Town of McCandless, PA
Allegheny County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[Ord. 1272, passed 7-15-2002]
A Town Personnel Board is hereby established, consisting of three members and up to two alternate members, all of whom shall be qualified electors of the Town.
[Res. 9-1975, passed 4-28-1975; Ord. 1272, passed 7-15-2002]
Initial appointment of the three members of the Personnel Board shall be one member for a one-year term, one member for a two-year term and one member for a three-year term. Subsequent appointments of members and alternate members shall be for a three-year term.
[Res. 9-1975, passed 4-28-1975]
The members of the Personnel Board shall serve without compensation, but they shall be reimbursed for the reasonable expenses incurred in the performance of their duties.
[Ord. 1410, passed 12-19-2011]
The Personnel Board shall have the following powers and duties:
(a) 
To solicit and evaluate all applicants for the police force;
(b) 
To make a listing of eligible police applicants with numerical rating scores;
(c) 
To conduct noncompetitive examination of police chief nominees, if directed by Council;
(d) 
To conduct a hearing, when requested in writing, by any non-probationary employee who has been discharged, suspended or demoted and who has exhausted the prescribed grievance procedures;
(e) 
To conduct a hearing, when requested in writing, by any non-probationary employee who believes that he or she has been aggrieved in the promotion process, as set forth in Rule III;
(f) 
To make investigations in the fulfillment of its proper duties, and to issue subpoenas;
(g) 
To hear appeals from any applicant or person who has been examined for a promotional vacancy; and
(h) 
To perform such other functions and duties as may be provided for in the Personnel Code.
[Ord. 960, passed 9-28-1987; Ord. 1137, passed 1-23-1995; Ord. 1196, passed 12-15-1997; Ord. 1272, passed 7-15-2002; Ord. 1410, passed 12-19-2011]
Rule I - General.
101 - Composition of Board: The Personnel Board shall consist of three qualified electors of the Town, appointed by Council, to serve three-year overlapping terms, without pay. The Board shall organize each year prior to January 10, by electing a Chairman and a Vice Chairman. Once a panel of members and/or alternate members commences consideration of a matter, a majority of that same panel shall be required to complete consideration of such matter.
102 - Meetings: Meetings may be called by the Chairman or by the other two members. Two members constitute a quorum. Two affirmative votes are required for approval of any motion. Conduct of meetings shall be governed by Robert's Rules of Order. Meetings shall be open to the public unless a public meeting would broach the normal confidentiality of employee data. Minutes shall be kept and minutes of open meetings shall be made available to the public upon request. Minutes shall be approved by the majority of the Board and signed by the Chairman.
103 - Powers and Duties: The Personnel Board shall have the powers and duties specified in Section 137.04.
104 - Rules: The Personnel Board has the power to prescribe, amend and enforce rules and regulations for the purpose of implementing the provisions of this Article and the Home Rule Charter. Before any such rules and regulations are implemented, the same shall first be approved by Town Council. No changes shall be made in these rules without approval of Town Council.
Rule II - Police Appointments.
201 - Advertisement: Whenever the Board is advised that Council desires a new list of eligible candidates from which to fill existing or anticipated vacancies, the Board shall advertise this fact and establish a period of time during which applications will be received.
202 - Qualifications: An applicant for employment as a police employee shall meet at least the following qualifications:
a.
Be at least 18 years of age;
b.
Have a bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university, or have at least four years (8,320 hours) law enforcement experience as determined by the Personnel Board after consultation with the Chief of Police;
c.
Be licensed by the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to operate a motor vehicle;
d.
Be a citizen of the United States of America;
e.
Be a person who has successfully completed a basic police training course in conformity with current law (formerly PA Act 120) and commits to the taking of a certification examination administered by the Municipal Police Officers' Education and Training Commission (MPOETC) within 60 days of notice by the Town to take and pass the examination, or is otherwise certified under applicable law and further has satisfied all other federal, state and local rules and regulations regarding his/her ability to act as a police officer.
f.
