County, from which date his personal leave and vacation accruals are calculated.
- One or more positions sufficiently similar with respect to duties and responsibilities to be designated by a single descriptive title and treated as a unit for the purpose of recruiting, establishing salary ranges and administering other personnel functions.
- CLASSIFIED SERVICE
- The exempt class, the noncompetitive class, the labor class and the competitive class as defined by the Civil Service Law.
- The assigning of positions to an appropriate class.
- The movement of an employee from one position to another position in a class of a lower grade.
- An administrative unit of the County government, whose administrative head has been designated as an appointing authority.
- DIRECTOR OF PERSONNEL AND LABOR RELATIONS
- The officer responsible for administering Rules IV and V, §§ 888-4 and 888-5, of the Rules for the Administration of Classification and Salary Plans of Suffolk County.
- The incumbent of a position holding the position in accordance with the Suffolk County Civil Service Rules and the Civil Service Law and whose titles are assigned to Bargaining Unit Nos. 2 and 6 as defined by the Suffolk County Public Employee Relations Board.
- A negotiable item.
- MANAGEMENT EMPLOYEES
- For purposes of these rules, those persons designated as excluded from any bargaining unit.
- PERSONNEL OFFICER
- The Personnel Officer of the Department of Human Resources, Personnel and Civil Service of the County of Suffolk, who is the officer responsible for administering Rule III, § 888-3, of the Rules for the Administration of the Classification and Salary Plans of Suffolk County.
- An office or employment involving an aggregation of duties to be performed and responsibilities to be exercised by one person.
- PROMOTIONAL UNIT
- A department of the County government.
- The reassigning of a class of positions to a different salary grade.
- The redesignation of a position from one class to another because of a permanent and material change of the duties of that position.
- SALARY PLAN
- The schedule of salaries established for all classes of positions in the classification plan.
Purpose. The Classification Plan provides a complete inventory of all positions in the County classified services and accurate descriptions and specifications for each class of employment. The plan standardizes titles, each of which is indicative of a definite range of duties and responsibilities and has the same meaning throughout the classified service.
Composition of the Classification Plan. The Classification Plan consists of:
A grouping into classes of positions which are of approximately equal difficulty and responsibility, which require the same general qualifications and which can be equitably compensated for within the same range of pay under similar working conditions.
A class title, descriptive of the work of the class, which shall identify each class.
Written class specifications for each class of positions containing each of the following: a description of the nature of work and of the relative responsibilities of the positions in the class; requirements of work in terms of knowledge, skills and abilities necessary for the performance of the work; and a statement of the minimum experience and training for recruitment into the class.
Class title. Class titles shall be used in all personnel, accounting, budget, appropriation and financial records. No person shall be appointed to, or employed in, a position in the classified service under a title not included in the Classification Plan. Titles used in the course of departmental routine to indicate authority, status in the organization or administrative rank may continue to be used for such purposes.
Class specifications. Specifications are to be interpreted in their entirety and in relation to others in the Classification Plan. Particular phrases or examples are not to be isolated and treated as a whole definition of the class. Class specifications are deemed to be descriptive and explanatory of the kind of work performed and not necessarily inclusive of all duties performed.
Uses of Classification Plan are as follows:
In preparing public announcements of examinations for vacancies.
As a guide in preparing examinations that will measure the qualifications needed to perform the work of the class.
In determining lines of promotion and in developing employees' training programs.
In determining personnel service items in the several departmental budgets.
In determining salaries to be paid for various types of work.
In providing uniform job terminology understandable by all County officials, employees and the general public.
Maintenance of the Classification Plan.
The Personnel Officer is charged with responsibility for the proper and continuous maintenance of the Classification Plan so that it will reflect on a current basis the duties being performed by each employee in the County classified service. The Personnel Officer shall make amendments to the Classification Plan in the form of new classes, revisions of existing classes and the abolition of classes no longer required in the plan. The Personnel Officer shall specify the effective date of the change in classification.
