Article 5 – Conditions of Employment

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Section 501    Work Week

The standard work week for all employees of the various departments of the County shall be from 8:00 a.m. until 5:00 p.m., Monday through Friday. Exempt employees shall work those hours necessary to ensure the satisfactory performance of their departments, but generally not less than forty (40) hours per week.  When the activities of a particular department require some other schedule to meet work needs, the County Manager may authorize a deviation from the normal schedule.

Section 502    Gifts and Favors
  1. No official or employee of the County shall accept any gifts exceeding nominal value, which is defined as anything worth more than $25.00, whether in the form of a service, loan, thing, or promise from any person, firm, or corporation that, in the employee’s knowledge, is interested directly or indirectly in any manner whatsoever in business dealings with the County or that may tend to influence that employee in the discharge of duties.
  2. No official or employee shall accept any gift, favor or thing of value that may tend to influence that employee in the discharge of duties.
  3. No official or employee shall grant any improper favor, service, or thing of value in the discharge of duties.
  4. Gratuities shall be refused by all County officials and employees.
Section 503    Political Activity Restricted
  1. Every employee of Currituck County has a civic responsibility to support good government by every available means and in every appropriate manner. Any employee may join or affiliate with civic organizations of a partisan or political nature, may attend political meetings, and may advocate and support the principles or policies of civic or political organizations in accordance with the constitution and laws of the State of North Carolina and the Constitution and laws of the United States of America. However, while on duty, no employee of Currituck County
    1. Engage in any political or partisan activity;
    2. Use official authority or influence for the purpose of interfering with or affecting the result of an election or a nomination for office;
    3. Be required as a duty of employment or as a condition of employment, promotion, or tenure of office to contribute funds for political or partisan purposes;
    4. Coerce or compel contributions for political or partisan purposes by another employee of the County; or
    5. Use funds, supplies, or equipment of the County for political or partisan purposes;
  2. Employees subject to the Hatch Act may not be candidates for elected office in a partisan election.
  3. Any violation of this section may subject the employee to dismissal or other disciplinary action.
Section 504    Unlawful  Workplace Harassment
  1. Purpose of Policy: The purpose of this policy is to prohibit any form of unlawful workplace harassment of employees, and to attempt to ensure that County work sites are free of unlawful workplace harassment. This policy also prohibits retaliation against employees who file grievances, make complaints, act as witnesses to unlawful workplace harassment, and provide evidence in relation to harassment complaints. Retaliation is adverse treatment which occurs because of an employee’s opposition to unlawful workplace harassment.

    All employees are guaranteed the right to work in an environment free from unlawful workplace harassment and retaliation. The desired standard of employee behavior is one of cooperation and respect for each other despite any differences.

    All employees, including appointed and elected full-time and part-time employees and temporary and seasonal employees are responsible for conducting themselves in a manner consistent with the spirit and intent of this policy. Conduct prohibited by these policies is unacceptable in the workplace and in any work-related settings outside the workplace, such as during business trips, business meetings and business-related social events.
  2. Definitions of Unlawful Workplace Harassment: For the purposes of this policy, “unlawful workplace harassment” is defined as unsolicited and unwelcome speech or conduct based upon race, sex, creed, religion, sexual orientation, gender identity, genetic information, national origin, age, color, or disability.

    Conduct that violates this policy includes verbal, nonverbal, or physical behaviors that a reasonable person would find hostile or abusive and one that the person, who is the object of the harassment, perceives to be hostile or abusive. In determining whether speech or behavior violates this policy the County will look at all circumstances or incidents, including frequency of alleged harassing behavior, severity, and whether it unreasonably interferes with an employee’s performance or adversely affects the employee’s employment opportunities.

    Sexual harassment in violation of this policy consists of unwelcome sexual advances, requests for sexual favors, and other verbal, visual, written or physical conduct of a sexual nature. It includes, but is not limited to situations where:

    The employee is told or threatened, expressed or implied, that submission to the conduct will influence any personnel decision (employment, wages, advancement, assigned duties, shifts, or any other condition of employment or career development); or

    The conduct may unreasonably interfere with an individual’s work performance or create an intimidating, hostile or offensive working environment.

