It is the policy of Otero County to select and recruit the best-suited persons for all regular classified positions in an open and competitive manner, to ensure no discrimination and to ensure equal employment opportunity for all applicants and employees. This section applies only to regular classified employees, except as specifically stated for temporary employees.
When a classified position becomes open, the elected official or department head, in coordination with the County Manager, may promote a qualified employee in the subject department to fill the vacant position. If there is no qualified employee within the subject department, then, at the discretion of the elected official or department head, the position may be advertised internally for five workdays or opened to the public. The department head and/or elected official shall document, in writing, to Human Resources the reasons why each step in the recruitment process is deemed to be appropriate for the particular position. If internally advertised and no qualified applications are received or the elected official or department head has directed, a job announcement through such media deemed appropriate to ensure open and competitive recruitment with sufficient time to ensure reasonable opportunity for persons to apply shall be accomplished. All publications for job announcements shall include reference to Otero County as an equal opportunity employer, such as EOE, and a drug-free workplace. Additionally, public advertisement for positions of the same title is required only one time during each six-month period, provided there is a sufficiently large pool of applications received through original advertisement.
Vacant positions may be filled by temporary employees on a temporary basis to replace regular classified employees on leave for a period not to exceed six months. To ensure open and competitive recruitment for such positions, a job announcement through such media deemed appropriate to ensure open and competitive recruitment with sufficient time to ensure reasonable opportunity for persons to apply shall be accomplished. All publications for job announcements shall include reference to Otero County as an equal opportunity employer, such as EOE, and a drug-free workplace.
All applications shall be turned in to the County Human Resources office. The Human Resources office shall ensure that the appropriate elected official, department head, County Manager, or designee of the County Manager, are given the opportunity to review all applications submitted for a position in their respective offices. The best-suited applicant is determined by the elected official or department head based on minimum qualifications of education, experience, abilities, skills and past work experience as specified in written position specifications for each position. Personal interviews shall be conducted with at least three applicants, or if fewer than three applications are received, all applicants shall be interviewed.
Interviews shall be conducted by an interview board consisting of a minimum of three County supervisory employees chosen by the County Manager, department head, or elected official. Members of the public may serve on the interview board when appropriate. This board shall provide a recommendation to the department head, elected official or County Manager.
After personal interviews have been conducted, a recommendation shall be made by the interview board to the County Manager, final appointment shall be made by the County Manager after consulting with the elected official or department head based on the recommendation of the interview committee.
Publicly posted and advertised positions shall not be promised to a person prior to recruitment and selection.
Applicants shall be considered ineligible for hire or rehire by Otero County if the applicant has:
Knowingly made any false statement or omission on the employment application;
Not met the requirements of the position;
Failed to complete pre-employment examinations drug/alcohol or other requirements as directed by the County;
Not met the criteria for insurance or bonding as required by County or state law;
Been dismissed from County service as a disciplinary measure;
Not been certified by a physician that the applicant can perform the physical requirements or the essential requirements of the position;
Been convicted for driving while under the influence of alcohol or drugs in the three years prior to the date of the application, if a valid New Mexico driver's license is required for the position;
Been convicted of or plead guilty to or entered a plea of nolo contendere to any felony charge to any violation of any federal or state law or local ordinance relating to aggravated assault, theft, driving while intoxicated, controlled substances or other crimes involving other moral turpitude and/or has not been released or discharged under dishonorable conditions from any of the armed forces of the United States within the three-year period immediately preceding his/her application (NMSA 1978, § 29-7-6).
In addition to the above criteria, ineligibility of applicants for Deputy Sheriff and Detention Officer applies as follows: No person who is not a citizen of the State of New Mexico, is convicted of a felony, is under indictment, and/or is generally known for having a bad character or as a disturber of the peace shall be eligible to serve as a Deputy Sheriff or Detention Officer.
The above list is not necessarily exhaustive and may not include all of the reasons, which would make an applicant ineligible for hire or rehire.
The County may require an applicant to submit to testing for certain bona fide occupational qualifications to determine employment eligibility.
Applicants are required to provide an authorization for the County to check references and do background check. Only applicants who sign this written authorization will be considered for the position for which they have applied. References provided by applicants will be checked by the Human Resources Department. Human Resources will coordinate with the Sheriff's Department to run criminal background checks or through an independent company hired for that purpose. Applicants must receive satisfactory employment references or demonstrate a total of five years of previous satisfactory performance. Applicants who are entering the job market for the first time may substitute references from their educational background, including high school.