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By James M. Coram and James M. Coram,Staff writer | February 10, 1991
County Executive Charles I. Ecker's request for flexibility to impose a wage freeze on county workers won mixed support last week from the county personnel board.Eliminating pay raises, longevity bonuses and some salary incentives could trim $2 million in costs, Ecker said.He is sending the council three bills, all recommended Wednesday by the personnel board, that would allow him to do just that.For several weeks, Ecker has said that while he hopes a pay freeze will be unnecessary, it is becoming increasingly likely and would be preferable to laying off or furloughing employees.
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NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF | December 19, 1999
Union leaders will try to challenge an appellate court ruling this month that took away back pay an Anne Arundel County Circuit judge had awarded government employees who claimed their workweek was increased but their paychecks were not."I think the court just simply was wrong," said Francis J. Collins, lawyer for the blue-collar and clerical Anne Arundel government employees represented by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.An estimated $600,000 is at stake.
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NEWS
By Larry Carson and Larry Carson,Staff Writer | August 11, 1993
Baltimore County's independent-minded personnel board is involved in a new dispute with the Hayden administration over the cases of two county workers it feels were treated unfairly.The dispute erupted as David D. Queen ended his three-year term as board chairman. Mr. Queen, who was appointed by County Executive Roger B. Hayden, is an outspoken attorney active in Republican politics. He left the board Aug. 3. No new chairman has been announced.Mr. Queen sharply criticized the county executive in May, when he spoke for the five-member board in declaring illegal the "secretive" way Mr. Hayden handled the February layoffs of 290 county workers.
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF | January 5, 1999
An Anne Arundel County judge has handed the county what amounts to a bill for $600,000 in back pay for 67 employees whose workweek was increased but whose paychecks were not.Circuit Judge Eugene M. Lerner ruled last week that the county could not retroactively apply a law it did not change until three months after 1996 union contracts took effect. The retroactive application of the law denied workers more pay when their workweek was increased to 40 hours from 35. Lerner said that was unconstitutional.
NEWS
By James M. Coram and James M. Coram,Staff writer | March 6, 1991
The county personnel board said Monday that it would not renege on its endorsement of three bills that would allow the administration to eliminate employee raises in the coming fiscal year.Board member Sandra Jaffe asked for the reversal Monday night after the board agreed to an administration bill that would permit the county to furloughemployees.Jaffe said she feels "extremely strongly" that if the administration lays off 11 percent of its work force and reduces the hours of those who remain, there must be "a reward," namely merit raises must beprovided surviving employees "for a job well done."
NEWS
By TANOAH v. STERLING and TANOAH v. STERLING,SUN STAFF | October 13, 1995
Several county police officers who thought they would get raises and promotions this year won't because the county personnel board has ruled that the results of the promotion test should be thrown out and a new test given.The board decided that the results of the sergeants test were "tainted" because a lieutenant charged a fee for a preparatory class.The strongly worded decision assailed upper management in the department for allowing Lt. Ronald Bateman, a night shift supervisor in the Eastern District, to give the course.
NEWS
By James M. Coram and James M. Coram,Staff writer | January 30, 1991
Despite an expected $25 million drop in county revenues next year, the county personnel board asked the Ecker administration Monday to try to give employees some sort of merit pay increase for satisfactory performance.For more than a decade, the county has given a 5 percent merit raise annually to employees whose work is deemed satisfactory. The county also paid premiums to workers who have special skills or work odd hours, as well as cost-of-living adjustments and longevity bonuses.County Executive Charles I. Ecker, faced with an expected budget shortfall of at least $25 million for the fiscal year beginning July 1, had asked the personnel board to consider three pieces of legislation that would allow the county to omit the raises this year.
NEWS
By Craig Timberg and Craig Timberg,SUN STAFF | April 2, 1997
Howard County Executive Charles I. Ecker has angered county employees by rejecting their top choice for representation on the Personnel Board, a powerful panel already dominated by Ecker appointees.Robert Coggins, an investigator with the county's Office of Human Rights, was the clear winner in a tally of county employees and had the support of every county union.But Ecker -- exercising a power rarely if ever used by Howard County executives -- instead selected the runner-up in the election, Chris McNamara, an employee of the county's public-safety communications office for nearly 19 years.
NEWS
By TaNoah Morgan and TaNoah Morgan,SUN STAFF | June 6, 1996
County police promotions, delayed for months by a legal challenge, will resume later this month, Chief Robert A. Beck announced yesterday.His announcement comes days after a strongly worded opinion from Circuit Judge Pamela L. North reinstated the promotions list.In an internal Police Department memo released yesterday, Beck said that he will hold a ceremony at 9 a.m. June 21 at the Columbian Center in Severna Park to promote six officers who have been in acting sergeant positions since January.
