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October 6, 2014

Employee Fest 2014 a Roaring Success

Employee Fest 2014 drew thousands to Freedom Park Oct. 2.

This year’s record-turnout event featured a barbecue lunch catered by Jim ‘N Nicks BBQ, games, performances by County employees and artists supported by the Arts and Science Council, information on Charitable Giving opportunities, sponsor tables and recognition, and most importantly, a celebration of the contributions Mecklenburg County employees make to the quality of life for County residents.

This year’s award winners were:

Team of the Year: Public Information Department

Customer Service Heroes:

  • Service Quality - Denise Steele-Campbell, Sr. Social Services Manager, Youth and Family Services
  • Ethics – Rachel VanHoy, Senior Fiscal Administrator, Sheriff’s Office
  • Communication – Lovely Hibbler-Reape, Intake Specialist, DSS, Economic Services Division
  • Timeliness – Juan Rodriguez, Plans Examiner, LUESA – Code Enforcement
  • Courtesy & Respect – Jernell Sterling, Registrar, Health Department

Employee of the Year: Marsha O’Brien, Senior IT Business Analyst, Tax Assessor’s Office

Pictures from the event are available on the County’s Flickr site online.

LaCaria Named Sr. Assistant to the County Manager

Dennis K. LaCaria has been named Sr. Assistant to the County Manager. He will provide enterprise-wide strategic leadership in facilities and real estate planning and utilization, and will serve as the County’s expert in the identification of space needs. He begins work Oct. 13.

Dennis has directed capital planning for Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools (CMS) since 2006. His department managed the real estate team and a portfolio of 21 million square feet of building space.

Please join me in welcoming Dennis to Mecklenburg County.

NCACC Begins Legislative Goal Setting Process

The North Carolina Association of County Commissioners (NCACC) has begun their legislative goal setting process. On Friday, the Justice and Public Safety Committee considered 17 goals and voted to move the following seven forward, including a statement on Domestic Violence that supports Mecklenburg's legislative goal regarding criminal penalties for domestic violence acts committed in the presence of children. The goals moving forward are:

  • Seek legislation for greater flexibility in county governments' use of 911 funds and protect current funding streams.
  • Greater Support legislation to redirect savings from Justice Reinvestment Act including drug court, employment assistance, rehabilitative services and other services to reduce recidivism.
  • Adequately reimburse counties for participating in the Statewide Misdemeanant Confinement Program.
  • Increase penalty for firearm-related offenses.
  • Shorten hold time for selling unknown livestock.
  • Support state funding for various crime prevention programs.
  • Support legislation to reduce domestic violence.

Mecklenburg County Makes Great Showing at Cherwell Global Conference

Mecklenburg County’s internal customer service web portal has earned worldwide honors.

Mecklenburg County recently placed second out of more than 1,100 international entries for Cherwell’s Most Innovative Use of the Service Management software during the Cherwell Global Conference.

Mecklenburg County also received the Cherwell Reference Customer Award for the work our Cherwell administrators have done with providing detailed product information and referring potential Cherwell customers.

Mecklenburg County has been actively using the new Cherwell ITSM (Information Technology Service Management) tool since November 2013. 

The County’s entry was based on utilizing the software as a multi-use, self-service solution – called “MeckSupport” – for employees. This self-service application allows employees to access four different support services – IT Customer Support Center, Human Resources, Meck Purchasing, and Facilities and Building Maintenance – in one location.

The Cherwell Service Management (CSM) Awards recognize and acknowledge the positive effects and the business value that CSM has provided to its customer base.

If you have questions about Cherwell, please contact IT Manager Frances Davis via email. 

General Assembly Relaxes E-Verify Requirements

During the 2013 session of the North Carolina General Assembly, the legislature enacted the RECLAIM NC Act which prohibited state and local governments from entering into certain contracts if the contractor or the contractor’s subcontractors were not compliant with North Carolina’s E-Verify law, Section 2 of S.L. 2013-418 (H786).   
The requirement applied to all contract types entered into by state and local governments. Article 2 of Chapter 64 of the General Statutes establishes North Carolina E-Verify requirements. Private employers subject to the E-Verify requirements are those who do business in the state and employ 25 or more workers in the state.

E-Verify is a free, web-based system operated by the U.S. Department of Homeland Security’s Administration (SSA) that allows participating employers to electronically verify the legal employment status of newly hired employees and whether they are authorized to work in the United States.

During the 2014 session, the General Assembly scaled back the application of the E-Verify statutes so that now the provisions apply ONLY to purchase and construction or repair contracts that fall within the formal bidding range. Under G.S. 143-129, the formal bid threshold for purchase contracts is $90,000 ($100,000 for Mecklenburg); for construction or repair contracts, the formal bid threshold is $500,000 (H 369). With this amendment, all units of local government, including cities and counties, only purchase and construction or repair contracts in the formal bidding range are now subject to the E-Verify prohibition.

If you have questions, please contact me.

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