Honorable Executive Board Members:
After receiving official confirmation from DPA and the State Controllers officer today, I am proud to formally announce CDF Firefighters Local 2881 has secured an additional two months of furlough exemption until December 31, 2009. The previous exemption was due to expire on October 31. This will mean our members will not be impacted by income loss due to furloughs, which translates to an average of $700.00 per month for an FAE at top step take home pay. The additional extension on furlough exemption applies to all CAL FIRE employees regardless of their assigned bargaining unit.
Additionally, CDF Firefighters has secured an additional two-month extension to our exemption from implementation of Government Code 198441, Overtime Calculations, until December 31, 2009. Implementation of this new government code section approved during the last budget signed by the governor would have made drastic changes in the way overtime is calculated. For example: If you had taken two weeks off on vacation, holiday, sick leave or annual leave, you would have to work six 24 hour days or 144 hours of additional time before you would receive time and one-half compensation. Simply put, use of any leave credits would not be shown as hours worked when calculating overtime pay due the employee. The employee would only be paid straight time for these hours, (a huge loss of income).
The extension from implementation of these new overtime rules permits our members to be paid as we normally have. Overtime will be paid at the time and one-half rate regardless of taking any leave credits. We continue to work hard towards a fix to this change and prevent its implementation forever. The exemption from new overtime rules only apply to CAL FIRE employees assigned to Bargaining Unit 8.
This news comes at the end of a long period of intense joint effort that included or CDF Firefighters Sacramento team, CAL FIRE Director Del Walters, CAL FIRE administrative staff, CAL FIRE Labor Relations, DPA director and the governor’s office. You can take these exemptions as recognition of your hard work and sacrifices in the face in incredible odds doing our jobs each and every day. Congratulations.
Our entire CDF Firefighters team has worked hard to prevent negative impacts to our members and their families, and I am proud of our union’s accomplishments. I can tell you that no one on our team in Sacramento has taken a single break or stopped our efforts to leave no stone unturned in our fight to prevent huge fiscal hits to our families. I ask you to Remember that not all State employees will enjoy these exemptions so be respectful when discussing this with others times are hard and people are hurting out there.
Please join me in thanking our hard working staff. Times are hard and so is the union -- we are hard at work for you.
Aaron Read, Political Director
Terry McHale, Public Policy Director
Gary Messing, Chief Legal Counsel
Rick Swan, General Vice President
Ken Hale, Rank and File Director
Ray Snodgrass, Retiree Director, Legislative Committee
Paul Van Gerwen, Legislative Committee, PAC Committee, Bargaining Team Member
Kevin O’Meara, District III Vice President, Bargaining Team Member, Special Representative to the Board of Forestry
Steve Hartman, Bargaining Team, Advisor
Jim Rissmiller, Legislative Committee, Advisor
Special thanks to our entire Executive Board of Directors and CDF Firefighters Bargaining Team
Stay proud, Stay strong and Stay union.
Bob Wolf President