Chapter 3A.05
PAY ADMINISTRATION

Sections:

3A.05.010    Pay plan.

3A.05.020    Rates of pay.

3A.05.030    Advancement within a pay range.

3A.05.040    Adjudicative proceeding to dispute a determination of overpaid wages.

3A.05.010 Pay plan.

The director shall prepare and submit an annual pay ordinance to the council. The proposed ordinance shall contain an annual pay plan setting forth the official pay range for each class of work in the classification plan. The council may amend or alter the proposed ordinance in any manner.

The director shall administer the pay plan for all positions in the classified service in accordance with the provisions of this title. The director may at any time recommend to the council amendments or revisions to the plan.

(Added Ord. 84-129, § 2, Nov. 21, 1984).

3A.05.020 Rates of pay.

No employee will be paid at a rate of pay less than the minimum nor more than the maximum established for the employee’s job as set forth in the pay plan unless otherwise provided for in these rules. All pay rates in the pay plan are based upon full-time employment at the normal working hours for the position. For purposes of pay administration, full-time employment is defined as work consisting of at least 35 hours per week.

(1) Starting Rate upon Initial Employment. New employees will be appointed at the minimum step of the pay range in effect for the particular classification or position to which the appointment is made unless the employing official has requested and received prior authorization from the director to fill the position at some other step in the pay range. In no event will the starting rate of pay exceed the maximum rate of the pay range.

(2) Pay Rate upon Promotion. An employee who is promoted will be paid at the step in the pay range for the classification to which the employee is promoted, which represents at least a one-step pay increase over the rate of pay received immediately prior to the promotion or at the minimum step of the new pay range, whichever is greater; however such increase may not exceed the maximum step of the new pay range. A greater pay rate may be permitted upon promotion to correct the situation where a supervisor would receive less than a subordinate through application of this rule.

(3) Pay Rate upon Demotion. An employee who is demoted to a lower classification for reasons other than misconduct may be paid at the step in the pay range assigned to the lower classification which is appropriate to the circumstances surrounding the demotion as determined by the director, the affected employee’s experience and training, and the availability of funds. An employee who accepts a voluntary demotion because of organizational changes or reduction in force or who requests a voluntary demotion for personal reasons will be paid at that step in the lower pay range that results in at least a one-step reduction in pay unless such reduction would result in the employee being paid below the minimum step in the lower pay range.

(4) Pay Rate upon Demotion from Promotion. An employee who is demoted from trial service following promotion will be paid at the step in the lower pay range that the employee held before promotion, however adjustments will be made to take into account any pay increase that would have occurred had the employee not been promoted.

(5) Pay Rate upon Transfer. An employee who transfers from one position to another within the same class, or from a position in one class to a position in a different class that is assigned to the same pay range, will continue to receive the same rate of pay as before the transfer.

(6) Pay Rate upon Reinstatement or Rehire. A person who is recalled from layoff within two years, or who returns from an approved unpaid leave of absence, or who is rehired following separation from county employment within one year from the date of break in service, and who is reemployed in the same classification as held before the break in service, will, unless otherwise prohibited by state or federal law, be paid at the same step in the pay range as held prior to the break in service, subject to the availability of budgeted funds. If such person is reemployed in a classification other than the original classification, the rate of pay will be at the minimum step of the pay range for the new classification, unless otherwise approved by the director.

(7) Pay Rate Following Reclassification. An employee occupying a position that is reclassified to another class with the same pay range will receive the same rate of pay as before the reclassification. If the position is reclassified to a class with a higher pay range, the employee will receive an increase in pay as provided for in cases of promotion. If a position is reclassified to a class with a lower pay range, the employee’s rate of pay will be frozen for a period of 12 calendar months. Upon expiration of the 12-month period, the employee will be paid at the step in the lower pay range that results in the least reduction in pay.

(8) Pay Rate Following Adjustment to the Pay Range. If a class is reassigned to a new pay range, with no change in duties or responsibilities, the employee will be paid at that step in the new pay range that most closely corresponds to the employee’s placement in the original pay range.

(9) Pay Rate for Temporary and Regular Part-time Employment. Temporary and regular part-time employees will be paid for actual hours worked at an hourly rate of pay equivalent to the rate paid regular full-time employees performing substantially the same type of work. Where no similar work is normally performed, the director will establish an appropriate pay rate after consulting with the employing official.