    Some types of prohibited sexual harassment include, but are not limited to:
      1. Verbal propositions or innuendos; lewd or sexually offensive comments; humor, jokes or teasing about sex or gender – specific traits; rumors about other employees, verbal abuse, and insults;
      2. Nonverbal sexually oriented gestures, signs, cartoons, pictures, cards, books, magazines, graffiti, or paraphernalia; whistling; email, internet, or other computer transmissions;
      3. Physical behaviors, specifically any unwelcome touching, such as rubbing, patting, pinching, or brushing the body.

    Some other types of prohibited activities related to unlawful workplace harassment include, but are not limited to:

      1. Pictures or graphics that are derogatory to an ethnic or religious group. Displaying racially insensitive pictures.
      2. Making rude and offensive remarks because of an individual’s disability or making the victim feel intimidated of isolated because of a disability.
      3. Using demeaning or inappropriate terms or epithets. Telling off-color jokes concerning race, sex disability or other protected bases.
  3. Role of Department Heads and Supervisors: Department Heads and supervisors are responsible for conducting themselves in a manner consistent with the spirit and intent of this policy. They shall establish and maintain a climate in the work unit which encourages employees to communicate questions or concerns regarding this policy; recognize incidents of workplace harassment; they must take immediate corrective action to stop such behavior when they become aware of it; and notify Human Resources.

    Any supervisor who observes, is confronted with, or becomes aware of situation involving workplace harassment must report the situation immediately to the Human Resources Director.

    The Human Resources Director is responsible for investigating the grievance in accordance with Article 10 Problem Resolution and Grievance Procedure. Disciplinary action, up to and including termination, may result against supervisors and managers who fail to respond immediately and appropriately to perceived workplace harassment in violation of this policy. 
  4. Grievance Procedure for Workplace Harassment: Any employee who feels he/she is being subjected to workplace harassment is encouraged to report workplace harassment to anyone with whom they feel the most comfortable, provided that it is a member of County management (supervisor or higher).This procedure does not require reports to be made to the Department Head or to anyone else the employee believes to be participating in The Department Head or Human Resources Director will prepare a written statement documenting the complaint. Complaints of workplace harassment will be kept as confidential as possible while the matter is thoroughly investigated and promptly dealt with as appropriate. Under no circumstances will the investigation be conducted by or under the direction of the person(s) reported to have engaged in the workplace harassment.

    The employee who is accused of workplace harassment may be placed on investigation leave while fact-finding is conducted. A finding of facts regarding the complaint will be completed as confidentially as possible, and a written report shall be completed by the designee in accordance with Article 10 Problem Resolution and Grievance Procedure. The investigator will determine whether the conduct constitutes workplace harassment in violation of this policy. In making that determination, the investigator will review the report as a whole and the totality of circumstances, including the nature of the conduct in question, the context in which the conduct, if any, occurred, and the conduct of the person accused of workplace harassment.

    If it is determined that the complaint of workplace harassment is founded, immediate and appropriate disciplinary action shall be taken consistent with the circumstances. The disciplinary action shall be consistent with the nature and severity of the offense, the rank of the employee and any other factors deemed appropriate.

    Retaliation against employees or job applicants who report, or file complaints or charges due to perceived workplace harassment, or who participate in investigations or proceedings as witnesses, or in other capacities is prohibited and will not be tolerated and should be reported immediately according to the reporting procedure outlined in Article 10 Problem Resolution and Grievance Procedure.
  5. Workplace Harassment by Non-Employees: When reports of workplace harassment against an employee in the workplace involve a nonemployee, the County will support appropriate steps to address the workplace harassment or to remove the complaining employee from exposure to the non-employee.
Section 505    Outside Employment

The work of the County takes priority over other employment interests of employees. All outside employment for salaries, wages, or commissions and all self-employment must be reported to the employee’s Department Head before such work is to begin.  Advance written approval must be obtained from the County Manager before engaging in the outside employment.  The request for approval shall contain the hours, dates, place and nature of employment.  The Department Head and the County Manager will determine whether the outside work would create a conflict of interest or otherwise be incompatible with County service.  The assumption of outside employment without prior approval by the County may be deemed improper conduct and subject the employee to disciplinary action, up to and including dismissal. No employee shall engage in outside employment during regularly scheduled work hours or when considered on duty.

