Saying it would be a "waste of public resources" to put it on the ballot, the Ventura County Superior Court Judge Kent Kellegrew on August 4, 2014 ordered the removal of a ballot measure that would have replaced the County's defined benefits pension plan with a 401(k) and set a cap on retirement benefits.
This is a victory for the Citizens for Retirement Security ("CRS"), a coalition of nine unions within Ventura County that filed suit against the County. CRS argued that the county can't unilaterally repeal its participation in the County Employees Retirement Law of 1937. Only the legislature has the power to authorize a pension phase-out plan.
The measure was also eliminated because it violated the single subject requirement imposed by the California Constitution. The subject initiative sought to 1) eliminate defined benefit retirement programs and 2) impose a five year salary cap. Ventura County employees can take in a sigh of relief knowing that their pensions are still in place, for now.
However, the Judge provided the parties time to appeal prior to the election by staying his decision until August 14th. An appellate ruling would likely issue before the final deadline for printing the November ballots later this month. We will keep you updated as the appellate process unfolds.
ACSS received the Pay Letter 14-08 from CalHR and we can now confirm who will get the 2% general salary increase effective July 1, 2014. Check if your class received a raise by reading the official pay letter.
CalHR will develop separate pay letters for specified increases for excluded employees aligned with Bargaining Unit 5 and for special pay adjustments for some of the excluded employees aligned with Bargaining Units 9 and 10. A separate pay letter for excluded employees aligned with Bargaining Unit 6 is anticipated as well. There may be some additional letters that provide special adjustments for specified classifications. ACSS will notify you of these additional letters as they become available for release.
For questions, please directly contact YOUR local ACSS Labor Relations Representative.
ACSS received the following response from CalHR regarding the pay package for excluded employees, fiscal year 2014-2015:
"Most excluded employees (excepting S05 and S06 employees) will be receiving a 2% GSI effective 7/1/14. The budget also provides funds for the policy objectives to address compaction for S09 employees to bring them to 5% above their subordinates and to implement Like Pay for Like Work for S10 employees. Any increases greater than 5% will be incrementally PERSable over a 3 year period."
As of Friday, June 27, 2014, CalHR has not responded to ACSS several inquires concerning whether Unit 12 Supervisors will get a 2% raise instead of the bonus. Pay letters should be issued by July 8th and ACSS will receive an advance copy from CalHR. In addition, CalHR still has not confirmed the S09/M09 and S10/M10 classifications that will received a salary adjustment or the amount.
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Per a memo from CalHR, retirement contribution rates will increase effective July 1, 2014, for certain state employees pursuant to the Public Employees' Reform Act of 2013 and CalPERS law. Click here to learn more about the required employee retirement contribution increases for excluded, exempt, and represented employees by retirement category.
Departmental personnel offices are not required to take any action. The State Controller's office (SCO) will process a mass update to capture employee retirement contribution changes.
On June 12, ACSS Executive Director Rocco Paternoster met with Richard Gillihan, Acting Director of CalHR to discuss compaction and other issues facing ACSS members.
Paternoster was appreciative that Gillihan spoke honestly and frankly during the productive meeting regarding the state budget process, employee compensation issues, and especially compaction, showcasing Gillihan's depth of knowledge and expertise on the subject. Compaction and SB216 were discussed at length. In addition, Paternoster was able to provide CalHR with with specific information on multiple state supervisory classifications which make significantly less or incrementally more than the classifications they supervise.
While Acting Director Gillihan could not commit to resolving compaction he did acknowledge that it was an issue in state service and committed to continuing to work with ACSS on labor issues.
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