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Collection Guide
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Inventory of the California Merit Award Board Records
R321  
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Series Descriptions

ID R321.1, Box 1, Folders 1-14

Series 1 Meeting Files 1955-1978

Physical Description: 14 file folders

Arrangement

Arranged chronologically.

Scope and Content Note

These files include agendas, minutes, correspondence, reports, and schedules of future meetings. Many of the meeting files only contain the minutes of the previous meeting. The minutes include lists of suggestion numbers categorized by action type, such as: authorized cash payment, awarded a Certificate of Commendation, issued a complimentary letter, etc. The majority of reports pertain to the tracking of the number of suggestions received, accepted, and rejected for the month or year. A noteworthy feature of the meeting files was the ongoing discussions of the passage of AB3265 in 1957. The purpose of this incentive program was to provide awards for state employees who perform special acts or services in the public interest, by their superior accomplishments making exceptional contributions to the efficiency or economy in the operations of the state government.
ID R321.2, Box 1-2, Folders 15-12

Series 2 Accepted Proposal Files 1954-1972

Physical Description: 21 file folders

Arrangement

Divided into subseries ESP and WIP and arranged chronologically thereunder.

Scope and Content Note

Accepted Proposal Files include the original suggestion form, which provides the name, title, and agency of the employee, as well as the date and full text of their suggestion. The files also include analysis by the affected agency, and various related correspondence. Many files also include samples of the proposed changes. These samples may include maps, photographs, drawings, altered forms or labels, and a toothbrush.
The Employee Suggestion Program (ESP) Files relate to the ongoing program whereby state employees submitted their suggestions directly to the Merit Award Board, whereas the Governor's Work Improvement Program (WIP) was a two-year promotional project (1958-1960) whereby employees would submit ideas to their supervisors for approval or rejection. Only those suggestions recommended for an award were advanced to the MAB. A suggestion that described a specific problem, offered a workable solution, and was intended to be of benefit of the State would be accepted for evaluation. An employee was not eligible for an award for a suggestion pertaining to a subject assigned as part of normal job requirements. The total amount of a cash award allowed may not be less than $10 and usually would not exceed $150.
ID R321.3, Box 2-3, Folders 13-13

Series 3 Rejected Proposal Files 1953-1966

Physical Description: 22 file folders

Arrangement

Divided into subseries ESP and WIP and arranged chronologically thereunder.

Scope and Content Note

Rejected Proposal Files include the original suggestion form, which provides the name, title, and agency of the employee, as well as the date and full text of their suggestion. The files also include analysis by the affected agency, and various related correspondence. Many files also include samples of the proposed changes. These samples may include maps, photographs, drawings, altered forms or labels, and a toothbrush. A suggestion was typically rejected for unoriginality, infeasibility, or insufficient cost savings. Photograph negatives have been separated to a cold-storage vault for preservation purposes and separation sheets are in the proposal files to alert the researcher to the existence of these items.
The Employee Suggestion Program (ESP) was an ongoing program whereby state employees would submit their suggestions directly to the Merit Award Board, whereas the Governor's Work Improvement Program (WIP) was a two-year promotional project (1958-1960) whereby employees would submit ideas to their supervisors for approval or rejection. Only those suggestions recommended for an award were advanced to the MAB. A suggestion that described a specific problem, offered a workable solution, and was intended to be of benefit of the State would be accepted for evaluation. An employee was not eligible for an award for a suggestion pertaining to a subject assigned as part of normal job requirements. The total amount of a cash award allowed may not be less than $10 and usually would not exceed $150.