Section 506    Limitation on Employment of Relatives
  1. No two members of an immediate family as defined in Article 1 Section 104 shall be employed within the same department if such employment will result in one supervising a member of his or her immediate family, or where one member occupies a position that has influence over the other’s employment, promotion, salary administration, and other related management or personnel considerations.
  2. The term “immediate family” means an employee’s spouse, parent, sibling guardian, son, daughter, grandchild, and grandparent, as well as the various combinations of half, step, in-law, and adopted relationships that can be derived from those family members named herein.
  3. The provisions of this section shall not be retroactive, and no action will be taken concerning those members of the same family employed in conflict with Subsection A, above, prior to the adoption of this policy.
  4. The Board of Commissioners shall approve the appointment by the Sheriff or the Register of Deeds of a relative by blood or marriage of nearer kinship than
Section 507    Use and Operation of County-Owned Vehicles
    1. General
      1. All employees shall observe both the letter and spirit of the laws of North Carolina and Currituck County in the operation and use of County owned vehicles. A portion of G.S. 14-247 is quoted and hereby reiterated as follows: “It shall be unlawful for any officer, agent, or employee of the State of North Carolina, or of any county, or of any institution or agency of the State to use for any private purpose whatsoever any motor vehicle of any type or description whatsoever belonging to the State, or to any county, or to any institution or agency of the State.”
      2. All employees shall operate County owned vehicles in a manner which will reflect credit on themselves, their Department and the County of Currituck.
      3. County owned vehicles should be pooled to the extent possible. This is particularly applicable in administrative offices and for supervisory personnel.
      4. Hitchhikers shall not be permitted to ride in County owned vehicles. Spouses or children of employees of the County of Currituck may accompany them in County owned vehicles, if ample space is available and all travel is strictly for official County business. Individuals who are not employees of the County of Currituck may accompany the employee in a County owned vehicle when they have a business interest in the travel.
      5. The County Manager or his designee may authorize deviations from these Policy Statements during actual emergency periods, or during alert or standby for exceptional conditions when they deem it to be in the public interest and necessary for the protection of life and property.
      6. All persons driving or being transported in a County owned vehicle shall utilize safety belts when same are provided on the vehicle in use.
      7. Employees on assigned travel status in the performance of official duties may prudently use a County owned vehicle for travel to obtain meals or breaks but not for private purposes.
      8. Multiple usage of vehicles is required where assigned duties will permit and permanent individual assignments of vehicles will be held to a minimum.
      9. All persons driving county vehicles or personal vehicles for official County business must consent to DMV records check. Records shall be obtained prior to operating a county vehicle and may be checked periodically in the future.
      10. All accidents while operating county-owned vehicle or on official county business in a private vehicle must be reported to the supervisor immediately.
      11. Employees shall immediately notify Human Resources upon conviction of a violation while operating a motor vehicle.
      12. Disciplinary action will be taken for improper use and operation of County-owned vehicles.

        Private use of a County-owned vehicle is in violation of the General Statutes. Disciplinary action will be taken for such use. This action may include dismissal.  Private use includes use during breaks or driving to obtain meals when not on County business.

        Flagrant misuses of County owned vehicles will be considered cause for immediate dismissal.

        In considering allegations of misuse of County owned vehicles, the party making the allegations should be required to give specific data in order that a complete and proper investigation might be made. It is the intent of the County to take action on the basis of fact and not on the basis of unfounded accusation.
      13. Any employee involved in a vehicle accident will also be required to submit to drug and/or alcohol screening in accordance with Article 8, Section 802.D. Post-accident testing is to be done within 12 hours.  Further, an individual driving a County vehicle involved in an accident that involves another person may be required to have a drug test within twelve hours.
    2. Assignment and Commuting
      1. For purposes of this policy, passenger motor vehicles are considered to be all County-owned vehicles.
      2. Individual Assignment of Passenger Motor Vehicles.

