E. 1. All SSA employees are to presume that the office is open each regular workday unless specifically announced otherwise. Although employees are expected to be prepared to deal with most emergencies, conditions might occur which will make the closing of all or some SSA offices necessary. The decision to close the office or open it late will be based on the Agency's concern for the health and safety of its employees weighed against the mission of the Agency, including due consideration to the needs of the public. The decision to close the office will be as a result of hazardous conditions that the majority of employees might face reporting to their workplace or returning home. An announcement of full day closing or delay in opening will be made through the news media. Depending on the circumstances of the particular situation, attempts will be made to make a closing decision and broadcast it as early as possible. Employees should be advised that when storms or other hazardous conditions develop during nonworking hours, they should listen to the radio or TV news and follow the Agency's specific instructions.
2. When a decision is made to close a work place for a full day by administrative order due to inclement weather or other conditions warranting such closing, employees not required to work, including employees previously authorized annual or sick leave will not be charged leave. The administration will timely notify the news media and employees on duty of such decision.
3. When a decision is made to dismiss employees during the workday, employees on duty at the time of the dismissal not involved in essential services will be excused without charge to leave or loss of compensation.
In the event an employee in a duty status on the day of an early dismissal or closing requests annual leave due to inclement weather or other condition warranting dismissal or closing, leave will be charged in a fair and equitable manner.
4. When employees request leave because of conditions discussed above when early dismissals or nonworkdays have not been authorized, leave approving officials shall be as liberal as possible in approving such leave. They will give special consideration to physical or other conditions which subject employees to special hazards in such circumstances.
5. When the opening of an office is delayed due to hazardous weather or other emergency conditions, regular employees (except essential services unless specifically designated in the announcement) will be excused without charge to leave or loss of pay for the number of hours the office delays opening. Employees on approved (either previously authorized or by telephone on the same day) annual or sick leave will not be charged leave or lose pay for that portion of the day the opening of the office is delayed. This applies to leave requested for either the entire day or that portion of the day the office is closed.