Chapter 2.35
VACATION AND SICK LEAVE

Sections:

2.35.010    Definitions.

2.35.020    Holidays.

2.35.025    Unpaid holidays.

2.35.030    Vacations.

2.35.040    Compensating time.

2.35.045    Shared leave.

2.35.050    Emergency service.

2.35.060    Sick leave.

2.35.070    Transfer of position.

2.35.075    Special duty pay.

2.35.080    Extenuating circumstances.

2.35.090    Conflict.

2.35.010 Definitions.

A. “Compensating time” is that period of time that an employee may have away service of the city due to service in excess of regular hours.

B. “Continuous service” is continuous service of an employee of the city and shall continue until resignation or involuntary dismissal. Military leave of not to exceed 30 days in any one calendar year, absence because of military service in time of war, and permitted sick leave shall not constitute an interruption of continuous service.

C. “Contract employee” is an employee whose terms and conditions of employment are determined by an annual contract with the city. Contract employees shall include but are not limited to the council resource person; provided, however, that no person shall be deemed a contract employee without the express authorization of the city council. The provisions of the contract shall govern and control and no provision of any collective bargaining agreement or this chapter shall be applicable to the position unless specifically referenced in the contract and the city ordinance. The employee shall receive only those benefits provided by the contract or specifically required pursuant to state or federal law.

D. “Day” means a standard eight-hour work day. The vacation, sick leave and other accruals referenced in this chapter shall be converted to a total of hours earned, based upon each day of accrual equaling eight hours of accrual.

E. “Employee” means those persons employed in the service of the city on a full-time basis and who are remunerated pursuant to the annual salary ordinance, other than those persons for whom the city has recognized a sole collective bargaining agent.

F. “Service” is being present for and/or performing the duty to which an employee of the city has been assigned.

G. “Spouse” shall mean an individual who is married to a city employee under the laws of the state of Washington, or who is in a domestic partnership which has been registered with the state of Washington in accord with the provisions of Chapter 43.07 RCW. [Ord. 3675 § 1, 2007; Ord. 3547 § 1, 2005; Ord. 2870 § 2, 1992].

2.35.020 Holidays.

A. Each employee shall be entitled to one day away from service for each of the following holidays:

January 1st (New Year’s Day);

Third Monday of January (Martin Luther King, Jr. Day);

Third Monday of February (President’s Day);

Last Monday of May (Memorial Day);

July 4th (Anniversary of Declaration of Independence);

First Monday of September (Labor Day);

November 11th (Veteran’s Day);

Fourth Thursday of November (Thanksgiving Day);

Day immediately following Thanksgiving Day;

December 24th and 25th (Christmas Eve and Christmas Day);

B. Each employee who, because of the nature of his/her service, serves on a holiday, shall be compensated in accordance with the following provisions:

1. Employees classified as nonexempt shall, at his/her option, be compensated for work on that holiday either by payment for such work at the overtime rate of pay or, may, at his/her election receive an equivalent amount of compensatory time off at a date convenient to the city. Such day away from service shall be set at a date mutually agreed upon, but shall be set within 12 months of the holiday served. Such rate of pay shall not be pyramided in the event that any hours worked are subject to the overtime provisions of the Fair Labor Standards Act.

2. Exempt employees shall be permitted one full day away from service with full pay on a day which he/she would otherwise have served. Such day off shall be scheduled at a date mutually agreed upon within 12 months of the holiday served.

C. No employee shall be called to work on any holiday for less than a full day of work. When any of the aforementioned holidays falls on a Sunday, the Monday following shall be considered the holiday. If the holiday occurs during an employee’s vacation, he/she shall receive the holiday pay in addition to his/her vacation pay.

D. Nothing in this section shall be construed to have the effect of adding or deleting the number of paid holidays provided for in any existing agreement between the city and any group or groups of employees of the city.

If any of the legal holidays set forth in this section are also federal legal holidays but observed on different dates, only the holiday occurring on the date specified shall be recognized as a paid legal holiday. In no case shall both be recognized as paid legal holidays for employees. [Ord. 3404 § 1, 2002; Ord. 2821 § 1, 1991; Ord. 2571 § 1, 1986; Ord. 1862 § 1, 1976; Ord. 1422, 1969; Ord. 1168 § 2, 1966].

