OKLAHOMA CITY – State Rep. Mike Osburn announced today he is filing legislation aimed at providing transparency, accountability and consistency to Oklahoma’s hiring and compensation systems.
The bill is intended to streamline hiring to ensure the state is recruiting the best employees to serve taxpayers. By updating the current state employment classification system, the legislation will provide consistency to state employee compensation. The reforms will also streamline the discipline process to ensure state employee basic rights and eliminate the possibility of political influence, while eliminating unnecessary steps and easing agency human resource management burdens.
“As a member of the House Special Investigation Committee, I’ve been alarmed at the toxic work environment that exists in some state agencies,” said Rep. Mike Osburn, R-Edmond. “Employees should be able to report mismanagement or areas of concern within agencies without fear of retaliation.”
“I am pleased to be working with Rep. Osburn on this important and timely legislation,“ said bill coauthor Sen. Kay Floyd, D-Oklahoma City. “These updates to our current classification system will help ensure that Oklahoma has a strong system to recruit, select, and maintain an effective work force.”
Oklahoma’s Merit Protection System was created in 1954 and transformed into its current form in 1982. It has not been substantially updated or reformed in more than 30 years.
“The changes I’m proposing to the merit protection system will bring Oklahoma in line with other states,” said Osburn. “The reforms will also provide a long-overdue update to the structure and strengthen protection for whistleblowers along with agencies’ internal auditors. It takes Oklahomans on every level to make government work well, and this bill will help employees speak freely at the first signs of alarm.”