WSR 97-05-010

PROPOSED RULES

DEPARTMENT OF

RETIREMENT SYSTEMS

[Filed February 7, 1997, 3:22 p.m.]

Supplemental Notice to WSR [97-01-017].

Preproposal statement of inquiry was filed as WSR 96-21-045.

Title of Rule: Estimating hours worked by part-time community college faculty.

Purpose: To bring the standards for calculating hours worked by part-time community college faculty for purposes of the teachers' retirement system (TRS) into conformity with similar standards promulgated by the legislature and the Employment Security Department.

Statutory Authority for Adoption: RCW 41.50.050.

Statute Being Implemented: RCW 41.32.270, 41.32.010 (26)(b) and (37).

Summary: Actual hours worked are often not tracked for part-time community college instructors. For this reason, it becomes necessary to input hours worked. The proposed rules adopt a method for inputting those hours that is consistent with rules adopted by the Employment Security Department (WAC 192-16-002) and statutes enacted by the legislature (RCW 28B.50.4891).

Reasons Supporting Proposal: The proposed rules have been adopted as emergency rules to ensure that they will be effective throughout the 1996-97 school year. Adopting the permanent rules will make sure the rule will remain in effect permanently.

Name of Agency Personnel Responsible for Drafting: Paul Neal, 1025 East Union Avenue, Olympia, WA, (360) 709-4747; Implementation and Enforcement: Greg Deam, 1025 East Union Avenue, Olympia, WA, (360) 709-5328.

Name of Proponent: Department of Retirement Systems, governmental.

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

Explanation of Rule, its Purpose, and Anticipated Effects: The rule permanently codifies a method currently used by the department and the community colleges for estimating hours worked by part-time community college instructors. Under the rule a community college determines how many hours are required of a full-time instructor and multiplies those hours by the ratio of a part-time instructor's load to a full-time load (e.g. .5) to arrive at an estimate of the hours worked by a part-time instructor. The purpose of the rules is to establish a consistent method for estimating hours worked by part-time instructors. The anticipated effect is to continue the situation established by the emergency rule where community colleges have clear guidance on how to perform the calculation.

Proposal Changes the Following Existing Rules: The proposed rule amends WAC 415-112-330 so that it only applies to K-12 teachers' retirement system members. The rule deletes the provisions from WAC 415-112-330 that deal with part-time community college instructors and presents them in a revised version in new WAC 415-112-335.

No small business economic impact statement has been prepared under chapter 19.85 RCW. The rules apply to public employers and employees participating in the retirement systems administered by the Department of Retirement Systems. No private businesses are affected by the rules, therefore, no small business economic impact statement is required.

Section 201, chapter 403, Laws of 1995, does not apply to this rule adoption. The Department of Retirement Systems is not one of the agencies that this provision applies to. The Department of Retirement Systems does not opt to voluntarily bring itself within the coverage of those rules.

Hearing Location: Boardroom, 2nd Floor, 1025 East Union Avenue, Olympia, WA 98504-8380, on March 28, 1997, at 2:30.

Assistance for Persons with Disabilities: Contact Paul Neal by March 25, TDD (360) 586-5450, or (360) 586-3368.

Submit Written Comments to: Paul Neal, P.O. Box 48380, Olympia, WA 98504-8380, FAX (360) 753-3166.

Date of Intended Adoption: March 31, 1997.

February 6, 1997

Paul Neal

Rules Coordinator

AMENDATORY SECTION (Amending WSR 91-21-084, filed 10/18/91, effective 11/18/91)

WAC 415-112-330 ((Amount of)) Calculating service credit for plan I K-12 employees. (((1) This section shall apply only to persons who became members prior to October 1, 1977.

(2))) For plan I members who are employed ((as classroom teachers)) by a school district, a school year shall consist of one hundred eighty days. One year of service credit shall be granted to a plan I member who is employed as a classroom teacher for one hundred forty-four or more days during a school year. A fractional year of credit shall be granted to a plan I member who is employed for at least twenty days but less than one hundred forty-four days during a school year. The fraction shall be that produced by using the days employed as the numerator and one hundred eighty as the denominator. ((In the absence of an indication in the contract or elsewhere concerning what constitutes one day of employment))

(1) If there is no contract, bargaining agreement or employer policy indicating how many hours are in a work day, a plan I classroom teacher shall be granted one day of credit for every seven hours ((the teacher works and for which the teacher is compensated)) of compensated employment.

