The planners set the average yearly quota for the forthcoming year when they do the economic plan. The labor manager, within those limits, may vary quota from week to week for good reasons. If, for any reason, the average quota cannot or should not be maintained as planned, the labor manager consults with the planners and then either raises or lowers quota as directed by the planners.
Credits that qualify for meeting quota
1. Work approved by managers of the areas
2. Sick time taken according to the community's sick leave policies.
3. Pension hours taken according to the health team's pension policies.
4. Visits to doctors, dentists, etc., approved by health team and in accordance with its policies.
5. Leaves of absence approved by health team or planners.
6. Personal Service Credits (PSCs) or other "over quota" areas.
Rates at Which Credits May be Taken. and Limits to Them
1. In general, one hour of work equals one credit.
2. Sick time is creditable as above, except that on a day in which sick leave is taken, total credit for the day may not exceed a day's quota.
3. Pension hours depend on the biological age of the person taking them. Every person over the age of 49 may take one pension credit (credit without doing any work for it) per week for every year of age past 49. (Example, a person 56 years old gets 7 pension credits per week.) Pension credits are intended as a lowering of quota for older people and may be taken by people of the appropriate age, regardless of how much work they do or where they are. Generally, visitors in the appropriate age group may also take pension credits during their visit. This is a health team policy and subject to change by them.
4. Doctor and dentist visits are fully creditable for the time one is with the doctor or dentist or waiting for the doctor or dentist to be available, plus the actual transportation time to the city where the appointment is. No credit for waiting due to car-pooling is given by health team.
5. Leaves of absence are creditable at one day's quota for each day of Leave of Absence. No over-quota may be claimed on a Leave of Absence. If any community work is done, it should be claimed, but the total of the work and the Leave of Absence credit each day may not exceed a day's quota.
6. Personal Service Credits (PSCs) are always at 1 credit per hour.
7. Childcare and Primary time: check current Child board policy, or talk to a Child board member or parent.
Labor budgets are set for each area of the community by the planners at economic planning time for the coming year, based on the requests of the managers, modified by the Tradeoff Game. At the same time, the managers determine how they want their labor budgets spread over the four quarters of the year. The amount so designated for each quarter then becomes the budget for that quarter, but can be transferred from quarter to quarter. Each week the amount of labor done is subtracted from the available labor budget for the quarter. If the budget is used up before the end of the quarter, any of the following may occur:
1 The planners may agree to increase the labor budget for a particular area, or allow it to be overspent, if they think it wise.
2. The labor manager or planners may agree to take credits for the overspent area from another quarter if the problem is simply one of distribution. In the event that a labor budget is overspent without special arrangement, and not caught in time to prevent the over-expenditure, the labor manager may, at cos discretion, take the extra hours out of future quarters, but need not do so, especially if the work assigned seems vital or the over-expenditure is due to inadequate information to managers (like late budget reports).
How Population Affects Budgets
Yearly labor budgets are based on an estimate of labor availability made by the planners in November of the previous year. In the course of the labor year, population may change enough so that there is significantly more, or substantially less labor than predicted.
It is up to the planners to decide whether any changes will be made in budgets due to population changes. There are many factors that affect their decision, such as (1) need for additional income to support increased population; (2) requests from members to translate a population rise into lowered quota; (3) need to cut budgets to fit into actual labor supply when it is lower than prediction; (4) things that come up mid-year that seem necessary or highly desirable to do; (5) concern that population, though higher than predicted early in the year, may fall below prediction later; and so forth. The planners are under no legal obligation to lower quota when population goes up but may choose to do so.
Vacation Credits and Vacation Balances
Every member can be given or earn labor credits with which to take vacations, either on or off the farm. The community gives 2.5 credits (referred to as "bonus" credits) per week to each member who turns in cos completed sheet on time. That means Saturday Noon, or sometimes a little bit later if the sheets haven't been picked for processing right away. If you're a few minutes late, it is worth your while to get your sheet to the office and put it with the others. It will probably be counted as "on time." If you turn in a sheet late, but there was some very good reason you couldn't turn it in on time, attach a note to this effect (Such as "I was gone over the weekend"), and your sheet will usually be counted as "on time."
The credits accumulated by this means add up to 130 credits per year (52 weeks times 2.5 credits). This is somewhere between 2 and 3 weeks, depending on quota. Please note that any reference you might hear to "guaranteed vacation" or to "the community gives 2-1/2 weeks per year" refer to this arrangement. There is no other vacation given by the community, and it is not given in a lump. The vacation balance you see on the monthly Vacation Balance Report is, for its date, the complete amount available.
Members may earn extra credits with which to take extra vacation by working over quota (in the sense of working more hours than quota requires). Vacation balances are cumulative. They remain in the member's vacation balance until used, carrying over from year to year. When the vacation hours are taken, the balance goes down accordingly. Vacation balances for each week are calculated this way: credits claimed (done) plus bonus hours minus quota for the given week.
A record of the cumulative balance for each member is kept on computer and calculated afresh each month (usually between the 10th and 25th of the following month, depending on other work pressures). Anyone who needs a more precise, up-to-date figure can get it with (or without) the help of the labor manager or an office person by referring to more recent sheets and doing the calculations by hand.
A. Using Vacation Hours.
Vacation time may be taken either on or off the farm. It may be used in any increment, down to the tenth of an hour. If a member goes away for a week and does no community work during that week, zero done hours will be recorded for that week. Quota will be subtracted. Bonus credits will be given. Then the new vacation balance will automatically be lower by about a week's worth of credits than it was before the vacation was taken.
A member may be gone for a month or a weekend or a single day or part of a day. Or co may stay right here on the farm and not do any work, lie in a hammock, walk in the woods, compose poetry, or spend the entire time in bed. That's also vacation.
Or, co may intend to work but dawdle at the dinner table, chat with friends, and unintentionally waste time, finding at the end of the week that co has done only 40 hours when co meant to do 47. The difference here is also called vacation. It is not intention that makes a vacation; it is the not-doing of community creditable work. The community sometimes has members who never seem to have any off-the-farm vacation because they spend it all right here, doing less than quota frequently enough to use up what they accumulate. This is their choice. Sometimes members can do community work while on vacation off the farm. For instance, an indexer may take along an index to work on, or a manager might do some writing or phone calls.
B. Timing of Vacations
Members may take vacation at will, except in cases where they have agreed with other members to keep some work area covered and to schedule their vacations. There are several good reasons to maintain responsible behavior in work areas and avoid impulsive traveling to the detriment of the community's well being. However, this is left to conscience and social control. The labor system does not control it.
C. Going in the Labor Hole
Members who want to go on vacation but have not saved up enough credits for it may borrow briefly under certain conditions. This is spelled out in detail in a policy called the "Labor Hole Policy," which is not part of this document but should be kept with it.