Legislative News

May Budget Revision Reveals More Money Than Previously Predicted

Posted: 5/15/2015 Tags: budget health pension retirement Tags Views: 1221

Image courtesy of www.StockMonkeys.com 

Compared to the January Budget, in the May Revise, released on 5/14, Governor Brown disclosed $6.7 billion more dollars available to put to use for 2015-16. While this is good news that there is more money available, the vast majority of it will go to public elementary schools, lower-income households, the rainy day fund, CSU and the UC school system (to cover pension debt). Very little of the May Revise was new material for state workers, and revealed more depth of the same proposals we have already known about.

On the hot topic of heathcare and retirement, the Administration continues to move forward with their more cohesive “3-pronged approach” to managing the $72 billion unfunded liability. 1) Prefunding retiree healthcare is most certainly pushing forward. 2) Newly hired state employees will be required to work longer to receive retirement compensation. And 3) more affordable healthcare plans (hinting towards HSA plans) will be implemented. Again, these concepts are not new, but they are becoming more concrete into an impending reality.

As for civil service, the May Revise proposes $57 million in new state employee compensation and reduces contributions to CalPERS down by $110 million. Proof that pension reform is indeed working. It also reiterated the proposals to streamline classifications, abolish vacant positions and broaden recruitment efforts in civil service.

Click here to download the official full version of the May Revise.

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Myths vs. Facts on CalPERS Pensions, Investments, Health Care, and More!

Posted: 5/13/2015 Tags: health pension policy retirement Tags Views: 1324

CalPERS has provided a list of Myths versus Facts to address common misconceptions.  Test your knowledge on the following CalPERS issues related to pensions, investments, accountability, ethics, and health care. 

MYTH -or- FACT? Most Police and firefighters retire at age 50 with 90 percent of pay.

MYTH -or- FACT? CalPERS doesn't promote a public pension database so it can hide pension amounts.

MYTH -or- FACT? CalPERS Long-Term Care Program is financially unstable.

MYTH -or- FACT? Taxpayers pay 100 percent of retiree health care costs.

For more Myth or Fact questions and to see answers to the questions above, click here to read the full article on the CalPERS website.

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Important Compaction Milestone Near for Supervisors at CDCR

Posted: 4/23/2015 Tags: budget compaction policy salary Tags Views: 2351

ACSS is happy to report a huge milestone achievement in the resolution of compaction for some critical supervisory classifications at CDCR. Over the past several years, ACSS has diligently spent a tremendous amount of time and effort advocating for the end of compaction in classifications where supervisors were drastically underwater. One of the most egregious examples of this was in the Office of Correctional Education where supervisor’s salaries were 13% less than the teachers they supervised. In a March 25, 2015, meeting, CDCR informed ACSS that they submitted a compaction proposal to CalHR requesting a salary increase for Supervisors of Vocational Instruction (2370), Supervisors of Academic Instruction (2305), and Supervisors of Correctional Educational Programs (2303) for a total of 99 impacted excluded employees state-wide. The proposal provides for a special salary adjustment to finally bring those classifications up to a 5% salary differential above the employees they supervise. CDCR stated that the funding for the salary increase has already been included in the current budget proposal. The proposal may still require legislative approval, however ACSS is pleased that our tireless efforts on behalf of our members finally resulted in positive action on this critical matter. ACSS continues to fully support this compaction resolution and work tirelessly to push the issue into effect in alliance with CDCR, CalHR and the Administration.

>> See related article on CDCR Quarterly Meetings

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Turn Your Time Into Money! Cash Out Your Unused Paid Leave.

Posted: 4/20/2015 Tags: benefits leave policy Tags Views: 1217

Starting May 1, 2015, excluded state workers can apply to cash out their unused paid leave time into money.  Cashing in on this opportunity is helpful for both taxpayers and the government and actually helps curb increases to the state's liability, since unused time cashed out at the end of employment is based on final salary. Excluded employees are allowed to cash out up to 40 hours.

>> Click here to read more on this topic from the SacBee article 

>> Click here to see CalHR's memo PDF on the Excluded Employee Leave Buy-Back Program

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CalHR and the Administration Work Together to Eliminate Unused Classifications

Posted: 4/17/2015 Tags: compaction jobs Tags Views: 3819

Posted: 4/17/2015

In order to make the state more efficient and nimble, CalHR is working with the Administration to abolish unnecessary classifications that have been unused over the past 24 months. Cal HR submitted a Classification Consolidation Project strategic plan to the State’s Personnel Board on January 8, 2015 in alignment with the Governor’s 2015-16 Budget Summary to “streamline the state’s job classifications”.

In 2007, SPB and DPA identified over 4,200 separate classifications, of which, 1,000 were vacant. The lengthy list of classifications proposed for the chopping block are the first phase in improving the Civil Service System by consolidating the classifications into broader, more usable occupational families. According to CalHR, “each classification will be reviewed to ensure we do not take away opportunities for upward mobility, restrict entry into state service, eliminate necessary bridging classifications, or negatively impact current or future state employees/members”. Click here to see the entire list of classifications proposed to be abolished.

By removing unused classifications, we anticipate that the complicated task of ending salary compaction may be simplified. In the Classification Consolidation Project report, an item in the Post-Project Implementation Challenges section states “salary compaction issues will occur, but consideration should be given to offering safety and pay differentials for supervisors and managers.” ACSS is determined to work with CalHR to make this project progress smoothly and with utmost fairness.

As always, ACSS will update you on progress with this important issue.

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