Payroll Basic Information

Payday is every other Friday for a two-week work period. Pay checks are electronically deposited directly to the employee's financial institution (preferred method) or mailed directly to the employee home or mailing address.

Salary ranges for most jobs have five stages at 5% intervals. Hiring is normally the first step. Eligibility for an increase to step 2 comes after six months of employment and yearly thereafter to step 5 if work performance is satisfactory and your Department Head recommends it.

On promoting to a job with a higher salary range, an employee advances to a step in that range providing a salary higher than before.

Salary range reviews are usually done annually with adjustments based on comparable jobs elsewhere. Meeting and conferring with employee organizations are part of the process. When a salary range changes upward as a part of this process, employees go to the same step as in the previous range.

Holiday and Time Off - There are twelve paid holidays and one Personal leave day for most permanent County employees. Employees required to work on a holiday receive full holiday pay in addition to pay at the appropriate rate for actual hours worked. Vacation time is accrued by a permanent, full-time employee at the following rate, after initial probationary period:

     1 to 4 years = 10 days per year
     5 to 9 years = 15 days per year
     10+ years = 20 days per year

Total number of vacation days an employee may be entitled to accrue is 30 or 40 days and must be taken at a time approved by their supervisor.

Leave of Absence - An employee may request leave with or without pay for reasons of illness not covered by sick leave, to attend school or training; to accept appointment in the unclassified service; to work temporarily at another governmental agency; military leave; family leave; pregnancy disability or parental bonding. All requests should be in writing to the department head. Requests in excess of twenty (20) days shall be forwarded to the County Human Resources Director by the department head for prior approval. (Failure to report back within 5 working days following expiration of leave-of-absence may constitute automatic resignation.)

Overtime and Compensatory - Most employees are eligible for overtime pay or compensating time off for any work ordered or authorized by a management employee which is in excess of forty hours of actual work per week. Paid time off does not contribute towards the weekly forty hour threshold for overtime. Management and certain other classes are not subject to defined working hours and are excluded from overtime pay.

Pay Differentials - Most employees who are required to be "on call," or to work regularly scheduled shifts, portions of which fall between 5 p.m. and 7 a.m., may be eligible for pay differentials based on the employee's Bargaining Unit (BU) agreement.

Employees in positions where bilingual skills are required may, if authorized by the Human Resources Director receive a differential amount ranging from $35.00 - $100.00 per month based on the employee's BU agreement.

Promotions - Two types of promotional exams exist: "Departmental Promotional," which is limited to permanent employees who work in the department, and "Countywide Promotional," which is open to any permanent employee possessing the minimum qualifications.  In addition, employees in job titles that are part of a career series are eligible for a "Career Series Promotion" when meeting minimum qualifications for the next step in their career series and with the approval of their department head.

Retirement - San Luis Obispo County has its own independent Retirement Plan (a defined benefit pension plan), contributed to by both the County and employee. Amount deducted is based on wages, hours and entry age. Your personal deposits are credited with interest every two weeks. The plan also provides for death and disability retirements. A minimum of five years of service credits is required to be eligible for "ordinary" permanent disability, service retirement benefits or for vesting rights upon termination. The County has reciprocal benefits treatment with CalPERS. For more information, call the Retirement Plan administrator, the San Luis Obispo County Pension Trust, at (805) 781-5465.

Sick Leave - All permanent, full-time employees accrue one working day of sick leave for each month of service. For many employees, the maximum accrual is limited to 260 days.

Sick leave with pay may be used in case of a bona fide illness or disability, including disability resulting from pregnancy of the employee, or in the event of illness or death of a relative in the first degree. Evidence may be required in the form of physicians' certificate for the time sick leave is requested. Up to 6 days may be used because of illness or death of a relative of the first degree.


Overtime, Sick Leave, Vacation, and other Paid Time Off
Leave Information, Forms, and Documents
Compensation and Pay Differentials
Benefits At-A-Glance
Pension Trust