        Vehicles may be individually assigned to employees when it has been determined the vehicle is routinely necessary in order for employees to carry out their job responsibilities. Assignments must be approved by the County Manager or his designee.
      3. Commuting with Individually Assigned Passenger Motor Vehicle: Employees with individually assigned vehicles may routinely drive the vehicle to and from their home when one or more of the following conditions exist:
        1. Employee’s home is their official base of operation, or
        2. Employee is subject to 24-hour emergency call, or
        3. Employee is subject to work abnormal hours and on week-ends on County business.
        4. Assignments must be approved by the County Manager or his designee.
        5. The Internal Revenue Service special valuation rules for employee transportation benefits will apply to individuals authorized to commute from home to work in a County vehicle.
      4. Departmental Assigned Passenger Motor Vehicles
        1. Vehicles may be assigned to Departments when vehicles are necessary to carry out the functions of the Department, and are approved by the County Manager or his designee.
        2. Departmental assigned passenger motor vehicles may not be driven to an employee’s home or used during non-working hours unless one or more of the following conditions are met:
          1. County approved business requires an authorized trip by vehicle the following workday, the employee’s residence is closer to the destination than is the regular work station, and the employee does not have to return to his/her work station prior to beginning trip.
          2. Employee needs the use of the vehicle after completion of the regular workday to conduct County business on the same day or before their usual working hours on the next workday.
      5. Vehicles Other Than Passenger Motor Vehicles

        When it is considered to be in the best public interest, these vehicles may be either temporarily or permanently assigned to individuals with the authority to drive the vehicles to and from home.  These assignments must be approved in writing by the County Manager.
    3. Maintenance
      1. All County vehicles shall be serviced in accordance with Manufacturer’s Manual specifications. Arrangements to be made by assigned driver and Department Head. Inside/outside of vehicle is to be maintained and kept clean by employee or by standards set by Department Head.
      2. All major repairs or replacements to assigned vehicles are to be reported to Department Head, a purchase order is to be obtained by Department Head and repairs or replacements are to be executed by employee according to instructions from Department Head or his designee.
      3. Vehicles are to be checked and winterized by assigned employees at a time designated by Department Head.
      4. No repairs, minor or major, are to be made without prior authorization of Department Head.
Section 508    Travel Expense and Reimbursement
  1. Purpose

    It is the intent of this section to provide the necessary rules and regulations for a comprehensive reference and uniform interpretation of payment or reimbursement of travel and subsistence expenses pertaining to official County business.

    All board members, employees and non-County employees on official County business are subject to this policy.
  2. Board Member and Employee Responsibility

    A board member or employee traveling on official business is expected to exercise the same care in incurring expenses that a prudent person would exercise if traveling on personal business and expending personal funds. Excess costs, circuitous routes, luxury accommodations, and services unnecessary or unjustified in the performance of official business are not acceptable under this standard. Board members and employees will be responsible for unauthorized costs and any additional expenses incurred for personal preference or convenience. Willful violations of this policy may result in dismissal from County employment or other disciplinary action.
  3. Authorization and Accommodations
    1. A written request for travel must describe the travel requested, the purpose of the proposed travel and the period of time away from the County. Authorization of travel requests will be based upon need and cost/benefit of travel as determined by the authorizing party. For all in-state travel, other than travel by the County Manager and elected officials, the Department Head is hereby considered the authorizing party. The County Manager shall authorize all out-of-state travel. The County Manager shall approve all travel for Department Heads. The Finance Director will review all travel expenses of the County Manager and elected officials and any expenses not in keeping with this Article will be submitted to the Chairman of the Board of Commissioners for disposition.
    2. All arrangements for travel must be approved by the authorizing party. All travel costs except airline tickets, fuel, lodging and registrations will be paid directly by the requesting party and will not be billed to the County, except by those persons authorized to use a County credit or purchasing cards. In many cases, it is customary for airline tickets, lodging and registrations to be paid directly by the County either in advance or to be invoiced later. The requesting party is encouraged to use travel agents and reserve transportation and lodging in advance when possible. The requesting party also is encouraged to travel with other employees and officials of the County and representatives of other government units when possible. The requesting party will be reimbursed for cost incurred only, subject to limitations established in this Article.
  4. The County will follow specific guidelines relating to transportation, subsistence, and other costs as provided by the current IRS guidelines.
  5. Authorization for Reimbursement Procedures
    1. Travel advances will be issued at the discretion of the Finance Director. The amount of the travel advance may not exceed the estimated travel cost. Unused travel advances shall be repaid no later than seven working days after completion of the approved travel. The Finance Director will not issue a travel advance unless the authorizing party has approved the travel.
    2. Submitting expense reports –
      1. A requesting party will complete a reimbursement form, attach receipts and submit it to the authorizing party no later than five working days after returning from travel. The authorizing party must submit the reimbursement form to the Finance Director by the fifth of the month following travel. Travel expense forms submitted after July 31st for prior budget year may be denied. Advances will be deducted from reimbursable costs.
      2. A requesting party submitting a falsified reimbursement form will be subject to disciplinary action and criminal prosecution. An authorizing party or Finance Director who approves a falsified reimbursement form that they know to be false will be subject to disciplinary action or criminal prosecution. Violations of the County’s travel policy may result in dismissal from County employment.
    3. Approval and processing of reimbursement requests
      1. Reimbursement requests will be submitted to the authorizing party for approval. After approval by the authorizing party, the form should be forwarded to the County Finance Director.
      2. The Finance Director will determine that the reimbursement form has been properly approved, that it is mathematically correct, and that requested reimbursements agree to submitted receipts and are within the limits set by this policy. If an error in the reimbursement request is found, the requesting party will be informed and the error will be corrected before payment is made.
      3. Before the reimbursement is made, the Finance Director will determine that an amount sufficient to pay the request has been encumbered for payment, or that there is a sufficient unexpended appropriation in the expenditure item. The Finance Director will immediately inform the authorizing party and requesting party if payment cannot be made.
Section 509    Status of Non-Exempt Employee While Traveling (FLSA)

