Township of Wilkins, PA
Allegheny County
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Table of Contents
Table of Contents
[HISTORY: Adopted by the Board of Commissioners of the Township of Wilkins as indicated in article histories. Amendments noted where applicable.]
GENERAL REFERENCES
Auditor — See Ch. 5.
Manager — See Ch. 20, Art. I.
Ordinance Enforcement Officer — See Ch. 28.
Retirement — See Ch. 45.
[Adopted 6-1-1964 by Ord. No. 334]

§ 33-1 Title; intent.

This article shall be known as the "Personnel Ordinance of Wilkins Township," and its declared intent is that employment in the Township government shall be based entirely on merit and personal fitness and shall be free of personal, religious, racial and political considerations. This article shall be uniformly, equitably and fairly administered to the end that high employee morale is maintained, the deserving employee's career in the Township's service is enhanced, the unfit employee is not maintained on the Township payroll and the interests and rights of the public and the Township are properly preserved and protected.

§ 33-2 Scope; applicability.

A. 
All offices and positions of the Township are divided into the classified service and the exempt service.
B. 
The exempt service shall include the following:
(1) 
The Board of Commissioners, Township Manager, Township Solicitor, Township Engineer and all elected officials.
(2) 
Members of boards, commissions and committees.
(3) 
Police, auxiliary police, special police, volunteer firemen and volunteer personnel who serve without pay.
[Amended 2-5-1968 by Ord. No. 421]
(4) 
Consultants and counsel rendering temporary professional service.
(5) 
Temporary positions of less than six consecutive months' duration.
C. 
The classified service shall include all Township government offices and positions not specifically placed in the exempt service by this article.
D. 
The following provisions of this article shall apply only to the classified service unless otherwise specifically provided:
(1) 
Any provision of this article in conflict with provisions of the First Class Township Code.
[Amended 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917[1]]
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 55101 et seq.

§ 33-3 Administration.

The personnel program established by this article shall be administered by the Township Manager or, in his absence, the President of the Wilkins Township Board of Commissioners.

§ 33-4 Classification and pay plan.

A. 
The Township Manager shall recommend to the Board of Commissioners at or prior to submission of each annual budget whether the rates of pay and compensation of employees should remain unchanged, be increased or be decreased for the next fiscal year, all to the end that all positions in the Township service requiring similar qualifications and having similar duties and responsibilities are equally compensated.
B. 
Compensation to be paid positions covered by classified employees shall be set by resolution of the Board of Commissioners annually.
C. 
Compensation to be paid emergency, seasonal, temporary and part-time personnel not covered by this article and whose compensation has not been specifically set by the Board of Commissioners shall be determined by the Township Manager. The rate of pay so determined shall not be greater than the rate of pay in the area for similar work.
D. 
The Chief of Police shall have general supervision of the Township Police, and the Chief of Police shall enforce rules and regulations approved by the Board of Commissioners. Discipline, suspension and removal shall be administered by the Board of Commissioners and the Chief of Police in accordance with Article VI, Subdivision (d), et seq. of the First Class Township Code[1] (civil service for police and firemen).
[Added 2-5-1968 by Ord. No. 421; amended 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917]
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 55625 et seq.

§ 33-5 Appointments; promotions; separations.

A. 
Appointments to, promotions in and separations from all classified positions in the Township service coming under the jurisdiction of the Township Manager, except full-time police personnel, shall be by action of the Township Manager. No appointment or promotion shall be made to a paid office or position not previously created by the Board of Commissioners.
[Amended 2-5-1968 by Ord. No. 421; 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917]
B. 
Appointments to all classified positions shall be solely on the basis of merit, which shall be determined by evaluation of the person's training, experience and personal fitness, oral interview and, whenever practicable, a written examination. Preference shall be given to residents of Wilkins Township in cases where all other considerations are equal.
C. 
The Township Manager shall enforce this article and may suspend employees for just cause with employees having a right of appeal to the Board of Commissioners. Appeals must be filed, in writing, to the Chairman of the Board of Commissioners within 10 days after written notice of suspension has been given.
[Amended 2-5-1968 by Ord. No. 421; 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917]

§ 33-6 Residence requirements; exceptions; enforcement and reporting.

