Legislative News

Articles for tag budget


Governor Brown's "Push Me Pull Me" May Revision of the Budget

Posted: 5/12/2017 Tags: budget legislation pension policy salary Tags Views: 998

Governor Jerry Brown released his May Revise of the Budget on May 11th, 2017. Here, ACSS Legislative Advocate Ted Toppin provides relevant analysis and insight of the May Revise that may be of interest to managers, supervisors and other excluded state employees:

"With the Governor’s release of his May Budget revision yesterday, it was hard not feel as if you were being pushed and pulled in opposite directions. On the one hand, the Governor again highlighted the largest threats to the budget:

  • Recession. Our economic expansion is the third longest in California history and a “recession at some point is inevitable.”
  • Federal Funding Cuts. The federal government is contemplating “actions that could send the state budget into turmoil.”

In his remarks the Governor went so far as to say “make no doubt about it, cuts are coming in the next few years, and they’ll be big.”

On the other hand, the May revise reports revenues are higher than expected in January and proposes new spending:

  • January revenue projections were $5.8 billion short of what was expected. The May revise reports projected revenues have improved by $2.5 billion since then.
  • The May revise proposes new spending on K-12 school ($1.4 billion), county IHSS services ($400 million), and continuing state funded childcare ($500 million).

Reducing CalPERS State Pension Liabilities. Perhaps the most important and interesting May revise proposal for state supervisors and managers (indeed all state employees and retirees) was the Governor’s proposal to make an immediate infusion of an additional $6 billion supplemental payment to CalPERS. The money will come as a loan from the Surplus Money Investment Fund. If it works as expected, it really is a clever and innovative approach to reducing the unfunded CalPERS liability for state employees.

According to the May revise “this action effectively doubles the state’s annual payment and will mitigate the impact of increasing pension contributions due to the state’s large unfunded liabilities and the CalPERS Board’s recent action to lower its assumed investment rate of return from 7.5 percent to 7 percent.” After the transfer, the $6 billion will be expected to earn a 7 percent return from CalPERS, compared to the less than 1 percent currently earned from SMIF. Over the next two decades, this supplemental payment will save the state an estimated $11 billion in payments to CalPERS and lower the annual contribution to the fund by an average of 2.1 percent of payroll. The costs associated with the payment will be repaid with Proposition 2’s (rainy day fund) dedicated revenues for long term liabilities.

This proposal and the others in the May revise will now go through review by state legislative budget subcommittees leading up to the state budget approval deadline – June 15. Here is the Governor’s press release from yesterday with a link to the full May revise."


Comments 0 Comments

ACSS Met with CalHR to Address the Concerns of Managers and Supervisors

Posted: 1/30/2017 Tags: benefits budget legislation meeting salary Tags Views: 2196

On January 19th, ACSS met with CalHR to discuss the possibility of salary increases for excluded employees in reaction to the recent rank and file agreements that were reached through bargaining in December of 2016. ACSS also intended this meeting to introduce ourselves to CalHR’s new Labor Relations Officer, Kate Van Sickle (who replaced Steven Booth). ACSS helped bring VanSickle up to speed with the history of ACSS’ efforts on advocating for resolving salary compaction and helped familiarize her with the full scope of issues that ACSS advocates for. The meeting was productive and ACSS brought valuable items to the table, yet many specific items were left unanswered by CalHR. CalHR was not specific about which classifications will get additional pay and when it may happen.

ACSS thinks that excluded employees got the better deal regarding the sweeping 3% GSI salary increase for excluded employees in October 2016 versus the $2500 one-time bonus that Rank and file recently received. The 3% GSI increase for excluded employees is a “forever benefit” and it is PERSABLE, so it will count towards your retirement benefits. The $2,500 bonus that Rank and File just received does not.

In our recent January 19th meeting with CalHR, they confirmed that they will NOT be providing excluded employees with a one-time bonus, like that of SEIU Local 1000. During the meeting, ACSS heavily advocated on behalf of members for special salary adjustments to be passed on to excluded employees. CalHR’s response continues to be that final decisions have not yet been made and they will follow the administration’s directive to establish and maintain a 5% pay differential instead of the 10% that ACSS advocates as fair and equitable.

