Dear Member of Bargaining Unit 2:
As many of you heard in Governor Newsom’s press conference today and in media reports, the state is looking for 10% savings in employee compensation costs due to the estimated 54.3 billion dollar budget shortfall from COVID-19. CalHR has contacted CASE and has asked to bargain over ways to achieve those savings. CASE strongly opposes furloughs and pay cuts and will instead explore other ways to find savings. If there is no agreement about the 10% cut, the Governor will ask the Legislature to include two unpaid furlough days for state employees in the budget act that has to be passed by June 15, 2020. If the federal government passes a relief bill that includes money for state governments, it could change the size of (or the need for) the cut the state is requesting.
While we are always willing to work with the state to find solutions, we will focus on solutions that do not punish workers and cause harm to the state and its residents. We learned very clearly during the Schwarzenegger administration that mandated, involuntary furloughs are counter-productive and in many cases illegal. Furloughs hurt the people of the state by taking employees providing essential public services off the front lines and hurt the economy by reducing money that state employees would spend on local businesses. CASE will work diligently with the Legislature and emphasize the harmful effects furloughs have on state employees and on the state’s economy while we seek other solutions to this crisis.
Another problem with the Governor’s current proposal is that it asks hard-working state employees to agree to a 10% cut in pay while only asking the administrators and managers to cut 5% of their department budgets. There is no justification for asking workers to endure double the percentage cuts the state plans to cut from administrative costs. This is especially true regarding our members in agencies that are self-funded or supported by special funds because furloughs of those members would not save money for the general fund.
CASE will make every effort to mitigate the impact of the Governor’s proposals on the legal professionals in Unit 2. We are seeking additional information regarding the Governor’s proposals and will keep you informed as the situation develops. CASE believes there are better ways to meet this crisis and will continue working to find solutions while protecting you and allowing you to continue serving the people of California.
This email may not reach all CASE members. Accordingly, CASE encourages you to pass this email along to any of your colleagues who may not have received it. If you are not receiving CASE emails and wish to receive future communications from CASE, please send an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and request to be added to the distribution list, CASE also encourages you to send responses from your personal email address as opposed to your state email address. Please keep in mind that all responses will be treated as confidential by CASE.
As always, your support of CASE and your colleagues in Bargaining Unit 2 is greatly appreciated.
The CASE Board of Directors