By Scott Buttram, publisher
TRUSSVILLE –The city of Trussville is considering leaving the Jefferson County Personnel Board and forming it’s own city board, Mayor Buddy Choat said on Wednesday.
“The City Council of Trussville authorized our City Attorney to seek an opinion from the Attorney General’s office to explore the city’s option to form its own merit system,” according to a statement issued by City Clerk Lynn Porter. “The Attorney General’s office released its opinion stating that the city is not required to remain in the Personnel Board of Jefferson County, but is free, should it choose, to form its own merit system.”
No timeline has been set, and no firm decision has been made.
“Any rights our employees have with the JCPB which have vested will be protected should the city determine that creating its own merit system is in the best interest of the city and its employees,” according to the statement.
“We’re always looking to do what’s best for the city and our employees,” Choat said. “We will carefully consider our options and the council will determine the best decision for everyone involved.”
The Jefferson County has been under federal court order for its hiring practice for decades. Currently, Federal Judge Lynwood Smith has authority over the county and the federal decree.
Smith appointed Lorren Oliver as director of the JCPB and court-appointed receiver over the county’s human resources department. Oliver’s role has now been changed to monitor.
“Jefferson County is still under a consent decree, but the Personnel Board of Jefferson County was released from oversight in 2008,” Training Manager for PCJB Pete Blank said.
The Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office recently left the purview of the board.