[Amended 3-31-1997 by Ord. No. 899]
A. 
Residence requirements. All employees serving in the classified and exempt services of the Township, as defined in Ordinance No. 334, adopted June 1, 1964, as amended, as an express condition of employment or continued employment, must be residents of the Township of Wilkins, Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, as hereafter provided. Any person appointed or employed by the Township shall, if not a resident at the time of appointment, establish their residence within the Township within one year of their date of appointment or employment or within one year of the date of adoption of this section. Employees who are initially employed on a probationary status shall establish their residence within one year of the date upon which their status as a probationary employee ends. The Board of Commissioners shall have the power to grant extensions of time, for good cause shown, to any employee who has not complied with the provisions of this section.
B. 
Exceptions to residence requirements. The following employees and appointed officials shall be exempt from the provisions of the preceding subsection:
(1) 
Current full-time employees who:
(a) 
Are employees as of the date hereof.
(b) 
Are authorized under the existing ordinance(s) or existing written negotiated agreement to reside outside the Township.
(c) 
Now reside outside the Township.
(2) 
The Township Manager.
(3) 
The Township Solicitor.
(4) 
The Township Engineer.
(5) 
Other officers appointed in their professional capacities.
(6) 
Part-time employees and various short-term employees, including summer and seasonal part-time employees and interns.
(7) 
Full-time members of the Wilkins Township Maintenance Employees Association with 10 or more years of full-time service may reside within three air miles of the Wilkins Township Municipal Building.
[Added 1-13-2014 by Ord. No. 1039]
C. 
Enforcement and reporting. The Township Manager shall, from time to time, require employees of the Township to complete such forms and affidavits as are determined to be necessary for the administration and enforcement of this section.

§ 33-7 Hours of work.

A. 
Hours of work shall be set by resolution of the Board of Commissioners.
[Amended 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917]
B. 
Department heads shall schedule their work and the hours of work of their respective employees, subject to approval of the Township Manager.
C. 
The Township Manager is authorized and shall, in cases of emergency and/or instances where the protection, convenience or welfare of the public may be of substantial concern, alter any of the hours of work heretofore specified to cope with such contingency.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Original Sec. VIII, entitled "Holidays," which immediately followed this section, was deleted 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917.

§ 33-8 Employee benefits.

[Added 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917]
Permanent full-time employees shall receive compensation and other benefits as designated in written agreements. Employees without written agreements shall receive compensation and benefits as determined from time to time by the Board of Commissioners; and, if no Board determination of benefits other than compensation has been made, then benefits shall be equivalent to those benefits received by the Township Road Department.

§ 33-9 Vacation.

[Amended 2-5-1968 by Ord. No. 421; 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917]
A. 
The Manager and department heads shall determine the time of year at which such annual leave may be taken.
B. 
No employee shall be permitted to waive annual leave for the purpose of receiving double pay.
C. 
Annual leave shall be computed from the day a person becomes an employee of the Township, but the employee shall not take any paid annual leave before completing 12 months' service. Additional vacation weeks earned by service anniversary cannot be taken until after the anniversary employment date. Anniversary weeks may be combined with previous earned vacation weeks.
D. 
Paid holidays falling in an employee's vacation period shall not count as a part of the annual leave.

§ 33-10 Sick leave. [1]

