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Human Resources Department

Western Council of Engineers (WCE)

2023 - 2026 WCE Memorandum of Understanding:   Article 32: Layoff Policy - Water Agency

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What’s on this Page

  • 32.1 Staff Reduction
  • 32.2 Layoff Notice
    • 32.2.1 Restoration
    • 32.2.2 Order of Restoration
    • 32.2.3 Availability
    • 32.2.4 Forfeit
  • 32.3 Layoff - Appeals
    • 32.3.1 Hearing Body
    • 32.3.2 Appeal of Implementation
    • 32.3.3 Appeal Process

Read Next: Article 33: Grievance Procedure

32.1 Staff Reduction

Employees shall be subject to layoff whenever their positions are abolished or whenever necessary due to lack of work and or funds.

Neither the layoff nor decision to layoff shall be grievable or arbitrable under the procedures of this Memorandum of Understanding.

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32.2 Layoff Notice

An employee may be laid off from his or her position twenty-one (21) calendar days after formal written notice has been presented or mailed by first class to the employee at his or her last known address with a copy to the Council.

32.2.1 Restoration

Each person who has been laid off shall, in writing by certified mail, be offered restoration to a vacant position in the classification from which the employee was laid off, which the County determines to fill within two (2) years after the date the employee was laid off. The Water Agency shall make a reasonable attempt to notify an employee who is eligible for restoration. If an employee cannot be reached within thirty (30) calendar days, the right to restoration shall be forfeited. Should an employee not accept restoration within five (5) regular Water Agency business days after the receipt of the offer or should the employee decline to begin work within fifteen (15) regular Water Agency business days after the receipt of the offer, the employee shall be declared unavailable and shall forfeit the right to restoration unless a further offer of restoration is authorized by the Water Agency General Manager.

32.2.2 Order of Restoration

Whenever more than one person has been laid off in the same class in the Water Agency, the order of restoration shall be the last person of the order of layoff shall be offered restoration first, based on the date of layoff.

32.2.3 Availability

Whenever a person is unavailable for restoration, the next person who is eligible for restoration shall be offered restoration in the same manner and under the same conditions. Should there be no person available for restoration, the position may be filled by the Water Agency.

32.2.4 Forfeit

A person who has forfeited restoration may, within ten (10) regular Agency business days after forfeiture, request in writing to the Water Agency General Manager that he/she be considered for a further offer of restoration, should such occur within one (1) year after the layoff date. The request shall contain a full explanation of the reason for the person's unavailability. Within thirty (30) calendar days after the request is filled the Water Agency's General Manager shall either approve or deny the request. The Water Agency General Manager may specify conditions under which the further offer of restoration may be approved.

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32.3 Layoff - Appeals

32.3.1 Hearing Body

The General Manager of the Sonoma County Water Agency shall act as a separate and final hearing body for layoff appeals for all full-time and part-time employees.

32.3.2 Appeal of Implementation

Implementation of a layoff decision may be appealed by an employee laid off. However, the decision to layoff may not be appealed.

32.3.3 Appeal Process

Any formal written notice to a part-time or full-time employee stating that the employee is subject to layoff, may be appealed as follows:

  1. Within ten (10) regular Water Agency business days from the receipt of the notice, an employee may, within the provision of paragraph (b) above, appeal the proposed action to the Water Agency General Manager.
  2. Within five (5) regular Water Agency business days after receiving the appeal, the Water Agency General Manager shall give a written decision to the employee.
  3. If the employee is not satisfied with the decision, the employee may, within five (5) regular Water Agency business days after receiving the decision, appeal the decision to the Water Agency's Board of Directors.
  4. The Agency's Board of Directors or a Hearing Officer appointed by the Board shall review the appeal and schedule the appeal hearing within thirty (30) days. The Hearing Officer shall make a recommendation to the Board of Directors within thirty (30) days of the appeal hearing.
  5. The Agency's Board of Directors decision will be final after considering the Hearing Officer's recommendation if the Board appointed a Hearing Officer.

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