The State Worker

Chronicling civil-service life for California state workers

September 10, 2009
Furloughs immediately canceled for 7,900 state workers

State Fund employees are off furlough. Immediately.

A decision signed this morning by San Francisco Superior Court Judge Charlotte Woolard ends unpaid days off for all 7,900 or so State Compensation Insurance Fund employees throughout California, according to an announcement by SEIU Local 1000, which represents about 6,000 fund employees.

Woolard had ruled in favor of the union earlier this month. Today's hearing formalized that decision, which mirrored an earlier judgment in favor of about 500 fund legal staff.

According to a Local 1000 release, "The order also prohibits the Governor and DPA from arguing the order should be stayed pending appeal. This allows the State Controller's Office to reprogram the payroll system to full pay for SCIF workers immediately."

The local said that Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger's attorneys tried to keep the union from seeking back pay: "After hearing arguments the judge rejected the governor's attempt and entered an order ending the furloughs."

The union is going to "vigorously pursue retroactive back pay with interest for its members."

Fund President Jan Frank filed a successful complaint on behalf of employees not represented by SEIU to include them in the decision.

We'll post the court order later today.

On a related furolough lawsuit note, Local 1000 has filed its furlough appeal with the Third District Court in Sacramento. The local, along with Professional Engineers in California Government, California Association of Professional Scientists and California Attorneys, Administrative Law Judges and Hearing Officers in State Employment have all filed briefs seeking to overturn the Jan. 29 decision by Sacramento Superior Court Judge Patrick Marlette that supported Schwarzenegger's furlough order. Click here to see the court's register of actions in the case.

The document is so massive, we're told, that the union hasn't had time to scan it and send it to TSW so that we can post it. (The court's Web site doesn't provide document viewing.) Union spokesman Jim Zamora said that we'll get it soon. We'll post the brief immediately after it lands in our e-mail inbox.

There's been no court date set and there won't be for quite some time

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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.

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