HRDG 4630 - Absence and Leave - Section D - Subsection b

HRDG 4630 - Absence and Leave - Section D - Subsection b

Subchapter 4630 - Absence and Leave 
Section D - Administrative Leave and Excused Absence
Subsection b - Emergencies (Weather and Other)


 



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Who Are Emergency Employees?
Added 12/03
 

 

Emergency employees occupy critical positions that may be vital to public health, safety, welfare, national defense, or the operation of essential facilities or functions. Managers/supervisors must notify employees who meet this definition that they are designated as emergency employees. The notification must:

  • Be done at least once per year,
  • Be in writing,
  • State that emergency employees are required to report for work in emergency situations, and
  • State that dismissal or closure announcements do not apply to emergency employees unless they are specifically instructed otherwise

 

Programs may also identify a cadre of "mission-critical" emergency employees (MCEE) who may be called to work during extended emergencies, emergencies dealing with national security, or other unique situations. MCEEs must be provided with the following information:

  • The emergency situations in which they will be expected to report for work;
  • Where they are expected to report to work - - either at their regular worksite or an alternative worksite; and
  • That they are to remain in contact with their Programs at all times during any closure situation.

 

Programs may wish to issue communications and other equipment to MCEEs to facilitate contact in these situations.

Washington, D.C. Metro Area Emergency Dismissal and Closure Procedures
Updated 02/12
Updated 01/13
Updated 12/13
Updated 05/14

The guidelines in the chart below apply to Riverdale/Washington, D.C. metro area non-emergency employees.

When the Office of Personnel Management (OPM) makes any of the announcements found below, emergency employees are still expected to report for work on time. On an annual basis, Programs must follow the procedures found in the “Who Are Emergency Employees?” section to notify employees of their status and responsibilities in emergency situations.

If the OPM announcement says: Then: For non-emergency employees, this means that:
Federal offices in the Washington DC area are OPEN.Employees are expected to report to their worksite on time or begin telework on time. Employees, including those on telework, are expected to report as scheduled.
Note: Official announcements are rarely made when no changes are required in Federal operations.
Absences will be charged to appropriate leave category, as requested by employee and approved by the supervisor (annual leave, LWOP, earned compensatory time off in lieu of overtime pay, compensatory time off for travel, or credit hours, etc).
Federal offices are OPEN with the option for UNSCHEDULED LEAVE or UNSCHEDULED TELEWORK

Agencies will open on time.
Emergency employees must report for work on time unless directed otherwise by their supervisor.
Nonemergency employees may either TELEWORK or take UNSCHEDULE leave.

UNSCHEDULED TELEWORK means employees:

  • Already scheduled to telework must continue to telework until the end of their scheduled tour, or request unscheduled leave.
  • Not scheduled to telework may opt to do so as long as the employee has a telework agreement in place. These employees must notify their supervisors of their intent.

 

UNSCHEDULE LEAVE means employees:

  • Must notify their supervisors of their intent to use leave,
  • May substitute an Alternative Work Schedule (AWS) day off for the unscheduled leave day;
  • May use scheduling flexibilities during the remainder of the pay period to make up time taken as unscheduled leave, or
  •  Request sick leave, if appropriate.

Absences will be charged to annual leave, earned compensatory time off in lieu of overtime pay, earned compensatory time off for travel, earned credit hours, or leave without pay (LWOP).

Employees must notify their supervisor of their intent to use unscheduled leave or unscheduled telework.

Federal offices are OPEN under a XX - HOUR DELAYED ARRIVAL and employees have the option for UNSCHEDULED LEAVE or UNSCHEDULED TELEWORK

Emergency employees must report for work on time unless directed otherwise by their supervisor.
Nonemergency employees may either delay their arrival to work by XX hours, use UNSCHEDULED TELEWORK or take UNSCHEDULE leave.

XX HOUR DELAYED ARRIVAL means employees:

  • Must arrive at work no more than XX hours later than their normal arrival time.
  • Arriving later than the XX hours, must request leave to cover the excess time away from the office.

