CT COVID-19 Premium Pay & Supplemental Leave Extended; Vaccine Eligibility Expands March 31

Greetings Community Transit Colleagues,

As vaccinations roll out in our county and we continue to be diligent in following COVID-19 safety guidelines, we are seeing some hope as we fight this pandemic. Currently, all counties in the state are in Phase 3 of the Governor’s Healthy Washington – Roadmap to Recovery plan (https://coronavirus.wa.gov/what-you-need-know/safe-start).

Commitment to health and safety measures remains critical. With continued vigilance, we are all hopeful for brighter days ahead. Case counts have increased slightly recently in Snohomish County and King County, so we must remain vigilant.

More than 70% of our employees are eligible for the COVID-19 vaccination and we know many have already received their first dose. If you are eligible and have not yet been vaccinated, I strongly encourage you to do so. Immunization against the virus will help us to continue to protect the health and safety of each other as well as that of our customers. You can search for available appointments here: https://vaccinelocator.doh.wa.gov/.

COVID-19 Premium Pay Extended Through April 17

COVID-19 Premium Pay is currently scheduled to end on April 3. I have made the decision to extend this to April 17, the end of the next pay period. My decision is in part due to the availability of vaccines for our frontline workers. Vaccines will make the workplace much safer and I am optimistic about the increasing vaccination rates at our agency and in our county. Many of our employees have been vaccinated and we know more are planning on getting vaccinated in April.

We will continue to monitor vaccine availability for employees to inform a decision on whether to continue or conclude Premium Pay beyond April 17.

COVID-19 Supplemental Leave Extended to Sept. 4

We are also extending COVID-19 Supplemental Leave for employees who need leave related to COVID-19. This includes time off to attend a vaccination appointment, to recover from any vaccine side effects, to test for COVID-19, to recover from COVID-19, or to quarantine following potential exposure to COVID-19.

Eighty hours of leave is available for full-time employees and 40 hours is available for part-time employees. If you have already used this supplemental leave, you will need to consider other available options such as PTO or sick leave. More information on COVID-19 Supplemental Leave is available here: I:\Policy\Approved\COVID-19_Policy\Covid-Supplemental Leave Authorization FFCRA Revised 3 22 2021.pdf.

If you have questions about COVID-19 Premium Pay or Supplemental Leave, please feel free to reach out to your Employee Engagement Representative.

Vaccination Eligibility Expands on March 31

Tomorrow, the state will open eligibility to Phase 1B Tier 3 and 4, which includes anyone 60 years and older as well as people 16 years or older with 2 or more specific medical conditions. More information on this phase is available here: https://www.doh.wa.gov/Portals/1/Documents/1600/coronavirus/VaccinationPhasesInfographic.pdf.

Here is a link to a list of qualifying medical conditions: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-ncov/need-extra-precautions/people-with-medical-conditions.html. If you have questions about these conditions, please reach out to your health care provider.

Others who have already been named eligible for the vaccine still remain eligible. This includes veterans receiving care from the VA as well as these Community Transit positions:

  • Coach Operators
  • Coach Operator Trainees and Instructors
  • Dispatchers
  • Facilities Maintenance Tech 1 & 2
  • Field Supervisors
  • IT Support Specialists
  • Journey Mechanics
  • Journey Body Person
  • Parts Journey positions
  • Ride Store employees
  • Service Ambassadors
  • Vanpool Fleet Coordinators
  • Vehicle Service Workers
  • All employees training to move into one of the above positions

Thank you for your ongoing commitment to each other and the community. These have been challenging months and we are all looking forward to improvements in the months ahead. Thank you for keeping yourselves and each other safe. We are in this together and I am proud to work with each of you.