Coronavirus (COVID-19) Information

HR/Payroll FAQ’s

July 27, 2021

Who is at higher risk for developing serious consequences from COVID-19?

The Center for Disease Control has found that people at risk for serious illness from COVID-19 include the following:

  • Older adults – people 65 years and older
  • People who live in nursing homes or long-term care facilities
  • Those with underlying medical conditions:
    • Chronic lung disease, or moderate to severe asthma
    • Serious heart conditions
    • Compromised immune systems from cancer treatments, smoking, etc.
    • Severe obesity
    • Diabetes
    • Chronic kidney disease undergoing dialysis
    • Liver disease

It is important to consider not only the risk of exposure to NCCC students and employees but also those they come into regular contact with due to living or caregiving arrangements.

What should I do if I feel ill at work or need to call in sick?

If you are experiencing symptoms consistent with COVID-19, such as fever (100.4 degrees F or higher) or chills and a cough or shortness of breath, call your health care provider and explain your symptoms. They will give you instructions on how to get care without exposing other people to your illness.

Anyone experiencing symptoms should stay home. Employees should also notify their supervisor, who will keep this information confidential and will not discuss it with anyone unless that person has a legitimate need to know. Your supervisor will consult with HR to determine when you may return to work and your eligibility under New York State Paid COVID Leave benefits.

Students experiencing symptoms should call NCCC Wellness Center at 716-614-6275.

Information regarding how to prevent illness can be found on the CDC website.

If I do not have COVID-19 symptoms, am I expected to disclose whether I have a medical condition that the CDC says could make me especially vulnerable?

No. You are not required to disclose whether you have a medical condition that might place you at higher risk. The laws prohibiting discrimination based on disability prohibit NCCC from making these inquiries or requiring medical examinations of employees without symptoms.

What if I test positive for the COVID-19?

If an employee tests positive for the COVID-19, they should contact the Assistant Vice President of Human Resources, Catherine Brown at 716-243-0669. This information will remain confidential and the name of the employee will not be disclosed. The Niagara County Department of Health (NCDOH) will also need to be notified per requirements. Neither entities will provide any confidential information.

What benefits can I use for COVID-19 quarantine leave?

If you are under a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine or isolation issued by the State, New York State Department of Health, local Board of Health, or other authorized government entity, you may be eligible for job-protected sick leave and compensation through New York State Paid COVID Leave benefits.

If an employee is subject to a mandatory or precautionary quarantine order at least 14 days of paid sick leave will be provided to the employee. Part-time employees will be paid for the number of days/hours during the quarantine period that they would have otherwise received had they been able to work as normal.

Employees must report the quarantine on the “Other Time Used” line on their timesheet or leave report with a comment “NYS Paid COVID Leave”.

Employees who choose to self-isolate or are advised by their personal health care provider to quarantine absent an order from the government are not eligible for NYS Paid COVID leave.  Also, employees are not eligible for NYS Paid COVID leave to care for immediate family members absent a mandatory quarantine/isolation order of their own.  Employees will be required to utilize their leave accruals during this time missed from work if unable to work remotely.

How will NCCC notify the campus community of any case of COVID-19 at NCCC?

The Niagara County Department of Health (NCDOH) is the official source of information about confirmed cases of COVID-19 at NCCC or anywhere in the county. The college will work closely with the NCDOH if a notification is needed.

Per NCDOH protocol, neither NCDOH nor NCCC will comment on rumors of suspected cases or on suspected cases that may be under evaluation.

Can I stay home from work or work remotely?

Employees who are subject to a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine or isolation or need to care for immediate family members living in the same household who are under a mandatory or precautionary order of quarantine can request to work remotely during this quarantine/isolation period by contacting Jonathan Bellomo in Human Resources.

Also, if you voluntarily disclose to Human Resources that you have a specific medical condition or disability that puts you at increased risk for COVID-19, or that you are living with someone with such a condition or disability, the department will keep this information confidential.  You and your supervisor in consultation with Human Resources will determine the type of accommodation that will be needed to mitigate your risk. The appropriate accommodation will depend upon your job duties and responsibilities and will be determined on a case-by-case basis.  Approval to work at a remote location is at a supervisor’s and Human Resources discretion.