Reclassification of positions within the approved Classification Plan shall be made as follows:
The Personnel Officer shall make or cause to have made a study of the duties and responsibilities of each new position before it is created and, on the basis of this study, assign the position to the appropriate class within the Classification Plan.
Changes in the duties and responsibilities of a position involving either the addition of new assignments or the deletion or modifying of existing assignments shall be reported to the Personnel Officer by department heads. If these are determined to be permanent and more than minor changes, which justify the reclassification to a different class, the Personnel Officer shall reclassify each position to its appropriate class.
The Personnel Officer shall periodically review the classification of positions and, upon the basis of his investigation, effect the appropriate changes in the Classification Plan.
Status of employees upon reclassification. No employee whose position is reclassified shall be promoted, demoted, transferred, suspended or reinstated except in accordance with the Civil Service Law and Rules of the Suffolk County Department of Human Resources, Personnel and Civil Service. Salary upon promotion resulting from reclassification shall be calculated in the manner set forth in § 888-4.
Effect of reclassification of positions to more descriptive titles.
Reclassification of provisional and temporary employees. A provisional or temporary employee in a competitive class position which is reclassified cannot acquire permanent status without examination.
Claims against the County. No employee whose salary is increased as a result of reclassification shall have a claim against the County for the difference between his former salary and that which he received as a result of the change for the period prior to the effective date of the change.
Appeal of classification. Any employee or department head affected by the classification or reclassification of a position in the Classification Plan shall, if he believes the action to be improper, have a reasonable opportunity to be heard upon filing a written statement with the Personnel Officer. The Personnel Officer, after having taken into consideration the facts in the case, shall render his decision, and such decision shall be reported to the employee or department head in writing.
Composition of Salary Plan.
Each of these employees shall be paid at one of the rates set forth in the Salary Plan for the class of position in which he is employed, except where a single rate of pay has been authorized by the Legislature or pursuant to an order of the County Executive.
Development and maintenance of salary grades. Salary grades shall be established by recommendation of the Director of Personnel and Labor Relations for the County Executive and the President of the Suffolk Chapter of the CSEA and approved by the County Legislature and amended by the Classification and Salary Appeals Board as outlined in Rule V, § 888-5, unless agreed to with the recommendation of the Civil Service Employees Association Chapter President for the union and the Director of Personnel and Labor Relations for the County Executive and approved by the County Legislature, and shall be linked directly to the plan of position classification. They shall be determined with due regard to the following considerations:
Rates of pay for other classes.
Relative difficulty and responsibility of positions in the class.
Availability of qualified employees in particular occupational categories.
Prevailing rates of pay for similar employment in private establishments.
Rates of pay in other public jurisdictions.
Cost-of-living factors, the financial policies of the County and other economic conditions.
The salary grades are intended to establish and maintain rates of pay appropriate to the varying levels of responsibility of positions in the classified service and to meet recruitment requirements as recommended by the County Executive.
Salary increases within appropriate grades shall be based on seniority and shall be from one step to the next higher step. Employees (other than management employees) shall receive salary increases in accordance with labor contracts between the County and the appropriate bargaining agency. Salary increases or decreases resulting from the adjustment of salary grades, in accordance with § 888-2, shall not prevent within-range increases in accordance with this section.
For the purpose of this rule, employees with provisional status shall be treated in the same manner as employees with permanent status.
The minimum rate of pay for a class will normally be paid to any person on his original appointment to a position; however, the department head may submit in writing to the Division of Personnel and Labor Relations a statement of the difficulty in recruitment of certain positions which warrants employment at a higher rate in the salary grade. The Division of Personnel and Labor Relations shall make a recommendation to the County Executive, who shall approve or disapprove the hiring of County employees or officers at a rate higher than the minimum rate of a salary range or grade. These employees hired in-step shall proceed through the salary steps of that grade in the same manner as other employees. Employees hired in-step must be on the payroll continuously for at least three months before they are entitled to an increment, i.e., an employee hired in-step in August 1980 would be entitled to an increment in January 1981; any employee hired in-step on or about October 1, 1979, would not be entitled to an increment until January 1, 1981, or the next Countywide increment negotiated for that title by the appropriate bargaining unit. The only exception to this rule is an employee who is hired in-step and that step is deleted from the Salary Plan prior to his entitlement to his increment, and in this case the employee would automatically go to the next step at the time his step is dropped from the Salary Plan.