 

UNSCHEDULED TELEWORK means employees:

  • Already scheduled to telework must continue to telework until the end of their scheduled tour, or request unscheduled leave.
  • Not scheduled to telework may opt to do so as long as the employee has a telework agreement in place. These employees must notify their supervisors of their intent and begin telework on time.

 

UNSCHEDULE LEAVE means employees:

  • Must notify their supervisors of their intent to use leave;
  • May substitute an Alternative Work Schedule (AWS) day off for the unscheduled leave day;
  • May use scheduling flexibilities during the remainder of the pay period to make up time taken as unscheduled leave, or
  • May request sick leave, if appropriate.

The delayed arrival is charged to administrative leave, TC 66, on the T&A. For example, with a 2 hour delayed arrival, if your employee normally begins work at 8 am, than s/he must arrive by 10 am. If s/he arrives at 9am, than s/he is entitled to 1 hour excused absence of administrative leave. If s/he arrives at 9:45am, than s/he is entitled to 1 hour 45 minutes of administrative leave.

Employees arriving later than the XX hours permitted must request leave to cover the excess time away from the office. For example, with a 2 hour delayed arrival, if the employee's regularly scheduled tour was to start at 7 am, this meant that s/he was to report by 9 am. If the employee was unable to report until 9:30 am then the T&A must reflect 2 hrs administrative leave (from 7am - 9am) and 1/2 hour of leave. Supervisors may grant administrative leave for the excess time for unusual circumstances or hardships.

Absences will be charged to annual leave, earned compensatory time off in lieu of overtime pay, earned compensatory time off for travel, earned credit hours, or leave without pay (LWOP).

Employees must notify their supervisor of their intent to use unscheduled leave or unscheduled telework.

Teleworkers are not entitled to administrative leave.

Employees with individual hardships or unique circumstances may be granted a reasonable amount of administrative leave (TC 66).

Employees on pre-approved leave for the entire workday must be charged leave.

Federal offices are OPEN - Under a Delayed Arrival - Employees Should Remain Off the Roads Until XX:XX. Must Report to their Office No Later Than XX:XX. Federal Offices Will Open at YY:YY. Employees Have the Option for Unscheduled Leave or Unscheduled Telework.

Emergency employees must report for work on time unless directed otherwise by their supervisor.

Nonemergency employees must remain off the roads until the time designated by OPM but must arrive at their offices before by the announced opening time or employees may use UNSCHEDULED TELEWORK or take UNSCHEDULE leave.
Remaining off the roads and delaying arrival This means employees:

  • Will not begin their commute to work until the designated hour.
  • Must arrive to the office by the indicated time
  • Arriving later than the indicated time, must request leave to cover the excess time away from the office.

 

UNSCHEDULED TELEWORK means employees:

  • Already scheduled to telework must begin to telework on time or request unscheduled leave.
  • Not scheduled to telework may opt to do so as long as the employee has a telework agreement in place. These employees must notify their supervisors of their intent.

 

UNSCHEDULE LEAVE means employees:

  • Must notify their supervisors of their intent to use leave;
  • May substitute an Alternative Work Schedule (AWS) day off for the unscheduled leave day;
  • May use scheduling flexibilities during the remainder of the pay period to make up time taken as unscheduled leave, or
  • May request sick leave, if appropriate.

The delayed arrival is charged to administrative leave, TC 66, on the T&A. For example, if OPM announces that all employees must report to their offices by no later than 11:00 a.m., must remain off the roads until 9:00 a.m. and Federal offices will open at 11:00 a.m., then non-emergency employees must begin their commute no earlier than 9:00 arrive by 11:00 a.m. and will receive administrative leave (TC 66) until 11:00 a.m.

Employees arriving later than the designated arrival time must request leave to cover the excess time away from the office.

Absences will be charged to annual leave, earned compensatory time off in lieu of overtime pay, earned compensatory time off for travel, earned credit hours, or leave without pay (LWOP).

Employees must notify their supervisor of their intent to use unscheduled leave or unscheduled telework.

