There is no impact to the County General Fund in the current fiscal year as a result of the Recommended Action.
In Fiscal Year (FY) 2018, the cost for the remainder of the fiscal year for the Office Specialist II (OS II) position to be deleted is $13,661, with $1,913 in state and federal revenue and a net County cost of $11,748. The cost of the Estate Administrator Assistant (EAA) position to be added is $20,117, with $2,816 in state and federal revenue and a net County cost of $17,301. The increased cost of $5,553 will be absorbed within the Agency’s existing budget.
In FY 2019, the cost of the OS II position to be deleted is $86,236, with $13,005 in state and federal revenue and a net County cost of $73,231. The cost of the EAA position to be added is $127,706, with $19,275 in state and federal revenue and a net County cost of $108,431. The increased cost of $35,200 will be included in the County Executive’s FY 2019 Recommended Budget.
REASONS FOR RECOMMENDATION
The Board of Supervisors delegates administrative add and delete actions under certain circumstances to the County Executive, which includes the added position remains in the same bargaining unit as the deleted position. The Office Specialist II position, to be deleted, is in SEIU Local 521, Clerical Unit and the Estate Administrator Assistant position, to be added, is in SEIU Local 521, Administrative Professional and Technical (APT) Unit. Because they are not in the same bargaining units, this action requires a formal add and delete process to be approved by the Board of Supervisors.
The OS II position has been vacant since April 10, 2017, as a result of an employee’s promotion. The duties assigned to this position were primarily clerical and included a variety of support tasks. There are nine Office Specialist IIIs and one additional OS II in the Public Administrator/Conservator/Guardian (PAGC) Office, and the duties of this position were divided among the remaining clerical staff without a negative effect. However, there are only two EAA positions, which cannot adequately support the essential functions of the department.
The EAA classification assists the Estate Administrators as they investigate cases, marshal assets, inventory and appraise property, obtain vendors for house maintenance and sale preparations, and perform many other tasks involved with managing client assets. The EAA’s technical experience and knowledge of estate matters is necessary in closing cases and helping with the inventory process.
Recently, a Systems Improvement Plan (SIP) was created, which includes goals to reduce the backlog of Public Administration case closures and decrease the number of continuances necessary for court accountings. Two Extra-Help staff members are being used to address these issues, and it is clear that more help in the area of estate administration is needed. By adding an EAA position, PAGC will move forward with its effort to address these long standing issues with a more permanent solution.
The deletion of the OS II and the addition of an EAA will aid the Social Services Agency (SSA) in addressing one of the persistent business needs of the PAGC. It will also help to ensure increased accuracy and quality of service to the community served by the PAGC.
The recommended action will have no/neutral impact on children.
The recommended action will have a positive impact on seniors, allowing the PAGC to more effectively serve the needs of clients, 41% of whom are elders with dementia and other cognitive impairments.
The recommended action will have no/neutral sustainability implications.
The OS II position has been vacant since April 10, 2017, the result of an employee promotion, and the vacancy has not caused undue hardship upon the business operations. The OS II had maintained the file room, which is now the responsibility of another OS II in the PAGC. With the addition of an Office Management Coordinator (OMC) in PAGC, the clerical staff is now cross-trained and responsible for the cumulative clerical duties of the PAGC. They have managed the vacant OSII position’s tasks effectively since April 2017.
In past budgetary action, the number of EAAs was reduced from seven to two, and since these reductions, PAGC has struggled to meet Court deadlines for accountings and the timely closure of cases. Adding an EAA is one piece of a plan to improve performance in these areas.
SEIU Local 521 concurs with the recommended action.
The Employee Services Agency supports the recommended action.
CONSEQUENCES OF NEGATIVE ACTION
If the deletion of an OS II and the addition of an EAA is not adopted, PAGC will not be able to provide the needed support for the essential functions of the department.
STEPS FOLLOWING APPROVAL
The Clerk of the Board of Supervisors will return an executed copy of the legislative file salary ordinance amendment to Lisa Kho, Social Services Agency, Financial Management Services.