WSR 97-20-063

PROPOSED RULES

PERSONNEL RESOURCES BOARD

[Filed September 25, 1997, 3:01 p.m.]

Original Notice.

Exempt from preproposal statement of inquiry under RCW 34.05.310(4).

Title of Rule: WAC 251-10-030 Layoff.

Purpose: This rule pertains to layoffs.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: Chapter 41.06 RCW.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 41.06.150.

Summary: This modification is intended to clarify the current practice that is used to notify employees of their layoff options and effective date of their layoff.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Sharon Peck, 521 Capitol Way South, Olympia, WA (360) 753-0468; Implementation and Enforcement: Department of Personnel.

Name of Proponent: Department of Personnel, governmental.

Rule is not necessitated by federal law, federal or state court decision.

Explanation of Rule, its Purpose, and Anticipated Effects: This rule governs the layoff procedures for permanent classified employees in higher education institutions. During layoff actions, employees shall receive written notice of any available options in lieu of layoff. This modification stipulates the procedures for providing this notification.

Proposal does not change existing rules. See above.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. Not required.

RCW 34.05.328 does not apply to this rule adoption. These rules relate to internal government operations that are not subject to violation by a nongovernmental party. Therefore, pursuant to RCW 34.05.328 [(5)](b)(ii), section 201 does not apply.

Hearing Location: Department of Personnel, 521 Capitol Way South, Olympia, WA, on November 13, 1997, at 10:00 a.m.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Department of Personnel by November 6, 1997, TDD (360) 753-4107, or (360) 586-0509.

Submit Written Comments to: Sharon Peck, Department of Personnel, P.O. Box 47500, FAX (360) 586-4694, by November 11, 1997.

Date of Intended Adoption: November 13, 1997.

September 25, 1997

Dennis Karras

Secretary

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending WSR 96-13-078, filed 6/18/96, effective 8/1/96)

WAC 251-10-030 Layoff. (1) An appointing authority may layoff or reduce the number of working hours or the work year of an employee without prejudice because of lack of funds or lack of work and/or for good faith reorganization for efficiency purposes.

(2) Each institution shall develop for approval by the director a layoff procedure based upon layoff seniority as defined in WAC 251-01-245, to include as a minimum:

(a) Clearly defined layoff unit(s), in order to minimize the disruption of an institution's total operation, and

(b) Provision for veterans preference for eligible veterans and their unmarried widows/widowers as defined in WAC 251-10-045.

(3) A permanent status employee scheduled for layoff shall receive written notice of any available options in lieu of layoff as provided in subsections (5) and (6) of this section. Such notice shall be furnished directly to the employee during his/her scheduled working hours, or if this is not possible because of the absence of the employee, mailed by certified letter to the employee's last known address. If the notification is furnished directly to the employee, the day it is furnished shall be counted as a day of notice. If the notification is mailed, the notice shall be considered received the same day as it is postmarked and the notice period shall be computed as provided in WAC 251-04-100. The employee shall be given no less than three working days to select an option, if available, or to elect to be laid off and/or be placed on the appropriate institution-wide layoff list(s).

(4) Written notice of at least fifteen calendar days must be given to the employee after he/she has selected one of the options or upon completion of the option period. This notice shall be furnished as provided in subsection (3) of this section and may be incorporated into the original notice of options.

(5) Within the layoff unit, a permanent status employee scheduled for layoff shall be offered employment options to position(s):

(a) For which he/she meets any specific position requirements;

(b) Which are comparable, as determined by the personnel officer; and

(c) Which are in:

(i) Class(es) in which the employee has held permanent status which have the same or lower salary range maximum as the current class;

(ii) Lower class(es) in those same class series for which the employee is qualified.

The employee may exercise either option subsection (5)(c)(i) or (ii) of this section provided that the employee being replaced is the least senior in a comparable position in the class and has less layoff seniority than the employee replacing him/her. A vacant position, if available, should be considered to be the position in the class held by the least senior person. The employee may elect to have access to less-than-comparable positions by so notifying the personnel officer in writing.

(6) Except as provided in WAC 251-10-035, a permanent employee scheduled for layoff who has no options available under subsection (5) of this section shall be offered position(s) as follows:

(a) The personnel officer will offer in writing not less than three positions from among the highest available classes (unless the total available is less than three); provided that any position(s) offered must be:

(i) At the same level or lower than the class from which the employee is being laid off; and

(ii) Vacant or held by a provisional, temporary, or probationary employee; and

(iii) In a class for which the employee being laid off meets the minimum qualifications and can pass the appropriate qualifying examination.

(b) The employee will be required to indicate within three working days his/her interest in a specific class(es) so that the personnel officer may schedule the appropriate examination(s).

(c) Upon satisfactory completion of the examination(s) the employee will be offered option(s) to specific position(s), including salary information.

(d) Employees appointed to positions through provisions of this subsection will be required to serve a trial service period.

(7) In order to be offered a layoff option or return from layoff to a position for which specific position requirements have been documented in accordance with WAC 251-18-255(1), the employee must demonstrate a satisfactory level of knowledge, skill, or ability on the specific position requirements.

(8) In a layoff action involving a position for which a particular sex is a bona fide occupational requirement, as approved by the Washington state human rights commission, the most senior employee meeting the occupational requirements may be retained in the position over more senior employees in such class who do not meet the occupational requirement.

(9) When it is determined that layoffs will occur within a unit, the personnel officer will:

(a) Provide a copy of the institution's reduction in force procedure to all employees subject to layoff;

(b) Advise each employee in writing of available options in lieu of layoff;

(c) Advise each employee in writing of the specific layoff list(s) upon which he/she may be placed as required per WAC 251-10-055 and 251-10-035;

(d) Provide information about the process by which the employee may make application for state-wide layoff lists, as required per WAC 251-10-060(7);

(e) Advise each employee in writing of the right to appeal his/her layoff to the board per WAC 251-12-080.

(10) Layoff actions for employees of special employment programs as identified in WAC 251-19-150 shall be administered as provided in WAC 251-10-035.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 41.06.150 and chapter 41.06 RCW. 96-13-078, 251-10-030, filed 6/18/96, effective 8/1/96. Statutory Authority: RCW 28B.16.100. 93-01-155, 251-10-030, filed 12/23/92, effective 2/1/93; 88-22-057 (Order 174), 251-10-030, filed 11/1/88; 88-02-017 (Order 164), 251-10-030, filed 12/30/87, effective 2/1/88; 87-02-036 (Order 154), 251-10-030, filed 1/2/87, effective 2/1/87; 85-16-038 (Order 134), 251-10-030, filed 7/31/85, effective 9/1/85; 82-07-074 (Order 94), 251-10-030, filed 3/23/82; 79-07-096 (Order 76), 251-10-030, filed 6/29/79, effective 8/1/79; 79-03-029 (Order 71), 251-10-030, filed 2/27/79, effective 4/2/79; Order 61, 251-10-030, filed 8/30/77, effective 10/1/77; Order 44, 251-10-030, filed 6/25/75; Order 41, 251-10-030, filed 3/17/75; Order 35, 251-10-030, filed 7/23/74; Order 32, 251-10-030, filed 3/19/74; Order 8, 251-10-030, filed 6/17/71, effective 7/19/71; Order 4, 251-10-030, filed 2/19/71; Order 1, 251-10-030, filed 9/15/69.]

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