ACOA and the State negotiated this incentive into the Contract in 2009. Under Article 21.4 the Education Incentive Language states:
“Members who possess or achieve a Bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution of higher education shall receive a one-time only step increase with proof of degree.”
There have been a couple issues with this incentive (explained below), but what it comes down to is if you have a bachelor’s degree then you are eligible to receive a one-step increase by submitting proof of that degree to the Department.
If you have a qualifying diploma (Qualifying simple means that your degree has to be from an accredited institution) then write a memo stating that you received the degree and request the education incentive increase and submit it to your facility’s administration with a copy of your diploma.
* Please be patient as it can take some time for them to forward it on to the Division of Personnel & Labor Relations, Payroll Services and for it to be processed.
A Couple Issues
There were two issues with the education incentive. Fortunately, we were able to work with the State to resolve the interpretation of the language.
The first issue had to do with the State adjusting the Officers Merit Anniversary date when they processed the step increase. This was resolved almost immediately when the Director came out with this memo in 2010 (8/12/10 – Memorandum from Nicki Neal, Director, Division of Personnel & Labor Relations).
The second issue with resolved in July 2014 when the State and ACOA settled a grievance on how the education incentive was processed for a CO1 as they promoted to a CO2. If you would like to read more about this issue click here to read our July 21, 2104 post describing what happened.