Date: December 18, 2013
To: All Rutgers Staff, Faculty and Administrators
From: Vivian Fernández
Vice President for Faculty & Staff Resources
Re: Adverse Weather Policy Nomenclature Revisions and Essential Employees Guidelines

As we enter the time of year when adverse weather conditions may become more prevalent, it is important to review Rutgers University’s policies regarding operations during adverse weather events, as well as update essential employee rosters and adequately communicate responsibilities to employees designated as essential in the event of university closure due to weather conditions.  Recently, University Human Resources (UHR) revised existing adverse weather policies to ensure consistency in language across the university, and created resources to assist departments and university emergency personnel in identifying essential employees.

Please be advised that HR policies 60.3.16 (legacy Rutgers Attendance during Adverse Weather Conditions) and 60.9.58 (legacy UMDNJ Inclement Weather and Emergency Curtailment of Operations) have been revised specifically to align nomenclature to ensure the use of consistent language during declarations of weather emergencies.  The policy revisions are limited to nomenclature only, and it is important to note that none of the existing provisions or practices with regard to compensation or attendance during weather emergency declarations has been changed.

In order to assist you in understanding the new adverse weather nomenclature, please review the table below:

New Term Legacy Rutgers Equivalent Legacy UMDNJ Equivalent
Level 1 Delayed Opening Delayed Opening
Level 2 Campus(es) Open - Storm Advisory *  No Equivalent
Level 3 Campus(es) Open - Severe Weather **  No Equivalent
Level 4 Campus(es) Closed - Weather Emergency  Campus(es) Closed - Weather Emergency 
Level 5 Addressed in Policy 60.3.19, University Closings  Campus(es) Closed - Emergency Curtailment of Operations 

*- Level 2 is declared when weather conditions may make travel hazardous. Employees may charge accrued leave time for work time missed.

**- Level 3 is declared when weather conditions are such that employees who make a good faith effort to report to work but are unable to do so may be excused, with pay, at the discretion of each individual department. Otherwise, employees may charge accrued leave time for work time missed.

For a more in-depth explanation of the weather emergency declarations for legacy Rutgers and legacy UMDNJ employees, please review the tables posted at http://uhr.rutgers.edu/sites/default/files/userfiles/Weather-Policy-Clarification-Tables.pdf.

In addition, University Human Resources has created a more consistent and formalized process for notifying Essential Services Personnel of their status as such and for describing the functions Essential Services Personnel may be called upon to perform during a weather emergency.

Departments are now required to notify Emergency Services Personnel, in writing, of their designation and to detail what that designation entails in terms of what job duties they may be assigned to perform during a weather emergency.

Finally, in order to assist in ensuring that critical services will continue during periods of weather emergencies, University Human Resources has created a Sakai site which will contain a list of all employees who have been designated as Essential Personnel. This site will be accessed by relevant university emergency services staff members who may need to contact or have knowledge of which essential employees are assigned to specific departments.  Department administrators responsible for populating essential employee rosters for their units, schools or departments on the new Sakai site will receive separate notification and instructions; updated essential employee rosters are due on the Sakai site by January 31 of each year, but we encourage departments to maintain their rosters throughout the year to ensure the most updated information is available in the event of a weather emergency.

Thank you for your compliance and adherence to the new adverse weather policies and procedures.  If you have any questions regarding the application of policy or essential employee designation, please contact the Office of Labor Relations at (848) 932-3400.