Clallam commissioner mulls charter change to put elected officials under personnel policy

PORT ANGELES — Clallam County Commissioner Bill Peach is looking to change the county’s home rule charter to make elected officials fall under the county’s personnel policy.

“If you read this thing carefully, what you find is elected officials are exempt,” he said during the Board of County Commissioners work session Monday morning. “I believe that I should not be exempt; I should have the same requirements as any other county employee.”

The charter says the personnel system is designed to assure that “recruitment, selection, promotion, retention and separation of county employees shall be based on merit and fitness and shall provide for a county career service.”

Elected county officers, such as county commissioners, are exempt under the county’s charter.

Peach, whose seat on the board is up for election during the November general election, said the reason elected officials are exempt from the policy is due to the hiring and firing mechanisms in the policy, which don’t apply to elected officials.

“What we end up with is a situation that is just amazing to me, and I think it’s just an oversight,” he said. “That situation is that I, as an elected official, am not bound by the county’s personnel polices.”

Peach said he cannot think of a reason why he would want to be exempt from the personnel policy.

Changing the county charter to hold elected officials to the same policies as county employees would require a vote of the people during a November general election, he said.

County Administrator Jim Jones said the “unfortunate wording” would require a simple change to only exempt elected officials from the hiring and firing provisions of the county’s policy.

He said the deadline to get a measure on the November ballot would be in early August.

Peach said the county has done a good job in being transparent and that he wanted to be transparent to people who are considering running for office.

“They should know that we’re thinking about making this change,” he said.

Commissioner Mark Ozias suggested the commissioners discuss the measure during a future work session and invite other elected officials to the conversation.

Commissioner Randy Johnson did not attend the work session Monday.

________

Reporter Jesse Major can be reached at 360-452-2345, ext. 56250, or at [email protected] dailynews.com.

More in News

Sequim woman dies in motorcycle crash on Highway 101 near Port Angeles

A 19-year-old woman who died late Thursday afternoon was… Continue reading

Dedications made to Cynthia Little and her impact on Sunland community

Friends and neighbors, along with members and staff at Sunland… Continue reading

EYE ON JEFFERSON: Commissioners expected to approve resurfacing Center Road

Jefferson County commissioners are expected to create a county project to resurface… Continue reading

EYE ON CLALLAM: County commissioners to discuss plastic bags

Clallam County commissioners will discuss a proposal to prohibit thin-film, non-compostable plastic… Continue reading

Port Angeles woman injured in wreck near Discovery Bay

A 74-year-old Port Angeles woman was injured Saturday when… Continue reading

Winner expected today in Race to Alaska

The 750-mile Race To Alaska is expected to crown… Continue reading

Sequim hires hearing examiner for dispute with port over John Wayne Marina

City officials have hired a hearing examiner to adjudicate a… Continue reading

Most Read