Participation in official out-of-town business meetings, authorized training courses and authorized professional conferences is time worked for the purpose of computing wages for employees subject to overtime. Travel time for overnight trips is always compensable whenever work is actually performed during that time. Driving is considered “work”.

Travel time to an overnight trip in which the employee is a passenger is compensable when it cuts across the employee’s normal hours of work, even if the travel occurs on a day that the employee does not normally work. (For example, an employee’s regular schedule is 8a.m. to 5p.m., Monday through Friday. The employee has to fly to New York on Sunday for a work-related conference that begins on Monday, and the flight departs at 10a.m. and arrives in New York at 2p.m. The employee’s travel time would be compensable.)

On the other hand, if the passenger travel occurs outside the employee’s normal hours of work, the time is not compensable even if it occurs on a work day. Using the same schedule as an example, if the employee flew to New York at 8p.m. Friday and arrived at 11p.m. Friday, the time would not be compensable unless the employee performed work while on the trip. In that case, the compensable time would be the time that the employee was actually working and would not include time spent watching moves, reading novels or in-flight magazines, or napping.

Section 510    Use of Technology Resources and Social Media
  1. Technology Resources: Technology resources belonging to the County including, but not limited to pagers, radios, all computer systems, e-mail systems, network resources and internet services are owned by the County and are in place to enable the County to provide its services in a timely and efficient manner. This is the primary function of these resources and any activity or action that interferes with this purpose is prohibited. Employees do not have an expectation or right to privacy with respect to any electronic correspondence, files, documents, images, created, stored, displayed, received or sent on the County’s technology systems. The County reserves the right to review, monitor and inspect use of its technology resources without advance notice. The County has in effect an appropriate use policy covering the use of these resources: all employees are responsible for abiding by its contents.
  2. Social Media: Currituck County endorses the secure use of social media to enhance communication, collaboration and information exchange; streamline processes; and foster productivity. This policy establishes this County’s position on the utility and management of social media and provides guidance on its management, administration and oversight. This policy is not meant to address one particular form of social media; rather social medial in general, as advances in technology will occur and new tools will emerge.

    Social medial provides a new and potentially valuable means of assisting the County and its personnel in meeting community outreach, problem-solving, investigative, crime prevention and related objectives.  This policy identifies potential uses that may be explored or expanded upon as deemed reasonable by administrative and supervisory personnel.  The County also recognizes the role that these tools play in the personal lives of some County personnel.  The personal use of social media can have bearing on County personnel in their official capacity.
    1. Definitions:

      Blog: A self-published diary or commentary on a particular topic that may allow visitors to post responses, reactions or comments. The term is short for “Weblog.”