[Amended 2-7-1966 by Ord. No. 377; 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917]
A. 
Sick leave, unlike annual leave (vacation), is not something to which the employee is automatically entitled but is provided by the Township in an attempt to keep the employee from being seriously handicapped financially if he/she is unable to work because of illness. For the purpose of this article, "personal illness" shall include disability due to sickness, injury or accident which is not compensable under the Workmen's Compensation Laws of Pennsylvania.
(1) 
To be entitled to the benefits of this article, employees who are off-duty sick more than three days shall file with the Manager a physician's certificate certifying to the illness of such employee, the nature thereof, its cause and such additional information as may be required.
(2) 
In the event that an employee is hospitalized, the three-day waiting period for sick-leave benefits shall be waived.
(3) 
In the event that an employee is absent from work due to an illness as defined in this article for a period in excess of 10 days, the three-day waiting period shall be waived.
B. 
No employee of the Township shall be entitled to the benefits of this article for any disability which shall result form any of the following:
(1) 
The use of drugs or intoxicants.
(2) 
Illness or injury intentionally self-inflicted.
(3) 
Illness or injury which shall be the result of the employee's own misconduct or gross negligence.
(4) 
Disability which existed and which was known to the employee at the time of his employment.
(5) 
Disability or illness which shall occur while an employee is on leave of absence, furlough or suspension from work, other than on regularly earned vacation.
C. 
Sick-leave time shall be computed from the day a person becomes an employee of the Township, but the employee shall not receive any paid sick-leave time before completing six months' Township service.
D. 
Saturdays and Sundays occurring during an employee's illness shall not count as a part of the sick-leave time. Holidays occurring during a sick-leave period shall not be compensated for separately.
E. 
The Manager shall require an employee to file competent written certification that his absence was for an authorized reason. If he/she has been incapacitated for the period of his absence or a major part thereof, he/she shall be required to provide evidence that he/she is again physically able to perform his duties. Claiming sick leave or benefits under any conditions other than those permitted by this article may be cause for disciplinary action, including suspension, demotion or dismissal.
F. 
The falsification of any sick-leave certificate by an employee of the Township shall constitute grounds for dismissal of such employee, and he/she shall be subject to all actions and remedies at law for the recovery of all moneys paid to such employee by reason of said false certificate or certificates.
[1]
Editor's Note: See also Art. II of this chapter.

§ 33-11 Training and conferences.

Training and conference-attendance expenses incurred in the development of an employee's skills, knowledge and abilities to assist him/her in staying abreast of his field and to better perform the duties of his position in the Township government shall be paid by the Township, subject in all cases to Township Manager approval and budget appropriations.

§ 33-12 Political activity.

[Amended 2-5-1968 by Ord. No. 421]
A. 
No Township employee shall run for a Township office while employed as such.
B. 
No elected Township official shall require or demand that any Township employee engage in political activity, directly or indirectly, nor shall continued employment be dependent upon any political activity by Township employees.
C. 
Nothing contained herein shall be construed to abridge the right of voluntary political expression.
D. 
Township police may hold the office of Constable as provided by Section 1401 of the First Class Township Code.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: See 53 P.S. § 56401.

§ 33-13 Discrimination.

There shall be no discrimination because of religious or political opinions, beliefs or affiliations or because of race, color, creed or national origin in the recruitment, promotion, disciplining, treatment or dismissal of employees nor in the furnishing or failure to furnish any municipal service to the residents of the Township.

§ 33-14 Outside employment.

A. 
No regular full-time employee in the classified service shall accept outside full-time employment where the hours of work are equal to or greater than the scheduled hours for the Township of Wilkins.
B. 
No regular full-time employees in the classified service shall accept outside employment, whether it is part-time, temporary or permanent, without the Township Manager's prior written approval. Each change in outside employment shall require separate approval.
C. 
The test in all cases as to whether approval shall or shall not be given for outside employment is whether or not such outside employment conflicts or interests with or is likely to conflict or interfere with the employee's usefulness to the Township.

§ 33-15 Rules and regulations.

A. 
The Township Manager, with the approval of the Board of Commissioners, shall make administrative rules and regulations, not inconsistent with law or the ordinances of the Township of Wilkins, that he/she deems desirable for the good of the service and to effectively carry out the intent and purposes of this article and shall make available to all present and future Township employees a copy of this article, rules and regulations and any other information he/she considers essential for the proper guidance and information of the employee.
B. 
Employees of the Township serve the citizens of Wilkins Township. It is their obligation to be courteous, efficient and loyal at all times. They are Township taxpayers as well as Township employees. They will serve their own best interests by helping to maintain a high standard of public service.
C. 
Township employees shall not disseminate or issue any official information to newspapers, public officials or anyone without direct consent of the Township Manager. At no time will employees discuss official business with anyone not previously authorized.
D. 
Before any employee presents a formal or informal speech concerning Township government and activities to an organized group, the Township Manager shall be notified.

§ 33-16 Jury duty.

Any employee who serves on jury duty or in court in the interests of Wilkins Township shall be compensated in the amount which will be necessary to equal the difference between the employee's regular pay and the compensation he/she receives for jury duty.