(10) Call-Back Pay. When an employee has completed the employee’s regularly scheduled shift or work week and is "called back," the employee will be entitled to a minimum of three hours call-back pay at the employee’s regular hourly rate of pay. Employees whose jobs normally require attendance at meetings outside of normal office hours or whose working conditions require regular call-backs as a normal part of the job will not be entitled to call-back pay. When the total number of hours worked in one week exceeds 40 hours, the call-back provisions of this section will cease to apply and the overtime provisions of subsection (11) of this section will apply.

(11) Overtime Compensation for a Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) Non-Exempt Employee. In the case of a FLSA non-exempt employee who is working less than a 40-hour work week, all hours worked in excess of the normally scheduled work week up to a maximum of 40 hours per week shall be compensated at the straight-time rate of pay. For hours worked in excess of 40 in a work week, overtime compensation shall be paid or compensatory time shall be granted upon approval by supervisor in conformity with the requirements of the FLSA and applicable state wage and hours laws. Holidays, sick leave, bereavement leave, vacation leave and compensatory time will be considered time worked for the purpose of calculating overtime pay. In order for a holiday to be considered time worked, the holiday must either be worked or fall within the employee’s scheduled work days.

(12) Additional Compensation for a FLSA-Exempt Employee. A FLSA-exempt employee may receive compensation in addition to his or her regular salary if: (a) the FLSA-exempt employee is required to directly supervise subordinate employees in their performance of overtime work caused by an unplanned emergency; (b) the supervised overtime is substantial; (c) failure to grant such additional compensation would result in the pay of subordinates exceeding that of their supervisors; and (d) necessary funds are available and have been specifically budgeted for this purpose. Additional compensation may be paid to a FLSA-exempt employee under the circumstances listed above if the department head verifies that the circumstances listed above have been met. If additional compensation is paid, it will be paid at the rate of one and a half times the FLSA-exempt employee’s equivalent hourly rate of pay. Holidays, sick leave, bereavement leave, vacation leave and compensatory time will be considered time worked for the purpose of calculating overtime pay. In order for a holiday to be considered time worked, the holiday must either be worked or fall within the employee’s scheduled work days.

(13) Out-of-Class-Pay. An employee who is temporarily assigned work in a higher classification and, in fact, performs substantially the full scope of the work of the higher classification for a period of one working day or more, including consecutive hours the following day, will be paid at the rate of pay assigned to the higher classification according to the provisions of these rules governing pay rate upon promotion for all hours actually worked in the higher classification.

(14) Temporary Upgrade. When an out-of-class assignment is expected to continue for more than 30 calendar days, the employee will be placed in a temporary upgrade. All hours worked or designated as paid leave while in a temporary upgrade will be paid at the rate of pay assigned to the higher classification.

(Added Ord. 84-129, § 2, Nov. 21, 1984; Amended Emergency Ord. 92-151, Nov. 25, 1992; Amended Ord. 97-054, § 1, July 9, 1997, Eff date July 20, 1997; Amended by Ord. 13-070, Oct. 9, 2013, Eff date Oct. 20, 2013).

3A.05.030 Advancement within a pay range.

Employees in regular appointments will receive increases in pay within the steps of the pay range for their classification contingent upon: satisfactory job performance, as determined by the hiring official; and the availability of funds, as determined by the council. An employee in a regular appointment is eligible to be considered for such performance increase annually on the employee’s anniversary date representing the completion of one year of service in the same job classification at the same step in the pay range except as provided herein.

(1) Deferral of Performance Increase. Performance increases are contingent upon satisfactory job performance as determined by the hiring official and the availability of funds as determined by the council. If an employee’s performance is less than satisfactory during the year preceding the employee’s anniversary date, the employing official may, with prior approval of the director, defer the increase for a stipulated period of time until specific improvement is made in the employee’s performance. The reasons for denial of a performance increase will be provided to the employee. A denied performance increase may be approved at any time the employing official determines that the employee has demonstrated satisfactory performance improvement. If the denial exceeds six months because the employee’s performance has not improved sufficiently, any pay increase will be withheld until the employee’s next anniversary date.

(2) Anniversary Date Administration. The anniversary date for an increase in pay within the steps of the pay range shall be the first day of the month as specified in this subsection. An employee hired between the first and the fifteenth of any month will have an anniversary date of the first of the month in which the hiring occurred. An employee hired between the sixteenth and the last day of any month will have an anniversary date of the first of the following month.

(3) Adjustment to Anniversary Date.