The Department shall pay a rate higher than the minimum rate of the grade for the class, if one of the following conditions exists:
An employee who is promoted to a position in a higher salary grade will be advanced to the minimum of the new grade, or if his/her current salary is at or higher than the new minimum, he/she shall be advanced to the next higher step than his/her current salary, provided that his/her increase amounts to not less than 4%. Employees hired in-step shall be promoted in the same manner. Those employees promoted or demoted or who have been moved in salary grade and/or step between January 1, 1981, and the adoption of this amendment shall have their salary recalculated by the Office of Personnel and Labor Relations to determine their proper salary and step in the new Salary Plan in accordance with the Civil Service Employees Association collective bargaining agreement for the contract year 1981. Decisions by the Office of Personnel and Labor Relations regarding these calculations shall be final and binding.
A permanent employee who had at least one year of service with Suffolk County reinstated within one year to his former position or to another position in the same class shall be paid at the rate within the salary grade he would normally have attained in conformance with the collective bargaining agreement had he not been the subject of layoff or other separation not reflecting discredit upon the employee. A permanent employee who has been subject to a demotion due to layoff who is then reinstated within one year to a salary grade equal to or greater than his former position shall receive the step of the new salary grade based upon the rate within his former salary grade that he normally would have attained had he not been the subject of layoff. A permanent employee reinstated after one year and within four years in a position in the same class due to layoff or demotion due to layoff shall be paid at that rate within the salary grade which is at least equal to the salary rate that he was receiving at the time of his layoff or demotion due to layoff. Any exceptions to this rule must be approved by the County Executive.
If a permanent employee has accepted a provisional promotional appointment and returns to his original position, he shall be placed in the salary step he would normally have attained had he not accepted the provisional appointment.
When an employee is appointed to a position in a salary grade lower than the grade in which he is currently employed, his salary will be calculated as if he had been at the lower grade on a continuous basis. Should the employee's new grade fall between his present grade and a lower grade which he had held previously, his salary shall be calculated as though he was promoted from his previously held grade to his new grade at the time of his previous promotion.
When an employee resigns from a position in a salary plan of one bargaining unit to accept a position in a salary plan of another bargaining unit of the County, he will be advanced to the minimum of the proper grade for the salary plan of the new bargaining unit; and if his current salary is at or higher than the new minimum, he shall be advanced to the next higher step than his current salary.
No appointing authority shall demote and then promote an employee for the sole purpose of granting the employee an increase in pay. It shall be presumed that any demotion and promotion within 30 days shall be in violation of this rule.
Departmental transfers. An employee transferred from one department to another in the same class and/or grade shall receive no salary increase.
Effective date of salary changes. The effective date of salary increases and decreases shall be the first day of the pay period following the transaction of other than service-wide salary increases resulting from collective bargaining agreements. However, employees receiving a promotion shall receive the new pay rate effective on the date the employee is appointed to the higher grade.
Certification of payrolls. Prior to the payment of any salary, wage or other compensation for personnel services, the Personnel Officer shall certify that each person named on the payroll has been employed in accordance with the appointment and classification procedures of the Civil Service Law and Rules and that salary rates for all positions are those authorized by the Salary Plan.
Method of revising the Salary Plan. Upon amendment of the Salary Plan, the following adjustments shall be made:
An employee occupying a position in a class allocated to a pay grade which is revised upward shall be moved from the step he is occupying at the time of reallocation to the corresponding step in the new salary grade. Such reallocation shall not prevent the employee from receiving service-wide salary increases as provided in collective bargaining agreements.
