The Public Health Officer has declared a Local Health Emergency because of COVID-19 (Coronavirus). The County is committed to providing a safe work environment for all its employees and encourages employees to work as partners with the County during this event. During this declared emergency, the County is asking all employees to stay home if they feel sick. Employees may also have a need to stay home to care for family members or self-isolation.
To continue providing services to the public, teleworking will be temporarily available based upon Department Head recommendations for CAO approval. Any recommendation for interim teleworking during this time should be done with consideration of the type and nature of information that would not normally be accessible outside of the office location. Additional consideration should be given to the eligibility criteria outlined below.
The intent of this interim telework protocol is to ensure the safety of our employees and the continuity of services during this time and should be used sparingly.
An employee may be eligible to telework if:
- Their work can be performed at a remote location.
- Functions of the unit, other departmental units, other departments, or outside agencies will not, because of teleworking, be compromised.
- The nature of the job, or a portion of the job, is primarily knowledge-based and involves handling of information, including but not limited to reading, writing, analyzing, or processing data
- Employee will sign the interim teleworking agreement.
- The appropriate equipment is available such as laptop, VPN services, etc.
An employee may not be a good candidate for teleworking if:
- Their work is entirely, or primarily, location-dependent, or requires access to resources that are not allowable or practical from a remote location.
- Their job requires daily face-to-face interaction with individuals (e.g., managers, clients, co-workers, the public, etc.).
- Their presence is required at his/her principal work location for coordination and participation in team-based, quick-reaction, and/or turnaround tasks, or to address unscheduled events.
- The work requires access to computer databases and/or highly secure or protected information/resources in which access is not permitted or possible from the remote location according to departmental and legal confidentiality requirements.
- They conduct field work that must begin and end at the principal work location to comply with department health and safety guidelines.
- Other types of work or work schedules that do not allow them to be away from their principal work location for entire days or portions thereof.
- The employee would benefit from consistent supervision or monitoring.
SCHEDULING AND WORK HOURS
- The Interim Telework schedule must be agreed upon in writing in advance with the teleworker’s department head or designee. At the discretion of the department head or designee, the actual telework days per week may vary depending on the nature of the work.
- The teleworker must be available to communicate with those with whom they normally conduct business (e.g., management, co-workers, customers, vendor contacts, public, etc.) by phone, email, and web/audio conferencing during the telework engagement, if required, except for during pre-determined and agreed upon lunch and break periods.
- If the teleworker encounters constraints that prohibit them from continuing the telework engagement (e.g., required equipment fails), the teleworker must either report to their primary work location to continue working, or notify his/her department head or designee to determine if alternate work can be done to continue the telework engagement. Alternatively, with department head or designee approval, the employee may take remaining time off via available accruals.
- In all cases, a teleworker’s regular hours of work, whether on a fixed or flexible schedule, must not exceed their normal schedule unless approved in advance by his/her department head or designee. Prior approval from the department head or designee is required prior to working overtime.
- The business needs of the primary work location may take precedence over regularly scheduled telework days, whereby a teleworker may be required to be onsite.
EQUIPMENT & ALTERNATE WORK LOCATION
- The County will not be liable for damages to a teleworker’s personal or real property while the
- official duties (ergonomic workspace, secure WIFI, phone, etc.). The environment shall be conducive to working in an office setting, with personal disruptions kept to a minimum.
- The teleworker has a safe and ergonomically sound work area adequate for performance of
- working from home, including, but not limited to, the following: maintenance and repairs to privately owned equipment, usage fees for privately owned computers, utility costs associated with the use of telephone, computer or occupation of the home, or travel to the office if required to come in on a telework day.
- No expense reimbursement will be provided to teleworkers while on a telework assignment
- home to conduct County Business.
- Teleworker agrees they shall not bring clients, customers, vendors or other persons into their
- Employees (teleworker) must adhere to all County and departmental rules and policies.
TELECOMMUTE POLICY AND AGREEMENT
Should you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact your department head, the County Administrator’s Office or Human Resources.