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Louisiana Revised Statutes Tit. 33, § 2561. Appeals by employees to the board

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A. Any regular employee in the classified service who feels that he has been discharged or subjected to any corrective or disciplinary action without just cause may, within fifteen days after the action, demand in writing a hearing and investigation by the board to determine the reasonableness of the action.  The board shall grant the employee a hearing and investigation within thirty days after receipt of the written request.

B. (1) All such hearings and investigations conducted by the board pursuant to the provisions of this Part shall be open to the public.  No hearing and investigation shall be held unless both the employee and the appointing authority have been advised at least ten days in advance thereof of the date, time, and place therefor.  If either the appointing authority or the employee fails to appear at the place and on the day and at the hour fixed for the hearing, the board may decide the issue involved on the basis of the evidence adduced and confined to the question of whether the action taken against the employee was made in good faith for cause set forth in the provisions of this Part.

(2) Both the employee and the appointing authority shall be afforded an opportunity to appear before the board, either in person or with counsel, and present evidence to show that the action was or was not taken in good faith for cause as set forth in the provisions of this Part.

(3) The board shall have complete charge of any such hearing and investigation and may conduct it in any manner it deems advisable, without prejudice to any person or party thereto.  The procedure followed shall be informal and not necessarily bound by the legalistic rules of evidence.  The board shall not be required to have the testimony taken and transcribed, but either the employee or the appointing authority may, at their own expense, make the necessary arrangements therefor.  In such cases, the board may name any competent shorthand reporter as the official reporter.  If the testimony is not taken or transcribed, then the board shall make a written finding of fact.

C. (1) After such investigation, if the evidence is conclusive, the board may affirm the action of the appointing authority.  If it finds that the action was not taken in good faith for cause under the provisions of this Part, the board shall order the immediate reinstatement or reemployment of such person in the office, place, position, or employment from which he was removed, suspended, demoted, or discharged, which reinstatement shall, if the board so provides, be retroactive and entitle him to his regular pay from the time of removal, suspension, demotion, discharge, or other disciplinary action.  The board may modify the order of removal, suspension, demotion, discharge, or other disciplinary action by directing a suspension without pay for a given period, a reduction in pay to the rate prevailing for the next lower class, a reduction or demotion to a position of any lower class and to the rate of pay prevailing thereof, or such other lesser punitive action that may be appropriate under the circumstances.

(2) The decision of the board, together with its written findings of fact, if required, shall be certified in writing to the appointing authority and shall be enforced forthwith by the appointing authority.

(3) Any employee of the classified service and any appointing authority affected by the finding of the board as provided in Paragraph (1) of this Subsection who is able to produce evidence of a violation of the provisions of R.S. 33:2565 such that the violation was material to the finding of the board may, within six months after the date of the board's finding, request in writing a reconsideration by the board on the matter.  Such written request shall provide the name of any person in violation of R.S. 33:2565 and the details of the evidence.  The board shall set the matter for reconsideration within thirty days after receipt of the written request and, based upon the merits of the evidence presented, may hold and conduct an investigation and hearing pursuant to this Part.  Such hearing and investigation, if conducted, shall be held within thirty days of the board's decision.  If the board determines that such violation occurred and was material to its original decision, the board may modify or reverse its decision and shall take any corrective action as authorized under the provisions of this Part.  An appeal of the finding of the board under the provisions of this Paragraph may be taken by the employee or the appointing authority in accordance with the provisions of Subsection B of this Section;  however, the exercise of the appeal for reconsideration under the provisions of this Paragraph shall not be used for the purpose of extending the prescriptive period for appeal to district court following the board's original finding.

D. Notwithstanding the provisions of this Section or any other provision of law to the contrary, any member of the board who is the immediate supervisor or direct work associate of any officer or employee appealing removal, suspension, demotion, discharge, or any other disciplinary action by the appointing authority and who is directly involved in the incident out of which such action arose shall recuse himself from voting on any decision by the board to affirm, reverse, or modify the order of the appointing authority.  Also, any immediate family member of the appealing employee shall recuse himself from voting on any such decision.  For purposes of this Subsection, “immediate family member” shall mean any parent, child, sibling, or spouse.  If such recusal by a member of the board results in the inability of the board to make a finding of fact or to reach a decision by the concurring votes as provided by R.S. 33:2536(M), the board shall be considered to have affirmed the action of the appointing authority.

E. Any employee under classified service and any appointing authority may appeal from any decision of the board or from any action taken by the board under the provisions of this Part which is prejudicial to the employee or appointing authority.  This appeal shall lie direct to the court of original and unlimited jurisdiction in civil suits of the parish wherein the board is domiciled.  This appeal shall be taken by serving the board, within thirty days after entry of its decision, a written notice of appeal stating the grounds thereof and demanding that a certified transcript of the record or written findings of fact and all papers on file in the office of the board affecting or relating to such decisions be filed with the designated court.  The board shall, within ten days after the filing of the notice of appeal, make, certify, and file the complete transcript with the designated court, and that court thereupon shall proceed to hear and determine the appeal in a summary manner.  This hearing shall be confined to the determination of whether the decision made by the board was made in good faith for cause under the provisions of this Part or to whether a board member should have or failed to recuse himself in accordance with Subsection D of this Section.  No appeal to the court shall be taken except upon these grounds.

Cite this article: FindLaw.com - Louisiana Revised Statutes Tit. 33, § 2561. Appeals by employees to the board - last updated January 01, 2019 | https://codes.findlaw.com/la/revised-statutes/la-rev-stat-tit-33-sect-2561/


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