(((3) For members who are employed as community college academic employees as defined by chapter 28B.52 RCW, a school year shall consist of at least three academic quarters or two semesters during a fiscal year. Academic employees shall be granted one full year of service credit for eighty percent of the full-time annual load as defined in their institution's negotiated agreement. In the absence of a definition of full-time annual load in the agreement, the official board-adopted college policy will apply. Percents of load of at least eleven percent (reported as not less than twenty days per fiscal year) and less than eighty percent (reported as eighty percent of the individual college academic calendar or one hundred thirty-four days per fiscal year, whichever is greater) will be applied pro rata. Percent of load will be converted to days for institution reporting and for retirement benefit calculation purposes. Nonacademic employees will have their service credit reported and benefits calculated based on actual days worked. Where there is no definition of full-time load in either the collective bargaining agreement or the official board-adopted college policy, service credit will be calculated pursuant to subsections (4) and (5) of this section.

(4) For members who are employed as community college classroom instructors, a school year shall consist of at least three academic quarters or two semesters during a fiscal year. Such a classroom instructor shall be granted one year of service credit for teaching thirty-six quarter hours or twenty-four semester hours. A fractional year of credit shall be granted to such instructors who teach at least five but less than thirty-six quarter hours, or at least three but less than twenty-four semester hours. The fraction shall be that produced by using the quarter hours taught as the numerator and forty-five as the denominator, or the semester hours taught as the numerator and thirty as the denominator.

(5) Members who are not employed as classroom instructors and who are employed for one hundred forty-four or more days during a fiscal year shall be granted one year of service credit. A fractional year of credit shall be granted to a member who is employed for at least twenty days but less than one hundred forty-four days. The credit granted shall be the fraction produced by using the days employed as the numerator and one hundred eighty as the denominator. Where there is no indication in the contract or elsewhere concerning what constitutes one day of employment,))

(2) If there is no contract, bargaining agreement or employer policy indicating how many hours are in a work day, plan I K-12 employees other than school district classroom teachers will earn one day of credit ((shall be granted)) for every eight hours ((the member works and for which the member is)) of compensated((: Provided, That counselors and librarians who are employed by a community college district in an instructional position as defined in RCW 41.32.010 (11)(a)(ii) and paid on an hourly rate shall be granted one day of credit for every seven hours the member works and for which the member is compensated.

(6) The fact that a member is granted a fractional year of service credit under this section shall not be determinative as to whether that member was employed less than full time in a year used to determine benefits under RCW 41.32.497, 41.32.498, and 41.32.520, for purposes of determining whether the member held a bona fide part-time position and what earnable compensation the member would have received under RCW 41.32.011)) employment.

[Statutory Authority: RCW 41.50.050 and 41.32.570. 91-21-084, 415-112-330, filed 10/18/91, effective 11/18/91. Statutory Authority: RCW 41.32.270 and 41.32.010 (11)(a)(ii). 88-17-052 (Order 88-13), 415-112-330, filed 8/17/88.]

NEW SECTION

WAC 415-112-335 Calculating service credit for part-time community and technical college employees. Most community and technical colleges employ academic employees under contracts expressed in terms of a certain number of contact hours, which are usually limited to actual time spent in the classroom. Most academic positions require more time to be spent providing services to the college than are reflected in the contact hours. However, actual hours worked are not submitted by the academic employees nor recorded by the college. This subsection adopts a method for estimating hours of work in order to determine membership eligibility and service credit in plan I and plan II. This estimate is to be used solely for that purpose. The estimate is not a representation by the department of actual hours worked and is not to be used as a basis for calculating other benefits or salary for technical college and community college academic employees.

(1) Plan I. In order to estimate the number of days worked by a TRS I technical college or community college faculty academic employee for a particular month, the college will:

(a) Determine the number of working days in the month as defined by the college's adopted academic calendar;

(b) Determine the part-time workload for the employee. The part-time workload is the percentage of the part-time employees' weekly in-class teaching hours to the weekly in-class teaching hours required of a full-time instructor in that employee's discipline at the college; and

(c) Multiply the number of working days in the month by the academic employee's part-time workload.

The resulting number is an estimate of days worked by the academic employee during the month. The college will report this estimate to the department for the sole purpose of determining plan I service credit and/or membership eligibility.

(2) Plan II. Determining service credit for plan II requires the college to estimate hours worked rather than days worked. To estimate hours worked, the college uses the steps described in subsection (1) of this section and takes two additional steps:

(a) Determine the number of hours in a full-time work day. In the absence of a definition of the number of hours in a full-time work day in the collective bargaining agreement or elsewhere, the college will use seven hours;

(b) Multiply the estimated days worked as determined in subsection (1) of this section by the number of hours in a full-time work day.

The resulting number is an estimate of hours worked by the academic employee during the month. The college will report this estimate to the department for the sole purpose of determining plan II service credit and/or membership eligibility.

(3) Definitions. "In-class teaching hours" means contact classroom and lab hours in which full-time or part-time academic employees are performing contractually assigned teaching duties. The in-class teaching hours shall not include any duties performed in support of, or in addition to, those contractually assigned in-class teaching hours.

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