(a) The commission and council shall study the following issues relating to employment practices:
(1) Developing a fair and rational policy based upon best human resources practices for covering reductions in force, furloughs and other issues relating to seniority, including determining how employees shall be treated whose salaries are derived from funds other than state appropriations;
(2) Determining the advantages and disadvantages of maintaining the internal preferences for hiring, promoting and transferring classified employees;
(3) Determining the appropriate definition of a "nonclassified" position, recommending a best practice criteria for designating positions as nonclassified and recommending the appropriate number or ratio of nonclassified positions for commission and council organizations.
(4) Recommending a rational, uniform policy to determine the status of employees whose positions are funded, in whole or in part, by an external grant or contract from a federal, state or local government or a private entity.
(b) The commission and council shall complete the work and report their findings, conclusions and recommendations, together with drafts of any legislation necessary to effectuate the recommendations, to the Legislative Oversight Commission on Education Accountability upon completion, but no later than January 1, 2018.