Employees choosing to telework (scheduled or unscheduled) are not entitled to administrative leave.

Employees with individual hardships or unique circumstances may be granted a reasonable amount of administrative leave (TC 66).

Employees on pre-approved leave for the entire workday must be charged leave.

Employees with individual hardships or unique circumstances may be granted a reasonable amount of administrative leave (TC 66).

Federal offices are OPEN for business as usual under a XX- HOUR STAGGERED EARLY DEPARTURE

Emergency employees must remain at work unless directed otherwise by their supervisor.
Non-emergency employees may be dismissed from their worksite XX hours early based on their regularly scheduled tour for the day or take UNSCHEDULED leave to depart prior to their departure time.

XX hours STAGGERED EARLY DEPARTURE means employees:

  • May be dismissed from their worksite XX hours early based on their regularly scheduled tour of duty for the day. For example an announced 3-hour early departure means an employee who is regularly scheduled to work until 5:00 p.m., is authorized to leave at 2 p.m.
  • Will be granted administrative leave (TC 66) for the hours remaining in their work day.
  • Who depart prior to their staggered early departure time will be charged leave and will not be granted administrative leave.

 

Employees already scheduled to TELEWORK must continue to telework until the end of their scheduled tour, or request unscheduled leave.

UNSCHEDULED LEAVE means employees:

  • Must notify their supervisors of their intent to use leave;
  • May substitute an Alternative Work Schedule (AWS) day off for the unscheduled leave day;
  • May use scheduling flexibilities during the remainder of the pay period to make up time taken as unscheduled leave, or
  • May request sick leave, if appropriate.

Absences will be charged to the appropriate leave category, i.e., annual leave, earned compensatory time off in lieu of overtime pay, earned compensatory time off for travel, earned credit hours, or leave without pay.

Employees on pre-approved leave for the entire workday or those who were granted unscheduled leave before an early departure policy is announced must be charged leave for the entire workday or remainder of the workday, as applicable.

Employees on leave and not scheduled to return to work must be charged leave.

Employees on leave, who are scheduled to return to work after the applicable departure time, must be granted administrative leave beginning at the time he or she was scheduled to return from leave.

Employees who have pre-approved leave (e.g., for a dental appointment) that starts after their staggered departure time may be granted administrative leave.

Employees with individual hardships or unique circumstances, e.g., no available public transportation, or no alternative forms of child or elder care, or the employee has health/medical limitations, may be granted a reasonable amount of administrative leave (TC 66).

Federal offices are OPEN for business as usual under a XX- HOUR STAGGERED EARLY DEPARTURE - EMPLOYEES MUST DEPART NO LATER THAN XX:XX AT WHICH TIME FEDERAL OFFICES ARE CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC

Emergency employees must remain at work unless directed otherwise by their supervisor.
Non-emergency employees may be dismissed from their worksite XX hours early based on their regularly scheduled tour for the day. Employees must be out of their offices by the final departure time.

XX hours STAGGERED EARLY DEPARTURE means employees:

  • Will be dismissed from their worksite XX hours early based on their regularly scheduled tour of duty for the day. For example, an announced 3-hour early departure means an employee who is regularly scheduled to work until 5 p.m., is authorized to leave at 2 p.m.
  • Whose staggered departure time is later than the final departure time must depart at the final departure time. For example, if a 3 hour staggered dismissal with a final departure time of 2 p.m. is announced, employees with a staggered departure time of 3p.m. must leave their offices by the 2 p.m. final departure time. These employees are granted administrative leave from 2 p.m. until the end of their regularly scheduled tour for the day.
  • Will be granted administrative leave (TC 66) for the hours remaining in their work day.
  • Who depart prior to their staggered early departure time or the final departure time will be charged leave and will not be granted administrative leave.

 

Employees already scheduled to TELEWORK must continue to telework until the end of their scheduled tour, or request unscheduled leave.

