Town of Lady Lake Ordinance 2006-76
AN ORDINANCE ESTABLISHING A CITIZENS’ REVIEW BOARD (CRB) TO ADJUDICATE GRIEVANCES IN LIEU OF AN ARBITRATOR PREVIOUSLY HOLDING THIS AUTHORITY, SETTING FOR THE CRITERIA FOR BOARD MEMBERSHIP, ESTABLISHING HEARING PROCEDURES, REPEALING ALL CONFLICTING PROVISIONS, PROVIDING FOR SEVERALBILITY, AND ESTABLISHING AN EFFECTIVE DATE.
WHEREAS, the Town of Lady Lake and the Fraternal Order of Police Lodge 16 (FOP) have worked diligently and in good faith to settle their differences,
WHEREAS, the Town of Lady Lake finds that it is in the best interest of the Town and will promote the general health, safety, and welfare of the Town and its citizens to have an appointed Citizens’ Review Board made up of Lady Lake Citizens to decide an aggrieved party’s request to hear disciplinary matters and to review all other disciplinary matters as agreed to by the FOP and the Town of Lady Lake,
WHEREAS, the Town of Lady Lake Staff and the FOP have proposed a Citizens’ Review Board to review such disciplinary matters for final adjudication,
WHEREAS, the Town Commission of the Town of Lady Lake held a public hearing to consider establishing a Citizens’ Review Board (CRB) to review and adjudicate disciplinary matters instead of an arbitrator and has determined that a CRB will serve the Town and its citizens well.
NOW THEREFORE, be it ordained and enacted by the Town Commission of the Town of Lady Lake, in Lake County, Florida:
Section 1: Establishment of Citizens’ Review Board, Criteria for Board Membership, and Hearing Procedures
The Town of Lady Lake hereby establishes a Citizens’ Review Board (CRB) to decide an aggrieved party’s request to hear disciplinary matters and to review all other disciplinary matters as agreed to by the FOP and the Town of Lady Lake under the terms and procedures set forth in Exhibit “A” attached hereto and incorporated herein.
Section 2: Conflicting Provisions Repealed
Should a Court of competent jurisdiction determine that this Ordinance conflicts with any prior Ordinance, this Ordinance shall control and supersede the conflicting provision, if any.
Section 3: Severability
The provisions of this Ordinance are declared to be separable and if any section, sentence, clause or phrase of this Ordinance shall for any reason be held to be invalid or unconstitutional, such decision shall not affect the validity of the remaining sections, sentences, clauses or phrases of this Ordinance, but they shall remain in effect, it being the legislative intent that this Ordinance shall stand notwithstanding the invalidity of any part.
Section 4: Inclusion in the Town of Lady Lake Code
The Town Commission of the Town of Lady Lake intends that the provisions of this Ordinance shall become and be made a part of the Town of Lady Lake Code of Ordinances and that the sections of this Ordinance may be renumbered or re-lettered and the word “ordinance” may be changed to “section”, “article” or such other appropriate word or phrase to accomplish such intentions.
Section 5: Effective Date
This ordinance shall become effective immediately upon final reading and adoption by the Town Commission of Town of Lady Lake, Florida as provided by law.
PASSED AND ORDAINED in regular session of the Town Commission of the Town of Lady Lake, Lake County, Florida, this 11 day of November, 2006.
Town of Lady Lake, Florida
s/ Max Pullen, Mayor
s/ Kris Straka, Town Clerk
Approved as to form:
s/ Derek Schroth, Town Attorney
Note: The original signed documents are on file at the Town Clerk’s office. Copies are available upon request.
Exhibit “A”: Citizens Review Board (CRB)
This is a Disciplinary Review Board
The Board consists of eight citizens, consisting of five voting members and three alternates who have the minimum qualifications determined by the Lady Lake Fraternal Order of Police (FOP) Lodge 16. The police union’s executive board establishes the qualifications. A third party trainer, who is agreed upon by both the FOP and the Town, will conduct training for board members. One requirement mandated by the FOP and the Town is that the members be residents of the Town at the time of their written application and during their entire appointment as members of the CRB. The FOP approves these members for membership.
Applications will be advertised by the Town Clerk’s Office. Members of the CRB must be and have been citizens of the Town of Lady Lake for at least one full calendar year prior to their application for panel membership. Other criteria for membership on the volunteer CRB shall be as follows:
- A member of the CRB must be at least 21 years of age and possess a valid Florida driver’s license or Florida Identification. A suspension of the member’s driver’s license, for any reason, will be reviewed by the FOP and the individual will be subject to replacement.
- Member must maintain residency within the Town limits throughout the duration of a three-year appointment term. In the event that a CRB member no longer resides within the Town limits of Lady Lake, an alternate member will replace them. The Town Clerk’s Office will post a vacancy announcement for an alternate CRB position. The FOP will review applicants and select a new alternate CRB member.
- A CRB member must have no criminal record. An arrest will not automatically exclude membership but appointment will be dependent upon the circumstances of the arrest.
