Governor Haslam signs civil service overhaul bill

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) -- Gov. Bill Haslam has signed his plan to overhaul state civil service rules.

The Republican governor signed the legislation in a ceremony Tuesday across from the state Capitol. He was joined by state employees, legislators and members of his cabinet.

The measure will make it easier for executive branch employees to be hired and fired, and will allow for merit raises for high-performing workers -- and pay decreases for poor ones.

The bill will also require written performance standards and annual evaluations, set a minimum of three candidates to be interviewed for openings, and reduce the minimum layoff notice from three months to 30 days.

Veterans and their spouses will receive preference if there are two candidates with equal qualifications and one is a veteran.

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