      Page: The specific portion of a social media website where content is displayed and managed by an individual or individuals with administrator rights.

      Post: Content an individual shares on a social media site or the act of publishing content on a site.

      Profile: Information that a user provides about himself or herself on a social networking site.

      Social Media: A category of Internet-based resources that integrate user-generated content and user participation.  This includes, but is not limited to, social networking sites (Facebook, MySpace), micro blogging sites (Twitter, Nixle), photo-and video sharing sites (Flickr, YouTube), wikis (Wikipedia), blogs and news sites (Digg, Reddit).

      Social Networks: Online platforms where users can create profiles, share information and socialize with others using a range of technologies.

      Speech: Expression or communication of thoughts or opinions in spoken words, in writing, by expressive conduct, symbolism, photographs, videotape or related forms of communication.

      Web 2.0: The second generation of the World Wide Web focused on shareable, user-generated content, rather than static web pages. Some use this term interchangeable with social media.

      Wiki: Web page(s) that can be edited collaboratively
    2. On the Job use: County-Sanctioned Presence and County Media Sites. All procedures are outlined at the following link:
      http://cits-sharepoint/Policies%20%20Procedures/Forms/AllItems.aspx.

      1. County Use (Official):

        Where possible, each social media page shall include an introductory statement that clearly specifies the purpose and scope of the Agency’s presence on the website.

        Where possible, the page(s) should link to the County’s official website.

        Social media page(s) shall be designed for the target audience(s).
      2. Procedures for County Social Media Sites:
        All County social media sites or pages shall be administered within each individual department or as otherwise determined.

        Where possible, social media pages shall clearly indicate they are maintained by the County and shall have County contact information prominently displayed.

        Social media content shall adhere to applicable laws, regulations and policies, including all information technology and records management policies.

        All privacy settings should be set to public.

        Content is subject to public records laws. Relevant records retention schedules apply to social media content.

        Content must be managed, stored, and retrieved to comply with open records laws and discovery laws and policies.

        Where possible, social media pages should state that the opinions expressed by visitors to the page(s) do not reflect the opinions of the County.

        Pages shall clearly indicate that posted comments will be monitored and that the County reserves the right to remove obscenities, “off topic” comments and personal attacks.

        Representatives of the County communicate via the website. Consequently, a communication via this site (whether by a government employee or the general public) may be subject to monitoring and disclosure to third parties.
      3. On the Job Use – County-sanctioned use

        County employees shall identify and conduct themselves at all times as representatives of the County and accordingly, shall adhere to all County standards of conduct and observe conventionally accepted protocols and proper decorum.

        County employees shall not make statements about the guilt or innocence of any suspect or arrestee or comments concerning pending prosecutions, nor post, transmit, or otherwise disseminate confidential information, including photographs or videos, related to County training, activities, or work related assignments without express written permission. Adherence shall be giving to Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) guidelines as it relates to confidentiality.

        Political activities or private business is prohibited.

        Employees shall observe and abide by all copyright, trademark and service mark restrictions in posting materials to electronic media.
    3. Personal Use

      Precautions and Prohibitions under County policy:Publishing or posting false information, that harms the reputation of another person, group or organization (defamation);

      Publishing or posting private facts and personal information about someone without their permission that has not been previously revealed to the public, is not legitimate public concern and would be offensive to a reasonable person;

      Using someone else’s name, likeness, or other personal attributes without that person’s permission for an exploitative purpose; or

      Publishing the creative work of another, trademarks, or certain confidential business information without the permission of the owner.

      County personnel should be aware that privacy settings and social media sites are constantly in flux, and they should never assume that personal information posted on such sites is protected. Be aware that anything posted on the internet is not considered a private communication.

      County personnel should expect that any information created, transmitted, downloaded, exchanged, or discussed in a public online forum may be accessed by the County at any time without prior notice.

Participation in social media on behalf of the County is not a right and it therefore needs to be taken seriously and with respect. Employees who fail to comply with these policies are subject to disciplinary action, including dismissal.