Be of good moral character;
g.
Be free of habitual addiction of intoxicated liquors or drugs;
h.
Indicate a willingness to establish residence within a defined geographical boundary (as determined by the Town or as determined in a collective agreement) within one year of appointment;
i.
Be eligible to carry a firearm and be free from conviction of a disqualifying crime in accordance with the Police Officers Education and Training Program of Title 37 of the Pennsylvania Code; and
j.
Such other qualifications which may be proposed by the Personnel Board and approved by Council.
203 - Applications: Each applicant shall complete fully the prescribed application form. The applicant is responsible for all information placed upon the form. False or incorrect information will void the application form and any subsequent action taken upon it.
When the form is returned, the following shall be provided by the applicant at that time:
a.
The fee as set by resolution of Town Council;
b.
Proof of any honorable discharge, and a full and complete explanation, if appropriate, of any claim for veteran's preference. All veteran's preference claims shall be made along with the return of the application form, and within the time required of the return of the application form. Any person claiming veteran's preference shall execute whatever release may be required in order to investigate fully the circumstance of the claim of veteran's preference.
204 - Examinations: All examinations shall be practical in character and shall relate to such matters and include such inquiries as will fairly test the merit and fitness of the persons examined to discharge the duties of the position sought. The examination shall consist of:
a.
A written examination, and
b.
An oral examination.
The written examination shall constitute 60% of the final composite score, and the oral examination shall constitute 40% of the final composite score.
The written examination shall have a minimum passing score of 85%, and the oral examination shall have a minimum passing score of 80%.
205 - Contenders: The Board shall administer the oral examination to the highest 12 applicants who have attained the passing scores of 85% or greater on the written examination, and any person possessing a veteran's preference right who has achieved a passing score on the written examination and who may place in the top 12 if provided with veteran's preference after the oral examination.
206 - Background Investigation: The Board may refuse to examine, or may refuse to certify, any applicant who is found to lack any of the minimum qualifications as prescribed and adopted for the position or the employment for which he has applied, or who is disabled and/or unfit to perform the duties of the position for which he seeks employment, or who is addicted to the habitual use of intoxicating liquors or narcotic drugs, or who has been guilty of any crime involving moral turpitude or of infamous or notoriously disgraceful conduct, or who has been dismissed from public service for delinquency or misconduct in office, or who is affiliated with any group whose politics and activities are subversive to the form of government set forth in the Constitution or laws of the United States and Pennsylvania.
The Chief of Police shall be furnished with a list of contenders, and shall conduct a background investigation of each one. The investigation will include, but is not limited to, questioning neighbors, schools and employers. The Chief may question the applicant.
The applicant may be required to execute releases or waivers permitting any investigation as determined by the Chief or the Board.
The Board may utilize the services of the Chief of Police or other persons to aid in any background investigation.
207 - Hearing: If any applicant or person feels himself or herself aggrieved by the action of the Board in refusing to examine or certify him or her, the Board shall, at the request of such person, within 10 days after the request notify such person to appear personally and by counsel before the Board. The Board shall then review its refusal to make an examination or certification and take such testimony as may be offered. The decision of the Board shall be final.
208 - List of Eligibles: All contenders who have successfully passed the written examination and the oral examination and have a score of at least 85% on the written examination and 80% on the oral examination, shall be included on a list of eligibles. {i1}The list shall be prepared in descending numerical order of composite scores. The written score shall be multiplied by 60% (.60) and the oral score shall be multiplied by 40% (.40); the addition of these two calculations shall form a composite score. To the composite score shall be added 10 points to anyone properly entitled to veteran's preference points. The names of those persons with the highest three scores may be considered by Council for selection as a police employee.
Town Council may decide to interview some members of the list of eligibles. Any contender requested to attend an interview shall appear at the time and place set by Council. Failure to attend any such interview shall be deemed to be a willful decision not to accept a position which may be offered by the Town.
