4.4 Weather/Short-Term Emergency Closings

Responsible Position



Minnesota State Board Policy

Minnesota Statute 12.21, Governor
Minnesota Statute 43A.05, subd. 4, Powers and Responsibilities  


Authority to Cancel Classes or Other College Activities

The authority to cancel classes and other college activities due to weather or other short-term emergencies resides with the college president or the president’s designee. See Minnesota State Board Policy 1A.10 Emergency Management for long-term closures.

Cancellation of classes does not excuse any employee from work. With supervisor approval, employees of the college, including faculty, may take personal leave, vacation leave, or use earned compensatory time when classes or activities are cancelled, and they choose to be absent from work.

Campus Closing Due to Weather or Other Emergency

The college president or designee may close all or a portion of the college due to a weather or other short-term emergency of six (6) calendar days or less. See Minnesota State Board Policy 1A.10 Emergency Management for long-term closures.

The closure of state agencies by the Commissioner of Minnesota Management and Budget does not apply to Minnesota State institutions. Pursuant to Minnesota Statute, the Governor of Minnesota has emergency powers to issue an executive order to change the work schedule of executive branch employees in cases of natural disaster or other emergencies.

Weather Emergencies:

The ATCC president shall develop written procedures that will be used to determine when weather conditions constitute a threat to the health and safety of students and college employees. The written procedures must identify the following:

  1. Processes for assessment of weather and travel conditions (temperature, wind, precipitation, condition of roads). Pertinent state and local authorities should be referenced as part of an assessment of weather and travel conditions. The following offices are suggested as authorities to reference:
    • State Highway Patrol District Office
    • Minnesota Department of Transportation – district offices
    • County and city law enforcement offices
    • County and city highway maintenance offices
    • Local school districts
  2. Positions and employees of the college who provide services that are essential to protect life and property during campus closings due to weather conditions. These “weather essential” employees will not be excused from work duty during campus closings.
  3. Methods of notification of campus closings appropriate to students, employees, and the public.

A copy of the written procedures must be filed with the Minnesota State chancellor.

Other Emergencies:
The college president shall maintain 
  1. Emergency operations plans and continuity of operations plans (other than those which are due to weather conditions) that specify processes and procedures when closure would be an appropriate action, and 
  2. A list of essential employees that would not be excused from work duty during campus closings due to identified emergency conditions. 
Effect of Closure:

When a campus closing is declared, college employees may be excused from work with pay if alternative working arrangements are not practical as determined by the president or designee. Employees who are authorized and scheduled to telework, or have the means and are approved to work from home or an alternative site, will continue to work if the short-term emergency does not prevent them from safely performing work at their home or alternative site.

An employee’s absence with pay for an individual emergency situation must not exceed the equivalent of two (2) workdays unless the Minnesota State chancellor authorizes a longer period. A campus closure applies to all employees without regard to labor contract. Weather or other emergency essential employees who are not excused from work will be paid at their regular rate of pay.


The declaration of a campus closure must, whenever possible, clearly identify the timeframe when employees are excused from work.

Notice to the Minnesota State Chancellor

Each college shall notify the Minnesota State chancellor or designee after the decision is made to close campus due to weather or other emergency conditions. This notice will be used by the Minnesota State system office to respond to inquiries regarding campus closures.

Related ATCC Documents:


Approved by: Leadership Council & Faculty Shared Governance Council

Effective Date: 1/18/2024

Next Review Date: January 2027

Archive: 4.1 Weather and Emergency Closings & Cancellations