Columbia and other cities begin taking vacation for snow days

COLUMBIA, S.C. (AP) -- Several cities in South Carolina are changing their policies on paying workers when they get days off for snowy weather.

Instead of just paying workers for staying home, places like Columbia and Fountain Inn are requiring them to take vacation days or special leave if they want their paychecks to stay the same.

Officials said it saves money in tough budget times and treats employees that have to come into work, like police officers and public works employees, more fairly.

Not all public employees are having to use personal time or vacation to get paid for snow days. Gov. Nikki Haley signed an order paying all state employees for the time they missed when their offices were closed because of the Jan. 10 snow.

(Copyright 2011 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)