Please contact your supervisor or NCCC Human Resources at 716-614-5951 for specific guidance regarding your personal work situation and determine your eligibility.

I meet with students (employees, patients, etc.) frequently as part of my job responsibilities. What should I do if I encounter someone who is obviously sick?

As with other forms of influenza (flu) or contagious illnesses such as colds, maintaining a reasonable distance from the person is a starting point. Do not shake hands or make other physical contact. Use a sanitary wipe after the person has left to wipe areas of your work station that the person has touched and follow good hand-washing practices. There may be situations in which a meeting can be rescheduled to a time when the person is feeling better or the business can be conducted by phone or e-mail.

What do I do if I feel unsafe at work because I fear I might be exposed to COVID-19 by coworkers or students who have traveled to an area with widespread sustained (ongoing) transmission?

If you voluntarily disclose that you have a specific medical condition or disability that puts you at increased risk for COVID-19, or that you are living with someone with such a condition or disability, the department will keep this information confidential.  You and your supervisor will determine the type of assistance that will be needed to mitigate your risk.  The appropriate accommodation will depend upon your job duties and responsibilities and will be determined on a case-by-case basis.

What assistance is available to help me cope with the emotional impact of this COVID-19 pandemic?

NCCC provides resources to help full-time academic and staff employees and eligible dependents cope with these types of life events through its Employee Assistance Program (EAP). The EAP provides confidential, short-term counseling at no cost to the employee.

You can also find guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention on mental health and coping here:

Employees needing assistance with the Employee Assistance Program (EAP), go to https://www.theeap.com/higher-education-eap. If you have not registered previously, you will need to click on “employee login”, then “register here”.

Who should I contact if I have further questions about employment and the COVID-19 pandemic?

If you have any further questions, please follow up with your supervisor. If you have payroll-related questions, contact Patrice Elnicki at pelnicki@niagaracc.suny.edu, and for human resource questions, please contact Catherine Brown at cbrown@niagaracc.suny.edu.

When I am working on campus what precautions do I need to take?

A face mask must be worn in common areas such as hallways, restrooms, classrooms, lecture halls, shared offices, the mailroom, even if no one else is present, etc.., where you could have direct contact with employees or students if you are unvaccinated.

If you have not provided the college with your vaccination card, please go to the Human Resource Office at A-261 to provide a copy.

Wash your hands often with soap and water for at least 20 seconds.

Use hand sanitizer if soap and water are not readily available.

Avoid touching your face.

Disinfect your workspace and shared spaces often.  Please contact your supervisor for supplies.

Communicate with your supervisor and/or the HR Office if you have concerns or suggestions.

Important Reminders

  • What if I receive a paper payroll check?
    In order to minimize disruption, please go to the payroll office ASAP and sign up for direct deposit.  Be sure to bring proper identification and proof of bank routing and account number information.
  • How do I receive my pay statement electronically?
    Follow the instructions to sign up for “iPay” at http://niagaracc.suny.edu/ADP

  • How do I sign up for NCCC Rave Alerts?
    NCCC offers a free service that delivers text messages and email messages to NCCC students, faculty, and staff during emergencies, incidents that may affect personal safety, and when adverse weather conditions affect normal campus operations. View RAVE Brochure.
  • How do I update my emergency contact information?
    NCCC employees can update their phone number and emergency contact information using Banner Self Service: https://ncccbanner.itec.suny.edu/PROD/twbkwbis.P_GenMenu?name=bmenu.P_GenMnu

What if I was in close contact with someone who has been exposed to a confirmed COVID-19 patient?

If you are healthy and the exposed person you came into contact with did not have any symptoms, you do not have to get tested, self-isolate or take any special precautions. Exceptions may be made if you are part of a high-risk population, such as the elderly and those with diabetes, lung disease and heart conditions.