The Sonoma County Board of Supervisors this morning approved without discussion the program to mitigate layoffs and reduce the county departments' budget deficits.
Employees were given the option to take unpaid time off in 2003 but no one tracked how many employees took advantage of the program.
The county's Human Resources Department has now established a separate payroll code that will create a record of how many employees take the time off.
The voluntary time off must not exceed 25 percent of regularly scheduled hours per pay period. Taking time off will not affect employees' benefits, seniority and retirement.
Sonoma County employees suggested voluntary time off as a way to save money. The Board of Supervisors cut $15 million before approving the $1.2 billion 2009-10 budget in June. The general fund budget is $427 million.
Today's action offers the voluntary time off program to employees including those of the Sonoma County Water Agency, the Community Development Commission and the Sonoma County Air Pollution Control District.
The program ends June 30, 2010.