County of Paintearth adopts employee discipline policy

The new policy outlines a standard procedure for administration to follow

By Kevin J. Sabo

For the Advance

County of Paintearth council members have approved a new policy for dealing with employee discipline.

The new policy, which was passed during the June 18th meeting, outlines a standard procedure for County administration to follow in the event of employee performance problems.

“This is a new policy, but it has been in draft for quite awhile,” said County Assistant CAO Brenda Hepp.

“The procedures have been followed, but it’s never been made official.”

The new policy, which has been reviewed by administration management and the union, is a progressive tool for the County management to use in dealing with employee issues.

The policy sets out three levels of discipline that can be used. The first step is a documented oral warning by the employee’s supervisor. The second step is a written warning, and third step in the process is dismissal for just cause.

When a discipline problem is identified, the employee’s supervisor will attempt to work with the employee to resolve the issue.

In the event that the disciplinary policy needs to be used, it identifies four questions that need to be answered in regard to an infraction.

The questions identify the nature of the misconduct, disciplinary history of the employee, employee length of service, and finally the impact or the potential impact of the misconduct on the County.

Depending on the severity of the infraction, steps of the policy can be skipped.

In the case of a termination, any managers wanting to release an employee must bring the request to CAO Michael Simpson, who has the only authority to terminate employees.

“This policy brings some level of consistency prior to moving to dismissal,” said Simpson.

“The hope is to keep and grow our employees.”

Other highlights of the June 18th meeting of council;

• Council has approved a $500 funding request to each the Castor Pee Wee U13 AA Baseball team and the Castor U12 Girls D team for the provincial championships.

• Administration has set the Christmas and year-end hours. The County of will be closed Monday to Friday for Christmas week, resuming normal hours the next Monday. The office will close to the public at noon on Dec. 31st to allow all the departments to complete preparations for the New Year.

• Council has approved a strategic planning process. This process would require any future to councils to conduct a strategic planning session in the year after their first year of office.

• Council has offered their unanimous consent to Paintearth Regional Waste Management to make their annual donation of $100,000 to Paintearth Economic Partnership Society.

• Council has directed CAO Simpson to write a letter of support to Castor and Coronation FCSS, who are working to get more Mental Health services into the region.

• As part of their Strategic Plan, council has directed County administration to complete a service capacity and staffing level review. The first department to be reviewed will be corporate services.

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