Some county workers will receive state bonuses

News Date

Article by Paul Sisson. Click here to read this article on The San Diego Union tribune website.

Workers at two county facilities are in line to receive up to $1,500 each under a statewide retention bonus program.

At their regular meeting Tuesday, county supervisors unanimously approved filing an application with the state for employees at the San Diego County Psychiatric Hospital and the Edgemoor skilled nursing facility in Santee to be part of the Hospital and Skilled Nursing Facility COVID-19 Worker Retention Payment Program.

One-time payments, due to start in February, stem from the passage of Senate Bill 184, which, among other things, calls for the Legislature to appropriate funds for “the purpose of promoting stability and retention in California’s workforce.

The program is not limited to government agencies. A wide range of “covered entities” from hospitals to private physician practices can apply.

Payments vary according to the amount of time on the job, with those who worked at least 400 hours from July 30, 2022 through Oct. 28, 2022, receiving up to $1,500. Part-time workers who logged at least 100 hours during that three-month span are eligible for $1,250 one-time payments. Doctors qualify for up to $1,000, but managers do not qualify.

The county did not specify how many of its workers will qualify though paperwork indicates that managers expect the request to generate about $800,000, an amount that could provide $1,500 bonuses to more than 500 workers.

Before voting for the item as part of the county Board of Supervisors’ consent calendar, Supervisor Terra Lawson-Remer thanked the workers who stayed at their jobs during the COVID-19 pandemic.

“We are grateful to the workers who are on the front lines every day, serving our community,” Lawson-Remer said.

The vote is separate from an ongoing salary study that the county is currently pursuing around increasing wages for mental health workers.