The Department of Human Resources (CalHR) and the Department of General Services (DGS) have implemented a new Telework Stipend Program and a new statewide Telework Policy – each effective on October 1, 2021. Although the new statewide DGS Telework Policy is now effective, emergency telework provisions still remain in effect.
CalHR confirmed to ACSS that telework stipends for excluded employees are intended to be effective October 1, 2021, but that the payment of the stipends most likely requires a legislative appropriation. This means payments are not expected to begin until the Legislature passes a measure approving the appropriation of funds after returning to session in January 2022. CalHR confirmed that with a legislative appropriation, the telework stipend payments for excluded employees will be retroactive to October 1.
The major provisions of the new Telework Policy and Telework Stipend Program include:
- An encouragement of teleworking, with management/departments retaining the discretion to find that positions or job classifications are not appropriate for telework
- Dependent care and personal responsibilities cannot affect work duties or professionalism
- For employees who telework, they will be either remote-centered (50% or more at home) or office-centered (more than 50% at the office)
- Remote-centered employees will receive a $50 per month stipend
- Office-centered employees will receive a $25 per month stipend
- As employees need to provide adequate internet coverage to perform the job, this is the main basis for the stipend
- Other equipment and office supplies may be provided or reimbursed (pens, paper, printer ink, etc.)
- The state will provide equipment for a single dedicated work station for employees
- Remote-centered teleworkers shall have their dedicated work station at their designated alternate work location. Remote-centered teleworkers shall use a shared work station when working in the office
- Office-centered teleworkers shall have a dedicated work station in the office and utilize their own equipment or department provided mobile equipment for teleworking at their designated alternate work location
- Each department will have to adopt its own telework policy by October 1, 2022, but cannot alter the CalHR Standard 200 Telework Form
Departments are encouraged by the Administration to determine the maximum level of telework appropriate based on their operational needs with the goal of maximizing telework. ACSS will meet and confer as appropriate over proposed departmental telework policies to protect the interests of supervisors and managers.
ACSS’ legislative advocates will work to ensure the Legislature approves an appropriation to fund the telework stipends for excluded employees. We will keep you apprised of the progress and expected timing of retroactive telework stipend payments for eligible excluded employees.
If you have questions about telework, contact your ACSS Labor Relations Representative.