2002 No Action
2001 No Action
2000 No Action
1998 No Action
1995 No Action
July 7, 1998
TO THE HONORABLE, THE SENATE:
I am transmitting to the Secretary of State, without my signature, 98-S 2208, Substitute A, As Amended, "An Act Relating to Public Officers and Employees." I take no action on this bill as it does not substantively alter current practice.
This Act maintains present law providing that an appointing authority shall require a physician's certificate or other satisfactory evidence after discharge with pay of three (3) consecutive days of sick leave. Existing law also mandates that an employer require a physician's certificate in support of each request for sick leave after three (3) consecutive days of sick leave in any calendar year. All this Act does is drop the mandate requiring an appointing authority to obtain a physician's certificate in any case where less than three (3) consecutive days of sick leave is discharged.
This Act will not impliedly or directly restrict an appointing authority from requesting a doctor's note when less than three (3) days' of sick leave is discharged. Under the Act a certificate shall be required after (3) consecutive days of sick leave. Appointing authorities nonetheless still may require a physician's note after a one (1) or two (2) day sick leave. As written, the bill would not prevent an appointing authority from requiring or not requiring a doctor's note any time that an employee discharges sick leave.
Article 13.5 of the present contract between the State and Rhode Island Council 94 of the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Workers, recognizes the right of employers to require a doctor's certificate in support of any request for sick leave. Article 13.5 provides that, "The appointing authority may require a physician's certificate or other satisfactory evidence in support of any request for sick leave with pay, but must require a physician's certificate or other satisfactory evidence for each sick leave with pay covering an absence of more than three (3) consecutive working days." In a recent arbitration involving the Department of Children, Youth and Families and Local 580, an arbitrator recognized the State's right to request a doctor's note in support of any request for sick leave.
If this Act prohibited the right of departments of state government to require a sick leave note after fewer than three (3) consecutive sick days, I would not be in favor of its passage. Because it does not, I allow this act to pass into law without my signature.