In anticipation of mobilization, this is a brief summary of the laws, rules and regulations in place to protect and support state employees who leave jobs to serve in active duty for the Military Reserves and the National Guard in connection with the events of September 11, 2001.
New York Military Law
Section 242 of the New York State Military Law provides 30 calendar days or 22 workdays (whichever provides the greater benefit to the employee) of paid leave per calendar year for employees activated for military service.
Supplemental Military Leave
The State will provide an additional 30 calendar days or 22 workdays (whichever provides the greater benefit to the employee) of paid leave, called “Supplemental Military Leave,” for employees who are federally activated or activated by the Governor for military service in connection with the events of September 11, 2001.
Military Leave at Reduced Pay
After an eligible employee exhausts the 30 days or 22 workdays of leave provided under the Military Law, and the 30 days or 22 workdays of Supplemental Military Leave, employees are entitled to be placed on Leave at Reduced Pay. Employees may request the use of leave credits, other than sick leave, before being placed on Leave at Reduced Pay. Employees in reduced pay status will be paid their regular State salary reduced by their military pay. The reduced State salary is calculated as of the employee’s last day in full pay status, and the military pay is calculated as of the first day of activation, and will remain unchanged during the entire period of activation.
If you receive a request from an employee for Leave at Reduced Pay, please contact Victoria Phipps at 585.245.5616 or firstname.lastname@example.org
NOTE: Employees who were already off work due to training or professional development with the Military Reserves or National Guard do not receive the Supplemental Military Leave or Leave at Reduced Pay unless activated in connection with the emergency stemming from the events of September 11, 2001.
Training Leave at Reduced Pay
An employee has one window per year to charge leave credits before being placed on Training Leave at Reduced Pay. This opportunity exists when all of the following conditions are met:
- Th employee has exhausted his/her total entitlement to paid leave under section 242 of the New York State Military Law in the current calendar year;
- In the current calendar year the employee has previously performed active duty related to the war on terror; and
- The employee has not previously been placd on Training Leave at Reduced Pay in the current calendar year.
Employees who meet all of these conditions may elect to charge leave credits (except sick leave) for military absences unrelated to the war on terror. Once they stop charging credits and use Training Leave at Reduced Pay for the first time in the calendar year, however, they are not allowed to charge leave credits for military absences to which Training Leave at Reduced Pay would apply for the remainder of the calendar year.
Under the New York State Military Law, time in active duty does not constitute an interruption of continuous service.
(Complete time and attendance reports)
- Section 242 of the New York Military Law and Supplemental Military Leave: Employees do not charge accruals and continue to earn vacation, sick and personal leave accruals while in full pay status. They do not earn credit for holidays except for designated floating holidays.
- Leave at Reduced Pay: Employees do not charge or earn accruals while on Leave at Reduced Pay. However, any balances standing to the employee’s credit at the time his/her Leave at Reduced Pay began are restored upon his/her return from leave, except for credits that otherwise would have expired.
Benefits Questions and Answers
- Will my State health insurance continue while on military leave?
Your State health insurance will continue as an active employee (deductions will continue) while on paid Military Leave, and the Federal Government provides individual coverage for those on active duty. So, while you are on paid Military Leave, you will have both State and Federal coverage. While you are on unpaid Military Leave, you will have coverage through the Federal Government only.
- Will my State health insurance continue for my dependents?
Coverage for dependents of state employees enrolled for family coverage in NYSHIP, for at least 30 days prior to activation, will be continued at no cost while on unpaid Military Leave, for a maximum period of 27 1/2 months from the date of activation, or until December 31, 2008, whichever occurs first. This means that your dependent coverage will continue as an active employee (deductions will continue) while you are on paid Military Leave, and then will continue at no cost once you are on unpaid Military Leave, until 12 months from the date of activation. Available dependent benefits include health, dental, and vision coverage as provided to active employees' families until the employee returns to State employment or is no longer on military duty, whichever occurs first.
Below is a SUMMARY of information on Dependent Benefit continuation:
Benefit Time Period Cost
Health, Dental, Vision Coverage Activation date to 12 months Deductions continue while paid, no cost while unpaid.
Health, Dental. Vision Coverage 13 months and beyond Cost determined by union membership.
Unpaid Leave and Reemployment
In addition to benefits accorded by the State, the federal Uniformed Services Employment and Reemployment Rights Act (USERRA) requires that employers provide up to five years of unpaid leave to eligible employees who are in active service. The Act also provides broad reemployment rights to employees who are called or who volunteer for active duty. As long as an employee applies for reemployment within the time limits specified in the USERRA, the employee is entitled to the job they would have had if they had not taken military leave. Under “escalator” provisions, if an employee would have received a promotion or a salary increase, he or she must be given those benefits upon return. The full reemployment and escalator entitlements are complex, and will be described in greater detail as events dictate.
Employees are expected to notify their department as soon as possible regarding their need for military leave. A copy of the employee's military orders is generally required. Employees receiving military leave with pay using the Leave at Reduced Pay benefit will be required to provide a copy of their Leave and Earnings Statement or other evidence confirming the actual military pay.