As promised, I wish to update you on the Mercer County Administration's COVID-19 Return to Work plan. Since the start of our response to the pandemic in March 2020, my administration has had a core group of leaders devoted to developing a thoughtful re-entry plan in order to keep our employees and the public we serve as safe as possible.
In my last correspondence to you regarding our return to work date, I stated that the County would reopen to employees no earlier than July 6, but subject to change . As we watch what is happening around the country to jurisdictions that perhaps opened too soon, and as a result are seeing a resurgence of cases of COVID-19, it is my recommendation that we continue to keep most Mercer County facilities closed for the time being.
We have scores of employees who are telecommuting and others who come into the office while following safety precautions when it comes to wearing a face covering, practicing social distancing and frequently washing their hands or using hand sanitizer. I appreciate that so many of you have been able to adapt during this crisis in order to continue to deliver services to our constituents, whether from home or from a County building.
At this time, all County employees who are working remotely are expected to continue to do so, and those employees who come into the office to provide services are similarly expected to do so. I appreciate your patience and understanding as we navigate these uncharted waters and work diligently to improve our workplace environment. I look forward to letting you know when we will be able to return to our offices.
Brian M. Hughes, Mercer County Executive
The Mercer County Personnel Office has a set of new policies pertaining to COVID-19. Please review these policies. Should you have questions specific to your individual situation, that office will be happy to assist you as we begin to phase in the reopening of county facilities. Please take a moment to read the County Executive's letter of thanks.
The County of Mercer is committed to providing a safe and healthy workplace for all its employees. As a result, we have developed the following COVID-19 Response Plan. Our goal is to mitigate the potential for transmission of COVID-19 in our workplaces and communities, and that requires full cooperation among all employees. Only through this cooperative effort can we establish and maintain the safety and health of our workplaces.
Time and Attendance Summary
All current full-time and part-time employees with exception of Public Safety and other emergency responders scheduled but unable to work (or telework for following reasons): Time & Attendance Summary for detailed information.
To comply with the Families First Coronavirus Response Act and to assist employees affected by the COVID-19 outbreak with job-protected leave and pay, where applicable. This policy will be in effect from June 1, 2020 until December 31, 2020. Our existing FMLA leave policy still applies to all other FMLA qualifying reasons for leave outside of this policy including leave provided pursuant to collective negotiations agreements. Mercer County COVID-19 Leave Plan for detailed information.
The County of Mercer has guidelines to allow for a telecommuting option for eligible employees under certain conditions. By definition, telecommuting allows employees to work at home for all or part of their regular workweek. Telecommuting is a work alternative that may be appropriate for some employees and some jobs at the County's discretion. It is not an entitlement; it is not a Countywide benefit; and it does not change the terms and conditions of employment. Click on Telecommuting for more information.
In recognition of the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s recommendations and Governor Phil Murphy’s Executive Orders regarding the public health crisis created by the COVID – 19 virus, and to aid Mercer County’s continuing effort to fight the spread of the COVID – 19 virus and protect Mercer County employees and visitors, the Mercer County COVID-19 Mask Policy is hereby effective and implemented immediately.