Personnel Committee
Meeting Highlights
June 12, 2013

CLOSED MEETING – VA CODE § 2.2 – 3711 A (4), A (7), and A (15)
The Personnel Committee of the Rappahannock Area Community Services Board unanimously approved a motion to convene in a closed meeting pursuant to Virginia Code § 2.2 – 3711 A (4) for the protection and privacy of individuals in personal matters not related to public business; Virginia Code § 2.2 – 3711 A (7) to receive a briefing by staff pertaining to litigation, where such briefing would affect the litigation posture of RACSB if held in open session; and Virginia Code § 2.2 – 3711 A (15) to discuss and review medical and mental records excluded from 2.2 – 3711 pursuant to subdivision 1 of 2.2 – 3705.5.

Upon reconvening, all Committee members certified that, to the best of their knowledge, the Committee discussed only matters lawfully exempted from statutory open meeting requirements of the Freedom of Information Act; and only public business matters identified in the motion to convene the closed meeting.

No action was taken in Closed Meeting.


Mary Louise Holmes, Human Resources Manager, presented to the Committee the EEO Report for May 2013. During the month of May, RACSB processed a total of 267 applications. This is a slight increase in applications compared to the previous month and exceeds the number received during the same period the previous year.

Mrs. Holmes reviewed a list of 29 open positions as of June 3, 2013. Since the time of the report, three additional positions have been filled.

Mrs. Holmes said that the list of open positions will increase substantially next month with the addition of 11 new positions for the Myers Drive Respite Care Group Home. Additionally, each Intellectual Disability Residential program is adding one part-time Residential Counselor position for a total of 13 new positions. This action was taken to address the Affordable Care Act and the 29 hour work week for part-time positions.

Mrs. Holmes reminded the Committee that opening the Intermediate Care Facility will result in hiring for an estimated 25 additional positions later in the year.

David Vaughn (City of Fredericksburg) inquired about the Virginia Wounded Warrior Program. Sharon Killian, Clinical Services Director, will arrange for Camilla Schwoebel, Regional Coordinator, to present an overview of the programs funding and services at a future Program Planning and Evaluation Committee meeting.

Mr. Vaughn asked if RACSB participates in job fairs. Mrs. Holmes confirmed that RACSB often participates in local career fairs. She cited one held the previous week at the Fredericksburg VFW as well as one recently at Germanna Community College.

The Committee discussed the vacant psychiatrist position. Executive Director Ron Branscome said that a locum tenens psychiatrist began temporary employment at RACSB on June 10, 2013. Mr. Branscome said there have been several candidates; however the most recent applicant sought a salary substantially higher than the RACSB salary range.

Karen Kallay (City of Fredericksburg) questioned the expense of the locum tenens versus extending the salary range for RACSB psychiatrists. She shared her belief that early intervention precludes expenses in the future and should be part of the cost discussion. Jack Rowley (Stafford County) said RACSB is currently paying the market rate based on the recent compensation and classification study. Mr. Branscome said that RACSB pays a fair salary to its psychiatrist that is based on the market.

In response to a question from Mr. Rowley regarding the Staffing Specialist position, Mrs. Holmes said the new position is going well. She said the Staffing Specialist began targeting vacancies within Intellectual Disability Residential Services and recently expanded to Day Support Services at Rappahannock Adult Activities. Mrs. Killian said that having the Staffing Specialist conduct reference checks has been a tremendous help in the hiring process.

The Committee unanimously approved a motion recommending the Board accept the EEO Report as presented by staff.
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Mary Louise Holmes, Human Resources Manager, presented to the Committee a report of disability claims processed from January 1 through May 31, 2013 through CIGNA. The total premium paid year-to-date is $58,493.60. A total of seven (7) short-term claims and two (2) long-term claims have been processed. The loss ratio for short-term clams is 31.52% (well below the 80% target). The loss ratio for long-term claims has increased from 90.33% to 115.66%. There is one (1) long-term claim that remains open at the time of the report.

A motion by the Committee recommending the Board approve the Disability Claims Report as presented was unanimously approved.
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Mary Louise Holmes, Human Resources Manager, presented the quarterly report provided by the health insurance provider, Anthem. The report provides claim expense from May 2011 through April 2013. Overall claim expenses increased 10.7% compared to the previous quarter. However, there was a small increase on an annual basis. Total expenses during the 12-month period of May 2012 through April 2013 were $1,451,637. A total of 21.98% or $319,086.46 was attributed to eight (8) claims. The average monthly enrollment during the reporting period was 247 employees.