§ 33-17 Active military service.

[Amended 2-5-1968 by Ord. No. 421]
Any employee called into the active service of any branch of the Armed Forces of the United States shall be granted a leave of absence for the period of such service. He/she shall be reinstated without loss of service continuity to his former position, provided that he/she applies for reinstatement within 90 days after honorable discharge. The application for reinstatement shall be addressed to the Manager or Board of Commissioners.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Original Sec. XVIII, entitled "Leave of Absence," which immediately followed this section, was deleted 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917.

§ 33-18 Separation.

Any employee wishing to leave the service of the Township in good standing shall file with the Manager, at least 14 days before leaving, a written resignation stating the effective date of resignation and the reason for leaving. Failure to comply with the provisions of this section may be considered cause for denying such employee future employment and for denying him/her such benefits as have been made available. Unauthorized absence from work for a period of three working days may be considered as a resignation without benefits.[1]
[1]
Editor's Note: Original Sec. XX, entitled "Effective Date," which immediately followed this section, was deleted 12-28-1998 by Ord. No. 917.

§ 33-19 Disciplinary action.

A. 
Violation of any provisions of this article or of the rules and regulations established by the Township Manager with the approval of the Board of Commissioners shall be subject to disciplinary action by the Township Manager, including reprimand, demotion, suspension or dismissal.
B. 
Any employee who feels that the disciplinary action is unwarranted may appeal such action to the Board of Commissioners. Appeals must be filed, in writing, to the Chairman of the Board of Commissioners within 10 days after notice of disciplinary action.
[Amended 2-5-1968 by Ord. No. 421]

§ 33-20 Physical examination.

[Added 3-11-1991 by Ord. No. 807]
A. 
All applicants for positions in the classified service shall, as a condition of employment, take a physical examination administered by a physician retained and paid by the Township.
B. 
A detailed description of each classified position shall be prepared by the Township Manager, and this description shall be provided to the examining physician, together with a request that the physician note and job-related medical or mental condition which will prevent the applicant from performing in an efficient and able manner the work described in the job description.
C. 
A physician's report stating that the applicant will be unable to perform the work in an efficient and normal manner shall be cause for disqualification of the applicant.
D. 
The Township may, by resolution adopted from time to time, determine specific medical or mental conditions as job-related guidelines likely to affect the applicant's acceptance.
E. 
Nothing contained herein shall be construed to deny the right of any handicapped or disabled person to receive an appointment to any of the classified positions when such person is otherwise qualified for the position.

§ 33-21 Definitions.

For the purpose of interpreting the provisions of this article, the following words will have the meaning or meanings hereby ascribed to them:
EMPLOYEE
Any person who renders service to the Township for pay, excluding persons who work under a professional service contract. Employee includes persons in probationary, regular, casual or temporary status.
[Added 11-11-2013 by Ord. No. 1035]
MATERNITY LEAVE
Absence caused by pregnancy of a female employee.
PERMANENT DISABILITY
Any disability which renders an employee unable to perform his duties and which on the basis of medical opinion, is permanent or which has rendered an employee unable to perform his duties for an uninterrupted period of eight calendar months from the first day of disability.
SICK LEAVE
Any absence caused by nonoccupational illness or injury suffered by an employee rendering him/her unable to perform his duties, except absence caused by pregnancy.
TEMPORARY DISABILITY LEAVE
Any absence caused by occupational illness or injury, including but not limited to injuries caused by injury within the meaning of the Workmen's Compensation Act of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania, illness caused by diseases within the scope of the Occupational Disease Act and, as to policemen and firemen, disabilities or incapacity incurred in the performance of duties and subject to Section 1 of the Act of June 28, 1935, P.L. 477, as amended.
TRANSITIONAL WORK/MODIFIED DUTY
Work restrictions (modifications of work duties or tasks) determined and recommended by a Township-approved physician or practitioner who has been rendering treatment to the employee or who is qualified to render an opinion on the employee's physical abilities.
[Added 11-11-2013 by Ord. No. 1035]

§ 33-22 Sick leave allowed.