2.35.025 Unpaid holidays.

A. Employees are entitled to two unpaid holidays per calendar year for a reason of faith or conscience or an organized activity conducted under the auspices of a religious denomination, church, or religious organization.

B. The employee may select the days on which he or she desires to take the two unpaid holidays after consultation with his or her supervisor. If an employee prefers to take the two unpaid holidays on specific days, then the employee will be allowed to take the unpaid holidays on the days he or she has selected unless the absence would unduly disrupt operations, impose an undue hardship, or the employee is necessary to maintain public safety. The term “undue hardship” has the meaning contained in the rule established by the Office of Financial Management at WAC 82-56-020.

C. If possible, an employee should submit a written request for an unpaid holiday provided for by this section to the employee’s department head a minimum of two weeks prior to the requested day. Approval of the unpaid holiday shall not be deemed approved unless it has been authorized in writing by the employee’s department head. The employee’s department head shall work with HR to evaluate requests by considering the desires of the employee, scheduled work, anticipated peak workloads, response to unexpected emergencies, the availability, if any, of a qualified substitute, and consideration of the meaning of “undue hardship” developed by rule of the Office of Financial Management at WAC 82-56-020.

D. The two unpaid holidays allowed by this section must be taken during the calendar year, if at all; they do not carry over from one year to the next. [Ord. 3972 § 1, 2014].

2.35.030 Vacations.

A. Regular employees shall accrue the following amount of vacation leave with pay based on the length of continuous service, as that term is defined in the personnel policies:

1. Nonexempt, represented employees shall receive vacation leave in accordance with the applicable collective bargaining agreement;

2. Nonexempt and exempt nonrepresented employees below the level of supervisor shall accrue annual vacation in accordance with the following schedule:

Years of Employment

Days of Vacation

After the first 6 months of continuous employment

6 days of credit

Second 6 months of continuous employment

5 days additional

2 years through 5 years

11 days per year

6 years through 11 years

16 days per year

12 years through 19 years

21 days per year

20 years and thereafter

22 days per year

3. Division managers, supervisors, and equivalent positions, consisting of those individuals designated as such in the annual salary ordinance, shall accrue annual vacation in accordance with the following schedule:

Years of Employment

Days of Vacation

After the first 6 months of continuous employment

8 days of credit

Second 6 months of continuous employment

8 days additional

2 years through 5 years

16 days per year

6 years through 11 years

21 days per year

12 years through 19 years

22 days per year

20 years through 24 years

25 days per year

25 years and thereafter

27 days per year

4. The police chief and those individuals designated on the annual salary ordinance as directors shall initially accrue 22 days of vacation per year. Such accrual shall be credited on a semi-monthly basis with each employee’s paycheck, except as provided above. The rate of accrual shall be reflected by a credit equal to the proportionate share of vacation earned for the period.

B. Employees are encouraged to use their accumulated vacation time within the year in which it is accrued. Vacation accruals of up to two years’ accumulation may be carried over from one year to the next.

C. Any employee whose service is honorably terminated after the completion of six months of continuous service shall be paid for any vacation time accumulated prior to the effective date of termination. [Ord. 3917 § 3, 2013; Ord. 3583 § 1, 2006; Ord. 3545 § 2, 2005; Ord. 3505 § 1, 2004; Ord. 3279 § 2, 1999; Ord. 2970 § 1, 1994; Ord. 2716, 1989].

2.35.040 Compensating time.

When work beyond regular hours is required of an employee of the city (excluding those employees designated as exempt from this benefit on the annual salary schedule) compensating time off may be allowed as city requirements permit, subject to the following requirements:

A. Nonexempt employees, on their request and at the city’s option, may be permitted to take compensating time off at the overtime rate of one and one-half times the actual overtime worked in lieu of payment; provided, that such employees may not accumulate more than 48 hours of compensating time and any compensating time off must be used within the 12-month period following the date on which overtime is earned.

B. All exempt employees other than those excluded by the annual salary ordinance (see subsection (E) of this section) shall receive compensatory time for night meetings, emergency call outs, and other similar periods for which they are required by their supervisor to work. Compensating time shall not be earned for short extensions of regular work hours less than one hour in length, such as staying late or coming in early. Compensatory time for such exempt employees shall be earned at the straight time rate, one hour of compensatory time earned for each hour worked. The measurement of such time shall be in accordance with the mayor’s administrative policies. Such exempt employees shall be allowed to accumulate up to a maximum of 48 hours of compensatory time during any calendar year. The terms of use shall be as established by the mayor’s administrative policy. If an employee earns additional compensatory time after he or she has accumulated the maximum, then the employee must either be paid for the additional time or provided time off during the next pay period.