UNSCHEDULE LEAVE means employees:

  • Must notify their supervisors of their intent to use leave;
  • May substitute an Alternative Work Schedule (AWS) day off for the unscheduled leave day;
  • May use scheduling flexibilities during the remainder of the pay period to make up time taken as unscheduled leave, or
  • May request sick leave, if appropriate.

Absences will be charged to the appropriate leave category, i.e., annual leave, earned compensatory time off in lieu of overtime pay, earned compensatory time off for travel, earned credit hours, or leave without pay.

Employees on pre-approved leave for the entire workday or those who were granted unscheduled leave before an early departure policy is announced must be charged leave for the entire workday or remainder of the workday, as applicable.

Employees on leave and not scheduled to return to work must be charged leave.

Employees on leave, who are scheduled to return to work after the applicable departure time, must be granted administrative leave beginning at the time he or she was scheduled to return from leave.

Employees who have pre-approved leave (e.g., for a dental appointment) that starts after their staggered departure time may be granted administrative leave.

Employees with individual hardships or unique circumstances, e.g., distance, availability of public transportation, child or elder care responsibilities, may be granted a reasonable amount of administrative leave (TC 66).

IMMEDIATE DEPARTURE - FEDERAL OFFICES ARE CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC

Emergency employees must remain at work unless directed otherwise by their supervisor.
Non-emergency employees must depart immediately from their office. Employees will be granted administrative leave for the number of hours remaining in their regularly scheduled tour of duty. This excludes employees who:

  • Leave before an immediate departure policy is announced. These employees will be charged leave from the time they left until the end of their regularly scheduled tour of duty.
  • Are on official travel outside of the affected region,
  • Are on leave without pay, or
  • Are on their alternative work schedule (AWS) day off.

 

Employees already scheduled to telework continue to telework or may take unscheduled leave.

Employees scheduled to return from leave after an immediate departure is announced must be charged leave for the period prior to the immediate departure and then granted administrative leave for the remainder of the workday following the immediate departure time.

Absences will be charged to the appropriate leave category, i.e., annual leave, earned compensatory time off in lieu of overtime pay, earned compensatory time off for travel or earned credit hours.

Federal offices are CLOSED.Emergency and Telework-Ready Employees Must Follow Their Agency’s Policies
Updated 05/14

Emergency employees must report for work on time unless directed otherwise by their supervisor.

Non-emergency employees with approved telework agreements are required to telework but will receive up to 2 hours of administrative leave on the day of the closure.

Non-emergency employees without telework agreements and any employees on preapproved leave will be granted administrative leave for the number of hours they are regularly scheduled to work.

 

 

Employees granted administrative leave due to the closure must code the T&A using TC 66-weather.

Maxiflex employees that are granted administrative leave (TC 66) must code the T&A to reflect the number of hours regularly scheduled to work for the day. For example, a regularly scheduled 8-hour day would be coded with 8 hours TC 66. A 9-hour day would be coded with 9 hours of TC 66.

The 2 hours of administrative leave granted to teleworkers may be used:

  • In part, in total or not at all depending on the employee’s needs.
  • At any time on the day of the closure.
  • Only for weather-related emergencies such as, but not limited to, shoveling snow, burst pipes, elder/child-care issues, etc.

The 2 hours administrative leave is to be used by those telework employees who were regularly scheduled to work a full day, e.g., 8, 9, or 10 hours or regularly scheduled hours for a part-time employee. It is not to be granted to those employees who had previously approved leave for a full or partial workday. Employees are to notify their supervisor of:

  • The amount of administrative leave to be used not to exceed 2 hours;
  • The time of day it will be used, e.g., 10 am to 12 noon, 1pm to 2:00 pm., and;

The need for additional leave, e.g., credit hours, annual leave, in order to attend to the weather-related emergency.

Employees on leave without pay, leave without pay for military duty, workers' compensation, suspension, or in another nonpay status are not granted administrative leave.

Telework eligible employees must notify their supervisor of their intent to Telework from home on a non-telework day.

Employees on alternative work schedules are not entitled to another AWS day off in lieu of the workday on which the agency is closed.

