Article - Courts and Judicial Proceedings
(a) This section applies only in Howard County.
(b) The Sheriff of Howard County shall receive an annual salary of:
(1) $85,000 each calendar year for calendar year 2010 through calendar year 2014;
(2) $88,000 for calendar year 2015;
(3) $91,000 for calendar year 2016;
(4) $94,000 for calendar year 2017;
(5) $97,000 for calendar year 2018;
(6) $101,000 for calendar year 2019;
(7) $105,000 for calendar year 2020;
(8) $109,000 for calendar year 2021; and
(9) $113,000 for calendar year 2022.
(c) (1) The Sheriff shall appoint the number of deputies authorized by the county government.
(2) The compensation of the deputies shall be set by the county government.
(3) (i) Each full–time deputy sheriff at the rank of lieutenant or below appointed by the Sheriff on or after October 1, 2005:
1. Shall be required by the Sheriff to serve an initial probationary period of 12 months; and
2. May be dismissed by the Sheriff for any reason only during the initial probationary period.
(ii) The Sheriff may extend the probationary period for a deputy sheriff for reasonable cause.
(iii) During the probationary period, the Sheriff has exclusive discretion to determine whether a probationary deputy sheriff has the qualifications and ability to serve in the position of a permanent nonprobationary employee.
(iv) Each probationary deputy sheriff shall be required to complete the minimum number of hours mandated for law enforcement agencies established by the Maryland Police Training and Standards Commission.
(v) After the probationary period, a full–time deputy sheriff at a rank of lieutenant or below may be disciplined or dismissed only for just cause:
1. In accordance with the Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights, if the employee’s rights are covered under this bill of rights; or
2. In accordance with the personnel rules and regulations of the Howard County Sheriff’s Office, if the employee’s rights are not covered under the Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights.
(vi) Except for an appeal taken pursuant to the Law Enforcement Officers’ Bill of Rights, an appeal by an aggrieved party shall be taken to the Circuit Court for Howard County.
(d) (1) The Sheriff may appoint additional temporary deputy sheriffs when necessary for the public safety.
(2) The county government shall allow the temporary deputy sheriffs reasonable compensation.
(3) A temporary deputy sheriff may not serve longer than the case actually requires.
(e) The primary duties of the Sheriff are the following:
(1) The security of the circuit court, and the performance of such duties as may be required of the Sheriff by that court;
(2) The service of process of writs, summonses, orders, petitions, subpoenas, warrants, orders to show cause, and other legal papers; and
(3) Additional duties, including law enforcement as may be requested by law enforcement or other criminal justice agencies, the circuit court, or the county government, when necessary for the public safety.
(f) (1) This subsection applies only to full–time deputy sheriffs in the Sheriff’s Office at the rank of corporal and below.
(2) A deputy sheriff may:
(i) Take part in or refrain from taking part in forming, joining, supporting, or participating in a labor organization or its lawful activities;
(ii) Select a labor organization as the exclusive representative of the deputy sheriffs subject to this subsection;
(iii) Engage in collective bargaining with the Sheriff, or the designee of the Sheriff, concerning wages, benefits, and other terms and conditions, except those terms and conditions expressly reserved by the Sheriff under paragraph (5)(iv)1 of this subsection, through a labor organization certified as the exclusive representative of the deputy sheriffs subject to this subsection;
(iv) Subject to item (ii) of this paragraph, enter into a collective bargaining agreement, through the exclusive representative of the deputy sheriffs subject to this subsection, covering the wages, benefits, and other terms and conditions of employment of the deputy sheriffs subject to this subsection, except those terms and conditions expressly reserved by the Sheriff in paragraph (5)(iv) of this subsection; and
(v) Decertify a labor organization as the exclusive representative of the deputy sheriffs subject to this subsection.
(3) (i) A labor organization seeking certification as an exclusive representative must submit a petition to the Sheriff that is signed by at least 30% of the deputy sheriffs indicating the desire of the deputy sheriffs subject to this subsection to be represented exclusively by the labor organization for the purpose of collective bargaining.
(ii) If the Sheriff does not challenge the validity of the petition within 30 calendar days following the receipt of the petition, the petition shall be submitted to the Commissioner of Labor and Industry to be approved by a consent election under Title 4, Subtitle 2, Part II of the Labor and Employment Article.
(iii) If the Sheriff challenges the validity of the petition, either party may submit a request to the Commissioner of Labor and Industry to determine the validity of the petition and whether to conduct a consent election under Title 4, Subtitle 2, Part II of the Labor and Employment Article.
(iv) The costs associated with a determination by the Commissioner of Labor and Industry under subparagraph (iii) of this paragraph shall be shared equally by the parties.
