Concerning the Possible Removal of SPA Employees at the University
from the State Personnel Act

RESOLUTION OF THE EMPLOYEE FORUM

THE UNIVERSITY OF NORTH CAROLINA AT CHAPEL HILL

March 7, 2007

WHEREAS, the Mission of the Employee Forum is to constructively address the concerns of the Employees of The University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, including the representation of staff concerns to University officials, the University of North Carolina General Administration, State Legislators and the citizenry of North Carolina; and

WHEREAS, those concerns may include any actions or decisions that significantly affect employees’ work environments and situations; and

WHEREAS, this Forum recognizes that modernizing and updating the current personnel system may be necessary, especially in view of the need to become more efficient with the use of state financial resources; and

WHEREAS, the report of the President’s Advisory Committee on Efficiency and Effectiveness (PACE) includes a section on “Barriers to HR Efficiency & Effectiveness,” pages 158 -183, that seeks to make the case for removing University employees from the protections of the State Personnel Act and the oversight of the Office of State Personnel by

“Seeking modification of N.C.G.S. Chap 116 to provide authority for the Board and President of the University of North Carolina to manage a comprehensive, self-contained human resource system for public University employees, in alignment with its mission.” (source: Barriers to HR Efficiency& Effectiveness, page 183); and

WHEREAS, any effort to remove State Employees from the governance of the Office of State Personnel will have very serious consequences for all employees; and

WHEREAS, the President’s PACE report has been completed “within a relatively brief period of time;” and

WHEREAS, the PACE report is notable for its top-down approach to the whole question of the need for, or suitability of, the Office of the President managing a “comprehensive, self-contained human resources system for public university employees”; and

 

WHEREAS, the PACE Human Resources working group consisted of

4 Associate Vice Chancellors for Human Resources

2 Vice Chancellors of Finance and Business

1 Senior Director of Human Resources and

1 Bank President and BOG member; and

WHEREAS, discussions to further the stated aims of “modification of N.C.G.S. Chap. 116” to remove employees from the governance of the Office of State Personnel have not been inclusive or wide-ranging and appear not to have considered other points of view on how problems with the state personnel system might be addressed without removing employees from that system; and

WHEREAS, such a momentous change in the terms of employment for staff employees must have the support and confidence of all University employees and be thoughtfully considered, allowing sufficient time for University-wide input to determine whether employees would support such a move and under what circumstances; and

WHEREAS, soliciting input about the desirable features of any proposed new personnel system is premature and de facto preemptively advances the case for Personnel Flexibility before University employees have been educated on the issues at stake and then asked whether they would support such a move as well as before alternative arrangements can be considered that might improve the delivery of Human Resources services without abrogating the State Personnel Act;

THEREFORE BE IT RESOLVED that at this time and at this stage, the Employee Forum of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill cannot support any proposed or actual effort to remove University employees from the governance of the Legislature through the Office of State Personnel.

Signed on behalf of the Delegates of the Employee Forum,

Ernie Patterson, Chair

 

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