209 - Conditional Offers of Employment: Examinations: Any person from the list of eligibles who has been given and accepted a conditional offer of employment shall be given physical, medical and psychological evaluations which shall be reasonably designed to test the individual's ability to perform the duties of a police officer. The Personnel Board shall determine which psychological, physical or medical tests are to be administered and who shall administer them in conformance with applicable law or regulations. These tests shall fairly determine whether the individual to be tested is able to perform the duties required to be performed by a police officer for the Town. The successful completion of any tests administered under this Section shall be a condition precedent to employment with the Town. In the event any test is approved to determine if unacceptable levels of alcohol are or have been consumed, or whether any controlled substances are or have been ingested, the applicant shall be notified prior to the test.
Each person from the list of eligibles who has been given and accepted a conditional offer of employment shall also be required to pass an agility test conducted at a location of the Town's choice. Each individual subject to such an agility test shall be required to sign a waiver releasing any and all rights and claims for damages while taking the agility test. Any individual to be tested under this section should also be notified, generally, concerning any further tests which may be administered during his/her probationary period, or whether physical standards must be met to conclude successfully the probation period.
210 - Confidentiality of Scores: The Board shall advise any applicant (upon written request) of the scores made by the applicant.
Rule III - Police Promotions.
301 - Announcements: Whenever the Board is advised of a vacancy in any rank above patrolman, the Board shall post on the police bulletin board notice of such vacancy and the interval of time during which applications from the Town's police officers will be accepted.
302 - Examinations: Written and oral examinations will be administered as required for police appointments. A review of each applicant's personnel record will be made by the Board. No background investigation will be made.
303 - Scoring: Any applicant who obtains 70% or more, in both the written and oral examination, shall be included on the eligibility list.
Both written and oral examinations shall be scored on the basis of a possible 100% with 70% of the minimum passing score on each examination. The composite score shall be 70% of the written score plus 30% of the oral score.
Example: 70% of 80 written = 56; 30% of 90 oral = 27; 56 + 27 = 83% composite score. Apparent ties shall be broken by favoring the contender with the higher written score.
Only the top three names may be considered for each selection by Council and any one of the top three candidates may be selected by Council.
304 - Medical Examination: Any applicant selected to fill the vacancy, must undergo the same medical examination as prescribed for police appointment.
305 - Chief of Police: The appointment or selection of a new Chief of Police, whether by promotion or otherwise, shall be at the sole discretion of Council and Council shall determine what procedure shall be followed in making the appointment or selection.
306 - Hearings for Officers Denied Promotion:
a.
Any non-probationary employee who has been examined for the purpose of filling a promotional vacancy and believes he or she is aggrieved by the action of the Personnel Board with regard to the conduct or results of his or her examination under Section 302, or in not being selected as one of the top three candidates to be considered for promotion by Council pursuant to Section 303 of this Rule may request, in writing, a hearing before the Board. The Board shall, at the request of such person, within 10 days after the request, notify such person to appear personally and by counsel, if desire, before the Board. The Board shall then review its refusal to promote such person and take such testimony as may be offered. The Board shall notify the aggrieved individual of the results of the hearing, in writing, within 10 days of its conclusion.
b.
Within 10 days of receiving the written results of his or her hearing under Section 306(a), if an aggrieved individual is not satisfied with the result reached by the Personnel Board pursuant to Section a. above, he may, in writing, make a request to the Board that a hearing before an impartial hearing officer be conducted in accordance with the Pennsylvania Local Agency Law, Subchapter B, 2 Pa. C.S. §§ 551, et seq. The impartial hearing officer shall be selected by the Town and shall have no affiliation or interest with the Town or the aggrieved individual. The cost of the impartial hearing officer shall be divided evenly between the Town and the aggrieved individual. The decision of the partial hearing officer shall be final.
Rule IV - Hearings.
