Administrative Services

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Nebraska State Personnel Board Decisions

The following State Personnel Board Decisions regarding employee grievances have been summarized for informational use only.

Fiscal Year 2012-2013

Jeff Hawkinson v. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Appeal (NAPE) The Appellant filed a grievance after the Department of Health and Human Services disciplined him in the form of a five-day suspension and six-months of disciplinary probation.  Hawkinson’s discipline was based upon two notices of allegations, one regarding failing to follow a supervisor’s directive, and the other for failing to maintain appropriate working relationships with coworkers.  The State Personnel Board designated Terri Weeks as Hearing Officer, and the hearing was held in accordance with 2009-2011 State of Nebraska and NAPE/AFSCME Labor Contract.

The Hearing Officer found that the Appellant committed the allegations and recommended that the State Personnel Board dismiss the grievance.

The State Personnel Board affirmed the recommendation.

Merritt Keiser v. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Appeal (Rules) The Appellant filed a grievance after the Department of Health and Human Services disciplined her in the form of termination.  The Respondent filed a Motion to Dismiss.  The State Personnel Board designated William J. Wood as Hearing Officer, and a Motion to Dismiss Hearing was held in accordance with the Nebraska Classified System Personnel Rules. 

The Hearing Officer found that the grievance was not filed properly as it did not cite or refer to the specific section or sections of the “Rules” that the Appellant claimed to be violated by the Respondent.  The Hearing Officer recommended that the State Personnel Board dismiss the grievance.

The State Personnel Board affirmed the recommendation.

Velda Graff v. Nebraska Department of Roads Appeal (NAPE) The Appellant filed a grievance after the Department of Health and Human Services disciplined her in the form of termination.  Graff’s discipline was based upon two notices of allegations, one regarding failing to follow a vehicle idling policy and failure to maintain appropriate work place relations, and the other for failing to maintain appropriate working relationships with supervisors.  The State Personnel Board designated Hugh Perry as Hearing Officer, and the hearing was held in accordance with 2011-2013 State of Nebraska and NAPE/AFSCME Labor Contract.

The Hearing Officer found that the Appellant failed to maintain appropriate working relations with her supervisors on the dates in violation, and that progressive discipline was followed by the Respondent.  The Hearing Officer recommended that the State Personnel Board dismiss the grievance.

The State Personnel Board affirmed the recommendation.

Jason Morgan v. Nebraska Department of Correctional Services (NAPE) The Appellant filed a grievance when he was disciplined in the form of termination.  The discipline was based upon allegations of failing to comply with regulations and policies and for failing to cooperate in a departmental review and investigation into an incident that involved the Appellant.  The State Personnel Board designated Samuel Van Pelt as Hearing Officer, and the hearing was held in accordance with 2011-2013 State of Nebraska and NAPE/AFSCME Labor Contract.

The Hearing Officer found that the Respondent did not have just cause for terminating the Appellant as the Department was foreclosed from pursuing this matter due to its failure to proceed with discipline within 30 days of placing Morgan on suspension.  The Hearing Officer recommended that the State Personnel Board uphold the grievance and that the Respondent be ordered to award back pay and benefits to the date of his suspension.

The State Personnel Board affirmed the recommendation.

Raynette Essman v. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Appeal (RULES) The Appellant filed a grievance after the Department of Health and Human Services disciplined her in the form of termination.  The discipline was based upon an allegation of failing to timely report abuse/neglect at the Beatrice State Developmental Center.  The State Personnel Board designated William Wood as Hearing Officer, and the hearing was held in accordance with the Nebraska Classified System Personnel Rules.

The Hearing Officer found that the action taken by the Respondent was taken in good faith and for cause and that the termination should be upheld.  The Hearing Officer recommended that the State Personnel Board dismiss the grievance.

The State Personnel Board affirmed the recommendation.

The Appellant appealed the Decision to the District Court, and the court affirmed the State Personnel Board’s Decision.  The Appellant appealed the District Court decision to the Court of Appeals and the Court of Appeals affirmed the District Court ruling.

Dannie Fielder v. Nebraska Department of Correctional Services Appeal (NAPE) The Appellant filed a grievance after the Respondent disciplined him in the form of a five day suspension.  The discipline was based upon an allegation of failure or refusal to comply with a lawful order when the Appellant did not provide the appropriate documentation to AON Hewitt.  The State Personnel Board designated Terri Weeks as Hearing Officer, and the hearing was held in accordance with 2011-2013 State of Nebraska and NAPE/AFSCME Labor Contract.

The Hearing Officer found that the discipline was not progressive in nature and the Hearing Officer recommended that the State Personnel Board reverse the discipline and remand the matter to the Respondent to impose a form of discipline that is progressive in nature based on the violation that occurred.

The State Personnel Board affirmed the recommendation.

Ana Mohrman v. Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services Appeal (NAPE) The Appellant filed a grievance after she was allegedly denied sick leave and also for being scheduled to work on her day off after she called in sick.  The State Personnel Board designated Terri Weeks as Hearing Officer, and the hearing was held in accordance with 2011-2013 State of Nebraska and NAPE/AFSCME Labor Contract.

The Hearing Officer found that the Appellant was a probationary employee at the time of the events.  Since probationary employees do not have grievance rights under the labor contract, the Hearing Officer recommended that the State Personnel Board dismiss the grievance.

The State Personnel Board affirmed the recommendation.

Mike Carroll v. Nebraska Department of Administrative Services (RULES) The Appellant filed a grievance when he was disciplined in the form of termination.  The discipline was based upon allegations of failing to comply with regulations and policies and for inefficiency, incompetence or negligence in the performance of duties.  The State Personnel Board designated Samuel Van Pelt as Hearing Officer, and the hearing was held in accordance with the Classified System Personnel Rules and Regulations.

The Hearing Officer found that the Respondent did not have just cause for terminating the Appellant as the Respondent did not prove by a preponderance of the evidence that the Appellant was inefficient, negligent, incompetent or that he violated any of the Nebraska Classified System Personnel Rules and Regulations.  The Hearing Officer recommended that the State Personnel Board uphold the grievance and that the Appellant be reinstated to his former position of Personnel Officer.  The Hearing Officer recommended that the Respondent be ordered to award back pay and benefits to the date of termination and that the case be remanded to the Department of Administrative Services for the imposition of proper progressive discipline. 

The State Personnel Board affirmed the recommendation.