The Committee unanimously approved a motion recommending the Board accept the Health Insurance Quarterly Report as presented by staff.
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Bob Nuzum, Finance and Administration Director, presented to the Committee the final RACSB Actuarial Valuation of Other Post Employment Benefits (OPEB) completed by Milliman, Inc. RACSB provides assistance to retirees for the cost of health insurance coverage.

The final valuation report includes the increase to the Medicare supplement for retirees as approved by the Board of Directors at their May 21, 2013 meeting (increase from $120.00 per employee/month to $140.00 per employee/month for retirees with more than 30 years of services). The plan requires an annual contribution of $50,600 in FY 2013 and $54,800 in FY 2014.

A motion by the Committee recommending the Board approve the final Actuarial Valuation Report developed by Millman, Inc. as presented by staff was unanimously approved.
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Mary Louise Holmes, Human Resources Manager, presented to the Committee information on the Hybrid Retirement Plan being implemented by the Virginia Retirement System (VRS). The new plan, effective January 1, 2014, includes the Virginia Local Disability Program (VLDP), a disability and long-term care coverage benefit. Current pension plans do not include the disability benefit or long-term care coverage. Employers may opt out of the coverage, but have to provide a comparable disability insurance plan. RACSB is in the process of reviewing the VLDP as well as other options to provide a disability benefit to employees covered by the Hybrid Retirement Plan.

Bob Nuzum, Finance and Administration Director, said that RACSB has until November 1, 2013 to make a decision. Should the agency elect to opt-out of the program, the decision is irrevocable and requires a resolution by the Board of Directors. The hybrid plan will apply to most new employees hired on or after January 1, 2014.

Mr. Rowley expressed his concern over the potential expense to RACSB under the hybrid plan. Executive Director Ron Branscome said he was also concerned and would like to research a self-funded option.

Mr. Nuzum and Mrs. Holmes will continue to research options and will present to the Committee at a future meeting.
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Mary Louise Holmes, Human Resources Manager, presented to the Committee proposed revisions to the RACSB Employee Handbook. She indicated RACSB has the handbook reviewed by legal counsel every few years and many of the revisions are based on his feedback.

The proposed revisions include adding Section 1.7 Immigration Law Compliance to comply with Federal Regulations. Mrs. Holmes said RACSB has been complying with the requirements listed and this helps to better document it. Mr. Rowley said he thought the section was well written.

Section 3.13 Grievance Procedure has been revised to incorporate changes to the Code of Virginia § 2.2-3003 and state grievance procedure. Mrs. Holmes said the revisions do not change the process but update it to reflect state terminology changes.

With regards to Section 4.0 Leave, staff recommend Section 4.1 – Annual Leave be amended to require staff to obtain written approval for the use of annual leave at least 30 days in advance (in the absence of extenuating circumstances). Section 4.4B Holidays relates to holiday pay for part-time employees and requires part-time employees to work on the last scheduled workday before the holiday and the first scheduled workday following a holiday in order to receive pay for the holiday. Under Section 4.11 Sick Leave, the call-out procedures are being further clarified to require staff members to notify their supervisor via a telephone call as soon as possible but at least 60 minutes prior to the scheduled start time for unscheduled absence due to sickness or injury. The proposed revision also would require staff members to notify their supervisor within two workdays for scheduled sick leave use (ex: medical appointment or procedure).

Related to Section 5.0 Recruitment and Selection, Section 5.6 Probationary Period remains unchanged with the initial probationary period for all employees staying at 12 months. In addition, Section 5.7 Volunteers and Interns adds language regarding professional conduct, “at will” employment, and clarification that volunteers and interns complete the RACSB employee screening process, but volunteers are not considered employees of RACSB.

To comply with the Affordable Care Act relative to providing health insurance benefits to employees, Section 7.3A Hours of Work revises the definition of part-time employment and indicates that hours worked cannot exceed 29 hours per week on a regular basis.

Section 8.5.5 Prohibitions is being revised to include the following language:
Refusals to be tested or failures to be tested in accordance with this policy without good cause are considered to be Standards of Conduct violations which could lead to disciplinary action, up to and including termination of employment.

