FORT LEE, Va. (Nov. 15, 2012) -- When inclement weather is forecast, many employees worry about their safety traveling to or from their workplace.
Fort Lee government employees can be assured that officials are constantly monitoring for adverse weather conditions and the impact on Fort Lee.
Several organizations on post work together to recommend a course of action to the garrison commander. Then, the garrison commander coordinates an action with the CASCOM commanding general.
The entire process is explained in Fort Lee Policy No. 20-01, which can be found on www.lee.army.mil.
There are several courses of action Fort Lee leadership can take based on the severity of the weather.
If the weather will impact the morning commute and the leaders decide to delay the start of the duty day, they will designate a specific hour for reporting to work, rather than instructing employees to report a number of hours late. Employees can call the Fort Lee Status Hotline at (804) 765-2679 for that information.
If the inclement weather strikes during the work day and the decision to release non-essential employees has been made, a “not-earlier-than” departure time will be set. To reduce traffic congestion and hazards, employees may have staggered release times within their organization based on their residence distance from Fort Lee.
In both of these cases, the absence is excused and does not result in loss of pay or charge to leave.
Another option for senior leadership is to offer liberal leave, which allows non-essential employees to make the decision to take leave during severe weather situations. Liberal leave can be used without obtaining advanced approval or providing detailed justification. If the employee elects to take leave, he or she is not eligible for any excused absence if others are released that day.
If the post is closed (essential personnel only), it is defined as a non-workday for leave purposes. Nonessential employees scheduled to work will be excused without charge to leave or loss of pay. Employees on previously authorized leave will not be charged leave on those days.
Essential personnel, shift workers and contractors should contact their supervisors for clarification of emergency weather delays/closures and their impact on scheduled work hours.
Telework may be an effective tool for supervisors to ensure continuity of operations. Employees in positions determined not normally suitable for telework may become eligible to telework in an emergency situation if their functions are designated as mission critical. The DoD telework policy is available at www.dtic.mil/whs/directives/corres/pdf/103501p.pdf and provides additional details regarding requirements for telework.
While each activity is responsible for disseminating emergency information through its organization, there are several ways to stay on track. The Fort Lee Status Hotline (765-2679) and the U.S. Army Fort Lee Facebook page www.facebook.com/ArmyFortLee will have status updates to inform employees of impending closures or delayed openings.