AFSCME - Frequently Asked Questions

Human Resources Benefits

AFSCME - Frequently Asked Questions


Are temporary employees entitled to paid leave?

750 Hour Rule: Temporary employees are entitled to annual and sick leave only after working 750 hours by the end of the last full pay period in each leave calendar year. If the employee is absent before the 750 hours is earned, leave will be charged to either AO (Approved Absence without Pay) or SO (Sick Leave without Pay).

Temporary employees are not entitled to Personal Leave or Holiday Leave.

Are leave earnings retroactive to the appointment date once the 750 hours are earned?

Annual and Sick leave earnings are retroactive to the appointment date.

Are temporary employees entitled to Personal or Holiday Leave once the 750 hours are earned?

Temporary employees are not entitled to Personal Leave or Holiday Leave even after earning 750 hours.

Are employees eligible for Holiday Leave retroactively if they transfer to a permanent position?

Employees are not entitled to holidays prior to becoming permanent.

When would a new permanent employee be considered eligible to use paid leave?
  • Annual leave: After 30 calendar days of service
  • Sick leave:After 30 calendar days of service
  • Personal leave: After working 150 hours in a calendar quarter
Are permanent employees permitted to anticipate leave usage?

Permanent employees with less than one year of service since their

last date of hire may not anticipate leave.

Are employees permitted to carry annual leave into the next leave calendar year?

Employees may carry 45 days into the new leave calendar year.

What if an employee has annual leave in excess of 45 days?

The employee is permitted to carry unused annual leave in excess of 45 days into the first seven (7) pay periods of the next leave calendar year.

Excess annual leave not used within the seven (7) pay periods will be converted to sick leave subject to the 300 day limitation on sick leave.

Are employees permitted to carry personal leave into the next leave calendar year?

Employees are permitted to carry unused personal leave into the first seven (7) pay periods of the next leave calendar year. Excess personal leave not used within the seven (7) pay periods will be lost.

Are employees permitted to carry sick leave earnings into the next leave calendar year?

Employees are permitted to carry sick leave into the next leave calendar year

to a maximum of 300 days.

What is the procedure for requesting time off?

Leave requests are submitted for approval through the Employee Self Service (ESS) portal with the exception of Injury Leave requests.

All injury leave requests ending in “I” or “M” must be submitted by completing a “Request for Leave” slip. All injury leave codes are listed on the reverse side of the “Request for Leave” slip.

What is the procedure for changing or cancelling leave?

A cancellation or change cannot be submitted until the original leave request has been approved. Once approved, the cancellation request may be submitted through the Employee Self Service (ESS) portal. Changes to the original request may be resubmitted after the cancellation of the original request has been approved. Cancellations and changes must be processed within 30 days of the original request. The payroll office should be contacted to process a cancellation or change if the 30 day period has expired.

The employee must complete another Request for Leave slip. The top section of the slip must be completed using the same information designated on the original slip. The change box in the "Remarks" section should be checked and the information regarding the change or cancellation should be noted in the space provided.

Is a physician's certificate necessary if an employee is off sick?

A physician's certificate is required for absences of three or more consecutive days. For absences less than three days, a certificate "may be required" if the Employer has reason to believe the employee has been abusing sick leave.

What happens if an employee becomes ill while off on annual or personal leave?

The employee may change annual or personal leave to sick leave provided a physician’s certificate is submitted as proof.

Are employees eligible to use leave for medical and dental appointments?

Employees may use sick leave (S) for medical appointments.

Should the codes SM, AM or PM be used for routine medical or dental appointments?

No. Codes ending in "M" are specifically used for medical appointments in relation to Injury Leave. An employee must have an approved worker's compensation claim in order to use codes ending in "M".

Are employees entitled to paid leave if a family member becomes ill?

Employees may use up to five days of sick family leave (SF) in each leave calendar year for immediate family. Immediate family is defined as husband, wife, child, step-child, foster child, parent, brother or sister of the employee or child of the employee’s domestic partner. The employer "may" require proof of family sickness.

Note: Sick family applies only to family members specified in the collective bargaining agreement.

The family member should also be noted on the Request for Leave slip under the "Family Relationship" section.

The family member must be indicated when requesting leave through ESS.

What happens if a family member becomes ill while an employee is off on annual or personal leave?

The employee is required to use the leave originally requested. It cannot be changed to sick family leave.

Is an employee entitled to paid leave for bereavement?

