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GUIDELINES FOR THE INSTALLATION OPERATING STATUS

FORT EUSTIS
The following guidelines apply to situations that prevent significant numbers of employees at Fort Eustis from reporting for work on time or which require the installation to close all or part of their activities, including adverse weather conditions (snow emergencies, severe icing conditions, floods, earthquakes, and hurricanes) and other disruptions of Government operations (air pollution, disruption of power and/or water, interruption of public transportation, etc.). These procedures apply to civilian employees located at Fort Eustis. These procedures do not apply to employees of the U.S. Postal Service or to private sector entities, including contractors.

It is essential that all activities located at Fort Eustis comply with this installation-wide plan and the announced decisions on dismissal or closure. Tenant activities should avoid independent action to ensure consistency in application of controlling policies/collective bargaining agreements. All Fort Eustis employees should be familiar with TCFE Plan Number 600-2, USATCFE Severe Weather and Disaster Preparedness Plan available in the public folders bulletin board under publications.

Click on the links below for definitions:

Mission Essential Employees
Liberal Leave
Excused Absence

For additional information, contact the servicing Human Resources Specialist in the Civilian Personnel Advisory Center.

When installation operations are affected by adverse weather or other emergency situations, the following guidelines will apply:

DISRUPTIONS BEFORE THE WORKDAY BEGINS

The 633rd Air Base Wing Public Affairs Office will provide one of the following four announcements when a disruption occurs before the workday begins. These announcements do NOT apply to individuals who are designated as "mission essential employees." Mission essential employees are expected to report for work on time unless excused by their supervisors.

Announcement                                                                                                                                                  What Announcement Means
1. "Fort Eustis is OPEN; employees are expected to report for work on time." Employees are expected to report for work on time.

2. "Fort Eustis is OPEN under an LIBERAL LEAVE policy."                                                                      Employees who cannot report for work may take unscheduled leave for their entire scheduled workday. When a "liberal leave" policy is announced, employees should contact their supervisor to request annual leave, leave without pay, and/or the use of previously earned compensatory time off or credit hours under an alternative work schedule. Mission Essential employees are expected to report for work on time.

3. "Fort Eustis is OPEN under a DELAYED ARRIVAL/LIBERAL LEAVE policy. Employees should plan to arrive for work no more than xx hours later than they would normally arrive, and employees who cannot report for work may take unscheduled (LIBERAL) leave." Employees should plan their commutes so that they arrive for work no more than xx hours later than they would normally arrive. Employees who arrive for work more than xx hours later than their normal arrival time will be charged annual leave or leave without pay for the additional period of absence from work.
Employees who cannot report for work may take liberal leave for their entire scheduled workday. When a "liberal leave" policy is announced, employees should contact their supervisor to request annual leave, leave without pay, and/or the use of previously earned compensatory time off or credit hours under an alternative work schedule. Mission Essential employees are expected to report for work on time.

4. "Fort Eustis is CLOSED." Mission Essential employees are expected to report for work on time.

DISRUPTIONS AFTER THE WORKDAY BEGINS

The following announcement will be made when a disruption occurs after the workday begins. This announcement does not apply to individuals who are designated as "mission essential." Mission essential employees are expected to remain at work unless excused by their supervisors.

Announcement What Announcement Means

"Fort Eustis is operating under an EARLY DISMISSAL policy. Employees should be dismissed by their supervisors xx hours earlier than their normal departure time from work." Employees should be dismissed by their supervisors relative to their normal departure times from work. For example, if a 3-hour "early dismissal" policy is announced, workers who normally leave their offices at 4:00 p.m. should leave at 1:00 p.m. Employees who must leave work earlier than their official dismissal time will be charged annual leave or leave without pay from the time of their departure through the remainder of their scheduled workday.
Employees on pre-approved leave for the entire day should be charged leave for the entire day.
Mission essential employees are expected to remain at work.
"Fort Eustis is operating under an EARLY DISMISSAL policy. Employees should be dismissed by their supervisors at xx:xx time." Employees should be dismissed by their supervisors at the time listed in the announcement. For example, if 1:00 p.m. "early dismissal" policy is announced, workers should leave at 1:00 p.m. Employees who must leave work earlier than their official dismissal time will be charged annual leave or leave without pay from the time of their departure through the remainder of their scheduled workday.
Employees on pre-approved leave for the entire day should be charged leave for the entire day.
Mission essential employees are expected to remain at work.

Mission Essential Employees
At least annually, supervisors should review the designation of individual determined to be "mission essential". Mission essential personnel perform duties essential to the mission and the continuation of medical facilities services, public safety services or functions, national defense or other crucial operations, and who are required to be at work regardless of emergency situations and general dismissal authorizations. Employees must receive advance written notification of their designation as mission essential and the requirement to report for duty. The notice should include the requirement that mission essential employees report for or remain at work when operations are disrupted and an explanation that dismissal or closure announcements do not apply to them unless they are instructed otherwise. Alternate mission essential personnel should also be designated to ensure critical operations continue if primary or scheduled mission essential personnel are unable to report due to adverse weather conditions. While it is imperative that an appropriate number of mission essential personnel be designated, take care not to arbitrarily designate all personnel within an office or activity as mission essential. The serious nature of essential work that must be continued/completed requires all mission essential employees to make every effort to report for work.
In addition to those individuals pre-designated as mission essential, there may be emergency situations that require the supervisor to designate an employee as an ON THE SPOT MISSION ESSENTIAL. In those cases, the employee must be informed of the reason for the on the spot designation. Commanders, directors, division chiefs, or other personnel delegated responsibility to assign work will not retain employees as "On-The-Spot Mission Essential" to perform routine work that can be postponed.

Liberal Leave
Liberal leave means that supervisors will be "liberal" in granting leave that has not been scheduled and approved in advance. When a "liberal leave" policy is announced, employees should contact their supervisor to request annual leave, leave without pay, and/or the use of previously earned compensatory time off or credit hours under an alternative work schedule.

Excused Absence
The decision to curtail activities and to excuse non-mission essential employees due to adverse weather or other emergency conditions will be made by the Commanding General for employees located at Fort Eustis and by Fort Story Garrison Commander for employees located at Fort Story. There may be situations where the information provided by the media is unclear or confusing. In those cases, employees should use their chain of command to obtain clarification. The supervisor should be the primary source of information regarding excused absence, leave approval, or clarification of issues involving designation of mission essential personnel.

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