NEWS
April 3, 1992
County police officers and sheriff's deputies are going to court to seek an hourly pay raise equal to one they say county firefighters received earlier this year.Yesterday in county Circuit Court, the officers and deputies filed an appeal of a March 23 county Personnel Board decision denying their grievance seeking a pay raise.The officers and deputies argue that firefighters received a raise, since more than 80 percent of the firefighters had their hours reduced while their annual salaries remained unchanged.
NEWS
By Craig Timberg and Craig Timberg,SUN STAFF | June 10, 1997
More than 130 Howard County employees packed a hearing last night in hopes of applying the brakes to sweeping personnel changes they called divisive, destructive, discriminatory and deeply unfair."
NEWS
May 18, 1997
Lawn equipment is dangerous; treat it that wayWhile driving through my neighborhood on a beautiful Sunday morning in late April, I witnessed something frightening.A man was cutting his lawn using a power mower, with a young child riding on the back of the mower and another young child frolicking in the grass, running in circles around the mower. Have you ever been to a hospital emergency room on a nice spring day? You would probably find several children and adults who have been injured by power garden equipment; eye injuries from flying debris, missing fingers and toes, all manner of cuts, bruises and burns, and occasional fatalities.
NEWS
By Craig Timberg and Craig Timberg,SUN STAFF | April 2, 1997
Howard County Executive Charles I. Ecker has angered county employees by rejecting their top choice for representation on the Personnel Board, a powerful panel already dominated by Ecker appointees.Robert Coggins, an investigator with the county's Office of Human Rights, was the clear winner in a tally of county employees and had the support of every county union.But Ecker -- exercising a power rarely if ever used by Howard County executives -- instead selected the runner-up in the election, Chris McNamara, an employee of the county's public-safety communications office for nearly 19 years.
NEWS
By TaNoah Morgan and TaNoah Morgan,SUN STAFF | June 6, 1996
County police promotions, delayed for months by a legal challenge, will resume later this month, Chief Robert A. Beck announced yesterday.His announcement comes days after a strongly worded opinion from Circuit Judge Pamela L. North reinstated the promotions list.In an internal Police Department memo released yesterday, Beck said that he will hold a ceremony at 9 a.m. June 21 at the Columbian Center in Severna Park to promote six officers who have been in acting sergeant positions since January.
NEWS
By TaNoah V. Sterling and TaNoah V. Sterling,SUN STAFF | May 9, 1996
Anne Arundel County's personnel board misinterpreted the county charter when it threw out the results of a police promotion test in the fall, an assistant county attorney argued yesterday.Gail Watson contended in Anne Arundel Circuit Court that the section of the charter the board relied on was designed to eliminate attempts at bribery, not paying for a course.The hearing was the latest step in an effort by two county police officers and a sergeant to overturn the results of a test administered in the spring of 1995.
NEWS
By Marcia Myers and Marcia Myers,SUN STAFF | February 16, 1996
A group of former Baltimore County employees has filed suit in federal court, each seeking $1 million in damages from the county for terminating them three years ago to save money.In the lawsuit filed yesterday in U.S. District Court in Baltimore, the 39 former employees said they were let go without "just cause or recourse," and that administrators used incorrect budget information in making the decision.The employees were among those affected when then-County Executive Roger B. Hayden eliminated 566 county jobs and laid off 290 workers in Feb. 1993, in budget cuts that he said were forced by the recession.
NEWS
August 18, 1993
In denying pay to two county employees who had worked above their regular job classifications, the administration of Baltimore County Executive Roger Hayden has fallen back on the kind of legalistic excuses it used during the layoffs of county workers last February.Memories of Feb. 11, known as "Black Thursday," are still fresh in Towson. That's when hundreds of municipal employees were fired, some of them long-time workers ordered to clean out their desks that day. Even the county's five-member Personnel and Salary Advisory Board, comprised mostly of Hayden appointees, later blasted the executive for handling the layoffs in an "unduly secretive, arbitrary" manner that caused "confusion and poor morale."
NEWS
By Andrea F. Siegel and Andrea F. Siegel,SUN STAFF | December 19, 1999
Union leaders will try to challenge an appellate court ruling this month that took away back pay an Anne Arundel County Circuit judge had awarded government employees who claimed their workweek was increased but their paychecks were not."I think the court just simply was wrong," said Francis J. Collins, lawyer for the blue-collar and clerical Anne Arundel government employees represented by the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees.An estimated $600,000 is at stake.
NEWS
By DAN MORSE and DAN MORSE,SUN STAFF | November 5, 1995
Run government like a private business. Make bureaucrats more accountable. Get the most for your tax dollars.You've heard those recent calls from politicians. Listen to Howard County Executive Charles I. Ecker in an interview last month: "There was a time when if you had a government job, you always had one. That's gone right now."He envisions a smaller but more effective county work force. But the history in Howard, as well as other suburban Baltimore-area counties, suggests that one valuable tool -- firings -- is not a viable option.
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