Sick leave shall be allowed at the rate set forth in collective bargaining agreements, arbitration awards or resolutions of the Board of Township Commissioners which may now be in effect or hereafter become effective.

§ 33-23 Validation.

The Township may require any evidence reasonable under the circumstances to validate claimed sick leave and also to establish the fitness of an employee to return to duty. Such evidence may include a certification by a physician and also, as to fitness to return to duty, an examination by a physician selected by the municipality.

§ 33-24 Temporary disability.

A. 
Temporary disability for policemen. Temporary disability suffered by a policeman or fireman coming within the scope of the Act of 1935, June 28, P.L. 477, as amended, shall entitle such temporarily disabled policeman to the benefits provided for in said Act.
B. 
Temporary disability for other employees. Temporary disability suffered by any employee not coming within the scope of said Act of 1935, June 28, P.L. 477, as amended shall entitle such temporarily disabled employee to a continuation of his regular salary or wages during the period of such disability but not in excess of 60 working days.
C. 
Workmen's compensation benefits. If any such temporarily disabled employee is entitled to benefits under the Workmen's Compensation Act or the Occupational Disease Act as they are in force, such benefits shall be deducted from any salary or disability compensation to which such employee shall otherwise be entitled.

§ 33-25 Maternity leave.

Maternity leave. Leaves of absence will be provided for any employee of the Township whose absence from duties will be required because of disability from childbirth or pregnancy. Such leaves shall be governed by considerations for the health of the employees, the need for continuity in Township operations and the maintenance of a qualified staff.
A. 
While on a maternity leave, the employee shall be entitled to use accumulated sick leave for disabilities caused or contributed to by pregnancy, miscarriage, abortion, childbirth and recovery therefrom. The Township shall require that such requests for sick leave be supported by completion of the Township's Certification of Maternity Disability form.
B. 
If for any reason the employee does not intend to return to her position upon the termination of the leave, the employee is obligated to submit her resignation at least 60 calendar days prior to the expiration of the leave.
C. 
Prior to an employee's return to work from a maternity leave, a physician must certify that she is physically able to resume her duties on a full-time basis.
D. 
Failure to resume work after becoming physically able to do so shall be grounds for discharge, and permanent disability arising under this section shall be grounds for discharge under § 33-26B.

§ 33-26 Permanent disability.

Permanent disability.
A. 
Any employee who becomes permanently disabled and is entitled to pension benefits either as a disability pension or for age and service shall be retired on such pension as affords him/her the larger benefits. The pension shall become payable as of the day following the day for which he/she last receives salary or wages from the Township after becoming eligible for such pension benefits.
B. 
Any employed who becomes permanently disabled and is entitled to no pension benefits either for age and service or for disability shall be discharged forthwith from the service of the Township.

§ 33-27 Manager empowered to promulgate suitable regulations.

The Township Manager is empowered hereby to promulgate by executive order suitable regulations for the administration and supplementation of this article as it affects all employees. Such regulations shall cover, inter alia, the following:
A. 
Disciplinary measures to be taken in the event of abuse by an employee of the sick leave privilege provided for by this article.
B. 
Forms and procedures for processing claims for sick leave, temporary disability and permanent disability benefits as provided for or contemplated by this article.
C. 
Procedures for the furnishing of physician costs, physical examinations and medical opinions required hereby or which facilitate the administration and enforcement hereof.
D. 
Such other regulations governing the implementation and administration of the provisions of this article and not inconsistent herewith as the Manager shall determine.

§ 33-28 Word usage.

For the purposes of construing this article, the use of the singular shall include the plural, and the plural the singular. Words used in the masculine gender shall include the feminine and the neuter. Words used in the present or past tense shall include the future.

§ 33-29 Conflicts with collective bargaining agreements.

If the provisions of this article become inconsistent or in conflict with the provisions of any collective bargaining agreement hereafter entered into applying to some or all of the municipal employees of the Township, which collective bargaining agreement is duly authorized by an ordinance, such ordinance authorizing such collective bargaining agreement shall be deemed to amend this article to the extent of such conflict or inconsistency.

§ 33-30 Transitional work assignments/modified duty policy.