C. Compensating time shall be taken at the convenience of the city. All compensating time must be recorded and then approved by the employee’s supervisor and/or department head.

D. Upon termination no exempt employees shall be paid for unused compensatory time. Nonexempt employees shall be paid for unused compensating time at one and one-half times the overtime worked. However, every effort should be made to use compensating time prior to termination.

E. Employees designated as exempt from this compensating time provision shall receive a monthly salary as designated on the annual salary ordinance. Their presence or absence from the regular work schedule shall be reviewed in terms of the employee’s overall performance in accordance with the mayor’s administrative policies and the city personnel policies.

F. To be more competitive in the market place, the city will provide nonrepresented employees who are ineligible for compensatory time with 24 hours of management leave annually. Management leave will have no cash-out value and will not be carried over at the end of the calendar year. [Ord. 3917 § 3, 2013; Ord. 3505 § 2, 2004; Ord. 3279 § 3, 1999; Ord. 2732 § 1, 1989; Ord. 2542, 1985; Ord. 2508, 1985; Ord. 2482, 1985; Ord. 2340, 1983; Ord. 2204 § 1, 1981; Ord. 1939, 1977; Ord. 1168 § 4, 1966].

2.35.045 Shared leave.

A. Intent. The purpose of shared leave is to permit city employees, at no additional employee cost to the city other than the administrative cost of administering the program, to come to the aid of a fellow employee who is suffering from or has an immediate family member suffering from illness, injury, impairment, physical or mental conditions which has caused, or is likely to cause, the employee to take leave without pay or to terminate his or her employment. “Immediate family” is defined as spouse, registered domestic partner, son, daughter, mother, father, and in-laws of the same degree. The city may, but has no obligation to, approve recognition of other, significant relationships similar in nature to that of the immediate family, if the needs of the city permit. In addition to these purposes, the shared leave program may be used by employees who have been involuntarily called to military service.

B. A department director, with the mayor’s approval, may permit an employee to receive shared leave under this section if:

1. The employee suffers, or has an immediate family member suffering from an illness, injury, impairment or physical or mental condition, which has caused, or is likely to cause, the employee to go on leave without pay or to terminate his or her employment with the city. In addition, the shared leave program may be utilized by an employee who has been involuntarily called to active duty in the Washington National Guard, or in the Army, Navy, Air Force, Coast Guard or Marine Corps of the United States. An employee seeking to utilize the shared leave program due to an involuntary call to military service need not establish compliance with subsections (B)(2) through (4) of this section.

2. The employee has depleted or will shortly deplete his or her total of accrued vacation, sick leave, compensatory time, holiday time, and/or other paid leave.

3. Prior to a request to use shared leave, the employee has abided by the sick leave policy.

4. The employee has diligently pursued and is found to be ineligible for state industrial insurance benefits or such benefits have been exhausted.

5. Use of shared leave will not significantly increase the city’s costs except for those costs which would otherwise be incurred in the administration of this program and which would otherwise be incurred by the employee’s department.

C. The applicable department director, with the concurrence of the mayor, shall determine the amount of shared leave, if any, which an employee may receive under this section. The employee shall be required to provide appropriate medical justification and documentation both of the necessity for the leave and the time which the employee can reasonably be expected to be absent due to the condition. Shared leave shall be limited to no more than a maximum of six continuous calendar months or six months total in any five-year period and cannot be used to extend the absence of the employee beyond the post-leave time prescribed by state statute, the applicable labor agreement, or city policy.

D. Shared leave shall be funded through voluntary transfers of accrued vacation and/or sick leave from other city employees to the employee approved for a shared leave. Both vacation and sick leave can be donated for a shared leave request, which has been approved due to an extraordinary/catastrophic type illness or injury. Catastrophic illnesses or injuries are those which are potentially career-ending or life-threatening. For this type of request, all donated vacation must be used prior to any use of donated sick leave. For illnesses and injuries which are noncatastrophic in nature, only vacation leave can be donated and used. Sick leave donations are not allowed for this type of request. Co-workers who donate leave must retain a reasonable amount of accrued vacation and sick leave to protect them from a wage loss due to illness or injury and to enjoy a reasonable vacation period. When reviewing police employees, the police chief may consider holiday and compensatory time for purposes of approving shared leave requests and donations of leave time. Department directors shall not transfer any leave time in excess of the amount specified in the request. All donations shall be voluntary. The applicable department director shall determine that no significant increase in city costs will occur as a result of the transfer of leave.

