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hrDirect December 2012


HR Direct
  Happy Holidays!
Another year nearly over!

As we approach the holidays and reflect on the highlights of the last 12 months, we can see that it’s been another busy and productive year across USF, and in HR.

Highlights of 2012 include:
  • GoUSF running and walking events such as Run Wild San Francisco, the San Francisco JP Morgan Chase Corporate Challenge, and The Presidio 10.
  • A number of successful Healthy USF events, including Battle of the Buildings in April, the Get Ready for Summer program, "She’s Got It": Women’s Investing and Saving Presentation, and more
  • The introduction of ‘Harvey’ – our online expert on all things benefits-related
  • 36th Annual Service and Merit Awards Ceremony held in May
  • The first year of the Eyes of Hope eyewear donation program, with over 200 pairs of eyeglasses collected
  • Release of the New Staff Prehire Onboarding Process, and
  • A comprehensive calendar of professional development programs offered to faculty and staff in-person and online. 
Thank you to everyone for your participation and enthusiasm throughout the year!

In this jam-packed final edition of hrDirect for 2012, we take a look at 2013 changes to retirement contribution limits, the wage ceiling for short term disability tax, as well as disability benefit payments and increases to the SF minimum wage for 2013; new features to “Harvey” – our online Benefits expert; outcomes of the Fall Healthy Habits Challenge and GoUSF; a timely reminder about some easy ways to prevent Colds and Flu this winter; and last but not least, University closure dates for the holiday period and what this means for pay periods and your leave arrangements.

On behalf of everyone in Human Resources, I wish you a very happy holiday and a safe and healthy new year.

Martha Peugh-Wade
Assistant Vice President, Human Resources           

University Closed for the Holidays

As a reminder, the University will be closed from Saturday, December 22, 2012 through Tuesday, January 1, 2013. (Note - this does not include areas such as Public Safety, Facilities Management, and other departments deemed by the Dean or Vice President as required to remain operating).

Implications for Staff Leave

Paid University holidays during this time period are December 24th and 25th (for observance of Christmas Eve and Christmas Day) and December 31st and January 1st (for observance of New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day).

December 26th, 27th, and 28th are not paid University holidays and must be taken as unpaid or vacation time, unless you are in a department required to work over this time period.

OPE staff with sufficient compensatory time may use these hours instead of vacation or unpaid leave. Exempt employees who opt to take unpaid leave, will be eligible to receive Holiday pay for the New Year holiday (12/31, 1/1). However, to receive Holiday pay for Christmas (12/24, 12/25), exempt employees must be in active status on Friday, 12/21/12; that is, the employee must not be on unpaid leave.

Voluntary Contribution Retirement Plans

With a new year just around the corner, it’s a great time to focus on your retirement planning goals by starting a retirement contribution or increasing your current contribution. You can choose to direct your contribution to a pre-tax account or to a post-tax Roth option, or both, with TIAA-CREF and/or Fidelity.

It’s easy to get started. Here’s how…
  • To set up a new account with TIAA-CREF or Fidelity, you first need to complete an enrollment application. Go to http://usf.trustnode.com/your-benefits/pdf-library and scroll down to the section called 403b Resources where you will find the relevant forms. You then need to complete a Salary Reduction Agreement form, which you will find with the other forms. 
  • If you are already contributing and would like to increase your current contribution, complete a Salary Reduction Agreement form available from section 403b Resources at http://usf.trustnode.com/your-benefits/pdf-library and submit it to Human Resources by January 4 for a January, 2013 implementation.
Increase to retirement contribution limits

IRS contribution limits will increase for 2013, from $17,000 to $17,500 for employees under age 50, while employees who are 50 and over will be eligible to contribute an additional $5,500.

All forms are available at www.usfca.edu/hr/benefits

Fall Healthy Habits Challenge

During the Fall Healthy Habits Challenge that ran from September 17 to November 2, nearly 100 faculty and staff members made a commitment to take new steps to create healthy habits in their life, in areas such as exercise, nutrition, stress management, dental and vision health - just to name a few!

Highlights of the challenge included:
  • Weekly seminars run by our benefit providers offering information and suggestions to help staff improve their physical health and wellness along with tips to become fiscally fit. 
  • Free flu shots given to over 300 faculty and staff. Did you know that getting a flu shot is the most effective way to protect yourself from catching the cold and flu? 
Click here for more preventative actions you can take to stay healthy this flu season.

Final Pay Day for 2012

December 21st will be the last payday of the year for all employees, including those paid both monthly and semi-monthly. For semi-monthly employees, this will be the final payday prior to the January 15th, 2013 payday.

This early pay date means that you will need to submit your timesheets slightly earlier. Please click here for details on submission dates.
SF Minimum Wage to Increase in 2013

Effective January 1, 2013 the San Francisco city minimum wage will increase $0.31, from $10.24 per hour to $10.55. At USF, this change will impact student employees, some temporary staff and their respective supervisors.

For more information on the minimum wage increase and how it may impact you, please click here.
VDI rates: Short-Term Disability Tax and Taxable Wage Ceiling

The required short-term disability tax (VDI) will remain at 1% in 2013. However the taxable wage ceiling will increase from $95,585 to $100,880. This means that depending on your annual compensation, your contribution to the plan in 2013 can only be as high as the maximum of $1008.80.

Disability Benefit Payments

In addition, the maximum disability benefit payment allowed for an employee will increase from $1011 to $1067 per week.

If you have questions about this benefit, please contact Employee Benefits at x2405 or mafundaro2@usfca.edu.
‘Harvey’ 2013 Benefits Guide (PDF) now available!

Harvey is happy to announce that the 2013 Benefits Guide is now available online. In addition to the assistance and explanations that Harvey gives you about choosing the best Benefits plans for you, the 2013 Benefits Guide (in PDF) allows you to:
  • Zoom in and out
  • Change from single page view to book layout view
  • Search, print and email
…all from within the guide.

So, be sure to review the guide for changes to Benefit plans for 2013. You can access ‘Harvey’ from the Benefits tab on the Human Resources website

Congratulations to the 103 staff and family members who joined the GoUSF team in running and walking the Run Wild San Francisco 5K holiday run!

GoUSF running coach, Suzy Kisylia, led the warm-up exercises for the event and our GoUSF team ‘jingled’ their way across the finish line in their USF shirts, Santa hats and bells on their shoes!
Enroll in Direct Deposit

If you are still receiving a paper check and would like to upgrade to direct deposit, please complete and submit a Direct Deposit Authorization Agreement form to Payroll (LM 145) or HR (LM 339). The form may be downloaded at http://www.usfca.edu/hr/forms or obtained from the Payroll office.

By opting for direct deposit you can avoid lost and delayed or stolen checks which may take up to ten (10) working days for the University to cancel and reissue.

Please keep in mind that enrollment in direct deposit can take up to 30 days or one full payroll cycle to complete.
Verify Your Mailing Address

Please take a moment to verify your “Current” mailing address. You may access and update your “Current” mailing address information online through Employee Self Service. 

Keeping your Current Address up-to-date will help ensure that you receive all of your Payroll and HR documents, including your W-2.  

Read instructions on how to verify your address.

If you have any questions or comments about hrDirect, please contact us at etimesheets@usfca.edu.