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Employee Emergency Accrued Vacation Payout Program

Important: This program ended on November 14th, 2020

For additional questions on the Program, please contact: vac-pay-help@ucsc.edu.

The UC Santa Cruz Employee Emergency Accrued Vacation Payout Program (the “Program”) is a temporary program offering eligible UC Santa Cruz employees who are experiencing financial hardship as a result of the Summer 2020 wildfires in California an option to request a one-time payout of up to a maximum of 80 hours of their available accrued vacation to help meet expenses incurred due to impacts of the California wildfires.

Employees must submit an online application, on or before November 14, 2020, to apply for the Program. All applications will be reviewed to ensure applicants meet Program eligibility requirements. Applicants and their supervisors will be updated on the status of submissions and notified if their application has been accepted or denied.


Eligibility
The Employee Emergency Accrued Vacation Payout Program is open to academic, represented and non-represented staff employees, including probationary, career, partial-year career, limited and contract employees who meet the following requirements:
  • Have incurred direct financial expenses as a result of the Summer 2020 California wildfires (the “Wildfires”);
  • Hold an appointment and/or position that accrues vacation time; and
  • Have accrued unused vacation hours equal to or greater than the number of hours being requested for payout (up to a maximum of 80 hours) as of the date of submitting their application.


Application Process
Interested employees must submit the online application on or before November 14, 2020. The application includes the requested number of hours sought for payout under this Program and a certification that the employee’s request for participation in the Program is being made on account of a financial hardship resulting from the Wildfires and the amount requested does not exceed the amount necessary to address their financial need resulting from impacts of the Wildfires.


Application Terms
Requests for vacation payout must be made in whole hours. Any applications for fractions of an hour will be automatically adjusted down to the closest available whole-hour increment the applicant has available in their vacation balance. Similarly, any applications that would result in a negative Vacation Accrual Balance will automatically be adjusted down to the closest available whole hour increment the applicant has available in their vacation balance. Applicants should account for any pending or upcoming vacation as the requested hours will no longer be available for use. Once an application has been reviewed, the employee and their supervisor will be informed if the request has been approved, modified or denied. Vacation accrual payments are taxable income and subject to all applicable withholdings and deductions.


Vacation Balance
Once an employee has submitted an application for the Program, they will not be able to revoke the request. If the application is approved, the employee's accrued vacation hours will be reduced by the number of hours requested for cash payout in both UCPath and CruzPay. The employee will receive a lump-sum payment reflecting the available vacation payout under this Program. The payment will be made off cycle according to the employee’s election in UCPath, either by check or direct deposit. Employees will not be able to “buy back” their paid out vacation hours at a later date.


Frequently Asked Questions
  1. Q: How do I apply for an Emergency Accrued Vacation Payout?
        A: Complete the UC Santa Cruz Employee Emergency Accrued Vacation Payout Program online application.

  2. Q: What is the deadline to submit an online application?
        A: The deadline to submit the online application is November 14, 2020.

  3. Q: Who determines whether my circumstances are considered a financial hardship?
        A: The employee is responsible for certifying that they have experienced financial hardship as a result of the Summer 2020 wildfires in California.

  4. Q: Is my vacation payout considered taxable?
        A: Yes, the payout you receive is considered taxable income.

  5. Q: Will any other deductions be taken from my vacation payout?
        A: Yes, your vacation payout is subject to applicable taxes and retirement contributions.

  6. Q: How long after my request is made will I receive the payment?
        A: Once an application is approved, payment timing varies as payouts are processed “off cycle” either as a direct deposit or a check, based on your current method of payment.

  7. Q: What happens to my vacation balance once I make this request?
        A: Your accrued vacation balance will be reduced by the number of hours you received payment for under this Program at the time your payout is made. However, the balance change will not be reflected in UCPath or CruzPay until after your next normally scheduled payday.

  8. Q: Can I make more than one request as long as I don’t exceed the 80-hour maximum?
        A: No, you may only make a one-time request for a vacation accrual payout under this Program.

  9. Q: Once I’ve made a request, can I change my mind and cancel my request?
        A: No, once you have submitted an application, we are unable to cancel or change your request.

  10. Q: Can I “buy back” my vacation payout in the future?
        A: No, once the vacation accrual payout is submitted, you will be unable to cancel the request or “buy back” the hours at a later date.

  11. Q: Will this request for vacation payout affect pending or upcoming vacations?
        A: That will depend on the amount of leave balance you have available. You should account for any pending or upcoming vacation as the requested payout hours will no longer be available for future use.

  12. Q: Are Postdoctoral Scholars eligible for this Program?
        A: No, postdoctoral positions do not accrue vacation and are not eligible.

  13. Q: Are student employees eligible for this Program?
        A: No, student employee positions do not accrue vacation and are not eligible.


For additional questions on the Program, please contact: vac-pay-help@ucsc.edu.
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