Performance Based Rewards Program

Section 1 Policy
1.1 These regulations provide the rules for performance-based monetary awards to be granted by the District of Columbia Public Service Commission (Commission or PSC) pursuant to D.C. Code §1-551.03.
1.2 It is the policy of the Commission to recognize and reward employees whose performance is exemplary and who make a substantial contribution to the mission of the Commission.  That recognition may take several forms, including time-off awards.  However, these regulations are only concerned with monetary awards (bonuses) given to employees who exceed the expectations for performance found in their Individual Performance Plans (IPP) or Individual Accountability Plans (IAP), in the case of attorneys in the Office of the General Counsel.
1.3 The purpose of the Performance Based Rewards Program (Program) is to incent and retain exceptional high-performing employees, as well as to provide a tool for the recruitment of highly skilled employees.
1.4 It is specifically not the purpose of the Program to reward employees for the performance of their normal work duties; accomplishments that are routine and within the duties outlined on their job descriptions; or behavior that is generally expected of District government employees..   Further, it is not the policy of the Commission to reward employees who have exhibited behavior or misconduct problems within the past year, including but not limited to, excessive absenteeism, tardiness, insubordination or ethical violations.
1.5 Monetary awards under this Program are awarded solely at the discretion of the Chairperson of the Commission in his or her capacity as independent personnel authority. The Chairperson shall review the Commission’s previous fiscal year Performance Plan to assure that the Commission’s strategic initiatives and performance goals have been met.  If those goals have not been met, the Chairperson may determine that no monetary awards should be awarded, or that the amount of the awards should be reduced.
Section 2 Applicability
2.1 The Performance Based Awards Program applies only to full-time employees of the Commission and specifically excludes probationary employees, the Chairperson and Commissioners.
2.2 To be eligible for payment of a monetary award, an employee must be actively employed by the Commission at the time of the award’s payment.  Payment to an individual who has separated, retired, or for any other reason is not a current employee at the time of the payment of the monetary award is strictly prohibited. An employee serving in active duty deployment as part of their reserve duty, or an employee participating in family leave, or a work assignment detail, may still be eligible for a bonus.
2.3 Employees who have received a Disciplinary Action, as defined in the District Personnel Manual,  during the evaluation period shall not be eligible for a monetary award.
Section 3 General Provisions
3.1 Monetary awards shall be awarded only according to the following provisions:
       (a) A monetary award shall be based upon an employee’s performance evaluation.  Only those receiving a “4” or “5” overall rating will be eligible to receive an award.  However, an overall rating of “4” or “5” does not automatically warrant an award.
       (b)  All monetary awards are at the discretion of the Chairman, upon the recommendation of an employee’s supervisor.  No one is guaranteed an award.
       (c)  The IPP/IAP process will establish quantifiable measures by which to evaluate employees, called Objective Performance Measures.  Each employee shall collaborate with his or her supervisor to develop no fewer than three Objective Performance Measures which shall directly relate to the mission of the Commission and the specific responsibilities of the employee.  These Objective Performance Measures shall be included in each employee’s IPP/IAP.
3.2 An employee may not receive more than one monetary award in a twelve-month period.  However, monetary awards may be made in addition to any non-monetary award granted to the employee in a twelve-month period.
3.3 Monetary awards are in addition to the regular pay of the award recipient and are subject to the withholding of taxes.  The taxes must be deducted from the award and the amount of the award may not be adjusted upward to cover taxes.
3.4 Monetary awards are issued on a one- time basis, without any suggestion or promise of continuing payments.
3.5 Monetary awards are issued on an individual basis and not to a group or class of employees unless each of the employees in the group or class individually warrants an award.
3.6 An employee may not receive bonus pay and special awards pay in the same calendar year.  For purposes of this Program, bonus pay (Comptroller Subcategory 0137) is a performance award given pursuant to this Program.  Special awards pay(Comptroller Subcategory 138) is any other monetary benefit awarded pursuant to DC Code §1-551.06.
Section 4 Schedule
4.1 No later than May 1 of each year, each employee shall complete a Commission-developed course on the Commission’s performance management systems, including instruction on the preparation of performance evaluations and IPP/IAPs.
4.2 No later than June 1, each employee shall provide a draft Individual Performance Plan or Individual Accountability Plan (IPP/IAP) to his or her supervisor, using the Performance Planning, Evaluation and Tracking Form provided by the PSC Office of Human Resources. Each plan shall include, at a minimum, attendance at all mandatory training sessions and at least one Commission Outreach event. In addition, to the extent possible, each plan should include no fewer than three Objective Performance Measures to aid in evaluation of the employee.
4.3 No later than July 1, each supervisor shall approve or modify a draft IPP/IAP.
4.4 The evaluation period shall be from July 1 of each year to June 30 of the following year.
4.5 Between December 15 of each year and January 15 of each year, the supervisor shall meet with each employee to track his or her progress in meeting the individual goals in the IPP/IAP, including the Objective Performance Measures. At that time, by agreement of the supervisor and employee, revisions to the IPP/IAP may be made.
4.6 No later than September 1 of each year, the supervisor shall complete the evaluation of each employee, using the Performance Planning, Evaluation and Tracking Form.
4.7 No later than May 1 of each year, each employee shall complete a Commission-developed course on the Commission’s performance management systems, including instruction on the preparation of performance evaluations and IPP/IAPs.
4.8 No later than September 10 of each year, the supervisor shall forward to the Chairman any recommendations for monetary awards. The recommendation must justify the award and must be in writing.
4.9 Recommendations must be approved by the Agency Fiscal Officer certifying that sufficient funds are available to make the award.
4.10 In determining whether to grant a monetary award, the Chairman shall take into consideration whether the employee and the supervisor have timely met the deadlines in this Section. No employee, otherwise deserving of a bonus, shall be deprived of a bonus solely because his or her supervisor failed to meet the deadlines established in this Section.
4.11 The Chairman may approve, deny, or modify the award. Upon the Chairman’s authorization of an award, such approval shall be forwarded to the appropriate payroll office for payment.
4.12 The monetary award shall be issued no later than September 30 of each year. The performance evaluation on which the award is based shall be dated no earlier than 90 days before issuance of bonus pay.
4.13 Failure to receive a performance-based monetary award may not be grieved or appealed.
Section 5 Amount of Awards
5.1 The amount of all monetary awards is at the discretion of the Chairman and subject to the availability of funds.
5.2 A Performance Rating of “Role Model” (Level 5) may warrant the award of an amount between 6 and 10% of the employee’s base pay during the period.
5.3 A Performance Rating of “Highly Effective Performer” (Level 4) may warrant the award of an amount between 1 and 6% of the employee’s base pay during the period.
5.4 A monetary award shall not exceed a maximum of 10 percent of the employee’s base pay or $5,000, whichever is greater.
Section 6 Records and Reports
6.1 The Chairperson shall provide each affected employee with copies of signed forms awarding bonuses and shall forward copies to the Office of Human Resources for placement in the employee’s Official Personnel Folder.
6.2 The Executive Director shall annually review the adequacy of performance award activities, including the sufficiency of documentation, record keeping, and reporting and appropriateness of monetary awards and shall report any deficiencies to the Chairman together with recommendations for correcting any such deficiencies.
6.3 These regulations shall be posted on the Commission’s website and made available to all employees of the Commission.