Voting and Community Service
Employees are not permitted to use work time for voting. Since the polls are open for 12 hours or more on Election Day, employees must use their own time either before or after their regular work schedule to vote. In some instances, employees may be able to vote during their scheduled meal periods. Management, with reasonable notice provided by the employee, has the discretion to allow flexible work scheduling to accommodate voting employees, or allow the employee to code vacation leave, bonus leave or other accrued paid time off for the absence.
Community service leave (CSL) provides SPA (Subject to the State Personnel Act) and EPA (Exempt from the State Personnel Act) employees with paid time off to volunteer in their communities for political Activities including working inside the polls for the State or County Board of Election to facilitate the voting process as long as the employee is not receiving pay for the work.
Community Service Leave Terms and Definitions provides additional information about included and excluded activities.
Full-time and part-time SPA (Subject to the State Personnel Act) and EPA (Exempt from the State Personnel Act) employees and trainees in full-time, part-time, and time-limited positions are eligible for community service leave.
- Each full-time employee is credited with 24 hours of leave on January 1 of each year
- For part-time employees, Community Service Leave accrues at a pro-rated amount
Exception: Employees mentoring or tutoring receive 1 hour a week that the school is in session, for a maximum of 36 hours a year.
- New employees are credited with leave upon hire, prorated at 2 hours per month for the remainder of the calendar year
- Part-time employees are granted prorated hours equal to the percentage of full-time equivalency (FTE).
Note: Leave accrues when the employee is in pay status for one-half or more of the scheduled workdays and holidays in that month. However, Community Service Leave is non-transferable and does not carry over from one year to the next, and employees are not paid for this leave on separation.
- Submit a request for community service leave to their Supervisor.
- Enter and track all leave in the Web Leave System.
Supervisors review the requests for community service leave and approve or disapprove the request.
- Office of State Personnel, Community Service Leave
Terms and Definitions
Athletics - Participation in recreational or athletic activities including coaching is excluded.
Child Involvement - Includes meeting with a teacher or administrator about the employee's child or attending a school function in which the child is participating.
Church Involvement - While all churches are 501 (c) (3) organizations, all services provided to a church might not qualify. The work done must fill a service need to citizens, communities, or schools in North Carolina. For example, a mission trip to Brazil to repair homes would not qualify but a church sponsored project to repair homes damaged by floods in NC would qualify. Also, work cannot involve the promotion of religious beliefs or in raising funds to support religious activities.
Civic Group Meetings - Attendance at meetings such as Jaycees, Kiwanis, Rotary, etc. does not meet the intent of the policy.
Community Service Organization - Typically known as charitable organizations. Organizations must be non-profit, non-partisan and designated as IRS code 501 (c) (3) agencies serving citizens with special needs including children, youth, and the elderly. They must be operated exclusively for religious, charitable, scientific, public safety testing, literary, education, or the prevention of cruelty to children or animals purposes.
Fundraising - Since fundraising does not directly meet a service need of the citizens of NC, this is excluded.
Leave Accrual - Twenty-four (24) hours of leave credited to each employee on January 1 of each year unless the employee is tutoring or mentoring. Employees choosing this option are allowed one hour of leave for each week that school is in session, for a maximum of 36 hours per year. New employees are credited with leave upon hire, prorated at 2 hours per month for the remainder of the calendar year. Part-time employees are granted prorated hours equal to the percentage of full-time equivalency. Leave is accrued in a month where the employee is in pay status for one-half or more of the scheduled workdays and holidays in that month.
Political Activities - CSL can be used to work inside the polls for the State or County Board of Election to facilitate the voting process. Leave cannot be used for handing out brochures, campaigning, or transporting voters.
Private Schools/Home Schools - The policy covers public, charter, private, and child-care schools but not home schools for tutoring/mentoring. Home schools are covered for child involvement and volunteer activities.
Training to Tutor/Mentor - CSL for tutoring or mentoring is to be used exclusively for these purposes so attending training before volunteering is not covered.
Travel Time - Reasonable travel time to and from volunteer activities may be charged to CSL. However, travel time to and from schools for tutoring/mentoring is not covered. The intent of the policy is for the employee to spend one hour each week actually tutoring/mentoring.
Tutoring/Mentoring Opportunities - Contact the Communities in Schools of NC program at 919-832-2700.
Volunteer Opportunities - Call the Governor's Office of Citizen and Community Services at 1-877-SERVE-NC.