2007 ORS 238.350¹
Use of unused sick leave to increase retirement allowance
  • rules

(1)(a) Upon the request by a public employer that its employees be compensated for accumulated unused sick leave with pay in the form of increased retirement benefits upon service or disability retirement, the board shall establish a procedure for adding to the gross amount of salary used in determining final average salary the monetary value of one-half of the accumulated unused sick leave with pay of each retiring employee of the requesting public employer and shall establish benefits of the retiring employee on the basis of a final average salary reflecting that addition.

(b) For employees of a common school district, a union high school district, an education service district or a community college, or employees of the State Board of Higher Education engaged in teaching or other school activity at an institution of higher education, or employees of schools operated under ORS 346.010 (Training and educational services for children who are deaf or blind) engaged in teaching or other school activity, who are employed under contract for a period of less than 12 consecutive months and who are entitled to sick leave with pay of less than 96 hours for a year, each hour of accumulated unused sick leave with pay shall be valued on the basis of the actual number of contract hours of employment during the last year of contributing membership of an employee before retiring and the salary of the employee during the same period. This paragraph does not apply to any employee who is employed under contract for 12 consecutive months in any of the three or less years used in determining the final average salary of the employee.

(c) For the purpose of this subsection, accumulated unused sick leave with pay includes unused sick leave with pay accumulated by an active member of the system while in the service of any public employer participating in the system that has the request described in paragraph (a) of this subsection in effect at the time of the member’s separation from the service of the employer, whether that employer is or is not the employer of the member at the time of the member’s retirement.

(d) The board shall establish rules requiring all public employers participating in the system to transmit to the board reports of unused sick leave with pay accumulated by their employees who are members of the system and to provide timely notification to each of those employees of unused sick leave with pay accumulated by the employee and reported to the board.

(2) Accumulated unused sick leave with pay may be considered for the purpose of subsection (1) of this section only in accordance with the following requirements:

(a) Sick leave not credited at the rate actually provided by the public employer may not be considered. The amount of sick leave exceeding an amount credited at the lowest rate in effect for any employee of the public employer who is normally entitled to sick leave, and in any event exceeding an amount credited at a rate of eight hours for each full month worked, may not be considered.

(b) Sick leave credited for periods when an employee was absent from employment on sabbatical leave, educational leave or any leave without pay may not be considered.

(c) Any period during which an employee was absent from employment for illness or injury that was charged against sick leave not qualified for consideration shall be deducted from sick leave qualified for consideration.

(d) Sick leave for any period for which the public employer provides no sick leave with pay for its employees may not be considered.

(e) Sick leave accumulated on and after July 1, 1973, may be considered only to the extent it is supported by records of accumulation and use pursuant to a plan adopted formally by the public employer.

(f) Accumulated unused sick leave for periods before July 1, 1973, may be considered as follows:

(A) If any department, bureau or other organizational unit of a public employer maintained formal records of accumulation and use even though the public employer did not require that those records be maintained, the accumulated unused sick leave shall be considered according to those records.

(B) Where the public employer provided sick leave before July 1, 1973, but formal records of accumulation and use were not required or if required, are unavailable or incomplete, or the sick leave was subject to administrative limitations on total accumulation or transfer between public employers, accumulated unused sick leave for periods before July 1, 1973, may be considered as equal to 2.675 hours for each full month worked or an amount per month equal to the average monthly accumulation by an employee during the period beginning July 1, 1973, and ending at the time of retirement, whichever amount is greater, but reduced by the amount of any accumulated unused sick leave credited to the employee on July 1, 1973.

(g) The written certification of a member or former member of the Legislative Assembly shall constitute a formal record of accumulation and use in determining the amount of accumulated unused sick leave of an employee of the Legislative Assembly, either of its houses or any of its committees or officers for periods of employment before July 1, 1981. Sick leave accumulated on and after July 1, 1981, by employees of the Legislative Assembly, either of its houses or any of its committees or officers may be considered only to the extent it is supported by records of accumulation and use maintained by the Legislative Administration Committee, or any statutory, standing, special or interim committee of the Legislative Assembly or either house thereof, or any constitutional or statutory office of the Legislative Assembly or either house thereof, pursuant to a plan adopted formally by the committee or officer.

(3)(a) As used in this subsection, "legislative employee" means any person employed by the Legislative Assembly, either of its houses or any of its committees or officers, but does not include a regular employee of a statutory committee or statutory office of the Legislative Assembly described in ORS 173.005 (Personnel policies for employees of statutory committees) (1).

(b) Upon the request of a retiring legislative employee who is a member of the system, and the request of the public employer of the legislative employee, that the legislative employee be compensated for accumulated unused vacation with pay for periods of legislative employment in the form of increased retirement benefits upon service or disability retirement, the board shall add to the gross amount of salary used in determining final average salary of the legislative employee the monetary value of one-half of the accumulated unused vacation with pay of the legislative employee and shall establish the benefits of the legislative employee on the basis of a final average salary reflecting that addition.

(c) Accumulated unused vacation with pay may be considered for the purposes of paragraph (b) of this subsection only in accordance with the following requirements:

(A) Vacation not credited at the rate actually provided by the public employer may not be considered.

(B) Amounts of vacation exceeding amounts creditable to employees in the classified service of the state service pursuant to ORS 240.515 (1), and rules adopted pursuant thereto, in effect on June 30, 1981, shall not be considered.

(C) Vacation accumulated before, on and after July 1, 1981, may be considered only to the extent it is supported by records of accumulation and use pursuant to a plan adopted formally by the public employer. However, the written certification of a member or former member of the Legislative Assembly shall constitute a formal record of accumulation and use in determining the amount of accumulated unused vacation of a legislative employee for periods of legislative employment before July 1, 1981.

(4) Employers with plans providing payments on account of sickness in lieu of sick leave with pay may request the board to consider the monetary value of accumulated unused payments on account of sickness as if such payments were an equivalent amount of accumulated unused sick leave with pay under the same terms and conditions specified in subsections (1) and (2) of this section. [Formerly 237.153; 1997 c.249 §68; 2001 c.295 §10; 2007 c.70 §57; 2007 c.858 §60]

Notes of Decisions

Crediting of accumulated unused sick leave to pension account is contractual offer accepted by employee at time of commencing employ­ment and may not be terminated or reduced at later time. Oregon State Police Officers' Assn. v. State of Oregon, 323 Or 356, 918 P2d 765 (1996)

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Retire­ment benefit credit for unused sick leave, request by school district, (1973) Vol 36, p 665; sick leave and vaca­tion leave pro­vi­sions for exempt or unclassified academic service, (1974) Vol 36, p 1119; certifica­tion of amount of accumulated unused sick leave of retired legislative employee by letter written by current or former legislator, (1981) Vol 41, p 454; limita­tions on contracts affecting pension contribu­tion, sick pay cash out and min­i­mum account earnings, (1994) Vol 47, p 176

1 Legislative Counsel Committee, CHAPTER 238—Public Employees Retirement System, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­238.­html (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
 
2 Legislative Counsel Committee, Annotations to the Oregon Revised Stat­utes, Cumulative Supplement - 2007, Chapter 238, https://­www.­oregonlegislature.­gov/­bills_laws/­ors/­238ano.­htm (2007) (last ac­cessed Feb. 12, 2009).
 
3 OregonLaws.org assembles these lists by analyzing references between Sections. Each listed item refers back to the current Section in its own text. The result reveals relationships in the code that may not have otherwise been apparent.