A permanent employee occupying a position in a class which has been reallocated downward shall retain his current salary if it is within the new salary grade and have normal advancement in accordance with the collective bargaining agreement.
The salary of a permanent incumbent shall not be reduced by reason of reallocation of the salary grade of his title. A permanent employee whose present salary is above the maximum rate for his class will remain at his present salary, which shall be construed as a step in the salary grade for this individual as long as the incumbent is in this position.
Claims against the County. No employee whose salary is increased as a result of reallocation shall have a claim against the County for the difference between his former salary and that which he received as a result of the change, for the period prior to the effective date of the change.
Notwithstanding any other section of the rules for the administration of the Salary Plan to the contrary, for officers and employees excluded from bargaining units pursuant to Resolution No. 667 of 1967, as the same has been and may be from time to time amended (excluding those officers whose salaries can only be increased by local law), the County Executive and the Presiding Officer shall annually determine the step within the grade set by the County Legislature within the Suffolk County Salary Plan at which such officers and employees shall be paid, to be effective on the first day of the first full pay period of each fiscal year.
The Division of Personnel and Labor Relations of the County Executive's office shall be responsible for reviewing all salary rates and making such changes as may be necessary to ensure that employees of the County are paid not less than the minimum wage.
There shall be a Classification and Salary Appeals Board which shall consist of five members: two representatives appointed by the County Executive's office, two members representing the employees designated by the Suffolk County Association of Municipal Employees (Association) to serve a term of one year beginning on the first day of July of each year, and one member representing the Legislature who shall be mutually agreed upon by the County Executive and the Association President from three names submitted by the Presiding Officer. Said Classification and Salary Appeals Board members shall serve without salary. The County Personnel Officer or his designee shall serve as Secretary to the Board.
[Amended 9-8-1987 by Res. No. 797-1987]
Editor's Note: This resolution was adopted by the Legislature after disapproval by the County Executive.
Procedures and functions of the Board.
All appeals in writing from an employee or a department head on behalf of an employee or group of employees shall be processed within two weeks after being submitted. Appeals made on behalf of groups of employees are limited to a maximum of 50 employees per appeal.
The Board shall hold an informal hearing giving ample opportunity for the employee, department head and/or employee representative to be heard.
Decisions of the Board shall be by a majority vote of the members of the Board.
The decisions of the Appeals Board in matters of salary allocations are final and may include one or more of the following actions:
An automatic reallocation limited to two grades or two steps within a grade for all positions in the affected class or classes and further limited to $100,000 for all decisions for each fiscal year, except that the limit shall be $1,434,237 for fiscal year 1987. The decisions of said Board shall be final and binding on the County.
[Amended 9-8-1987 by Res. No. 797-1987]
Editor's Note: This resolution was adopted by the Legislature after disapproval by the County Executive.
A recommendation to the County Executive for a reallocation for a class or group of classes beyond two grades or where the fund of $100,000 is insufficient to cover the proposed increase.
No change in the present allocation of a class or group of classes.
There shall be a twelve-month waiting period between appeals presented to this Board by an individual or a group, unless substantial evidence is submitted in writing to support an immediate review. Such evidence must be over and above that which had been previously heard by the Board.
The Classification and Salary Appeals Board shall be the only party that may reallocate a grade or grades or a step or steps of all titles covered by the Civil Service Employees Association collective bargaining agreement, unless such reallocation is agreed to and recommended by the Civil Service Employees Association Chapter President for the union and the Director of Personnel and Labor Relations for the County Executive and approved by the County Legislature.
The powers, duties and functions hereinabove granted to the Classification and Salary Appeals Board shall not extend to determinations in connection with officers and employees excluded from bargaining units. In the case of such officers and employees, the powers and duties of the Classification and Salary Appeals Board be and they hereby are vested in the County Executive and the Presiding Officer of the County Legislature.