Human Resources

Flexible Furlough Frequently Asked Questions

When does the program start? When does it end?
It will start May 1 and end June 30, 2009.

What is the program?
The Flexible Furlough Program reduces all university employees' compensation by an amount equivalent to ½ of 1 percent (.5%) of their annualized base salary.

How is the salary reduction applied to permanent employees?
Permanent employees will have a salary reduction of ½% of annualized base salary. The deduction will be spread over the remaining pay periods in this fiscal year. This means that there will be a 3% reduction to the May check and a 3% reduction to the June check.

For example, an employee with a current annual salary of $40,000 will have a total salary reduction of $200 ($40,000 x .005). The May and June paychecks will be reduced by $100.00.

How is the reduction applied if the employee's final pay for this fiscal year is in May?
If the final pay is in May the entire annualized amount of .5% will be deducted from the May check.

NEW How are new hires during this period treated in terms of administering the Flexible Furlough?
An employee hired in May or June is subject to the rules regarding the Flexible Furlough. Employees who begin employment in May or June would have their pay reduced by .5% of their annualized base salary in their paychecks in May and/or June, regardless of what day in the month that they start. Any balance of the .5% deduction not taken in May would be taken in the June paycheck.

A full-time employee hired in May or June will also receive the 10 hours of time off.

How is the salary reduction applied to temporary faculty and temporary EPA employees?
Temporary faculty and temporary EPA employees will have the entire deduction taken from the May paycheck.

NEW: Summer School I salary for non-permanent employees is also subject fo the ½% salary reduction.

How is the salary reduction applied to SPA temporary employees?
The reduction applies to SPA temporary employees regardless of funding source. There are two options for applying the reduction: (1) reduce the number of hours worked in May or (2) apply the ½% (.5%) reduction to the entire amount paid this fiscal year and take from the June 15th pay. See pdf document for details.

Does the salary reduction apply to interns, undergraduate students, or graduate assistants?
No, these individuals are not impacted by the salary reduction.

How will Summer Session I payments be handled?
Summer School I salary for permanent employees is not included in the calculation for reducing pay by ½% since it is supplemental salary and not part of base salary.

NEW: Summer School I salary for non-permanent employees is subject to the ½% salary reduction.

How will employees know how much was taken out of pay for the salary reduction?
The salary reduction amount will be identified on the pay stub by the furlough salary reduction code FRL.

What is "flexible time off"?
Full-time leave earning employees can take 10 hours of flexible time off between May 15, 2009 and December 31, 2009. When an employee takes flexible time off, their pay will not be deducted any further beyond the .5% taken this fiscal year. Flexible time off will be adjusted by FTE. (See previous answers.)

How many hours of time off do I get if I work part-time?
The number of hours of time off that part-time employees receive is proportional to the number of hours worked. For example, employees working 20 hours a week will earn 5
hours of time off, those working 25 hours a week will earn 6.25 hours of time off, and those working 30 hours a week will earn 7.5 hours time off.

What about employees eligible for overtime and shift premium? Will the .5% be deducted from overtime and shift premium pay?
No. The deduction applies to base salary only.

How is the flexible time off recorded on the electronic timesheet?
Flexible time off would be recorded in column 14, labeled "Other". In column 15, enter the comment, "Flexible Time Off."

When must the flexible time off be taken?
Employees have from May 15, 2009 through December 31, 2009 to schedule and use this time off.

Can I use the 10 hours of flexible furlough time off to make up for adverse weather leave?
No.

Can employees take the flexible time off whenever they want? Does the supervisor have to approve the request to take this time off?
NEW:
Each supervisor has to approve furlough time between now and December 31. In order to honor the flexibility spirit that the governor stated, each supervisor is strongly encouraged to approve furlough leave at times as requested by the employees.

What happens if employees don't request time off?
Supervisors are responsible for monitoring the use of time off, and will schedule time off if employees do not request it.

What if employees don't like the time the supervisor schedules? Can they file a grievance about it?
No, supervisory decisions about approving or scheduling time off are not grievable.

What happens if employees don't request the time off and their supervisor doesn't schedule them for time off? Will they get the ten hours salary back?
No, if employees do not request time off and their supervisor does not schedule it by December 31, 2009, then they will lose the ability to take this time off.

What happens if an employee leaves state service before they use the time off? Will money still be deducted from their paychecks in May and June?
Yes, if employees leave state service before they use the flexible time off, monies will still be deducted from their May and June paychecks.

Can employees work additional hours to make up for the unpaid time off?
No.

Will the Flexible Furlough Program affect employee benefits?
The Governor has asked the General Assembly to enact legislation that would protect employees' retirement and health insurance benefits for the duration of this program.

NEW: Executive Order No. 11 and House Bill 917 protect employees' retirement and health insurance benefits during the Flexible Furlough Program. The university will pay both the employee and the employer contributions to the Retirement Systems Division or the appropriate Optional Retirement Plan carrier on behalf of the employee on the amount of compensation that was reduced.

How will this affect my ability to earn overtime?
Supervisors will be strongly encouraged not to allow overtime in any week in which time
off is scheduled. The total of leave, comp time, and work time should not exceed the
hours of work normally scheduled.

Will employees who are being separated in a RIF either May 31 or June 30 have the .5%
deducted from their paychecks?

Yes, employees receiving a pay check in May and/or June will have the appropriate
deduction made.

Will this program affect the amount of longevity I am supposed to receive?
No. The Flexible Furlough program will only affect your paychecks in May and June,
2009. It will not affect your base salary which is used to calculate longevity.