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including The Conductor, a special section of the Spectrum printed 4 times a year

AY rules outlined for CCSA

By Clara B. Cox

Spectrum Volume 17 Issue 33 - June 1, 1995

Guidelines for special-term and academic-year appointments for the classified staff were presented to the Commission on Classified Staff Affairs at the group's May 10 meeting.

Wyatt Sasser, president of Staff Senate and a member of the task force that drew up the guidelines, told commission members that the guidelines are "as fair and equitable as possible."

According to the guidelines, positions selected for conversion "must be nine-month appointments on an academic-year schedule (August 16, 1995-May 15, 1996)." Beginning in 1996-97, the appointments can be made for schedules other than the academic year.

The number of special-term appointments will be limited until the Human Resource Information System (HRIS) team implements the new payroll system. Currently, Sasser said, changes to the payroll system require manual entry.

During the first year, employees in converted positions will be paid only during the months worked, and they will accrue leave only during the work period. They will continue to earn 12 months of retirement service credit, however, and employer contributions for health- and life-insurance coverage will continue on a 12-month basis. Employees can elect to have their own contributions for insurance prorated during the months worked to cover months not worked or can make personal payments during the period of non-employment.

The selection of positions to be converted will be made by department heads, deans, directors, and vice presidents and will be based on the cyclical or seasonal workloads of classified positions.

When multiple positions exist in the same classification with the same or similar duties, the special term/academic-year appointment will be offered on a university seniority basis within the work unit. If no one accepts the offer, the least senior employee's position will be converted.

When positions are selected for conversion that are already filled, the incumbent must voluntarily agree to the conversion or must be given six months notice before the position is converted. In such cases, the guidelines state, "the attorney general has determined that the incumbent will not be considered to be in a layoff situation."

The guidelines also encourage senior managers "to identify alternatives for employees who wish to remain on a 12-month appointment (such as, exchange with an employee at the same grade in another department who prefers the special-term/academic-year appointment and who is qualified to perform the duties of the position)." When no exchanges are possible, Personnel Services will announce the exchange opportunity university-wide.

Once a position is converted, it will remain a special-term/academic-year appointment "unless workforce needs dictate that management restore the position to 12 months," the guidelines state. Employees will be given at least 90 days notice before a position is changed back to a 12-month appointment.

The guidelines allow employees in special-term/academic-year appointments to be paid on an hourly wage basis during the period they are off. (Please see the June 15 issue of Spectrum for a listing of the complete policy.)

In other business, Ann Spencer, associate vice president for personnel and administrative services, reported that the university has until June 4 to respond to appeals made under the Workforce Transition Act.

Spencer also indicated that changes may be in the offing for the decentralization plans proposed by the university. "We need to rethink our whole approach to decentralization" as resources become "more and more constrained," she said.

The commission will meet again on June 14.