Section 511    Dress Code
  1. General Policy: Currituck County employees are expected to present a professional image and be identifiable as County employees at all times while at work. For this reason, identification badges are required to be worn so that they are easily seen, and clothing, footwear and overall appearance must be appropriate and safe for the environment, work duties and work location for the day. Departments may have additional standards based on the business needs, environment and nature of work.

    Any staff member who does not meet the dress standards will be required to follow corrective action, such as leaving the premises to change clothing.  Any time missed because of failure to comply with directives and policy will be charged to accrued compensatory time or vacation leave.  If compensatory time or vacation leave are not available, then the leave will be without pay.  Supervisors are charged with setting the example for professional appearance in the work place. In addition, supervisors are responsible for the enforcement of County and/or department dress standards.
  2. General Standards

    Be conservative and modest when selecting work attire.  Look like you are coming to work.

    If there is doubt as to whether a piece of clothing or outfit is appropriate, do not wear it in the workplace.

    Modesty is to be preserved when bending over, stooping and sitting.

    Footwear should be selected according to the type of work performed, keeping safety, comfort, and professional appearance in mind.

    Body hygiene and grooming is required so that offensive body odor and/or appearances are avoided and a professional image is maintained.

    Hair should be neat, clean and dry.  Nails should be clean and well-groomed; avoid extremes of nail length and polish color.

    If County or department logo shirts are worn, they must comply with the Currituck County Logo Usage Policy.  Logos that are job-related and support State or professional associations are permitted.  Sports team logos should not be worn except for special days.
  3. Categories of Attire: Six categories of attire have been identified, each of which are appropriate under certain circumstances.

    Business Attire is appropriate when conducting business with elected officials and the public in a formal business setting. (Example: Board of Commissioners regular meeting, court, professional speaking engagements).

    Business Casual Attire is appropriate when conducting everyday business with the public in an office setting.

    Casual Attire is appropriate on designated casual days and special event work days.

    Non-Climate Controlled Environments Attire is appropriate when employees spend the majority of their workday in non-climate controlled environments such as outdoors, open buildings or buildings/spaces in the building without heat or air conditioning.

    Uniform Attire is appropriate if uniforms or special dress are provided and required.  Employees in departments that have County-provided uniforms should wear those uniforms at all times, unless there is a special event that requires other clothing to be worn. Employees must wear them in accordance with department uniform guidelines.

    On-Call/Emergency Call Back Attire will be at the discretion of the Department Head depending on the work environment.

    The Chart below lists examples for staffs’ guidance:
    These examples and lists are provided for guidance and are not intended to be all-inclusive.
    Business Attire
    • Dress pants, slacks, suits, skirts, businesslike dresses, dress separates.
    • Men must wear a tie with shirt tucked in.
    • Footwear should be appropriate to attire; hosiery/socks are not required for women.
    Business Casual Attire
    • Dress pants/skirts/dress capris/dresses with or without hosiery or socks.
    • Slacks or trousers with or without hosiery or socks.
    • Collared shirts, sweaters and mock turtlenecks for men.
    Casual Attire
    • Non-blue denim jeans.
    • Leggings and tights covered by appropriate finger-tip length dress or tunic.
    • Athletic and tennis shoes.
    • Non-collared shirts. Approved logos only.
    • Sleeveless shells or tops with at least two-inch wide straps that cover undergarments at all times.
    Non-Climate Controlled Environments
    • Non-blue jean pants, including work or cargo style.
    • Collared or non-collared shirts, approved logos only.
    • Hats are permitted if required as personal protective equipment. Solid colors, approved logos only.
    • Safety shoes and other personal protective equipment are required to be worn in accordance with safety guidelines.
    • Outdoor jackets and coats are permitted. Items that display small manufacturer logos or which are plain are acceptable.
  4. Unacceptable Clothing/Appearances for the Workplace.
    • Torn, frayed or patched clothing.
    • Strapless or spaghetti strap dresses, camisoles, halter, tank or tube tops or muscle shirts worn alone without covering.
    • Shorts, unless approved for a specific event or job, skorts, mini-skirts, leggings as pants, form-fitting pants.
    • Sweat suits or sweat pants, warm-up suits, overalls.
    • Hats or other head coverings unless required for non-climate controlled work, religious or medical reasons.
    • Spike-heeled or platform shoes or casual or foam rubber flip-flops.
    • Unnatural hair color (for example: pink, blue, green).
    • Revealing clothing that exposes excessive amounts of skin including; back, chest, cleavage, stomach, undergarments or leg.
    • Clothing with words, terms or pictures that advertise anything other than approved logos (County shirts/uniforms) or display small manufacturer logos.
    • Perfumes, colognes, and body sprays that are considered offensive to others.
    • Attire that looks like club, cocktail, party or picnic attire.
    • Clothing that is too tight or too baggy.
    • Body piercings which interfere with speech or could be distracting or offensive to customers, and/or offensive in the judgment of Department Heads; ear gauges.
    • Tattoos which could be distracting or offensive to customers, and/or offensive to Department Heads, shall be covered by clothing or make-up while working. Tattoos obtained after hire should be inconspicuous.
    • Denim blue jeans unless part of a work uniform.

