2-18-617. Accumulation of leave -- cash for unused -- transfer -- death benefit. (1) (a) Except as provided in subsection (1)(b), annual vacation leave may be accumulated to a total not to exceed two times the maximum number of days earned annually as of the end of the first pay period of the next calendar year. Excess vacation time is not forfeited if taken within 90 calendar days from the last day of the calendar year in which the excess was accrued.
(b) It is the responsibility of the head of an employing agency to provide reasonable opportunity for an employee to use rather than forfeit accumulated vacation leave. If an employee makes a reasonable written request to use excess vacation leave before the excess vacation leave must be forfeited under subsection (1)(a) and the employing agency denies the request, the excess vacation leave is not forfeited and the employing agency shall ensure that the employee may use the excess vacation leave before the end of the calendar year in which the leave would have been forfeited under subsection (1)(a).
(2) (a) An employee who terminates employment for a reason not reflecting discredit on the employee and who has worked the qualifying period set forth in 2-18-611 is entitled upon the date of termination to either:
(i) cash compensation for unused vacation leave if the employee is not subject to subsection (2)(a)(ii); or
(ii) conversion of the employee's unused vacation leave balance to an employer contribution to an employee welfare benefit plan health care expense trust account established pursuant to 2-18-1304 if:
(A) the employee is a member who belongs to a voluntary employees' beneficiary association established under 2-18-1310; and
(B) the contracting employer has entered into an agreement with members of the common association for an employer contribution based on unused vacation leave provided for in 2-18-611.
(b) Vacation leave contributed to the sick leave fund, provided for in 2-18-618, is nonrefundable and is not eligible for cash compensation upon termination.
(c) If an employee has earned vacation leave but dies from an accident while on the job, the accumulated vacation leave available for cash compensation under subsection (2)(a)(i) must be paid out as a death benefit to the employee's beneficiary or estate. This benefit is in addition to workers' compensation benefits, if those are applicable.
(3) If an employee transfers between agencies of the same jurisdiction, cash compensation may not be paid for unused vacation leave. In a transfer, the receiving agency assumes the liability for the accrued vacation credits transferred with the employee.
(4) An employee may contribute accumulated vacation leave to a nonrefundable sick leave fund provided for in 2-18-618. The department of administration shall, in consultation with the state employee group benefits advisory council, provided for in 2-15-1016, adopt rules to implement this subsection.
(5) This section does not prohibit a school district from providing cash compensation for unused vacation leave in lieu of the accumulation of the leave, either through a collective bargaining agreement or, in the absence of a collective bargaining agreement, through a policy. (Subsection (2)(c) terminates June 30, 2023--sec. 10, Ch. 167, L. 2019.)