E. Leave may be transferred from employee(s) from one department to an employee of the same department, or, with the concurrence of both department directors, to an employee of another department.

F. While an employee is on shared leave, he or she will continue to be classified as a city employee and shall receive the same treatment, in respect to salary and benefits, as the employee would otherwise receive if using vacation leave.

1. All salary benefit payments made to the employee on a shared leave shall be made by the department employing the person using the shared leave.

2. The employee’s salary rate shall not change as a result of being on shared leave nor, under any circumstances, shall the total of the employee’s salary and other benefits, including but not limited to state industrial insurance or any other benefit received as a result of payments by the city to an insurer, health care provider, or pension system, exceed the total of salary and benefits which the employee would have received had he or she been in a regular pay status.

G. Leave shall be transferred on a dollar-for-dollar basis. The value of the leave shall be determined at the current hourly wage of the transferor and the leave available to the receiving employee shall be calculated at the receiving employee’s wage.

H. The human resources department shall be responsible for computing values of donated leave and shared leave, and shall also be responsible for adjusting the accrued leave balances to show the transferred leave. The human resources department shall determine the appropriate fund transfers and budget amendments as needed for city council action. Records of all leave time transferred shall be maintained in the event any unused time is returned at a later date.

I. The value of any leave transferred which remains unused shall be returned at its original value to the employee or employees who donated the leave. The human resources department shall determine when shared leave is no longer needed. To the extent administratively feasible, the unused leave shall be returned on a pro rata basis.

J. The human resources department shall monitor the use of shared leave to ensure equivalent treatment for all employees of the city. Inappropriate use or treatment of the shared leave provision may result in cancellation of the donated leave or use of shared leave. [Ord. 3917 § 3, 2013; Ord. 3412 § 1, 2002; Ord. 3373 § 2, 2001; Ord. 2910 § 1, 1993; Ord. 2738 § 1, 1989].

2.35.050 Emergency service.

During an emergency all employees shall be available for extra duty as required by the city. [Ord. 1168 § 5, 1966].

2.35.060 Sick leave.

A. Represented employees accrue sick leave at the rate of and to the maximum established in the respective collective bargaining agreements. Nonrepresented employees shall accrue sick leave at the rate of one working day for each full calendar month of the employee’s continuous service. The maximum amount of accrued sick leave shall not exceed 1,000 hours for such nonrepresented employees.

B. Upon honorable termination, unused sick leave shall be paid to nonrepresented employees at a rate equal to one-half of the regular rate of pay at the date of termination to a maximum of 800 hours. In the event of the death of an employee, the payment for unused sick leave shall be paid to the surviving spouse or to the estate of the decedent if there is no surviving spouse. Honorable termination means resignation or lay-off due to lack of work or funding and shall not include any discharge for cause. In the event that further or conflicting terms are established by the provisions of collective bargaining agreements, such provisions shall control such payments to represented employees in accordance with their respective collective bargaining agreement.

C. An employee eligible for sick leave with pay shall be granted such leave for:

1. Employee’s own health condition (illness, injury, physical or mental disability, including disability due to pregnancy or childbirth);

2. The need to care for an ill family member in accordance with the family care policy;

3. Medical or dental appointments for the employee or dependent child; provided, that the employee must make a reasonable effort to schedule such appointments at times which have the least interference with the work day;

4. Exposure to a contagious disease where on-the-job presence of the employee would jeopardize the health of others;

5. Use of a prescription drug, which impairs job performance or safety;

6. Additional leave (maximum three days) beyond bereavement leave for a death in the immediate family to be authorized by the department head.

D. The certificate of a physician and/or a written report concerning the need for the sick leave may be required by the city, and if so required shall be supplied by the employee in order to qualify for sick leave with pay.

