[IPAC-List] Civil service eligible lists and USERRA

Maloney, Michael MMaloney1 at Columbus.gov
Wed Mar 27 14:15:48 EDT 2013

Check this out


Michael Maloney
Personnel Analyst II

750 Piedmont
Columbus, OH 43224
Direct: 614.645.7494

From: Lance Seberhagen [mailto:sebe at erols.com]
Sent: Wednesday, March 27, 2013 11:52 AM
To: Partain, Steven C.
Cc: ipac-list at ipacweb.org
Subject: Re: [IPAC-List] Civil service eligible lists and USERRA

There is no reliable and valid way to convert (or equate) a score from one promotional exam to another promotional exam. This is especially true in public safety promotional exams in which candidates are ranked down to a fraction of a point. Therefore, the one remaining candidate from the old eligible list should be required to take the new promotional exam and compete on an equal basis with all other applicants.

If the last remaining candidate on an eligible list were away on military duty, he/she would not be available for promotion, so the selecting official would have no choice but to administer another promotional exam if the vacant position needs to be filled before the candidate returns from military duty.

Under USERRA, returning military members generally have the right to be re-employed in the job that they would have attained if they were not absent for military service. However, candidates on an eligible list have no guarantee of promotion, and their status on the eligible list has a limited duration. Therefore, it does not appear that returning military members have a right to a promotion, or a spot on a new eligible list, unless there is case law to the contrary.

USERRA Fact Sheet

Lance Seberhagen, Ph.D.
Seberhagen & Associates
9021 Trailridge Ct
Vienna, VA 22182
Tel 703-790-0796

On 3/26/2013 1:45 PM, Partain, Steven C. wrote:
To those of you practicing in civil service-regulated environments, I have a question that is pretty esoteric and may not resonate with anyone, but I thought I'd give it a shot with this group:

We have local civil service rules (which must be consistent with principles of state civil service law) providing the appointing authority two names from the top of a ranked eligible list to be considered for one promotional vacancy. When the list is comprised of a single individual, the appointing authority may elect to consider that individual in isolation, or cancel the list to exercise its right to two eligibles to consider, and conduct a new exam to generate a new eligible list. If the latter, the individual who was impacted may transfer his/her eligibility to the new list based on previous score but can opt to retest and take higher score.

I don't know how typical that structure is in other civil service environments, but my question is really about removing this transfer of eligibility provision altogether. We're exploring the idea of eliminating this provision but are concerned about impact to legally protected groups. The primary one that comes to mind is military service personnel covered under USERRA. If Joe Guard is deployed and unavailable to be considered for a vacancy, and the list is cancelled (prior to expiration), it would seem that at a minimum USERRA would require us to extend his eligibility.

Again, I don't know how common this eligibility transfer provision is in other civil service rules, so this may not resonate. But if anyone has a parallel set of provisions and has addressed this, I would appreciate your input.


Steven Partain | HR Manager
Tualatin Valley Fire & Rescue
Direct: 503-259-1292



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