A. Paid sick leave is available to all employees for all uses permitted by law as set forth in the District’s Personnel Policies and Procedures.
Each full-time employee will earn sick leave from the date of employment, at the rate of 3.70 hours per biweekly pay period (96 hours/year). Regular part-time employees shall receive sick leave pay on a pro rata basis according to hours worked. This does not apply to temporary employees. Unused sick leave may be accumulated without limit. Unit members may use up to one-half of one year’s annual accrual (e.g., 48 hours for full-time employees) for family sick leave purposes.
B. Sick leave may be used for reasons provided by law as set forth in the District’s Personnel Policies and Procedures, and such things as: personal illness or injury; required attendance of an employee upon a sick or injured spouse, child or other immediate family member residing with the employee; medical or dental appointments to the extent that such appointments cannot be scheduled outside the work day. An employee may be granted sick leave only in the case of actual sickness as defined herein. No employee who is on sick leave shall engage in work or other activities which would negatively affect the employee’s ability to return to work and to perform the duties assigned.
C. Sick Leave Requests. An employee requesting sick leave shall notify his/her immediate supervisor or the Department Head no later than one (1) hour before the time their work shift begins or immediately when taken ill during work hours. Failure to do so without good reason, as determined by the Administrative Services Officer, Department Head, or their designee, may result in that day of absence being treated as leave of absence without pay. The employee, or the employee’s designee, will first attempt to personally notify the employee’s immediate supervisor or Department Head before utilizing voicemail, e-mail, and/or text message to make the sick leave request.
D. Physician’s Certificate Requirements. In the event that an employee has requested or taken sick leave for three (3) or more workdays, the District may require the employee to immediately, or as soon as possible, provide a physician’s certificate as to the illness or injury, duration, the treatment recommended for it, and/or an approval of the employee’s intended return to work. However, the District may require such certification regarding sick leave use at any time, including when the District has reason to believe that sick leave is being abused. The General Manager or the General Manager’s authorized representative may terminate or withhold said benefits if the employee fails to furnish satisfactory or non-falsified proof of illness or accident.
E. Abuse of Sick Leave. An employee is subject to disciplinary action for abuse of sick leave which is defined as a claim of entitlement to sick leave when the employee does not meet the requirements of sick leave as defined above, when they engage in work or other activities which negatively affect their ability to return to work, or when they furnish falsified proof of illness or accident.
F. Excessive Use of Sick Leave. Excessive use of unprotected sick leave may be considered in establishing the performance rating. Unprotected sick leave is sick leave which is not used in connection with Family Sick Leave, a reasonable accommodation for a disability, or any other leave that is provided under the law for which sick leave may be used. Excessive use of sick leave, tardiness, and failing to use the call-in procedures when absent or tardy can negatively impact the performance of your job or affect others in the performance of their job. Examples of excess use may include whether an employee’s sick leave use indicates a pattern of use on or around specific days of the week, the number of absences compared to other employees, whether absenteeism is limited to a finite time period or whether it continues over time, the basis for the absenteeism and the significance of the impact on the performance of the employee’s job or of others.
G. Upon termination of a full-time or regular part-time employee in good standing (i.e., resignation/retirement excluding disciplinary termination and resignation/retirement in lieu of disciplinary termination), he/she will be paid for 50% of accumulated but unused sick leave, up to a maximum accrual amount of 720 hours. Therefore, the maximum that will be paid is 50% x 720 = 360 hours.
H. Employees may voluntarily transfer up to forty (40) hours of unused sick leave per fiscal year in one (1) hour increments to a "sick leave bank" under the conditions established herein. The sick leave transfer shall be on an hour for hour basis and subject to the following conditions:
- The employee donating the sick leave must have a minimum of eighty (80) hours of accrued sick leave available after the donation. No transfers of sick leave shall be allowed when the donating employee is terminated, separated or retires from the District within nine (9) months after the donation. All transfers to the "sick leave bank" shall be non-reversible and donations shall be processed on the District's Personnel Action Form in the same manner as any other leave request.
- Employees eligible to receive sick leave hours from the "sick leave bank" must have been employed by the District for a minimum of eighteen (18) months, have exhausted all paid leave and are suffering from a long term illness or injury that will result in the loss of work for a period of at least twenty consecutive (20) working days. These "sick leave bank" provisions shall extend to the required attendance of an employee for the care of a spouse, child or other immediate family member residing with the employee. The General Manager shall review, approve, modify or deny requests for use of the "sick leave bank" based on the employee requests and the criteria established in this Section.
- Employees utilizing the "sick leave bank" may integrate these benefits with the provisions of Section 36 of this Memorandum of Understanding for State Disability Insurance, as well as Worker's Compensation, provided however, that the total compensation from these sources combined shall not exceed the employee’s base salary.
- The District reserves the right to request additional information on the nature of the injury or illness and/or require verification from a medical doctor regarding the diagnosis prior to making an eligibility determination.
- The maximum sick leave available for use by an eligible employee during any twelve (12) month period shall be the lesser of 1056 hours or the amount of sick leave available in the "sick leave bank". Allocation of hours from the "sick leave bank" shall commence on the date that all other leave of the requesting employee is exhausted. Subsequent eligibility by additional employees for use of the "sick leave bank" shall result in the concurrent use of available hours in the "sick leave bank".
I. Twenty four (24) hours of sick leave may be converted to vacation or pay if no sick leave is used by an employee during the calendar year provided that the employee was employed continuously from January 1st through December 31st. The employee must request the conversion during the month of January for the previous calendar year. Failure to request the conversion during January will result in ineligibility for conversion for the previous calendar year. All requests for conversion are non-reversible and shall require prior approval by the General Manager.