(v) A labor organization shall be deemed decertified if a petition is submitted to the Sheriff that is signed by more than 50% of the deputy sheriffs indicating the desire of the deputy sheriffs to decertify the labor organization as the exclusive representative of the deputy sheriffs subject to this subsection.
(4) (i) Following certification of an exclusive representative as provided in paragraph (3) of this subsection, the certified labor organization and the Sheriff shall meet at reasonable times and engage in collective bargaining in good faith.
(ii) The certified labor organization and the Sheriff shall make every reasonable effort to conclude negotiations on or before February 1 of the year in which a collective bargaining agreement is to take effect to allow for inclusion by the Sheriff of matters agreed on in its budget request to the County Executive of Howard County.
(iii) 1. If the certified labor organization and the Sheriff are unable to reach an agreement before the date set forth in subparagraph (ii) of this paragraph, an impasse shall be deemed to have been reached, each side shall submit their best and final offers within 24 hours, and within 5 days after an impasse is reached the dispute, along with each side’s best and final offer, shall be submitted to the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service.
2. The mediator appointed by the Federal Mediation and Conciliation Service shall meet with the parties and make written findings of fact and recommendations for the resolution of the dispute by March 1.
3. The costs associated with the mediator or mediation process shall be shared equally by the parties.
4. Copies of the mediator’s written findings and recommendations shall be sent to the Sheriff and certified labor organization.
5. The Sheriff and certified labor organization shall meet within 5 days after the conclusion of the mediation to reach a voluntary resolution of the dispute.
6. If no resolution is reached under subsubparagraph 5 of this subparagraph, the Sheriff shall submit to the County Executive the best and final offer of each side and the mediator’s findings and recommendations and the County Executive shall review all the materials before making a budget submission for the Sheriff’s Office to the County Council of Howard County.
(iv) 1. Any additional funding required as a result of a negotiated collective bargaining agreement is subject to approval by the County Executive and County Council.
2. A request for additional funding shall be submitted to the County Executive by the Sheriff within the time schedule provided in the agreement.
3. The County Executive and County Council may approve or reject a request for additional funding in whole or in part.
4. If any part of a request for additional funding is rejected, the entire agreement shall be returned to the parties for further bargaining, during which either party may renegotiate all or part of the agreement within the limits of the funding allocated by the County Executive and County Council and within a timetable established by the County Executive.
(5) (i) A collective bargaining agreement shall contain all matters of agreement reached in the collective bargaining process.
(ii) A collective bargaining agreement may contain a grievance procedure which shall apply only to questions concerning the interpretation or application of a specific provision of the agreement.
(iii) A collective bargaining agreement reached in accordance with this subsection shall be in writing and signed by the certified representatives of the parties involved in the collective bargaining negotiations.
(iv) An agreement made under this paragraph may not impair the right and the responsibility of the Sheriff to:
1. Maintain the order and efficiency of the public service entrusted to the Sheriff and to operate and manage the affairs of the Sheriff’s Office, including all rights and authority held by the Sheriff prior to signing a collective bargaining agreement except where abridged by an express provision of the agreement;
2. Determine the purposes and objectives of each of the Sheriff’s constituent offices and departments;
3. Set the standards of services to be offered to the public;
4. Determine and set work projects, tours of duty, schedules, assignments, and methods, means, personnel, and other resources by which operations are conducted;
5. Determine and set technology needs, internal security practices, equipment, and the location of facilities;
6. Exercise control and discretion over the Sheriff’s Office and operations;
7. Hire, promote, transfer, assign, or retain deputy sheriffs in positions within the Sheriff’s Office;
8. Establish work rules;
9. Demote, suspend, discharge, or take any other appropriate disciplinary action against employees for just cause and in accordance with the county charter and other applicable law;
10. Determine the mission, budget, organization, numbers, types, classes, grades, and ranks of deputy sheriffs assigned, the services to be rendered, operations to be performed, and the technology to be used;
11. Set the standards of service and exercise control over operations, including the rights to determine work shifts and the number of deputy sheriffs on each shift;
12. Determine and set the qualifications of deputy sheriffs for appointment and promotions;
13. Set the standards of performance, appearance, and conduct;
14. Judge skill, ability, and physical fitness;
15. Create, eliminate, or consolidate job classifications, departments, or operations; and
16. Control and regulate the use of all equipment and other property of the county.
(v) A collective bargaining agreement is not effective until it is ratified by the majority of votes cast by the deputy sheriffs in the bargaining unit and approved by the Sheriff.
(6) Nothing in this subsection may be construed to:
(i) Authorize or otherwise allow a deputy sheriff to engage in a strike as defined in § 3–303 of the State Personnel and Pensions Article; and
(ii) Restrict in any way the authority of the County Executive or County Council to determine the budget for the Sheriff’s Office.