Policy Number: 185
Other types of paid leave
Employees holding a regular appointment (see HOOP 17, Appointment Status)
- Date Reviewed:
- May 2018
- Responsible Office:
- Human Resources
- Responsible Executive:
- Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer
I. POLICY AND GENERAL STATEMENT
Unusual or extenuating situations may arise that warrant the granting of a period of paid leave which does not fall under any of the other leave policies. The State of Texas provides paid leave for miscellaneous circumstances not covered by other leave policies. This policy applies to such paid leave situations for employees who hold a regular appointment (see HOOP 17, Appointment Status). Types of paid leave described in this policy will not be charged against an employee's vacation or sick leave accruals.
A. Types of Leave
For those leaves described below that the employee is aware of in advance, the employee must provide his or her supervisor with reasonable advance notice and appropriate documentation to support the leave. Taking such leave is subject to the supervisor's approval. The supervisor may request documentation from the employee to support the granting of leave.
1. Adverse Conditions
Leave will be granted at the direction of the President as described in HOOP Policy 85 Controlled Access Status for Emergency, Disaster or Severe Weather.
2. Volunteer Firefighters and Emergency Medical Services Volunteers
Employees who are volunteer firefighters or emergency medical services volunteers will be granted, with the authorization of their supervisors, paid leave not to exceed five working days each fiscal year for attending training schools conducted by state agencies. This leave may also be granted to volunteer firefighters or emergency medical services volunteers for the purpose of responding to emergency fire or medical situations. Employees must notify their supervisors, or designated alternates, prior to responding to emergency situations.
3. Foster Parents
An employee who is a foster parent to a child under the conservatorship of the Department of Family and Protective Services is entitled to paid leave for the purpose of attending meetings held by the Department of Family and Protective Services regarding the child under the foster care of the employee, or to attend an admission, review or dismissal meeting held by a school district regarding the child under the foster care of the employee.
4. American Red Cross Disaster Service Volunteers
An employee who is a certified disaster service volunteer of the American Red Cross or who is in training to become such a volunteer, with the authorization of his or her supervisor, may be granted paid leave not to exceed 10 working days each fiscal year to participate in specialized disaster relief services for the American Red Cross, on the request of the American Red Cross and with the documented approval of the governor's office. The Division of Emergency Management within the governor's office coordinates a list of eligible individuals.
5. Assistance Dog Training
An employee who is a "person with a disability" is entitled to paid leave for the purpose of attending a training program to acquaint the employee with an assistance dog to be used by the employee. This leave is not to exceed 10 working days in each fiscal year. "Person with a disability" includes a person who has a mental or physical disability, an intellectual or developmental disability, a hearing impairment, deafness, speech impairment, visual impairment, post-traumatic stress disorder or any health impairment that requires special ambulatory devices or services.
6. Bone Marrow, Organ and Blood Donors
An employee is eligible for up to 5 working days of paid leave each fiscal year to serve as a bone marrow donor; up to 30 working days of paid leave in each fiscal year to serve as an organ donor; and up to 4 blood donation times each fiscal year with pay, with documentation.
7. Meritorious Performance
Department chairs or administrative equivalents may grant paid leave to employees as a reward for meritorious performance as documented by employee performance appraisals, up to a maximum of 32 hours in any fiscal year. Employees who have completed six months of continuous employment are eligible for an award of leave for meritorious performance. Employees who are awarded leave for meritorious performance must use this leave within a calendar year of the award date. If an employee terminates employment before using some or all of the leave awarded, the employee is not eligible to be paid in lieu of receiving the leave.
If leave for meritorious performance is awarded and documented within the employee's performance appraisal file, a request should be made to Payroll that includes the employee's name, employee ID and total number of hours to be recorded for entry into the University's timekeeping system. Once the hours have been entered into the appropriate compensation bank, the employee will have access to use the hours on his or her timesheets.
8. Amateur Radio Operators
An employee who holds an amateur radio station license issued by the Federal Communications Commission may be granted paid leave for up to 10 working days each fiscal year to participate in specialized disaster relief services. The leave must be authorized by the employee's supervisor and have documented approval of the governor's office. The Division of Emergency Management within the governor's office coordinates a list of eligible individuals.
9. Court Appointed Special Advocates Volunteer
With the prior authorization of his or her supervisor, an employee may be granted up to five hours paid leave each month to participate in mandatory training or to perform volunteer services as a Court Appointed Special Advocates volunteer.
10. Miscellaneous Administrative Leave
The President or designee may grant paid leave if an employee requests it and the President determines that the employee has shown good cause for taking such leave. The President may not grant paid administrative leave to an employee under this subsection unless the President believes in good faith that the employee granted the leave intends to return to the employee’s position on expiration of the leave. The University must report certain information to the Texas Comptroller for each employee who is granted more than 32 hours of leave under this subsection during a fiscal year.
11. Leave During an Investigation
The President, or designee, may grant paid leave to an employee who is the subject of an investigation or to a victim of or witness to an act or event that is the subject of an investigation being conducted by the University. Leave granted by a designee that exceeds 168 hours in a fiscal quarter must receive approval from the President.
12. Reserve Law Enforcement Officers
Employees who are reserve law enforcement officers as defined by Texas law are entitled to paid leave to attend continuing education required for peace officers. Leave for this purpose may not exceed five working days every fiscal biennium.
13. Medical and Mental Health Care Leave for Veterans
An employee who is a veteran may be granted paid leave to obtain medical or mental health care administered by the Veterans Health Administration of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs, including physical rehabilitation. Veteran is defined as a person who has served in the army, navy, air force, coast guard, or marine corps of the United States or who has served in the Texas National Guard. Additionally, the employee must be eligible for health benefits under a program administered by the Veterans Health Administration of the United States Department of Veterans Affairs. Leave may not exceed 15 days each fiscal year unless additional days are approved by the President, or designee.
B. Record Keeping
Employees who take paid leave must note it as such on their official time records.
2. Department Chair or Administrative Equivalent
When awarding paid leave for meritorious job performance, the department chair or administrative equivalent must ensure a copy of the employee's relevant performance appraisal form is readily available and easily cross-referenced to time records if the department is audited.
C. Effect on Pay, Leave Accruals and Holiday Eligibility
Leave under this policy is considered time worked for the purposes of computing pay, vacation and sick leave accruals, longevity pay and holiday eligibility.
- Human Resources