Policies and ProceduresSection 9: Separations

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9.1 Resignations

An employee desiring to resign from the County in good standing shall submit a letter to the agency head, or designee, setting forth the reason for leaving and giving no less than two weeks’ notice. Agency heads, assistants, or division heads desiring to resign from the County in good standing shall submit a letter to the County Manager, or appropriate official, setting forth the reasons for leaving with no less than four weeks’ notice. The employee may contact the Benefits Division of the Department of Human Resources to have specific benefits questions answered.

The Director of Human Resources or his designee may conduct an exit interview with an employee leaving the County.

9.2 Dismissals (06-20-2018)

Dismissals are an involuntary separation of employment, approved by the agency head and the Director of Human Resources, or their designees. Prior to dismissing an employee, the agency head must notify the Director of Human Resources or his designee of the proposed dismissal and the reasons for the proposed dismissal and complete the Recommendation of Discipline Form.  Additionally, before dismissal, an employee must be given an explanation of the evidence justifying the dismissal and an opportunity for the employee to present his side of the story. Most non‐probationary employees who are discharged may seek redress through the County’s grievance procedure (see Section 13.10). Probationary employees, as well as those employees who are placed in Personnel Complement IV, are not eligible to use the County’s employee grievance procedure if they are dismissed and may be dismissed with or without cause.  For further information on the Discipline process, please consult Section 13.6.

9.3 Final Settlement

  1. When an employee terminates, he shall receive his final paycheck for any wages earned on the next regular payday following his separation date.

  2. Payment for any applicable leave balances will be made to the employee as soon as possible thereafter, but within 30 days of his separation from payroll. The final payment may not be released to the terminating employee until all County furnished equipment (for example, County vehicles, materials, uniforms, I.D. cards, badges, debt, safety equipment, work tools, equipment and/or supplies, data files, records and other work-related information, and any other similar items) has been returned to or accounted for by the affected agency and all financial accounts with the County have been settled. The Director of Human Resources shall be consulted for clarification on any variation from this policy.

  3. When an employee retires from the County, he is responsible for notifying his agency head of the retirement date. The final payment may not be released to the retiring employee until all County furnished equipment (for example, County vehicles, materials, uniforms, I.D. cards, badges, debt, safety equipment, work tools, equipment and/or supplies, data files, records and other work-related information, and any other similar items) has been returned to or accounted for by the affected agency and all financial accounts with the County have been settled. Any and all of these items shall be returned to the County prior to the employee’s date of separation. All I.D. cards returned to the supervisor should be promptly destroyed. The Director of Human Resources shall be consulted for clarification on any variation from this policy.

  4. Payments due Deceased Employees
    The death of an active employee shall be reported to the Director of Human Resources as soon as the employing agency becomes aware of the death. All payments due the deceased employee, including compensation for hours worked, annual leave, and any refunds or reimbursements, shall be made payable “to the estate of” said employee. The Benefits Division of the Department of Human Resources will work closely with the agency in coordinating appropriate benefits.

9.4 Separation Process

When an employee’s employment is separated, regardless of reason, the employing agency shall submit the Termination Form as soon as the separation is known. Complete information surrounding the reasons for separation should be included, as should all supporting documentation.

When submitting a Termination Form for an employee who is a supervisor, the agency should designate on the Termination Form the person who will be responsible for approving HRMS timecards and other transactions while the position is vacant. In addition, all I.D. cards returned to the supervisor should be promptly destroyed.

When an employee separates from the County, the effective date is the last day the employee actually worked.  Because a separation is sometimes in conjunction with approved sick leave, injury leave, or leave without pay, the Department of Human Resources will collaborate with employees and their departments to determine the correct effective date.  There are times the separation date will not be the last date the employee was physically on the job.  If a separation date immediately precedes a holiday, the employee shall not be paid for the holiday.  Pay for annual and holiday leave balances to eligible employees will be paid in a lump sum as the final payment to the employee.

In all cases, the Director of Human Resources will determine the official separation date.

9.5 Disability Separation

If an employee will be leaving the County due to an illness or injury which keeps the employee from performing the essential functions of the job, the employee should contact the Benefits Division of the Department of Human Resources to discuss benefit options. This could include long‐term disability and/or disability retirement. The separation needs to be coordinated with Workers’ Compensation benefits if the illness or injury is work-related and has been ruled as compensable (see Section 4.9).

9.6 Reduction in the Workforce (Layoffs)

The County Manager has the right and obligation to manage the workforce to the best interest of the County and may require implementation of this reduction in workforce procedure. The following procedure shall apply to a reduction in the workforce of the County caused by adverse economic conditions, reorganization by and within the County, lack of sufficient work, abolishment of positions fully funded by the County, or by other related incidents directly and solely caused by the County. The following procedure shall not apply where the reduction in the workforce involves positions not fully funded by the County (employees in Complements II and III positions), as employees in such positions do not have a right to or expectation of continued employment. Unless specific instructions to the contrary are received from the County Manager, the following will serve as the general procedure for a reduction in workforce for positions funded in total by the County. No reduction in the workforce shall occur without it first being discussed or coordinated with the Director of Human Resources.

  1. The County has provided procedures for the removal of employees for unsatisfactory performance and for disciplinary reasons; therefore, it will be assumed that all employees, unless otherwise noted, are serving in a satisfactory manner. The length of continuous County service will provide the basis for determining the order of layoff in order to provide for a uniform, fair, equitable, and effective base for the determination of layoffs.

    Circumstances may cause other considerations to be the basis for determining order of layoff as approved by the County Manager. Such considerations may include, but are not necessarily limited to, past performance.

  2. A reduction in the workforce will be managed on an individual agency basis. The agency head, unless otherwise directed by the County Manager or his designee, will have the responsibility for the identification of organizational sections, job classifications, positions, and individuals affected. Additionally, the agency head will determine the order for layoff by job classification. Once that order has been determined, if there is more than one person in this classification, the employee with the least amount of continuous County employment will be the first to be laid off unless the County Manager approves an alternate plan.

  3. In all cases where a reduction in the workforce necessitates the actual lay-off of personnel within a specific job classification(s), the following order of priority will be strictly adhered to within the specified classification unless an exception is granted by the County Manager:

    1. Seasonal employees and emergency hires.
    2. Regular hourly employees.
    3. Part‐time employees in authorized positions.
    4. Probationary employees.
    5. Full‐time non‐probationary employees in authorized positions.

  4. Insofar as practical, subject to availability of funding, all employees to be laid off will be provided with a minimum of two weeks written notice.

  5. Additionally, such affected employees will be given first preference consideration in any re-employment should a vacancy occur in the same classification within the same agency they left. This preference for re-employment will be limited to six months from the official date of layoff.

  6. If an employee who is in the process of another administrative procedure (for example, a grievance) is laid off, he will be entitled to continue to pursue the administrative procedure if he so chooses. However, it will not change the impact of the layoff.

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