Federal Offices are under SHELTER-IN-PLACE (SIP) and are CLOSED TO THE PUBLIC

Employees must:

  • Find shelter as instructed in their Program’s emergency procedures.
  • Remain in the designated area until notified that they may return to their office or leave the worksite.

 

Employees prevented from entering the worksite must be granted administrative leave for the duration of the announcement.


Employees already scheduled to telework must continue working unless affected by the SIP emergency or otherwise directed by their Program.

Note: SIP procedures are conducted when employees (and visitors) must remain in the office or take immediate shelter in a readily accessible interior location to protect themselves. SIP has been added to the operating status announcement as an additional tool to help protect the MRP workforce during certain severe weather events, e.g., tornadoes, or emergencies, such as danger from exposure to outside contaminants in the event of a release into the atmosphere of hazardous materials such as radiological, biological, or chemical contaminants. Employees will be paid base pay through the end of their regularly scheduled tour of duty for SIP situations occurring during regular working hours. Employees placed in official “standby duty” status during SIP situations that occur after duty hours may be entitled to premium pay.

An OPM SIP announcement is not intended to supersede any Agency-specific SIP-type plans or procedures and Agencies retain the authority to act on their own without an OPM SIP announcement as circumstances dictate.
Field Emergency Dismissal and Closure Procedures 
Updated 02/12

During emergency situations, field offices:

  • With local Federal Executive Boards (FEBs) must follow the dismissal or closures procedures of the FEB.
  • Without a local FEB, are advised to consider adopting the DC area guidance outlined above and applying it to their particular situation. The highest ranking official at the facility is delegated the authority to make weather and/or emergency related decisions. In addition, when making dismissal or closure decisions:
    • MRP Programs co-located with other USDA offices must contact those offices and make a joint USDA decision. Disagreements between local managers will be referred to the Deputy Administrator of MRPBS for resolution. If resolution cannot be reached, the Deputy Administrators may contact the Director, Office of Human Resources Management, USDA, for final resolution.
    • MRP Programs that are not co-located are to use official public announcements by local, State, or Federal authorities that travel is to be avoided.
    • The designated MRP official must arrange for an announcement on local radio stations and/or other appropriate available media, if not already arranged by another Federal authority. If a public announcement is not possible, the designated official may determine retroactively that employees who could not report for duty because of the emergency will be granted administrative leave.
Dismissing Employees for Local Emergencies During Normal Work Hours
Updated 02/12
When local emergency conditions develop during the work day, for example, if work operations are interrupted due to building systems malfunctioning causing severe heat or cold which prevents employees from working and correction of the situation is not anticipated within 4 hours of the remainder of the workday, then early dismissal and the granting of administrative leave to affected employees may be appropriate. Use the table below for such situations.
Location: Authorizing official and responsibilities:
South Building or other DC location
Rivderdale Complex
  • The USDA will make the determination and notify management and employees of the early dismissal; or
  • The Director, Marketing and Regulatory Programs Human Resources Division (MRPHRD) will make the determination and notify appropriate Agency officials.
Field offices

Programs will designate officials who will:

  • Work with other co-located USDA offices to make a joint decision. Disagreements between local managers will be referred to the Deputy Administrator of MRPBS for resolution.
  • Decide on the appropriate dismissal strategy for emergencies affecting the particular location.
Reporting Employees' Status when the Office is Closed for Less than 1 Workday
Updated 11/10
Updated 02/12
 

IF AN EMPLOYEE:
THEN THE EMPLOYEE WILL BE REPORTED:
On Administrative Leave On Other Leave In Duty Status In Nonduty Status
1. Is notified in advance that his/her work cannot be suspended or interrupted during an emergency when other employees are excused and:
a.  He/she works during the excused period

b.  He/she does not work during the excused period Contact your servicing Leave and Compensation Specialist to determine the form of leave that must be charged based on your particular circumstance(s).

