Long Island Administrator Awarded Terminal Leave Pay
The SAANYS Legal Department successfully argued a case before the Suffolk County Supreme Court, with judgment on April 24, 2017 in favor of a Suffolk County administrator.
In December 2015, a grievance was filed by the unit, which was ultimately denied by the board of education, and the demand for terminal leave pay was rejected by the district. Subsequently, in January 2016, the unit served a Notice of Claim upon the district signaling that an action claim on behalf of the administrator would be commenced.
The petitioner, a long standing member of the district for 17 years, informed the district in July 2015 that she would be resigning from her position to accept employment with another school district. At the time of her resignation, she submitted the standard request to receive all accrued terminal leave and unused vacation pay in accordance with the wording of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA). The district denied the terminal leave pay request citing a non-published internal memoranda claiming that only retirement constituted terminal leave pay, as the basis for their decision. However, the petitioner provided copies of the CBAs to the court dating between July 1, 1996 through the currently active contract ending June 30, 2018, in which the wording “retirement or separation,” was clearly stated.
The Honorable Denise F. Molia having noted that the district’s decision was “deemed to have been arbitrary, capricious, contrary to law, and unsupported by the evidence,” ordered that the administrator be awarded all accumulated and terminal leave pay in accordance with the unit’s CBA, in addition to interest earned from the date of her separation with the district.