- Member must be able to pass the FDLE Background Check to include, but not limited to, criminal and in-house histories. Member must sign a Personal Inquiry Waiver for Background Check.
- A CRB member cannot be a current or former paid employee of the Town of Lady Lake.
- A CRB member cannot be related to a Town of Lady Lake employee as this term is defined in Article 27 of the existing contract between the FOP and the Town of Lady Lake.
- Member must be willing to attend training.
- A CRB member must notify the Town Clerk’s Office of any changes that may affect their membership qualifications or status. In the event, a CRB member has a conflict of interest in the grievance being heard, they must bring this to the attention of the Town Clerk’s Office or at the beginning of the hearing proceedings in order for an alternate member to be assigned. Not complying with the stated rule will immediately disqualify member permanently from board.
- All Board members serve 3-year terms with the possibility of one additional term renewal.
The FOP President recommends candidates to the Town Manager for appointment and to the Town Council for approval.
The Citizens Review Board elects a chairperson and vice-chairperson from among the citizen members to preside over its proceedings.
The grievant will make a written request to the CRB Chairperson with copies being provided to the Town Clerk’s Office and FOP to have a disciplinary matter heard before the CRB.
All documentation provided by either the Town or the FOP must be marked with a “T” for the Town or an “F” for the FOP. Each is responsible for marking all of their documentation prior to submitting to the Town Clerk Office for review by the CRB.
Upon receipt of the request, the Town and FOP shall provide within three days the Town Clerk’s Office with grievance packets to be given to the CRB. Each member of the CRB shall pick up his or her own grievance packets from the Town Clerk’s Office. The CRB will review packets and will submit a list of individuals who will need to attend hearing. These individuals will be identified on the Town Agenda. All CRB proceedings will be conducted in the Town Commission Chambers.
No later than seven days prior to the hearing, the Town and the grievant (or his or her representative) must file with the Chair, and copy the other party, with a list of witnesses each party intends on calling to testify at the hearing, and a copy of any and all exhibits that are to be introduced at the hearing. The Board will entertain requests by the parties to have the Chair send out certified letters to the witnesses urging their attendance upon application of either party to the Chair. The failure to list a witness or an exhibit will result in the exclusion of the witness’s testimony or the exhibit, absent good cause shown as determined by the Chair.
The hearing shall be conducted and decision rendered within 45 days of the written request by the grievant for a hearing. Reasonable extensions of this period may be granted by the Chair upon written request by either the Town or the grievant for good cause shown. Natural disasters are extenuating circumstance(s) that are an automatic reason for extend beyond the 45-day timeline, and remains extended until normal operations are resumed. The Chair shall determine the time and location for the hearing and notify both parties in writing.
Upon the hearing being convened, the Chair shall explain its purpose; identify him or herself, the other board members, the parties, and the representatives of the parties. The Chair shall ensure that the hearing is audio-taped in its entirety. The Chair or his designee shall swear in witnesses providing live testimony.
Each party shall be afforded the opportunity to give the Board an opening statement of no longer than 15 minutes, with the grievant proceeding first and the Town last.
After opening statements, the Town shall be afforded the opportunity to present its case through testimony or documentary evidence. The Town shall be afforded no longer than two hours to present its case, absent permission from the Chair for good cause shown.
The grievant shall then be afforded the opportunity to present his or her case through testimony or documentary evidence. The grievant shall be afforded no longer than two hours to present his or her case.
All witnesses shall be subject to cross-examination by the opposing party. At the conclusion of each witness’s testimony, the Chair shall afford each member of the Board the ability to question the witness. Witnesses may appear by telephone only with express advanced permission from the Chair.
At the conclusion of the parties’ presentations, both the Town and the grievant shall be afforded an opportunity to give closing statements to the Board of no longer than 30 minutes each, with the grievant proceeding first and the Town last.
The Rules of Evidence applicable to administrative proceedings pursuant to Florida Statute 120.57 shall be observed in this proceeding. Any rulings on evidentiary questions shall be made by the Chair. The Chair shall have wide latitude to exclude from consideration evidence that is irrelevant. The Chair shall also exclude from consideration any evidence that was not used as a basis for the discipline by the Town, or any evidence that was not presented by the grievant in response to the discipline during the grievance procedure leading up to this proceeding.
The Chair shall have the latitude to run the proceedings in a manner that he or she deems appropriate to support the Board’s efficiency and effectiveness. The Chair may eject any person who disrupts the proceedings.
Once the case is set for review by the five members, each must be present during all portions of the proceedings. The alternates will be released once the five members convene and one or more may be subject to recall should circumstances arise requiring the replacement of a Board member. At the conclusion of the closing statements, the Board shall deliberate in public and determine whether to agree to sustain or agree not to sustain or modify the disciplinary action taken. The decision of the CRB shall be final and binding.
Both the hearing and the deliberations shall be open to the public pursuant to Florida’s Sunshine Law. A Board member is prohibited from speaking with another Board member about the case in private.
(Mock scenerio’s will be conducted with the board involving both the FOP and the Town. Both sides will have opportunities to makes suggested changes, and modify the above regulations where needed.)