The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

September 1, 2009
Judge rules (again) that State Fund furloughs are illegal

A San Francisco Superior Court judge has upheld her tentative ruling that furloughing state workers at State Compensation Insurance Fund is illegal.

Judge Charlotte Woolard's decision from the bench today confirms that state insurance code "exempts State Compensation Insurance Fund employees from the furlough."

The ruling extends beyond the 6,000 State Fund workers covered by SEIU because Woolard also ruled in favor of State Fund President Jan Frank, who had filed a cross-complaint seeking to exempt all of State Fund's 7,900 employees from furlough.

"Judge Woolard found that furloughing staff is the same as staff cutbacks," Local 1000 senior attorney Felix De La Torre told The State Worker this afternoon. State insurance code prohibits State Fund employees from staff cutbacks.

It's not clear yet when the order will be implemented. Woolard has ordered another hearing on Sept. 10 to hear arguments about whether State Fund employees should remain on a furlough schedule while Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger appeals her ruling.

Local 1000's court win is the second furlough loss for Schwarzenegger. In April, San Francisco Superior Court Judge Peter Busch ruled that the state's insurance code prohibited legal staff at State Fund from being furloughed. On July 9, Busch formally issued the written decision, which allowed the State Controller's Office to issue back pay for wages lost to furlough.

Local 1000 wasn't part of the earlier lawsuit by California Attorneys, Administrative Law Judges and Hearing Officers in State Employment. In fact, Local 1000 President Yvonne Walker blasted the legal professionals union for pursuing the matter.

However, Local 1000 changed course and filed its own lawsuit in June.

De La Torre hopes that this case will move more swiftly than the first one. The Sept. 10 hearing includes a review and signing of the final order, which could speed up moving State Fund employees to a regular schedule, assuming the judge agrees that keeping employees on furlough during the appeal process would create "irreparable harm."

"We want to avoid unnecessary delay," De La Torre said.

About Comments

Reader comments on Sacbee.com are the opinions of the writer, not The Sacramento Bee. If you see an objectionable comment, click the "report abuse" button below it. We will delete comments containing inappropriate links, obscenities, hate speech, and personal attacks. Flagrant or repeat violators will be banned. See more about comments here.

What You Should Know About Comments on Sacbee.com

Sacbee.com is happy to provide a forum for reader interaction, discussion, feedback and reaction to our stories. However, we reserve the right to delete inappropriate comments or ban users who can't play nice. (See our full terms of service here.)

Here are some rules of the road:

• Keep your comments civil. Don't insult one another or the subjects of our articles. If you think a comment violates our guidelines click the "report abuse" button to notify the moderators. Responding to the comment will only encourage bad behavior.

• Don't use profanities, vulgarities or hate speech. This is a general interest news site. Sometimes, there are children present. Don't say anything in a way you wouldn't want your own child to hear.

• Do not attack other users; focus your comments on issues, not individuals.

• Stay on topic. Only post comments relevant to the article at hand. If you want to discuss an issue with a specific user, click on his profile name and send him a direct message.

• Do not copy and paste outside material into the comment box.

• Don't repeat the same comment over and over. We heard you the first time.

• Do not use the commenting system for advertising. That's spam and it isn't allowed.

• Don't use all capital letters. That's akin to yelling and not appreciated by the audience.

You should also know that The Sacramento Bee does not screen comments before they are posted. You are more likely to see inappropriate comments before our staff does, so we ask that you click the "report abuse" button to submit those comments for moderator review. You also may notify us via email at feedback@sacbee.com. Note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us the profile name of the user who made the comment. Remember, comment moderation is subjective. You may find some material objectionable that we won't and vice versa.

If you submit a comment, the user name of your account will appear along with it. Users cannot remove their own comments once they have submitted them, but you may ask our staff to retract one of your comments by sending an email to feedback@sacbee.com. Again, make sure you note the headline on which the comment is made and tell us your profile name.

hide comments
blog comments powered by Disqus


About The State Worker

Jon Ortiz The Author

Jon Ortiz launched The State Worker blog and a companion column in 2008 to cover state government from the perspective of California government employees. Every day he filters the news through a single question: "What does this mean for state workers?" Join Ortiz for updates and debate on state pay, benefits, pensions, contracts and jobs. Contact him at (916) 321-1043 and at jortiz@sacbee.com.

FOLLOW US ON FACEBOOK

Now on the State Worker column

    [an error occurred while processing this directive]

State Pay Database

This database allows you to search the salaries of California's 300,000-plus state workers and view up to four years of their pay history.

Latest Capitol Alert headlines

    404 - Not Found - The Sacramento Bee, Sacramento, California

    404 Not Found

    Our apologies....

    We can't find the page you requested in this location.

    The story may have moved or expired.

    You may wish to:

  • » More on the Capitol Alert blog

Categories


May 2013

Sun Mon Tue Wed Thu Fri Sat
      1 2 3 4
5 6 7 8 9 10 11
12 13 14 15 16 17 18
19 20 21 22 23 24 25
26 27 28 29 30 31  

Monthly Archives