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A salary differential allowance shall be paid to employees required to use a second language as designated by the appointing authority and the HR Director. Designation of bilingual required positions is the sole prerogative of the County. Positions can only be designated to receive the Bilingual Salary Differential Allowance when the following eligibility requirements are met and procedures followed. 


  1. All non-supervisory permanent positions are eligible for bilingual salary differential allowance.  Extra help employees in AFSCME or SEIU are eligible for bilingual pay.
  2. Department communicates the need for a particular position to be designated to receive the bilingual salary differential allowance based on:
    1. a second language is critical to the day to day operations of the unit; or
    2. the need of the position to use a second language on the job 20% or more; or
    3. the position carries a caseload of 50% or more non-English speaking clients.



  1. Department completes the top section of the attached Bilingual Salary Differential Allowance Form. Forms must be complete upon submission. Managers and supervisor signatures are required. Incomplete/Outdated forms will be sent back.
  2. Department forwards the completed form to the Bilingual Pay Coordinator.

Bilingual Pay Coordinator

  1. The Bilingual Pay Coordinator reviews the request and determines if the general eligibility requirements are met.
  2. The Bilingual Pay Coordinator coordinates the scheduling of a language proficiency examination.
  3. The bilingual Certified Tester conducts the exam, completes the “Bilingual Proficiency Exam” section, and returns the form to the Coordinator for approval.
  4. The Human Resources Department will forward the results of the examination to the department payroll specialist.  If the employee does not successfully pass the exam the Coordinator will contact the manager to advise.

Department Payroll Specialist

  1. Upon receiving the approved Bilingual Form, the department processes in Workday for Bilingual Tier 1 or 2, consistent with the HR/Payroll Reference ManualDELETING PREVIOUSLY DESIGNATED POSITIONS

When the department determines that a position no longer requires the bilingual designation, the department should:

  1. Notify the incumbent that the position no longer requires the bilingual designation.
  2. Complete the “Identifying Information” section of the Bilingual Salary form terminating the designation and forward to the Bilingual Pay Coordinator.


  1. Employees will receive bilingual salary differential allowance as specified by current Memoranda of Understanding.  The memoranda establishes a two "tier" system:
    1. Tier I stipulates compensation for positions in which second language is critical to the day to day operation of the unit or the position uses a second language 20% or more of the time.
    2. Tier II stipulates compensation for positions where workers have a caseload of 50% or more non-English speaking clients.  Only workers covered by the bargaining units AFSCME, BCTC, CNA, SEIU, PDA and UAPD qualify for Tier II. In general, supervisory positions will not qualify for Tier II compensation unless the position is one of a "working" supervisor who has an assigned caseload of 50% or more non-English speaking clients.
    3. Bilingual pay shall be prorated for employees working less than full-time and/or who are in a non-pay status for any part of the biweekly pay period.