Wednesday, October 31, 2007

No Cronies Need Apply

On October 15, 2007, the Chicago Tribune ran an editorial titled No Cronies Need Apply. This article ran just before the resignation of Kim David Gilmore from his position as Human Resources Bureau Chief of Cook County Government. The author encourages cooperation from President Stroger with the Compliance Administrator, Julia Nowicki, as he undertakes a national search for a new Bureau Chief:


"Honest government aside, Stroger has an incentive to do the right thing. If he can prove to the satisfaction of a federal judge that the county no longer factors politics into most personnel decisions, Stroger can liberate the county from constraints that date to Shakman decrees aimed at clout hiring. Essentially, the county is in the same position as the City of Chicago: It must convince U.S. District Judge Wayne Andersen that it's in compliance with the fair personnel practices Shakman has dictated.

On March 1, 2009, the county becomes eligible to seek Andersen's dissolution of the constraints. The judge will factor into his decision a subsequent recommendation from the person he has appointed as his eyes and ears to monitor county personnel practices. That's Compliance Administrator Julia Nowicki, a former Cook County judge.

One way for Stroger to show Nowicki he wants her support if and when he approaches Judge Andersen: Stroger can involve her in picking Gilmore's replacement. A Stroger spokeswoman says the county plans a nationwide search. We hope it turns up an apolitical outsider with stellar credentials -- perhaps a decade's experience running H.R. at employers with more than 10,000 workers. (The sorely featherbedded county has some 24,000.)"

Please click the link to read the article in its entirety.

http://http//www.chicagotribune.com/news/opinion/chi-1015edit1oct15,0,1764835.story?track=rss

11 comments:

Anonymous said...

C'mon this could be a good resource - more posts please!

Anonymous said...

I am a Cook County Employee from the Cook County Clerk's Office. I would like some clarification of the definition for Shakman exempt positions. Staff maintain that any full time position that is not union is Shakman exempt. All positions of Grade 16 or over seem to be considered Shakman exempt in this office. That is a lot of people. If 500 is the number for all county employees, I think that the numberhas been far exceeded. In the Clerk's office there are at least 70 employees with a grade of 16 or over, about 20%. If that is an average percentage, the number is closer easily over 2,000.

Cook County Compliance Administrator said...

The scope of the CA’s oversight responsibilities is determined by the Supplementary Relief Order (see our website at www.countyshakman for the complete SRO). The Clerk of the Circuit Court is not one of the county offices within her purview. Nevertheless, questions about the exempt list are among the most frequent that the CA receives. The current exempt list is posted in the Cook County Human Resources Department located on the eighth floor of the county building. There are 489 exempt positions in the officers under the President and the Bureau of Health. Not all of those over Grade 16 are exempt nor are all non-union employees exempt. Please see the CA’s First Semi-Annual Report (also posted on our website) for more information.

Cook County Compliance Administrator said...

After a long wait we have finally linked this blog to our website. We hope the link will stimulate more posts. The CA welcomes your comments.

phatkat said...

What’s the purpose of job descriptions? People in my office have been rewarded with good jobs based on patronage and nepotism. Either they have worked for a political sponsor or they are a relative to someone that holds a political spot. How can I get a fair shake, when I have to take orders from someone working in a very sensitive position that lacks education, judgment, etc, etc, etc.? This is unfair!!!! The majority of exempt employees are able to retire from the Cook County based on work provided to a politician not work provided to the public. Will there ever be justice?

Anonymous said...

The employee morale is down in my office because we have non-productive employees that constantly brag and boast about clout! One employee was laid off due to budget cuts, and was brought back under and exempt title. Now he's boasting about how powerful Commissioner Beavers is, because he was able to return to work while others face hardtimes from this massive lay off. Where's the justice? Why is this still going on? Let me guess; EXEMPT! The President should just put all of his dead beats exempt people in one office; Let me guess again. It would probably be the HIGHWAY DEPARTMENT (SUN-TIMES CALLED IT A POLITICAL DUMPING ZONE)Please help the people that actually work, the people that enjoy public service, the people that qualify for their jobs. Not the people that do favors for John, Todd and Bill on County Time.

Anonymous said...

When will the Chief Judge take over the Detention Center? There needs to be some new blood in the Administration at the top over there. There are employees who are working in positions without the pay. what is being done about that?

Anonymous said...

When will the Compliance Admin. clean up the Detention Center? The inside 8th Ward folks have been running it long enough. Thats why its in the shape its in now. Why is there a secretary running the Finance Department at Juvenile. That place is a joke. How can a secretary have access to all of that financial information?

Anonymous said...

When will the Chief Judge take over the Detention Center? There needs to be some new blood in the Administration at the top over there. There are employees who are working in positions without the pay. What is being done about that?

Anonymous said...

The employees who are working out of classification have agreed to do so without the pay. Now the Transitional administrator has the same thing going on but he is starting to make the County pay for the acting positions. or at least he has submitted the budget for it.It really looks like the cook county juvenile Detention Center is on the move in the right direction.I applaud his work and his staff.

Anonymous said...

I think that is a greta idea for the CA to assist in finding the new County Boss for H/R. I really feel that if Judge Nowicki was involved that the selection would not only be more up front and above board but it would show a kind of change , that Stroger is willing to work with the powers put in place to make county Government a better work place.