(a) The anniversary date once established at the time of initial employment will not be changed due to subsequent reclassification, promotion or demotion, but will, unless otherwise prohibited by state or federal law, be adjusted for any leave without pay or layoff period of more than 90 consecutive calendar days. When an employee returns from a leave without pay or a layoff that is 90 days or longer and is reemployed in the same classification, the anniversary date will, unless otherwise prohibited by state or federal law, be extended by the number of days equal to the period of leave without pay or layoff in excess of 90 calendar days. A new anniversary date will be calculated from this revised date in accordance with subsection (2) of this section.

(b) When an employee returns from leave without pay or layoff and is reemployed in a classification other than that originally held, the original anniversary date will, unless otherwise prohibited by state or federal law, be eliminated and the date of reemployment will be used to calculate the new anniversary date.

(4) Alternative Advancement Program. The director may recommend alternative advancement programs covering specific occupations to the council as a part of the annual pay plan(s). Such programs will only be effective when approved by the council and may modify or supersede the program described by this chapter. Criteria for advancement in such programs may include but are not limited to employee performance, demonstrated knowledge, skill or ability, completed training and education and increased longevity.

(Added Ord. 84-129, § 2, Nov. 21, 1984; Amended Ord. 94-074, § 1, Aug. 17, 1994; Amended by Ord. 13-070, Oct. 9, 2013, Eff date Oct. 20, 2013).

3A.05.040 Adjudicative proceeding to dispute a determination of overpaid wages.

(1) As used in this section, "director" shall mean the director of the department of finance or his or her designee.

(2) Any non-represented employee wishing to dispute a determination of overpaid wages pursuant to RCW 49.48.210(5) and as the same may be hereafter amended may request an adjudicative proceeding before the hearing examiner in the manner set forth below.

(3) Applications for adjudicative proceedings shall be processed pursuant to the provisions of chapter 2.02 SCC except as otherwise provided by this section.

(4) The employee’s application for an adjudicative proceeding must:

(a) Be in writing;

(b) State the basis for contesting the overpayment notice;

(c) Include a copy of the director’s notice of overpayment; and

(d) Include a copy of the director’s decision on review of the employee’s challenge to the overpayment notice.

(5) The application for adjudicative proceeding must be served on the director within 28 calendar days of the employee’s receipt of the director’s decision following review of the employee’s challenge under chapter 49.48 RCW and as the same may be hereafter amended.

(6) The employee must serve the director with the application for adjudicative proceeding by certified mail, return receipt requested.

(7) Once the employee has notified the director that he or she wishes to appeal the director’s review decision, the director shall transmit the employee’s application for an adjudicative proceeding (request for hearing) to the office of hearings administration (OHA) within three business days after receiving it from the employee.

(8) In any wage overpayment matter that is appealed, the director shall provide OHA with the following information:

(a) The name of the director’s contact in the matter and any contact information;

(b) The name of the employee and any contact information, including address and telephone number;

(c) The name and address of the director’s designee where the file should be sent after OHA closes the adjudicative proceeding.

(9) Within five business days of receipt of the employee’s request for hearing, the director shall also transmit to OHA the relevant case file, including documents which the director intends to use as exhibits in the hearing. The case file and documents may be transmitted to OHA together with the request for hearing. If the case file and documents are exceptionally voluminous, the director should contact OHA for instructions before transmitting them.

(10) The OHA shall issue notice of hearing to the employee and the director pursuant to SCC 2.02.125.

(11) Either party may request a prehearing conference.

(12) The hearing may be held telephonically at the discretion of the hearing examiner unless the rights of the parties will be prejudiced thereby.

(13) The hearing examiner shall hear the evidence presented by both the employee and the director regarding the wage overpayment. The hearing examiner shall decide based upon that evidence whether a wage overpayment has occurred and, if so, shall determine the amount, if any, of the overpayment of wages received by the employee.

(14) If the employee fails to attend or participate in the adjudicative proceeding, upon a showing of valid service of the notice of hearing, the hearing examiner may enter an order declaring the amount claimed in the notice sent to the employee after the director’s review of the employee’s challenge to the overpayment to be assessed against the employee and subject to collection action by the director as provided in RCW 49.48.200 and as the same may be hereafter amended.

(15) The decision of the hearing examiner in any wage overpayment adjudicative proceeding shall be considered a final order. Judicial review of the hearing examiner’s decision may be sought pursuant to SCC 2.02.195.

(Added by Ord. 14-061, Aug. 20, 2014, Eff date Sep. 7, 2014).