Texas Tech University

 

[Major revision–posted 9/20/21 (replaces 9/24/19 edition)]
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Operating Policy and Procedure

OP 10.03: Severe Weather, Energy Curtailment, or Other Emergency Situations

DATE: September 20, 2021

PURPOSE: The purpose of this Operating Policy/Procedure (OP) is to establish university policy regarding campus changes during emergency situations. Exceedingly inclement weather and emergencies related to the Central Heating and Cooling Plant are some of the events that might require changes to classes and campus work operations for a short period of time

REVIEW: This OP will be reviewed in September of each year by the Managing Director of Emergency Management and the Associate Vice President for Human Resources with substantive revisions forwarded to the Senior Vice President for Administration & Finance and Chief Financial Officer (CFO) and the President.

POLICY/PROCEDURE

1.  Severe Weather Conditions

a.    When weather conditions and/or reports indicate the potential for icing or snow, the Managing Director of Emergency Management will notify the Chief of Police.

b.    The Texas Tech Police Department (TTPD) shift supervisor will send the road condition report to the Chief of Police and the Managing Director of Emergency Management at a predetermined time.

c.    In collaboration, the Chief of Police and the Managing Director of Emergency Management will consider the severity of the event and form a recommendation sent to the CFO.

(1)    If possible, this recommendation will be made prior to 6:00 p.m. of the preceding day.

(2)    In those cases where hazardous conditions arise during the night, every effort will be made to send the recommendation to the CFO prior to 5:30 a.m.

d.    The CFO will contact the President, Provost, Chief of Staff, Chief Marketing & Communications Officer, and Deputy Chancellor with this recommendation. Once a decision has been made, the CFO will immediately inform the Managing Director of Emergency Management to relay the information to proper areas, including coordination with TTU System Administration and Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center.

(1)    Because severe weather and road conditions change quickly, notification will be sent as early as possible with the most accurate information available.

2.  Energy Curtailment or Other Emergencies

Energy curtailment or other emergencies will be identified and discussed between the Associate Vice President for Operations and the Managing Director of Emergency Management. Should there be a need to adjust classes or campus work operations, a recommendation will be sent to the CFO. The communication protocol and timing presented in sections 1.c. and 1.d. above will apply.

3.  Procedures for Implementation of Policy

a.   If classes are to be suspended or shifted to online instruction and offices are to be closed or shifted to remote work operations, the President will notify the Provost and the Chief Marketing & Communications Officer. The Chief Marketing & Communications Officer will notify appropriate media and work with the Managing Director of Emergency Management to issue TechAlerts.

b.    In the event the Chief Marketing & Communications Officer cannot be notified, the Managing Director of Communications & Marketing or other appropriate representative will fulfill this function.

c.    In any situation where the designated administrators are unavailable, the Managing Director of Emergency Management will make direct contact with the President or the Acting President.

d.    The same procedure will be used to determine and announce the time when essential personnel staffing ceases and normal staffing and classes resume.

4.  Identification of Essential Personnel

It is the responsibility of the President, Provost, vice presidents, and deans to assure by October 1 of each year the administrators in the organization notify those persons designated as essential personnel. The designation of essential personnel may also be included in the employee's job description.

Administrative officers may release essential personnel from their responsibilities to report for work on an individual basis if their services are not needed during a specific emergency. Administrative officers may designate other personnel as essential for a specific emergency on an individual basis by providing notice to the employee if their services are needed.

5.  Compensation of Essential Personnel During a Closing, Delay, or Dismissal

a.    Exempt Employees

Exempt employees are paid for the accomplishment of assigned tasks without accounting for hours worked and will not be entitled to equivalent time off or additional compensation for hours worked during an emergency period.

b.    Non-exempt Employees

Non-exempt benefits eligible employees shall be credited with paid emergency leave for the number of normal work hours involved in the emergency closing, delay, or dismissal and will be paid for the number of hours actually worked, in accordance with normal policy governing overtime and additional compensation (see OP 70.17, Overtime).

Non-exempt non-benefits eligible employees shall be paid for the number of hours worked, in accordance with normal policy, but they shall not be credited with additional emergency leave hours.

Employees who have been designated as essential personnel but who do not report to work and do not have a valid reason will not be credited with the number of normal work hours involved in the emergency closing and will be charged for leave without pay during the emergency period.

Employees who are not designated as essential personnel and not provided notice as essential for a specific emergency but who report to work during an officially declared emergency situation should be sent home immediately.

c.    It is the supervisor's responsibility to ensure their employees' time is entered correctly before approving timesheets.

6. Compensation of Personnel During a Remote Workday Designated by the President

a.    Exempt Employees

Exempt employees who were either out sick or on vacation during the remote work directive will report the appropriate leave time for their absence. 

Exempt employees who either worked remotely or who reported to work do not need to report hours worked as they are paid for the accomplishment of assigned tasks without accounting for hours worked.

b.    Non-exempt Employees

Non-exempt benefits eligible employees who are either out sick or on vacation during the remote work directive will report the appropriate leave time for their absence.

Non-exempt benefits eligible employees and non-benefits eligible employees who worked remotely or reported to work on campus should report actual hours worked through their normal process. 

Non-exempt benefits eligible employees who were unable to work remotely should report the appropriate number of emergency leave hours. 

c.    It is the supervisor's responsibility to ensure their employees' time is entered correctly before approving timesheets.

7.  Announcement of Policy

The President will prepare and distribute to the Provost, all vice presidents, deans, department heads, administrators, and directors in TTU a general information memorandum on this policy by November 1 of each year.

8.  Right to Change Policy

Texas Tech reserves the right to interpret, change, modify, amend, or rescind this policy, in whole or in part, at any time without the consent of faculty, staff, and students.

Operating Policies & Procedures