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April 23, 2004

Beller gets $40,000 contract

CONSULTANT WILL WORK 120 DAYS TO IMPROVE HUMAN RESOURCES

By MARK WAITE
PVT



MARK WAITE / PVT
Ann Silver, a consultant with Larry Beller and Associates.
Nye County Commissioners Tuesday voted to hire Larry Beller and Associates, at $110 per hour, for up to 120 days or until a new county human resources director is hired.

Human resource consultants will also be paid $330 per trip for their travel time and reimbursed for travel expenses.

Larry Beller and Associates will manage daily operations of the Nye County Human Resources and Risk Management Department; help the county implement the $68,792 Mercer Study of personnel positions; help search for a new human resources director as well as a comptroller and assistant county manager; and develop recommendations for long-term staffing of the human resources department.

Nye County Human Resources and Risk Management Director Jim Allan turned in his resignation effective April 21 after commissioners April 6 voted to buy out five years of retirement service credit for employees 65 years old or older. Those who wanted to take advantage of the offer had to submit their notice of intent by April 15 and retire by April 30.

The buy-out was touted as a way to save costs by replacing the older, higher-paid employees who have more longevity. Nye County Personnel Analyst Debbie Jeffrey took advantage of a similar offer last November, when commissioners voted to buy out up to five years of retirement service credit for employees who worked for the county over 25 years.

Commissioner Candice Trummell said Beller plans to have Allan's position advertised and posted by May 10. She said it would take between 90 and 120 days to get that position filled. Trummell said she opposed outsourcing county human resources positions permanently, but added there's a temporary emergency. There are still three employees in the human resources and risk management department, she said.

Ann Silver will be the county's contact person with Larry Beller and Associates.

Commissioner Patricia Cox voiced concerns over a consultant working 20 hours per week being able to supervise the day-to-day operations of the department; the amount of time Maher estimated Beller's consultants would work. Maher estimated their consulting work would cost the county $9,600 per month, plus travel costs.

Maher told commissioners, "I don't want us to go backward on our personnel work. We've got a lot of irons in the fire we want to clear up and go forward and get assistance."

Nye County Commission Chairman Henry Neth said after the county instituted a human resources department the county's liability payments over issues like workplace safety management and Equal Employment Opportunity Commission complaints went down 75 to 80 percent.

"I don't want to be without that function, it worries me," Neth said.



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