A. General Limitations on Voluntary Deductions.
(1) Voluntary deductions are provided by the State for the benefit of a reasonable number of employees. Voluntary deductions must be within the capacity of the Central Payroll Bureau's system that serves the employees and must conform to the Central Payroll Bureau's forms and procedures. When the net amount payable to the employee is not sufficient to cover all of the voluntary deductions, deductions will be made in accordance with the sequence of the items listed in Section B.
(2) All permitted voluntary deductions made on behalf of an employee organization or association (including deductions for insurance programs sponsored by the organization or association) will be provided at no charge as long as only one deduction is used. If additional deductions are requested by an organization or association, it will be required to pay a reasonable charge established by the Central Payroll Bureau taking into account personnel, computer and material costs.
(3) No Department, Board, Commission, or Agency (hereafter referred to as Agency), may authorize solicitation of employees for insurance purposes at the place of employment unless the soliciting agents represent an approved employee organization or association. Payroll deductions shall not be authorized for any insurance premiums which are not included in one of the categories within Section B. Twice a year on a day selected by the Agency, representatives of employee organizations or associations and their insurance agents may be permitted to establish information desks centrally located convenient to State employees for soliciting and giving information about insurance programs. The information desks may be made available to State employees before or after working hours and during lunch and break periods.
(4) Employees shall request all voluntary payroll deductions in writing on Central Payroll Bureau approved forms and all subsequent changes or cancellations shall similarly be in writing on an approved form.
(5) The Central Payroll Bureau shall be held harmless if it deducts, amends or cancels payroll deductions, in accordance with the written request of the employee. All disputes regarding payroll deductions, including refunds and missed deductions, are a matter between the employee and the organization or association receiving the deduction.
(6) Contractual employees are only afforded voluntary deductions for deferred compensation, United States Savings Bonds, Maryland Charity Campaign for State Employees and Retirees, and contributions to labor organizations or associations of management officials which meet the criteria of Section B(9) of this Order.
B. Categories of Voluntary Deductions Permitted by the State of Maryland.
(1) Health Insurance Premiums. The State offers a health program for its employees in certain categories. The premiums for this program are subsidized by the State as directed by the Secretary of Personnel. Deductions are initiated by the employee through the employee's Agency personnel office.
(2) Dependency Support. Deductions for alimony and child support have previously been available only pursuant to a Court Order. In order to avoid the cost of Court Orders to the employee and the State, the State will also honor voluntary deductions for dependency support when the employee enters into an agreement with a support enforcement agent of the Department of Human Resources and it is within the capacity of the Central Payroll Bureau to process the deduction.
(3) Deferred Compensation. The Maryland State Employees Deferred Compensation Program is administered by a Board of Trustees and includes a variety of options, including a savings account, fixed annuity, variable annuity, mutual fund and life insurance. Deductions are initiated, changed or cancelled through the Plan Administrator, currently the Public Employees Benefit Services Corporation.
(4) State Employees Credit Union and MTA Employees Credit Union, Inc. The State encourages savings by its employees, making available deduction for the Credit Unions chartered to serve its employees, retirees, and their dependents. Deductions are initiated, changed or canceled as follows:
(a) Except as provided in item (b) of this paragraph, for State employees, through the State Employees Credit Union; and
(b) For Mass Transit Administration employees of the Department of Transportation, through the State Employees Credit Union and the MTA Employees Credit Union, Inc.
(5) The Maryland Charity Campaign for State Employees and Retirees. The State sponsors a single annual Maryland Charity Campaign for State employees and retirees and makes payroll deduction available for this purpose. The deduction for each annual contribution is made available under the following conditions:
(a) The annual contribution is to be deducted over a term of one year beginning with the first pay period which begins in January or the initial date of employment, if later, and ending with the last pay period which begins in December.
(b) An equal amount is to be deducted each pay period.
(c) The employee may not change the amount deducted each pay period during the one year life of the deduction.
(d) The employee shall be informed of these restrictions before the deduction is requested.
(e) The employee may voluntarily discontinue the deduction at any time, but a discontinued deduction may not be reinstated.
(6) United States Savings Bonds. The State of Maryland cooperates with the United States Treasury Department in making payroll deductions available for up to three different United States Savings Bonds.
(7) Tax Deferred Annuities and Disability Plans. The State of Maryland offers to employees of the institutions of higher education various tax deferred annuities, life insurance plans and disability plans that have been approved by Morgan State University, St. Mary's College of Maryland, the Maryland Higher Education Commission, or the Board of Regents of the University of Maryland System. In addition, the Maryland State Retirement Systems also offer a tax deferred annuity. No expansion in these deductions is permitted without the concurrence of the appropriate governing body and the support of the Central Payroll Bureau.
(8) Insurance Afforded to Federal Civil Service Employees. The State of Maryland affords an insurance payroll deduction to Federal Civil Service employees who are currently paid by the State since it is a condition of their employment.
(9) Deductions for Employee Organizations and Associations. Subject to the general limitations stated in this Order, any employee labor organization or association of management officials or supervisors is entitled to payroll deduction privileges provided the organization or association meets all of the following criteria:
(a) It is organized for purposes other than obtaining insurance coverage.
(b) It serves the interest of employees and the State as an employer as certified by the Secretary of Personnel.
(c) It has at least 1,000 members who agree to payroll deduction.
(d) In order to provide payroll deduction to small organizations or associations, one additional deduction per employee is allowed for an organization or association that meets the criteria of (a) and (b) above if 50% of the eligible members of the organization or association who are members of the same occupational group of employees, as determined by the Secretary of Personnel, agree to a payroll deduction. This additional deduction is subject to the general limitations stated in Section A. The Secretary of Personnel shall act as the Governor's designee for purposes of granting approval under §6-402(B)(2) of the State Personnel and Pensions Article of the Annotated Code of Maryland.
(10) Insurance Programs Sponsored by Employee Organizations or Associations. Insurance programs that require employee organization or association membership as a condition of entitlement will be paid in the same deduction as the employee organization or association unless the employee organization or association pays the charge for an additional deduction as specified in Section A(2).
(11) State University and College Fund Raising Campaigns. One deduction per employee is offered for use by any State institution of higher education for capital or annual fund campaigns that have been approved by the appropriate governing body and which are within the capability of the Central Payroll Bureau.
(12) Existing Deductions that do not Meet These Criteria. Existing organizations and associations which currently have payroll deduction privileges and do not meet the criteria of this Order will be allowed to continue payroll deduction for existing employees but will not be permitted to add new employees or to increase existing deductions.
C. Publication of Executive Order on Payroll Deductions. Copies of this Executive Order, as amended, shall be distributed to all State officials and employees and copies shall be posted in conspicuous locations in all State facilities.
Amended effective April 1, 1985 (12:9 Md. R. 797); October 20, 1986 (13:23 Md. R. 2467); October 18, 1993 (20:23 Md. R. 1782)