[Added 11-11-2013 by Ord. No. 1035]
A. 
Applicability.
(1) 
This policy applies to all employees of the Township, including those employees covered by collective bargaining agreements.
(2) 
These policies and procedures apply to any situation where an employee is being treated for an injury or illness and is determined fit by a Township-approved physician or practitioner to return to work on a temporary basis with modified duties.
(3) 
Transitional or modified duty assignments are based on the availability of work. This policy does not guarantee that an injured employee will be assigned to a modified duty position.
B. 
Statements of policy.
(1) 
It is the policy of the Township, with the cooperation of all departments, to locate and assign modified duty, when feasible, to employees who are temporarily disabled from their regular job. All such modified duty assignments are to be within the limitations as recommended by a Township-approved physician or practitioner.
(2) 
This policy shall only be applicable to employees who are temporarily disabled. For the purpose of this policy, "temporary disabilities" are defined as those disabilities that apparently will last for less than six months. If an employee is projected to be disabled for a period of more than six months, the Township shall not be required to follow this policy.
(3) 
The Township shall not be required to create a new position to implement this policy. If the Township determines that there is temporary work available, for a temporarily disabled employee, the Township may utilize this policy. Also, if a temporarily disabled employee is working on a temporary job and such job ends, the Township may reassign the temporarily disabled worker to another temporary job or if no job is available, the employee may return to disabled status and may collect workers' compensation benefits.
(a) 
The Township-approved physician/practitioner shall be encouraged to release temporarily disabled employees to modified duty work status and to describe the employee's physical limitations in sufficient detail to enable the Township to identify a suitable work assignment or to modify the tasks of the regular assignment which may be eliminated or adjusted.
(b) 
The department in which the employee works shall attempt to locate a work assignment or modify the work duties of the regular assignment within the limitations recommended by the physician or practitioner.
(c) 
If no suitable assignment is available with the department, the Township administration shall be contacted immediately in order to consider other alternatives. The Township administration will attempt to coordinate, where feasible, a temporary reassignment of the employee on an interdepartment basis. The department to which the employee is regularly assigned will continue to be charged for the employee's wages and benefits.
(d) 
The employee will be responsible for reporting to his immediate supervisor following each medical appointment providing that person with the appropriate medical status slip from the authorized treating physician/practitioner. The employee shall cooperate to the fullest extent possible by performing the tasks and duties within the modified assignment to the best of his ability.
(e) 
Employees will be advised of the Township's policy of mandatory modified duty in accordance with the employee's work restrictions. Employees refusing to accept an appropriate modified duty assignment provided by the attending physician/practitioner and offered by the Township shall forfeit their workers' compensation benefits and any available supplemental salary benefits. Also, such refusal to accept an appropriate modified duty assignment may result in other discipline, up to and including discharge.
(f) 
The immediate supervisor will be responsible for monitoring the employee's performance during the period of modified duty.
(g) 
Employees shall be entitled to earn their usual base salary while on modified duty. It is the Township's policy that no overtime will be authorized unless the employee is expressly given permission by the department director. All overtime assignments must be approved in advance by the Township Manager and/or department director, and must be in accordance with the work restrictions set forth by the attending physician/practitioner.
(h) 
Upon release to regular work without restrictions, the employee shall be returned to his regular work unit in the usual work assignment.
C. 
Procedures.
(1) 
Each department shall be responsible for implementation of this policy within its unit. Department directors shall instruct their employees on the Township's modified duty policy.
(2) 
The department director shall inform the treating physician or practitioner and employee of the Township's policy on modified duty.
(3) 
Supervisors shall contact the department director and the Township Manager to confirm the employee's return to work on modified duty.
(4) 
The employee's time card shall be maintained by the department director to whom the employee is temporarily assigned.
(5) 
In the event a work unit cannot reasonably accommodate a modified work assignment due to operational difficulties of the employee's work restrictions, the Township Manager is to be notified within 24 hours or by the next business day.
(6) 
The Township Manager shall coordinate alternative assignments on an interdepartment basis for employees whose home departments cannot accommodate them. In the event that the Township Manager cannot locate an assignment, the employee will remain off work and will be provided compensation in accordance with applicable state law and in conformance with any labor agreement.
(7) 
The Township Manager is authorized and directed to develop and implement any forms to be used in this modified duty program.