John Liebert Passes Away …

I’m saddened to report that John Liebert, a founding partner of Liebert Cassidy Whitmore, passed away today. You can visit Liebert Cassidy’s website (click here) for further information.  John Liebert was truly one of the great pioneers of public sector labor law in California and in the nation.  He will be missed by all of us in the field. Jeff Sloan, a partner in my firm, knew John well and had this to say, “John was and is the most esteemed public sector labor lawyer in California, and beyond that an extraordinarily kind, compassionate and forward-thinking person. From its very…

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AB 195 Would Codify Employer Unfair Practices Under MMBA

Last week Assembly members Roger Hernandez and Michael Allen introduced AB 195 which would codify employer unfair practices under the MMBA. The bill would delete Government Code section 3506 and replace it with the following:3506. A public agency shall not do any of the following:(a) Impose or threaten to impose reprisals on employees, to discriminate or threaten to discriminate against employees, or otherwise to interfere with, restrain, or coerce employees because of their exercise of rights guaranteed by this chapter. For purposes of this subdivision, "employee" includes an applicant for employment or reemployment.(b) Deny to employee organizations the rights guaranteed…

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Court: Fiscal Impact of MOU Must Be Presented to Legislature

Cal. Statewide Law Enforcement Assn. v. Dept. Personnel Admin. (Case No. C061102) (Issued on 1/26/11) This case involved a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) between the California Statewide Law Enforcement Association (CSLEA) and the State of California reached in 2002. Under the new MOU, CSLEA bargaining unit members were to be reclassified as “safety members” effective July 1, 2004 and allowed to participate in the more generous safety retirement pension plan. A dispute arose over whether the reclassification into safety member status was intended to be retroactive; in other words, whether the employees' past years of service would also be credited…

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Supreme Court: Layoffs Are Management Right

The California Supreme Court has just issued its decision in International Association of Fire Fighters, Local 188, AFL-CIO v. Public Employment Relations Board (City of Richmond) (Case No. S172377) ("Richmond").Here's the holding:Here, we address two issues: (1) If, after receiving an unfair labor practice charge, PERB decides not to issue a complaint, is that decision ever subject to judicial review? (2) Is a city's decision to lay off firefighters for fiscal reasons a matter that is subject to collective bargaining?On the first question, we agree with the Court of Appeal that although PERB's refusal to issue a complaint is generally not…

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IAFF v. City of Richmond Decision Expected on Monday

The California Supreme Court has given notice that a decision in International Association of Fire Fighters, Local 188, AFL-CIO v. Public Employment Relations Board (City of Richmond) (Case No. S172377) ("Richmond") will be issued on Monday morning.As a recap, the Richmond case presents the following issues:(1) Is the decision by the Public Employment Relations Board not to issue an unfair labor practices complaint under the Meyers-Milias-Brown Act (Gov. Code, § 3500 et seq.) subject to judicial review? (2) Is a decision to lay off firefighters for fiscal reasons a matter that is subject to collective bargaining under the act?Given the questions asked by…

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