Updated at 2:11 p.m: Here is a very detailed response from APS board member Courtney English. Much thanks, Maureen
Hope all is well. Below is an explanation of the pay day change. We have received many questions on this issue and our CFO explains it as follows:
The change in pay dates does not cause an employee to lose an entire pay period. Historically, pay was received five days after the close of a pay period, with two exceptions. First, if the pay date (fifth day) was on a Saturday, Sunday or holiday, we moved the pay date forward to the work day preceding the scheduled pay date. Second, because the holiday work schedule for Winter Break abuts the scheduled pay date of January 5th, we moved the pay date for the December 16-31 pay period forward so it is distributed prior to the close of the calendar year.
With the transition in pay dates that began in August, we now are scheduled to receive our pay 15 days after the close of the pay period. As was the case before, if the pay date (now the 15th day) is a Saturday, Sunday, or holiday, we will move the pay date forward to the work day preceding the scheduled pay date.
However, since the district’s Winter Break work schedule no longer abuts the scheduled pay date for the December 16-31 pay period, we will no longer move that pay forward for distribution prior to the close of the calendar year.
An employee will be paid for the December 16-31 pay period as scheduled on January 15th. This change will have an impact on the calendar year 2012 W-2.
The amounts shown on a W-2 reflect the cash payments received by an employee during the calendar year. Historically, because we advanced the January 5th payroll to December because of the Winter Break work schedule, an employee’s W-2 reflected 24 pays.
For calendar year 2012, because we are not moving the January 15th pay forward to December, the 2012 W-2 will reflect only 23 pays. Calendar year 2013 will have 24 pays on the W-2, as will every calendar year in which an employee works a complete year.
For calendar year 2013, the 24 pays will reflect the last pay period of 2012 and the first 23 pay periods of 2013. The calendar year 2014 W-2 will then reflect the 24th pay period of 2013 and the first 23 pay periods of 2014…and so on.
When an employee resigns or retires, their final W-2 will reflect one pay period more than the number worked in that calendar year. Therefore, they never lose a pay. I hope this explanation has been helpful.
Back to original blog:
I am getting inundated with notes from APS teachers on a strange deal with their paychecks and have a sent a request to APS for clarification.
In the meantime, can anyone explain what sounds like a fishy deal? PAGE? GAE? Herb?
I listened to the APS video and understand what the district is doing, but it doesn’t seem fair to employees to put this change into effect now.
Some of the notes from APS folks:
I am an APS employee. I am hoping you might be able to post this to your blog to show more of APS’s foolishness.
Some background: Back in August, the Erroll Davis regime told us they would be adjusting the pay periods from the 5th and 20th of each month to the 15th and 30th. Not a big deal as far as I was concerned. Until recently when a coworker tipped me off to look at the pay stubs more closely.
To my surprise, the pay was coming up short. When we were paid on the 5th and 20th, we were paid for 10 working days each pay period. In August we were paid on the 6th and 22nd (12 work days instead of 10, but only paid the same amount as 10 work days). This pattern continued each month until now. So, between August and today, we have lost 10 days of pay.
This is an average of $2,600 for each teacher!
APS never mentioned this to us when they sent out the literature for pay day changes. BUT, they did acknowledge this in a YouTube video they sent to the staff last Friday The explanation starts around minute 4. They state that this year’s W2 will only reflect 23 periods instead of 24 like all previous (and subsequent years).
When will they pay us for the 24th pay date that is owed to us? WHEN WE SEPARATE FROM THE SYSTEM!
Can they legally do this?
The APS legal department isn’t always known for their grand legal expertise. Teachers have already been hit so hard by this economy. Our pay has been frozen for 5 years, each year sees more furlough days, and now this without warning! Our salary is already almost $1,500 less because of 4 furlough days. We were NEVER prepared to take an additional $2,600 hit this year, for an average gross total of almost $4,100!
Maureen, please help APS teachers by presenting this information to your readers. APS, of course as always, stands by and justifies this decision.
And from another APS employee:
I have been teaching in the Atlanta Public School system for the past five years and recently learned the system would hold our last check of the year until we depart from the system.
Typically, we are paid three times in the month of the December but for some odd reason we will not get that last check this year.
In years past, we received 24 checks, but this year we will receive 23 checks. Many of us just found this out through word of mouth and a video on YouTube. How can they just hold our money without giving us any real explanation?
The system already screwed our pay dates we had for years without any solid explanation. Our pay dates have not been consistent for a very long time for some odd reason. I understand the pay dates suppose to be consistent in January but why they did not just do it in August instead of prolong the dates which in turn screws up our financial responsibility?
To make matters worse, we will not receive our usual December 20 check until December 28, which put many of us in an unaffordable place that will hurt our families because we will not have the funds to buy our children gifts.
Mr. Davis is in the one percent bracket and he does not truly understand the struggle teachers go through. APS recently adopted customer service standards for all employees. What a joke because if teachers are customers also why are they treating us like crap and not paying us our money. Look, if I made the money Mr. Davis and his cabinet made, I can assure you, I would not be wasting your time or my time. HELP!
–From Maureen Downey, for the AJC Get Schooled blog