State Agency Charges Pacific Grove With Violating Labor Laws
May 20, 2011
The Pacific Grove Police Officers' Association scored a major victory today, as the California Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) issued a complaint against the city of PG on the Association's behalf, charging city officials with violating state labor laws.
PERB sided with the officers, who filed a charge with the agency in November 2010 after the city capped its contributions to public safety employees' retirement benefit plans without first consulting with the employees' unions. Last August, the city adopted an ordinance that capped its contributions to employees' retirement plans at 10 percent, changing its standard practice of contributing "the amount or percentage established and required by the California Public Employees Retirement System," according to the PERB decision released today. This, says PERB, violates PG's contractual obligation to pay its legally binding share of its police force's employment benefits - not to mention its obligation to confer with employee union representatives about any such changes.
"[The PERB complaint] is a vindication of our efforts to see that the city keeps its promises to its hardworking public safety employees," said Association President Sylvia Newton. The city now has 20 days to respond to the complaint.