There is good news in the Governor’s proposed 2017 – 2018 budget. The budget adds $1.2 billion for increased employee compensation. It is anticipated that this will provide for General Salary Increases for excluded employees in July 2017, as per PML 2016-023. This is just the beginning of the budget process. Unlike bargaining, where rank and file agrees upon multi-year salary increases, excluded employees are excluded from bargaining, which means that they rely upon the budget each year to determine salary adjustments. The final approved budget bill is still a long way off and a lot can happen between now and the end of the fiscal year. ACSS will continue to monitor the budget process and advocate funding to provide excluded employees fair and equitable pay packages.

ACSS Lobby Day is on March 15th. We strongly encourage you to join us at Lobby Day and meet with legislators and educate them about the issues affecting excluded employees, like pay compaction. As news develops, ACSS will provide any updates in regards to pay increases and further discussion with CalHR.


Comments 0 Comments

Legislative Analyst’s Office Predicts Uncertainty Yet Preparedness in Future Budget Outlook

Posted: 11/18/2016 Tags: budget legislation Tags Views: 541

On November 16, 2016, the Legislative Analyst’s Office (LAO) released a comprehensive report on the assessment of the condition of the California economy and budget over the 2016-17 through 2020-2021 period. While the report predicts unpredictable economic conditions ahead, the report also provides a positive budget outlook and describes how the state is prepared to withstand a mild recession in the future.

Assuming that the state makes no additional budget commitments, the report estimates the state would end up with a decent amount of reserves. Of the $11.5 billion in estimated reserves, $2.8 billion would be set aside for discretionary reserves, which the Legislature can appropriate for any purpose.

In the event of a mild economic downturn scenario, the LAO estimates the state would have enough reserves to cover almost all of its operating deficits through 2020-21 without cutting spending or raising taxes.

These estimates are under the assumptions that the state does not make any changes in current policies or programs during the outlook period, and assumes no new changes in federal policy. The future is uncertain and any unforeseen future changes could have significant impact on the budget outlook.

>>Click here to read the full report from the Legislative Analyst’s Office on the Budget Outlook.


Comments 0 Comments

What does the $15 minimum wage mean for state workers?


In the past decade, state raises ranged from 1 to 3 percent annually. The recent law that Governor Brown signed increasing the state minimum wage to $15 per hour by 2022 is equivalent to a 10 percent increase per year starting in January. This swift increase is bound to have dramatic effects.

Unions, like the AFL-CIO in New York, whose state recently passed a similar minimum wage law, predicts that those making 16, 17 or 18 dollars an hour can start to bargain for 19, 20 and 21 dollars or more. J.J. Jelincic, a CalPERS board member and former CSEA president, said, “When you raise the floor, it creates tremendous pressure for raises at least a few rungs up.”

But what does this mean for state managers and supervisors? Union spokesman for Cal Fire, Terry McHale, says, “The state risks compaction. You can't have the people at the bottom making more than the people directing.” The minimum wage raise may exacerbate compaction issues. Now, it is even more important for the State to tackle salary compaction issues for supervisors, managers, and excluded employees before the situation worsens

Read more from the SacBee article

Read more from US News and the Associated Press article


Comments 0 Comments

Notable Points From The Governor's State Budget Report 2016-2017


On Thursday 1/8/16, Governor Brown released his proposed 2016-2017 State Budget. Brown claims that the budget still remains “precariously balanced” for the long term. Brown stated, “While timing is uncertain, the next recession is getting closer, and the state must begin to plan for it.”

Here are the proposals that affect ACSS and ACSS members:

State Employee Compensation

The Budget includes $220 million ($27 million General Fund) in 2016-17 for employee compensation and health care costs for active state employees. Included in these costs are collectively bargained salary increases for many of the state’s rank and file employees represented by bargaining unit 9 (engineers), which the Administration is extending to state managers and supervisors related to these employees. A 5% general raise in July of 2016 is the only currently      >> Read More...


Comments 0 Comments

1 2 3