University Policy 60
Overtime Work

Formerly Executive Memorandum 96-118
Initially approved January 15, 1983
Revised July 1, 1985
Revised August 20, 1986
Revised August 26, 1996
Administering Office: Administration and Finance Office

The State Personnel Commission recently amended the State's Policy on overtime work to extend the time in which compensatory time off may be given and to allow accumulation of compensatory time.

Both State and University policy and the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) provide that, for each hour worked in excess of 40 within the workweek, a non-exempt employee must be given 1 and 1/2 hours off or must be paid overtime wages at the rate of 1 and 1/2 times the employee's regular hourly wage. Overtime worked by non-exempt SPA (Subject to the State Personnel Act) employees must be recorded on official University time cards or reports in units of one tenth of an hour (6 minutes) and compensation given in units of one tenth of an hour (6 minutes).

Compensatory time may be accumulated up to a maximum of 240 hours (160 hours straight time) and must be taken within twelve months from the date the overtime is performed. If compensatory time off is not given by the end of the twelve month period, overtime wages must be included in the employee' next regular paycheck. It is the responsibility of each department to maintain a record of any compensatory time due each non-exempt employee and to ensure that the compensatory time is taken within twelve months following the date it is earned. Departmental records are subject to audit by the University's Internal Auditor and by external auditors.

The official University time card or report that is forwarded for payroll purposes must reflect actual time worked and leave taken. Reports that misrepresent actual time worked and leave taken expose the University to serious penalties under State and Federal law. Such misrepresentation, either by non-exempt employees or their supervisors, is strictly prohibited.

It is the policy of the University to limit the hours worked by non-exempt SPA employees to a 40-hour workweek except in cases where overtime work is made necessary by (1) weather conditions, (2) necessary seasonal activity, and (3) emergencies.

The following procedures are to be followed for authorization of compensatory overtime:

  • The supervisor must determine that a condition exists that is covered by one of the three criteria cited above.
  • The department head must authorize the overtime and determine whether compensation should be in the form of compensatory time or compensatory wages. Where possible, compensation for overtime work will be time off rather than wages.
  • If payment of overtime wages, rather than compensatory time off, is contemplated, prior approval must be obtained from the appropriate vice chancellor or the Assistant to the Chancellor. Approval to pay overtime wages will be contingent upon a determination that the need for the work in question is urgent, that compensatory time off cannot be scheduled within the allowable time, and that funds are available to pay the overtime wages.

Responsibility for determining the availability of funds to pay overtime wages is delegated to the Vice Chancellor for Business Affairs.

Supervisors should be mindful that, so long as total hours in the workweek do not exceed 40, work in excess of eight hours a day does not constitute overtime and is compensated on an hour-for-hour basis rather than at the premium (1 and 1/2 times) rate required for overtime.

The Office of Human Resources applies criteria specified by the Federal Act and State policy to determine the "exempt" or "non-exempt" status of each SPA employee of the University and informs supervisors accordingly. Master lists of "exempt" and "non-exempt" position classifications are maintained in the Office of Human Resources. Executive, administrative, and professional employees are exempt from overtime provisions of the Federal Fair Labor Standards Act and the State Personnel System policy on hours of work and overtime compensation. All EPA (Exempt from the State Personnel Act) employees of the University have been determined to be exempt.

Under FLSA, employers are responsible not only for the work they require employees to do, but also for work they permit employees to do. Therefore, if a non-exempt SPA employee is permitted to work overtime in the same capacity as his/her regular duties, a liability for overtime compensation is incurred by the University. Likewise, if a non-exempt SPA employee is permitted to volunteer to perform duties in the same capacity as his/her regular employment, a liability for overtime compensation is incurred. Wage and hour compliance is subject to Federal, State, and University audit.

Non-exempt employees solely at their option may occasionally or sporadically work for the University in a different capacity from their regular employment without the occasional or sporadic employment being subject to overtime compensation. However, if the work is more than occasional or sporadic, if it is done at the option of the supervisor rather than the employee, or if it is in the same capacity as the employee's regular employment, it is subject to overtime compensation.

Services for the University performed by employees for civic, charitable, or humanitarian reasons are not subject to overtime compensation provided the services are (1) wholly voluntary, (2) performed without promise or expectation of compensation, and (3) in a capacity different from the employee's regular employment with the University.

 

Copyright by Western Carolina University      •      Cullowhee, NC 28723      •      828.227.7211      •      Contact WCU
Maintained by the Office of Web Services      •      Directions      •      Campus Map      •      Emergency Information      •      Text-Only

Office of Web Services