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College Policy Number/Title:

The emergency leave bank is designed to provide the possibility of added protection to employees in the event of very serious illness or disability or other crisis situations related to employee or immediate family health that are considered to be critical or of an emergency nature.

Eligibility for Membership in Emergency Leave Bank 

All full- and part-time position control/budgeted employees who have been employed by the college for one year are eligible to elect to participate in the emergency leave bank by contributing four non-refundable sick leave hours per year to the emergency leave bank (prorated for part-time employees).  Employees may join the emergency leave bank during yearly open enrollment after one full year of employment and would then remain in the emergency leave bank until they formally request to separate from it.  Employees who join during an open enrollment after their initial eligibility to join must contribute four hours of leave for each year during which they would have been eligible for membership. Membership in the emergency leave bank does not guarantee that each request for emergency leave will be granted.

Fiscal and Institutional Considerations 

Employees have no vested ownership in their sick leave since the actual expense of the absent employee is borne by the department, not by contributing employees.  An overriding guideline will be that the procedure will be administered in an equitable and consistent manner for all employees.  The college retains the right to limit the number of emergency leave days that can be withdrawn from the emergency leave bank in any fiscal year, and may also suspend or terminate the emergency leave bank's operation in whole or in part.

Termination of Emergency Leave Bank 

If the board of trustees terminates the operation of the emergency leave bank, all accumulated leave balances will be distributed to current members on a prorated basis.

Approval of Leave

In accordance with the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA), decisions concerning the use of leave from the emergency leave bank are determined by a team of human resources employees, including the associate vice president, after consultation with an employee’s supervisor.  Upon application by the employee, who must be a contributing member of the emergency leave bank, the request will be considered.  All requests will be considered in a confidential manner.  An employee may appeal the decision made by human resources to their area vice president for president’s team to review.

Criteria for Consideration Include the Following

  1. The situation must be of a critical/emergency nature such as an immediate family member with a very serious illness where extensive care is required or another family crisis when the employee must be away from work.  The emergency leave bank is not designed to cover routine family illnesses or circumstances.  Leave without pay may be an option in a situation of a non-emergency nature.
  2. In the event of immediate family illness, the employee must have depleted all personal, sick, and annual leave.
  3. In the case of employee illness, the employee must have depleted all personal, sick, advanced sick, short-term disability and annual leave.  In addition, this would be a case in which long-term disability (full-time employees only) is not available.
  4. The employee must provide physician's certification and/or other appropriate documentation for the employee or immediate family member.
  5. The procedure must be administered in an equitable and consistent manner for all employees.
  6. Fiscal considerations must be addressed.
  7. The employee must have demonstrated a responsible use of leave over his/her tenure at the college, in the judgment of the emergency leave bank team.

Requesting Use of the Emergency Leave Bank 

Members of the emergency leave bank request use of the emergency leave bank on a college request for leave.  The request goes to the office of human resources, which will consider the request.

Limitation/Maximum 

The maximum amount of leave that can be awarded from the emergency leave bank to any one employee is 20 working days (prorated for position control/budgeted part-time employees).  In extraordinary circumstances, an appeal for an additional 20 days can be requested (for a maximum of 40 days).  Appeals outlining the extraordinary circumstances should be sent to human resources, which will consult with the employee’s supervisor and area vice president prior to making a decision.

Employee Separation 

When an employee leaves employment with the college, membership in the emergency leave bank ceases and any contributions remain with the emergency leave bank.

Compensation and Benefits 

The compensation amount for days of emergency leave bank leave would be equal to the compensation benefit under the college's short-term disability policy and procedures.  College provided benefits would continue during use of the emergency leave bank.

Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) 

As with any other leaves granted under the FMLA, such leave will run concurrently with any emergency leave granted.

Accrual of Leave and Automatic Leave Sequence 

There is no leave sequence or accrual of leave while an employee is on leave from the emergency leave bank.

Effective Date:  2/13/2009