Section 9.1 Savings Clause and Contractual Disclaimer states that in conflicts between applicable state or federal statutes or regulations, and the provisions of the RACSB Employee Handbook, the provisions of the applicable state or federal statutes or regulations take precedence.

The Receipt and Acknowledgement of Understanding have been enhanced. It is signed by employees upon hire, annually, and as the handbook is revised.

The Committee unanimously approved a motion recommending the Board approve the revisions to the RACSB Employee Handbook as presented by staff.
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Executive Director Ron Branscome presented to the Committee the RACSB Code of Ethics. This document is reviewed annually. There are no proposed changes for Fiscal Year (FY) 2014.

Mary Louise Holmes, Human Resources Manager, confirmed that RACSB employees review and sign the Code of Ethics on an annual basis.

A motion by the Committee recommending the Board approve the RACSB Code of Ethics as presented by staff was unanimously approved.
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Executive Director Ron Branscome presented to the Committee the mission statement, purposes, and values of RACSB. These documents are reviewed annually. There are no proposed changes for FY 2014.

The Committee unanimously approved a motion recommending the Board approve the RACSB mission statement, purposes, and values as presented by staff.
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Executive Director Ron Branscome presented to the Committee the amendments to RACSB bylaws, which are based on the most recent edition of the Code of Virginia. He reminded the Committee that the Bylaws are based on the Code of Virginia which limits the flexibility of RACSB to make changes. The Code of Virginia was amended to replace the term “mental retardation” with “developmental” disability. Additionally, “consumer” has been replaced with “individual receiving services.”

Ms. Kallay sought clarification on change from annual performance contract requirement. Mr. Branscome stated that Community Services Boards now submit a two-year performance contract.

Mr. Branscome reminded the Committee that the bylaws can be amended at any regular meeting of the Board of Directors following written notice submitted to members at least two weeks prior to the meeting. A final vote on the amended bylaws will take place at the Board of Directors meeting on July 16, 2013.

A motion by the Committee recommending the Board approve the amendments to the RACSB bylaws as presented by staff was unanimously approved.
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Executive Director Ron Branscome presented to the Committee a revised Organizational Structure. The following changes were made for FY 2014: the addition of Medically Managed Detoxification Services at the Crisis Stabilization Program; replacement of “A Woman’s Place” with “Specialized Substance Abuse Services for Women;” and replacement of “Intensive In-home Services” and “Treatment Foster Care” with “Intensive Care Coordination.”

Mr. Branscome informed the Committee that all of the staff previously located at A Woman’s Place on Lafayette Boulevard has successfully moved to the Fredericksburg Clinic.

The Committee unanimously approved a motion recommending the Board approve the Organizational Structure as presented by staff.
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Michelle Wagaman, Public Information Officer, presented to the Committee the results of the Employee Satisfaction Survey administered in July 2012. She apologized for the delay in presenting the results to the Committee. The purpose of the survey was to identify trends in staff opinions and determine areas of strength as well as opportunities for continued improvement. The online survey addressed the following areas: overall evaluation of RACSB; your job and co-workers; RACSB management; RACSB resources; communication; compensation, benefits and rewards; work environment; branding and social media; opinions about your job; suggestions; and demographics. The survey included the opportunity for respondents to provide feedback with regard to RACSB strengths, weaknesses, and suggestions for improvement.

A total of 222 staff members initiated the survey with 207 completing it for a 44% response rate (based on 470 employees on payroll at the time the survey was administered). Of those responding, 160 indicated they were full-time (82.1%) and 36 identified as part-time (18.5%). With regards to service area or agency division, 66 respondents (35.3%) are from the Clinical Services Division, 104 respondents (55.6%) are from the Community Support Services Division, and 17 respondents (9.1%) are from the Finance and Administration Division.

Strengths of RACSB as identified in the survey include:

  • RACSB provides a safe work environment that is professional, clean, and drug-free.
  • Respondents enjoy favorable relationships with co-workers and immediate supervisors.
  • Respondents provide employees the opportunity to use their knowledge and skills while adhering to the highest degree of professional standards.

Opportunities for RACSB as identified in the survey include: benefits; communication across programs and from employees to management; compensation; and training.