 

 

 

X

 

 

 

X

 

 

X (1)

 
2. Is on other scheduled leave at the time notice is given excusing employees from reporting, or dismissing them early, and:
a.  He/she is expected to return to duty before the end of his/her workday
b.  He/she is not expected to return to duty before the end of his/her workday

 

X (3)



X (4)

X (2)
   
3. Is on other scheduled leave the day before, during, and the day after the day on which other employees were excused   X    
4. Reports for duty, but goes on other leave before time official notice is received excusing employees or before the time set for his/her dismissal   X (2)    
5. Is on duty at the time notice of early dismissal is received, but goes on other leave between the time of the notice and time of early dismissal X (3) X (4)    
6. Is not on scheduled leave but has not reported for duty at the time of early dismissal X (6)      
7. Is intermittent and works during the excused period     X (1)  
8. Is intermittent and does not report for duty on a day when employees generally are excused from reporting       X
9. Is intermittent on duty at the time of early dismissal and would otherwise have worked until the end of the workday X (3)
X (5)
     
10. Is on duty at the time of early dismissal and is not excluded under one of the above conditions X      

(1) Employees who work during periods of administrative leave (TC 66) will receive only their basic rate of pay for nonovertime hours worked.

(2) Other leave will be charged from the time scheduled leave began to the end of the workday.

(3) Contact the leave policy specialist, MRPHR, for further guidance on administrative leave (TC 66).

(4) Other leave will be charged from the time scheduled leave began to time of dismissal.

(5) Administrative leave (TC 66) for intermittent employees is generally applicable in emergency dismissals. Contact the leave policy specialist, Employment and Classification Policy Branch,
MRPHR, for further guidance.

(6) Administrative leave (TC 66) may be appropriate for part or all of this period. Contact the leave policy specialist, MRPHR, for further guidance.
Civil Defense Activities Employees assigned to State or local civil defense activities in pre-emergency training programs and test exercises may be granted up to 40 hours of excused absence per calendar year for participation in such activities.
Participation in Emergency Rescue or Protective Work
Updated 12/05
Updated 02/12

During severe weather or other emergency situations various Federal, State or other officials with jurisdiction (e.g., local government not the Red Cross) may request that MRP employees assist in emergency law enforcement, relief, or clean-up efforts. In such situations, supervisors may grant employees administrative leave (TC 66) to participate in a civilian capacity during official duty hours. Emergency situations include, but are not limited to:

  • Extreme weather conditions;
  • Civil disturbances; or
  • Disasters such as fire, flood, or other natural phenomena.

When granting an administrative leave (TC 66), supervisors are responsible for:

  • determining that the absence is/was for an emergency,
  • documenting on the T&A what Agency (Federal, State or other official with jurisdiction) requested the employee's assistance and
  • determining that granting the employee administrative leave (TC 66) is in the interest of the public welfare.


Note: This policy does not apply to Federal employees who are members of the National Guard or Reserves who are called up to assist in disaster relief and recovery efforts, since they are entitled to military leave under 5 USC 6323 (b).

Reference: OPM, CPM 2005-18, Handbook on Pay and Leave Benefits for Federal Employees Affected by Severe Weather Emergencies or Other Emergency Situations, dated September 6, 2005.

Employee Personal Emergency Resulting from a Public Emergency 
Added 06/12 

Programs may grant up to 40 hours of administrative leave (TC 66) to employees who:

  • Are faced with personal emergencies as a result of a public emergency, and
  • Can be spared from their usual responsibilities.


Programs must contact HRD in order to obtain approval to grant additional administrative leave if unusual circumstances occur due to the scope and severity of the public emergency. Follow the chart below to obtain approval:

Step Who? Does what?

1

Program

  • Prepares a written justification describing:
    • The number of hours of administrative leave needed.
    • The number of affected employees.
    • The unusual circumstance(s) warranting the additional time off.
  • Submits the justification to the HR Policy Branch.

2

HR Policy Branch

  • Prepares a written request to the Director, OHRM, for up to an additional 40 hours of administrative leave.
  • Notifies the Program and HRO-LCT of OHRM's response.

 

Note: Requests for more than a total of 80 hours of administrative leave are approved by the Assistant Secretary for Administration, through the Director, OHRM.

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