An employee may use up to five days of sick bereavement (SB) for the death of a spouse, domestic partner, parent, stepparent, child, or stepchild, or the child of the employee’s domestic partner and up to three days for the death of a brother, sister, grandparent, step-grandparent, grandchild, step-grandchild, son- or daughter-in-law, brother- or sister-in-law, parent-in-law, grandparent-in-law, aunt, uncle, foster child, step-sister, step-brother or any relative residing in the employee's household.

Note: Sick bereavement applies only to family members specified in the collective bargaining agreement.

The family member should also be noted on the Request for Leave slip under the "Family Relationship" section.

What rules specify the beginning and end of the leave calendar year?

The leave calendar year is defined as beginning with the employee's first full pay period commencing on or after January 1 and continuing through the end of the employee's pay period that includes December 31, i.e., new leave calendar year: January 14, 2011 to January 11, 2011

What are Deferred Holidays?

Deferred Holidays are minor holidays earned while the university is in session which are deferred for usage during the week which falls between Christmas and New Year's Day. Deferred holidays are President's Day, Columbus Day and Veteran's Day.

What are the eligibility requirements for earning holidays?

At the time of a holiday an employee must be in active pay status the last half of the employee's scheduled work day immediately prior to the holiday and the first half of the employee's scheduled work day immediately after the holiday.

"Active pay status" means that you must either be working or using paid leave to compensate for hours not worked.

If the employee uses any type of leave without pay during the times noted above, the holiday will not be earned. This applies to major and minor holidays.

What happens if an employee was not eligible to earn a deferred holiday for the Holiday break?

Employees may use annual, personal or compensatory leave to cover any deferred holiday which may not have been earned for the holiday break. If no other leave is available, the day must be charged to approved leave without pay (AO).

What happens if an employee is off on leave and the university closes due to an emergency?

Employees on leave when a closing occurs shall be charged with the period of such leave.

Do employees receive leave if they are summoned by the Court for Jury Duty or court proceedings?

Employees may use civil leave (C) if they have not volunteered for jury duty but were called for jury duty or who are not a party in a civil or criminal court proceeding, but are subpoenaed as a witness to attend the court proceeding.

Are employees eligible to receive payment from the court for serving as a juror or must the payment be returned?

Although paid leave by the university is provided, the employee is entitled to payments issued by the court if applicable.

When do employees receive pay increases under the current AFSCME agreement?

General Pay Increases

July 1, 2012 - 1.0%
July 1, 2013 - 0.5%
January 2014 - 0.5 %
July 1, 2014 - 2.0%

Step Increment Increases

  • Employees who have been employed continuously by the Commonwealth since April 30, 2012 will be eligible to receive a one step service increment effective on the first full pay period in April 2013.
  • Employees who have been employed continuously by the Commonwealth since April 30, 2013 will be eligible to receive a one step service increment effective on the first day of the first full pay period in April 2014
  • Employees who have been employed continuously by the Commonwealth since January 31, 2014 will be eligible to receive a one step service increment effective on the first day of the first full pay period in January 2015.
What will an employee receive as an increase if promoted?

When an employee is promoted to another classification in a higher pay scale group, the employee shall receive an increase of four steps for each pay scale group the employee is promoted or to the minimum of the new pay scale group, whichever is greater.

When does shift differential apply and what is the rate?

Shift differential is paid when an employee works a full 7.5 hour or 8.0 hour work shift on a scheduled work day beginning before 6:00 a.m. or at or after 12:00 noon. The rate is $1.00 per hour. The employee will also receive shift differential if they work overtime on a regularly scheduled day off as long as it is a full 7.5 or 8 hour work shift beginning before 6:00 a.m. or at or after 12:00 noon.

Shift differential applies only to actual hours worked and does not apply when an employee is off on leave or off due to a holiday.

When does call in time begin?

Call in time begins when the employee reports to the assigned work site ready to work.

Does an employee receive call in time if the call in is immediately prior to their work shift?

If an employee is called in prior to a shift and it is less than three (3) hours, the call in time does not apply. The employee will be paid for hours worked, not the 3 hour minimum to avoid duplication of hours.

What happens if an employee is called in to work on their scheduled holiday?

The employee will be compensated at one and one-half times the employee's regular hourly rate of pay for all hours worked on the the holiday and will also receive paid time off for all hours worked on the holiday up to a full shift.

What happens if an employee is called in to work after commencement of a prescheduled vacation?

The employee will be compensated at one and one-half times their rate of pay for hours required to work and will also be permitted to reschedule their vacation day or days.

What happens if an employee does not use earned compensatory leave prior to the completion of 120 days succeeding the date on which the overtime was worked?

The employee will be compensated at the appropriate rate of pay at the time the compensatory leave was earned.