Ms. Wagaman said several of the items identified in the survey have been addressed by RACSB management since the survey was administered and the creation of this report. With regards to Compensation, all full-time employees hired prior to July 1, 2012 were granted a pay raise of 5.8% in the pay of July 13, 2012. And, in the August 10, 2012 pay period, employees with at least one year of services as of June 30, 2012 received a salary increase of between 1% and 4% based on individual years of service. RACSB made adjustments to the Table of Organization through the creation of new supervisory positions and additional staffing. RACSB also purchased several new vehicles and is renovating several facilities. Additional trainings have been held throughout the past year. RACSB reinstituted the tuition reimbursement benefit and began employee wellness initiatives.

Under Section B: Your Job and Co-workers, Jack Rowley (Stafford County) sought feedback on question B4 related to opportunities for advancement within RACSB. Ms. Wagaman said overall 44% of respondents said there are “excellent/very good/good” opportunities to advance. A combined 48.6% answered with a “fair/poor” response. Ms. Wagaman said opportunities for advancement were identified as both strength and a weakness in the comments. She noted turnover within RACSB is often the result of internal promotions and position transfers. Executive Director Ron Branscome said RACSB is bound by education and experience requirements set forth by regulatory bodies including the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Services and Medicaid. He said staff members may not like those requirements or understand them as a reason as to why they cannot be promoted. Mr. Branscome said this is an issue within the residential and day support programs.

Jim Gillespie, Community Support Services Director, said this issue was reviewed closely over the last few months with regards to the Day Support Specialist position at Rappahannock Adult Activities. He said that regulatory agencies spell out the education and/or experience requirements. Mr. Gillespie also said that it is up to RACSB to provide evidence that staff members have the required knowledge, skills, and abilities based on their experience and additional courses/trainings completed to replicate the college experience.

Mr. Rowley initiated discussion regarding RACSB having enough staffing to do the job. He acknowledged that many people feel overworked and underpaid.

Ms. Wagaman said RACSB has made a number of adjustments to staffing and supervision over the past several months:

  • With regards to Mental Health Case Management, a supervisor position was created and the service was moved from the Community Support Services Division to the Clinical Services Division.
  • With regards to Intellectual Disability Support Coordination, two supervisor positions were added and caseload sizes were reduced. Additionally, Part C Service Coordination was transferred to the Part C System Manager, creating a third supervision position for Intellectual Disability Service Coordination.
  • An Assistant Coordinator position was created and filled within Intellectual Disability Residential Services.
  • And, a third Assistant Coordinator position was created and filled at Rappahannock Adult Activities.
  • The creation of the new Staffing Specialist position within Human Resources has worked to speed the hiring process.

Mr. Branscome said at the time the survey was administered, there were a large number of part-time vacancies at Rappahannock Adult Activities and residential programs. He said RACSB has worked to fill those positions and has made a positive impact.

Mr. Gillespie said creating the pool of substitute Day Support Aides to serve as “on –call” as well as working with Taskforce to fill longer term absences. Mary Louise Holmes, Human Resources Manager, said local staffing agencies have helped fill staffing shortages with direct staff as well as nursing staff.

Mr. Gillespie said the addition of supervisory staff does positively impact direct service caseloads. He said the Community Support Services programs are working better as a team and are well organized.

The Committee discussed training and staff having the adequate tools to perform their job functions. Mr. Branscome said he encourages new employees to seek help for documentation as he knows there is a learning curve. Ms. Wagaman said any future surveys will break the training question down into whether or not there was adequate orientation at hire conducted by Human Resources, adequate job-specific training conducted on-site, and adequate training upon promotion and/or transfer.

Overall, Mr. Rowley said the results were outstanding.

Mr. Branscome thanked the Committee for their positive feedback. He said he was concerned by a number of the comments. He acknowledged the agency has done a lot since the survey was administered.

Jim Johnson (King George County) said the results were very good. He attributed many of the comments to the general management of a large workforce.

Ellen Sears (Spotsylvania County) acknowledged there will always be positives and negatives no matter how hard an agency works.

Mr. Branscome said he is open to feedback and opportunities for improvement. He said the management team will look internally to identify items we can do to improve morale and make people feel better about their jobs and coming to work every day.

Mr. Johnson thanked Mr. Gillespie and Ms. Wagaman for their comments.

Mr. Branscome said another employee satisfaction survey will be administered in spring 2014.
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The next meeting of the Personnel Committee is scheduled for Wednesday, July 10, 2013 at 10:00 a.m. in Board Room 208 at 600 Jackson Street, Fredericksburg, Virginia.


Rappahannock Area Community Service Board  |  600 Jackson Street  |  Fredericksburg, VA 22401  |  (540) 373-3223