E. As an incentive to the appropriate use of sick leave, nonrepresented employees may earn additional leave hours on an inverse basis to the amount of sick leave used during the calendar year, in accordance with the following schedule:

Hours of Sick Leave Used

Annual Leave Hours Earned

0

24

8

16

16

8

24

0

Annual leave earned under this program shall be used in the calendar year in which the leave was earned. Absences compensated through the state workers’ compensation illness or injury program shall not be taken into consideration when applying the eligibility standards. The leave earned shall be pro-rated to the nearest full hour on the basis of sick leave used.

F. Nonrepresented employees who have accrued in excess of 800 hours of sick leave may convert the excess hours to a cash payment at the rate of three hours of sick leave for one hour of compensation at the employee’s current rate of pay, up to a maximum of $1,000 per year. The human resources department shall notify the employee of his or her accrued sick leave hours with the last paycheck in August of each year. The sick leave payout shall be paid with the first paycheck in January. Employees must request the optional sick leave payout within 10 working days from the date notice of accrued sick leave was provided.

G. Newly hired employees who are entitled to transfer sick leave from their previous employer to the city of Edmonds pursuant to interlocal agreement, collective bargaining agreement and/or state law may transfer such sick leave banks subject to the rules set forth in this section. In addition, a transferred employee who would, under the provisions of the city’s personnel policies, be required to pay back worker’s compensation benefits advanced by the city and thereby restore his/her sick leave bank may exercise such rights with respect to funds received from Labor and Industries as worker’s compensation within the first six months of their employment, thereby buying back sick leave which otherwise could have been transferred. [Ord. 3917 § 3, 2013; Ord. 3444 § 1, 2003; Ord. 3279 § 4, 1999; Ord. 2668 § 2, 1988; Ord. 2664 § 7, 1988; Ord. 1462, 1970; Ord. 1422, 1969; Ord. 1168 § 6, 1966].

2.35.070 Transfer of position.

In the event an employee is transferred from one position to another within the city, any accrued vacation time and/or accrued sick leave time and/or compensating time shall be available to the employee in his new position. [Ord. 1168 § 7, 1966].

2.35.075 Special duty pay.

A. The mayor is authorized to pay any manager or director level employee special duty pay in addition to that person’s regular compensation when the mayor has temporarily assigned special duties to that person. No employee may receive special duty pay for longer than one year without city council approval. “Special duties” are defined as those duties not included as “primary duties and responsibilities” in the employee’s official job description and not otherwise associated with the employee’s position.

B. Special duty pay shall consist of up to 10 percent of the employee’s salary at the time the special duties are assigned. The mayor is authorized to grant to each such employee up to five percent for special duty pay at the mayor’s discretion, and shall be based upon the scope of the additional responsibilities identified by the mayor. If the mayor determines that special duty pay above five percent is warranted for a particular employee, the mayor will be authorized to grant up to 10 percent for special duty pay upon prior approval by the city council. [Ord. 3917 § 4, 2013].

2.35.080 Extenuating circumstances.

The foregoing provisions of this chapter shall be considered as minimum employee privileges, which may be extended for extenuating circumstances upon the approval of the mayor. [Ord. 1168 § 8, 1966].

2.35.090 Conflict.

A. In the event that any provision of this chapter or any provision of this title shall conflict with any provision of an employment contract or collective bargaining agreement approved by the city council, such contract or agreement shall prevail. In no event shall any employee be entitled to claim greater benefits under this chapter than those provided for by a collective bargaining agreement or employee contract covering said individual’s employment.

B. It is understood that in order to attract experienced personnel, the city may be required to authorize deviations from the benefits established by this title or through the city’s personnel manual. During the course of any budget year, the mayor or his designee is authorized to extend offer letters to individuals which provide for benefits greater than those to which an entry-level employee would be entitled. The purpose of this authorization is to permit the city to attract persons with experience at comparable public agencies. When the mayor, in his discretion, believes that it is necessary to attract such individuals to the city, benefits may be authorized which place an individual at a higher level of benefits, such as vacation accrual, than their hire date would otherwise indicate. Such employment offers shall be ratified by the city council. In the event such ratification is not granted, the individual shall retain those benefits only for the budget year in which they are offered. The mayor’s offer shall not exceed the maximum imposed for employees of the classification or job status which has been established for such benefit without the prior written consent of the city council. All such offers shall be limited to and within the funds budgeted for the budget year in which the offer is made. [Ord. 3505 § 3, 2004; Ord. 2571 § 3, 1986].