COVID-19 Furlough Policy

 

Pepperdine faces increased fiscal challenges as a result of the COVID-19 crisis. The University has begun to explore a variety of measures to minimize these financial challenges and maximize its ability to continue to perform Pepperdine's critical educational and outreach mission.

This COVID-19 Furlough Policy has been adopted in the event a furlough is deemed necessary by the President. Under this policy, the type of furlough and the number of furlough days will be communicated in compliance with all applicable federal, state, and local laws to impacted employees and as soon as is reasonably possible under the rapidly changing business circumstances related to COVID-19. Below are the types of furloughs that may be considered under this policy:

  1. Consecutive Day Furlough Assignment: A furlough assigned in full-day increments for a continuous period of time with a defined start and end date.
  2. Intermittent Furlough Assignment: A furlough assigned in full-day increments that must not exceed one day every two weeks, coinciding with a biweekly pay period.
  3. Temporary Workload Reduction Furlough Assignment: A furlough which reduces an employee's normal weekly hours worked for a continuous period of time with a defined start and end date.
  4. University-wide Furlough: An intermittent or consecutive day furlough assignment that covers the entire institution with a defined start and end date.
  5. Elective Furlough: An elective furlough includes options that allow a staff employee to request a reduction in their full-time equivalent (FTE) status or days worked on an unpaid basis on a voluntary basis.

Supervisors and department heads will work with employees to schedule intermittent or consecutive furlough days in a manner that supports operational need and considers, but does not guarantee, an employee's scheduling preference. University-wide furloughs will be determined in consultation with all schools and operational areas. Salary reductions will be made according to the normal daily or hourly rate of pay for the employee's primary position. Procedures for implementing furloughs will be published and maintained on Pepperdine's COVID-19 Planning and Preparedness website. 

This policy applies to all regular, restricted, and temporary staff employees regardless of the position's funding source. Implementation of furloughs for grant-funded employees will be done in accordance with established grant provisions.

During an approved furlough leave, the University will continue most (although some exceptions apply) University-sponsored health insurance and welfare plans under the same terms and conditions that applied before the leave commenced. To continue coverage under health and/or welfare benefit plans, employees will be required to continue to pay their insurance premium contributions during the leave period (including premium payments for dependent coverage) that they would be required to make absent the leave. However, during any unpaid portion of the leave, the University may advance premium payments that an employee would otherwise be required to make to maintain such coverage, subject to and with the employee's agreement that on return to work, or upon separation of employment, the employee will be responsible to repay all such premium payments over a scheduled period of time.

Pepperdine University will make every effort to return employees on a furlough leave to their previous position at the end of the leave. However, reinstatement is not guaranteed except as may be otherwise required by law. Consistent with applicable law, the University reserves the right to recall employees from a furlough leave in order to maintain business continuity.