Employee-Initiated Reduction in Time (ERIT) Program: Overview
Effective Dates: July 1, 2012 through June 30, 2014
Effective July 1, 2012, the University is implementing a new one year Employee-Initiated Reduction in Time (ERIT) Program.
ERIT is an optional way for employees to assist the University in achieving salary savings by volunteering to reduce their appointment percentage and corresponding pay between 5% and 50% of full time. An employee's work schedule may not be reduced below 50% time in any given month of participation.
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Overview of ERIT Program and Eligibility
- Except for Senior Management Group Members, all career staff employees are eligible to participate in ERIT, including regular status and probationary employees.
- The minimum length of participation in the program is one month.
- The maximum length of participation in the program is twenty four months. An ERIT contract cannot extend beyond June 30, 2014, unless the ERIT Program is extended by the University.
- The minimum reduction in time an employee must take to participate in ERIT is 5% of their full time appointment.
- The maximum reduction in time an employee may take while participating in ERIT is 50% of their full time appointment.
- An employee's work schedule may not be reduced below 50% time in any given month of participation in ERIT.
- Time reductions are made in monthly increments or two bi-weekly increments for employees paid on a bi-weekly basis.
- Employees in part-time appointments may participate in ERIT provided that they reduce their appointment time under ERIT by at least 5% and that their appointment percentage under ERIT is at least 50%.
- Participation is subject to approval by an employee's department head.
- Work schedules are subject to approval by an employee's supervisor.
- Participation for represented employees is dependent upon agreement by the applicable union.
Effect of ERIT on Benefits
- Vacation and sick leave: will accrue based on the employee's accrual rate prior to the commencement of the ERIT Program.
- UCRP monthly retirement income or lump sum cashouts: will be calculated using Highest Average Plan Compensation (HAPC) based on the monthly full-time equivalent compensation.
- Employee pre-tax contributions to UCRP: will be based on the reduced salary.
- UCRP service credit: will accrue based on the reduced percentage of appointment. The effect of the ERIT Program on UCRP service credit is the same as a regular reduction in percentage of appointment.
- UCRP highest average plan compensation (HAPC): is used to calculate UCRP monthly retirement income or lump sum cashout, is based on monthly full time equivalent compensation, and does not change as a result of participation in the ERIT program.
- UCRP preretirement survivor income, death benefits for members who became active before October 1, 1990, and disability income: will be based on final salary, adjusted to reflect the average percent of time on pay status during the preceding 36 months if an employee dies or becomes disabled while, or within 12 months of, participating in the ERIT program.
- Health & welfare plans: eligibility for health and welfare benefits will not be affected by ERIT because an employee's percentage of time on pay status under ERIT cannot be reduced below 50% of time.
- Medical contribution base: an employee's full-time salary rate on January 1 of the previous year or on the hire date (whichever is later) is used to determine the Medical Contribution Base (MCB) for the current year. The MCB will not be impacted by an ERIT reduction.
- Short-term and supplemental disability benefit payments: disability benefit payments for both the Short-Term Disability Plan and the Supplemental Disability Plan will be based on an ERIT participant's pre-ERIT salary. Premiums for the Supplemental Disability Plan will continue to be calculated on the full-time rate.
- Eligibility for short-term or supplemental disability benefits: will not automatically terminate or extend an ERIT contract. The contract will be suspended when the employee is on leave and, upon the employee's return, the department head will determine whether the ERIT contract will be terminated or extended. No such extension can be granted beyond June 30, 2014, unless the University extends the ERIT program.
- Workers compensation payments: disability benefit payments received pursuant to Workers' Compensation coverage will be based on an ERIT participant's ERIT salary. If an employee elects to supplement his or her workers’ compensation disability benefit payments with sick and/or vacation leave accruals, upon exhaustion of sick leave, Extended Sick Leave benefit payments will become available. Departments will supplement these payments so that the aggregate benefit is equivalent to what would have been received if the payment was based on the pre-ERIT salary.
- Life insurance: supplemental and dependent life will not be impacted by participation in ERIT – premiums and coverage will continue to be based on the full-time salary rate. Basic life insurance will be calculated using the employee’s full-time salary rate and pre-ERIT appointment percentage.
- Dependent care and health care reimbursement: Dependent Care Reimbursement Account (DepCare) and/or Health Flexible Spending Account (Health FSA) contributions will continue at the same level unless the ERIT participant changes his or her election during a Period of Initial Eligibility (PIE) or an open enrollment period.
- Defined contribution plan, 403(b) plan, and 457(b) plan: if a participant's contributions are based on a percentage of compensation, the contributions during ERIT will be lower. Participants may adjust their contribution amount or the percentage contributed to these plans at any time.
- Social security and unemployment benefits: since social security and unemployment insurance benefits are calculated based on earnings, these benefits may be lower.
- Holiday pay: will be prorated based on the employee's ERIT appointment percentage.
- Temporary reduction: employees whose time was temporarily reduced, either voluntarily or involuntarily, prior to ERIT may request to participate. Such employees may participate at their pre-ERIT reduced percentage of time, subject to the requirement that their percentage time is at least 50% of full-time. Employees who receive notice of a temporary reduction in time may also request to participate in ERIT at the reduced percentage, provided that their reduced time is at least 50%.
- Part-time employees: employees whose regular appointments are part-time appointments may participate in ERIT, provided that they reduce their time under ERIT at least 5% of full-time and that their appointment percentage under ERIT is at least 50%.
- Indefinite layoff or reduction in time: in the event of a layoff or involuntary reduction in time, should one become necessary while an employee is participating in ERIT, participants will be granted right to recall and right to reemployment according to the ERIT participant's pre-ERIT percentage of time, or severance according to the ERIT participant's pre-ERIT percentage of time and salary.
- Seniority for purposes of determining the order of indefinite layoff: will be maintained in accordance with a participant's percentage of appointment before ERIT. If an employee's position is being considered for layoff during ERIT, the employee's seniority will be calculated based on the percentage of appointment before ERIT.
- Transfer or promotion to another position: continued participation in ERIT when an employee is transferred or promoted to another position in the same or different department will be subject to approval by the new department head.
- Exempt employees: although exempt employees normally are expected to work their appointment percentage, greater emphasis is placed on meeting the responsibilities of the employee's position than on working a specified number of hours. Supervisors should make appropriate workload adjustments for exempt employee who participate in ERIT.
- Time off pay status or temporary layoff status: will not automatically terminate or extend an ERIT contract. The department head will determine whether an employee's contract will be terminated or extended but no such extension can be granted beyond June 30, 2014 unless the ERIT Program is extended by the University.
- Complaint resolution and grievance procedures: the decision of a location or department whether or not to offer the ERIT Program is not subject to any complaint resolution or grievance procedures. However, management decisions to deny participation or implementation of certain features may be subject to review under the applicable complaint resolution policy or collective bargaining agreement provision.
For additional details about the ERIT program, please contact your appropriate HR representative or Employee Relations.