Section 1. Purpose
The Parties agree to the following procedure for providing bargaining unit members with time off from duty as an incentive award, as authorized by the Federal Employees Pay Comparability Act (FEPCA), Public Law 101-509.
Section 2. Policy
Time-off awards represent an option available to managers for recognizing excellence in employee performance and service. A maximum of two (2) separate time-off awards may be given to any staff member in one (1) leave year. They are not intended to replace other awards. As with other incentive awards, the Library will give due weight to time-off awards when rating and ranking employees for promotion.
Section 3. Criteria
Time-off awards should be granted in a manner proportionate to the value of the contribution being recognized. An equivalency between time-off awards and cash should be generally avoided.
A contribution by a staff member to a product, activity, program, or service to the public, or a beneficial change or modification of operating principles or procedures, which is of sufficient value to merit formal recognition may be awarded by giving the staff member time off from work.
Section 4. Granting Awards
- Immediate supervisors, upon consultation with division management, may provide immediate recognition for a job well done or an idea that benefits the Library by granting time-off awards without further review for periods not to exceed one (1) workday.
- For periods of more than one (1) workday, the decision to grant a time-off award and the amount of such award must be reviewed and approved by the service unit head. The justification for the award shall be forwarded by the supervisor to the service unit in a memorandum.
- In exceptional cases, an employee may be granted up to forty (40) hours of time off from duty as an incentive award for a single contribution. The total amount of time off an employee may be granted during any one (1) leave year is eighty (80) hours.
- Part-time employees may be granted time-off awards. In determining the total amount of hours that such employees may be granted, the Library will pro-rate the award, based on the average number of hours of work in the employee's biweekly scheduled tour of duty over a period of one (1) year.
Section 5. Scheduling and Use of Awards
- In granting a time-off award, the Library will permit the employee to schedule its use consistent with workload and productivity considerations. Time-off awards will be scheduled and used so as not to adversely affect an employee who is in an annual leave "use or lose" situation. To facilitate the scheduling and use of time-off awards, time and attendance reports to employees will be annotated to reflect the earning and use of such awards.
- Should an employee become physically incapacitated during the period of a time-off award, the Library may grant sick leave for the period of incapacitation.
- A time-off award must be used within one (1) year from the date granted. If the total amount of a time-off award is not used within one (1) year after its approval, any unused time-off is forfeited and may not be restored.
Section 6. Relationship to Leave and Other Employee Benefits
- Time-off awards may not be converted to a cash payment under any circumstances. Time-off awards cannot be transferred when an employee transfers from the Library to another Federal agency, nor can time-off award balances be transferred to approved leave recipients under the Library's leave transfer program.
- For purposes of health insurance (Federal Employees Health Benefits Program), life insurance (Federal Employees Group Life Insurance Program), and injury compensation, the same rules apply as with any other paid time off.
Section 7. The Library agrees to consult and bargain pursuant to the law before suspending awards because of budgetary constraints.
Section 8. During the term of this Agreement, if the Library determines to issue other regulations concerning time-off awards, this article does not preclude the Guild from bargaining over these new regulations, or staying with this contract article.
Library of Congress
101 Independence Ave. SE
Washington, D.C. 20540