Currituck County will reasonably accommodate a staff member’s religious beliefs or medical needs in terms of workplace attire unless the accommodation creates an undue hardship. Accommodation of religious beliefs or medical needs in terms of attire may sometimes be difficult in light of issues of safety and/or business needs. Medical accommodations requests must include medical documentation from a physician. For assistance in determining if a request may be reasonably accommodated management should contact Human Resources. All changes and amendments made to the Dress Policy must be approved by the County Manager.

Section 512    Driver’s License

Any employee performing work which requires the operation of a County vehicle must notify his/her Department Head in those cases where his/her license is expired, suspended or revoked. If an employee fails to report such an instance, he/she is subject to disciplinary action, including demotion or termination.  An employee who fails to immediately report such revocation or suspension to his/her Department Head and continues to operate a County vehicle shall be subject to termination.

Any judicial proceeding which results in a revocation, suspension, or limitation on an employee’s driver’s license shall be cause for immediate termination of the employee’s employment, provided that the County Manager may consider the viability of a transfer to another position within the County which does not require the operation of a motor vehicle in conducting County business. However, the County Manager is not required to make such a transfer and shall retain the right of termination or any lesser disciplinary action.  In any event, operation of a motor vehicle which results in a judicial proceeding involving revocation, suspension, or limitation on an employee’s driver’s license shall immediately terminate an employee’s right to operate a motor vehicle in the conduct of County business.

An employee performing work which requires the operation of a County vehicle, who has accumulated:

  • four motor driving record points, shall be subject to successfully complete at his/her expense a defensive driving course.
  • six motor driving record points, shall be subject to review of his/her driving skills and disciplinary recommendation by the County Manager.
  • eight motor driving record points, shall be subject to termination or transfer to a position that does not require the operation of a motor vehicle, in the discretion of the County Manager.
Section 513    Credentials 

By statute and rule certain duties assigned to positions may be performed only by staff members who are licensed, certified and/or registered. Certain positions, such as those in Communications, Inspections, Emergency Medical Services and Sheriff’s Department, require specific licenses, certifications and/or registrations.

Copies of the appropriate license, certification or registration must be received by the Human Resources Department within thirty days of issuance. Employees will not receive retroactive pay for copies of licenses, certifications or registrations received by the Human Resources Department after this thirty day time period.

Employees in these respective positions are responsible for obtaining and maintaining the appropriate credentials. Failure to obtain or maintain the legally required credentials may result in immediate dismissal without prior warning, in accordance with procedures for dismissal for unacceptable personal conduct.

Section 514     Use of Personal Cell Phone and Mobile Devices

During work hours employees are expected to exercise the same discretion in using personal cell phones and mobile devices as they use with County-issued phones. Excessive personal calls during the workday can interfere with productivity and may be disruptive and distracting to others.  Currituck County encourages a reasonable standard which requires employees to restrict personal calls and texting during work time. Employees should use personal cell phones and other mobile devices only during scheduled breaks, lunch periods and other designated non-work periods.  Flexibility will be provided in circumstances demanding immediate attention such as in emergency situations. As a courtesy to other staff members, employees should set their phones to vibrate mode if the immediate supervisor and/or Department Head has given permission for the cell phone to be turned on during work hours.

Currituck County will not be held liable for lost or stolen personal cell phones brought into the workplace.

Revised January 17, 2017