Professional Development Fund

NERE Professional Development Fund


Professional Development Fund for Non-Exclusively Represented Employees (NERE): Managerial, Supervisory, Confidential, and Business and Administrative Unit

The Professional Development Fund (PDF) was established in 1991 to provide an opportunity for non-exclusively represented employees (NERE) to obtain partial reimbursement for employment related education or training that is not available through state-offered training or department funding sources. The program is administered by the Office of the State Employer (OSE) and funded in accordance with the coordinated compensation plan approved by the Civil Service Commission.


  • To qualify for PDF reimbursement, you must first comply with your department's policy on tuition reimbursement. For example, if your department requires prior approval for tuition reimbursement, and denies your application because you did not submit it on time, then you will also not qualify for PDF reimbursement. It is your responsibility to be informed about your department's policy and to comply with it.

  • Up to 60 percent of eligible expenses are eligible for PDF reimbursement.

  • The 60 percent limit applies to the total reimbursement by your department and the PDF for each course. As an example, if your department reimburses 50 percent of tuition, the PDF will only reimburse for 60 percent of other eligible expenses for that course.

  • Payments are made on a fiscal year basis. All applications must be submitted within 60 calendar days after course ends; however, applications for courses that end with less than 60 calendar days before the fiscal year closes must be received by September 30th. 

  • Effective June 1, 2019 the maximum reimbursement per fiscal year will increase to $1,700.00 for any classes ending after June 1, 2019.

  • Minimum eligible expenses will be $50.00, resulting in a minimum reimbursement of $30.00.

  • Both college course credits and non-degree programs such as professional seminars and continuing education credits are eligible. 

  • Reimbursement will only be made for courses which result in a grade of C (2.0) or higher at the undergraduate level and B (3.0) or higher at the graduate level.

  • Reimbursement will be made for only one preparation course per employee for a certification or license that is directly related to your current employment with the State.


Frequently Asked Questions about the Professional Development Funds


  1. Who is eligible for NERE  professional development funds?

    Only non-exclusively represented employees are eligible.  NEREs are managers, supervisors, confidential employees and employees assigned to the Business and Administrative Unit. 

    As of the date of application for reimbursement applicants must have satisfactorily completed a required initial probationary period during the current term of employment.

    Applicants must also be employed 40 percent or more of full time on a continuing (permanent) basis in a managerial, supervisory, confidential, or non-exclusively represented position throughout the duration of the course/seminar and through the date of application for reimbursement.

    Employees in limited-term positions are not eligible, unless the employee previously obtained status in a permanent position and later transferred or was appointed to a limited-term position during the current term of employment. Employees in non-career appointments are not eligible. 

  2. What type of professional development is eligible for reimbursement from the PDF?

    The professional development must be related either to your current position or to career opportunities within state government. It can include college courses, professional seminars, continuing education credits, etc.

    Department offered or department-sponsored training courses are not eligible. If you have a question about whether the course you are considering is eligible, please contact the Office of the State Employer at
    A review or preparation courses for a professional licensure or certification exam (e.g., Bar Review or CPA Review courses) which is directly related to your current employment with the state, is eligible for reimbursement, limited to one such course per employee. Exam fees are not covered.  Credits for prior experience or a portfolio review are not eligible.


  3. What expenses are eligible?

    Eligible expenses are tuition and textbooks for courses from accredited institutions (, and registration fees for professional seminars.


  4. What is the relationship between department training or tuition reimbursement funds and these Professional Development Funds?

    PDF reimbursement is a resource available directly to eligible employees who undertake professional development that is not funded by their departments.
    Employees must comply with all requirements for obtaining funding in their own department or agency and must exhaust all departmental resources before becoming eligible for PDF reimbursement.


  5. How should I handle PDF application if my department will provide funding or reimbursement?

    Apply for department funds first. Then you may apply to the PDF for reimbursement of other eligible expenses. Your application must include documentation of any department funding or reimbursement for the courses included on your PDF application form.


  6. How should I handle PDF application if my department does not provide funding or reimbursement?
    By submitting the application form to the Office of the State Employer via your State e-mail account, you are certifying that you have requested reimbursement from your department and have been denied. A copy of the denial must accompany your application.

  7. How does the fund treat scholarships, grants or other stipends?

    Scholarships, grants or other stipends are subtracted from the expenses eligible for reimbursement before the reimbursement amount is calculated.

  8. How are student loan obligations treated?

    Student loans are not subtracted from the expenses eligible for reimbursement.

  9. When should I apply for reimbursement?

    You must submit your complete Application Form - OSE-115, with the necessary documentation. You must apply for PDF during the fiscal year in which the course is completed and within 60 calendar days after the course ends. However, applications for courses that end with less than 60 calendar days before the fiscal year closes must be received by September 30th.  Note: The Application Form has been revised. 

    The new form must be completed and submitted as an Excel document.

    The application and all required documentation must be submitted by the deadline; however, if it will be impossible to supply all required documentation by that date, you must still submit the application and any available documentation with a note explaining the circumstances and requesting an extension. Each request will be considered on a case-by-case basis.

  10. When should I apply for reimbursement for PhD dissertation credits?

    Dissertation credits are usually given a grade of P (Pass) or S (Satisfactory) at the completion of the dissertation.  Some universities will give an I (Incomplete) until the dissertation is completed, then the grade is changed to S or P.  You must claim dissertation credits during the fiscal year in which they were completed.  In instances where the grade is an I, the applicant must attach a statement from the Chairperson of their dissertation committee, stating that the applicant is making satisfactory progress towards the completion of the degree.

  11. Are the reimbursements from the fund taxable?

    Information on tax reporting requirements for educational assistance payments and Professional Development Fund (PDF) reimbursements made to or on behalf of employees is contained in the Financial Management Guide; Part IV, Ch. 3, Section 100 which can be found by clicking here.

  12. When can I expect to receive reimbursement?

     In most cases the reimbursement for approved costs will be included in your pay warrant via EFT three to four weeks after your application is reviewed and your eligibility is determined.


We encourage you to take advantage of this opportunity for professional development. The funds are allocated by the Civil Service Commission and administered by the Office of the State Employer. 

If you have any questions about the funds after reading this page, please contact:

Office of the State Employer

Revised 02/05/20


Unions with PDFs

​AFSCME (Article 22, Section DD.)

SEIU-Human Services Support (HSS) Unit (Article 22, Section 28. B.)

SEIU-Scientific & Engineering (S&E) Unit (Article 15 - B)

SEIU-Technical Unit (Article 27, Section 3)​