401 - Hearing Request: Any non-probationary employee, who has been discharged, suspended or demoted, may request, in writing, a hearing before the {i1}Personnel Board within 10 days of the formal issuance of the discharge, suspension or demotion to which he seeks challenge. If such a request is made, the Personnel Board shall grant him or her a hearing which shall be held within a period of 10 days from the filing of the request by the employee unless continued by the Personnel Board for cause at the request of the Town. A hearing shall be open to the public, or closed to the public, as desired by the individual requesting the hearing.
402 - Pre-Hearing Procedure: A member of the Personnel Board shall meet or otherwise confirm with the employee and the Town Manager within seven days of the receipt of the request for a hearing:
a.
The date, time and location of the hearing;
b.
Whether the hearing will be public or closed; and
c.
Whether the employee requesting a hearing will employ counsel.
403 - Counsel: The Town and the person sought to be suspended, removed or demoted shall at all times have the right to employ counsel before the Personnel Board and upon appeal to the Allegheny County Court of Common Pleas. The Personnel Board shall be represented by legal counsel who shall not be the Town Attorney or an attorney within the office of the Town Attorney.
404 - Evidence: Evidence presented at the hearing may be oral or documentary. The parties shall not be bound by technical rules of evidence, and all relevant evidence of reasonably probative value may be received. Reasonable examination and cross examination shall be permitted. The Chairman of the Personnel Board shall rule on the admissibility of evidence. In the event another Personnel Board member should disagree with the ruling of the Chairman, the Personnel Board may recess to resolve the difference of opinion. The Chairman shall reaffirm or modify his ruling as soon as the hearing has resumed in accordance with the decision of the majority of the Personnel Board.
405 - Testimony: The employee, the Town and the Personnel Board have the right to call and question witnesses and to question witnesses called by others. All testimony shall be taken under oath to be administered by the Chairman. The Chairman is empowered to subpoena witnesses and documents and must do so, if requested in writing, no later than two business days prior to the hearing. All Officers in public service and all Town Employees shall attend and testify when required to do so by the Personnel Board. If any person shall refuse or neglect to obey any subpoena issued by the Personnel Board, it may apply by petition to the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County for its subpoena requiring the attendance of such person before the Personnel Board or the court, there to testify and to produce any records and papers necessary, and in default thereof shall be held in contempt of court. A stenographic record of all testimony taken at such hearings shall be filed with and preserved by the Personnel Board, which record shall be sealed and not be available for public inspection in the event the charges are dismissed or a closed hearing was held at the request of an aggrieved individual.
406 - Procedure at Hearing: The Chairman shall open the hearing by reading the employee's request for hearing. If the hearing is a closed hearing, the Chairman shall require each person present in the hearing room to identify himself and state his position in the hearing. The Chairman shall then read the communication to the employee imposing discharge, suspension or demotion. The Chairman shall then have the Town or the supervisory official who ordered the discharge, suspension or demotion present the facts of the charge or case against the employee. The employee who has been discharged, suspended or demoted shall then be given the opportunity to present his case against the discharge, suspension or demotion. If either the Town (or its supervisory official) or the employee wishes to present a summation of the evidence, either individually or through counsel, such summation shall be briefly and concisely stated, with the employee's summation being last.
407 - Disposition: The Personnel Board shall render a written decision deciding whether the discharge, suspension or demotion is to be sustained, reversed or varied within 30 days of the conclusion of the hearing. An employee who has been discharged, suspended or demoted by the final action of the Personnel Board shall have the right to appeal to the Court of Common Pleas of Allegheny County within 30 days from the date of the decision by the Personnel Board. For that purpose, the employee shall be entitled to secure a full and complete transcript of the record of the hearing by the Personnel Board at the cost of the employee. The decision of the court affirming or reversing the decision of the Personnel Board shall be final and the employee shall be suspended, discharged, demoted or reinstated in accordance with the order of the court.
408 - Distribution of Costs: The employee shall be responsible for any hearing costs he incurs, including, but not limited to, the employee's counsel, court reporter, witnesses and other fees.