LAS VEGAS (KTNV) — Gov. Steve Sisolak signed an emergency directive on Monday that aims to increase staffing at the state's employment department.
His office says the directive provides flexibility for the Nevada Department of Employment, Training and Rehabilitation to hire non-merit, or contracted, staff to help process unemployment insurance claims.
In a press release sent to the media, Gov. Sisolak said:
I have heard stories from many Nevadans who are experiencing issues trying to process claims, and our staff at DETR has been working as quickly as possible to process the unprecedented number of claims.
This Directive will help onboard more staff quickly to help bring insurance benefits to more Nevadans faster.
The directive provides the agency with emergency flexibility for personnel standards including hiring of temporary staff, rehiring of retirees or former employees on a non-competitive basis, and other temporary actions to quickly process applications and claims. The emergency flexibility will be applicable through Dec. 31, 2020.
The governor says as Nevada continues to experience the COVID-19 pandemic and dramatic increase in unemployment, it is necessary for DETR’s Employment Security Division (ESD) to hire temporary personnel to help with timely processing of claims for unemployment insurance benefits, and assist Nevadans with the soon to be released Pandemic Unemployment Assistance system.
Without this directive, the agency would have to meet the hiring requirements stipulated under NRS 612.230 including requiring the Administrator to fill ESD positions on the basis of merit from registers prepared by the Division of Human Resource Management of the Department of Administration.
DETR Director Heather Korbulic said in an emailed statement:
We are excited to now have the ability to move forward on hiring the critical staff needed to assist in processing the record number of unemployment insurance claims.
We are optimistic this Directive will provide the flexibility we need to hire staff in support of all facets of the UI and CARES Act processes. We will work expeditiously in the hiring and training of staff engaged under this Directive, so we can get benefits to Nevadans in a timelier fashion.
This directive shall remain in effect until the state of emergency declared on March 12, 2020 is terminated or unless renewed by a subsequent directive proclaimed pursuant to the March 12, 2020 Declaration of Emergency.