March 27, 2024 Supervisory Files


New LAO Report Addresses State Employee Compensation. The nonpartisan Legislative Analyst’s Office released a report late last week analyzing the Governor’s 2024-25 budget proposal’s changes for state employee compensation. As you may recall, in January, the Governor proposed eliminating telework stipends, eliminating vacant positions for one-time savings, and deferring the June 2025 payroll (but not employee paydays) by one day to reduce fiscal year 2024-25 payroll costs by one month’s payroll. 

The last of the three ideas, the payroll deferral, was a common practice in the Great Recession Era and found favor with the LAO. It will not impact employees receiving timely wages. 

As for the other two ideas, the LAO noted that the one-time elimination of vacant positions is less likely to realize large savings than other measures. This is primarily due to the non-specific nature of the proposed cuts and whether they can be realized across all departments (including critical public safety agencies). The LAO also notes the number of vacant positions has grown – and grown at a faster rate – in recent years. In December 2023, the statewide position vacancy rate was 21%. 

The LAO also noted that the Governor’s proposed elimination of telework stipends seems “disproportionately difficult for modest savings . . . [e]liminating the telework stipend either through collective bargaining or through unilateral action likely would result in difficult labor relations and an erosion to any savings.” CASE, of course, disagrees that the state could unilaterally eliminate the benefit, but agrees that such an action surely would result in difficult labor relations – and legal challenges. 

The report does not address the possibility of furloughs or Personal Leave Programs and the Governor did not include these in his January Budget Proposal. Speaking with the Sac Bee’s Maya Miller, LAO Analyst Nick Schroeder commented on the likelihood of significant union pushback to a new round of furloughs while observing that, in 2020, units agreed to PLP but the budget problem they sought to address never materialized. “It kind of makes it more difficult for the state to try to get concessions of that size again,” he said. 

CASE remains committed to defending our bargained-for benefits, your wages, and the positions vital to ensuring Californians receive the services they depend on. 

You can read the full LAO report here


News of interest to Unit 2 legal professionals:

California state agencies won’t report telework data anymore as workers return to office – The Sacramento Bee via Yahoo News
Apple hit with massive antitrust case from federal DOJ, Calif. and 15 other states – Bloomberg via Fortune
California communities are banning syringe programs. Now the state is fighting back in court – Los Angeles Times via Yahoo News


2nd Annual CASE Public Service Scholars Award. Applications are open for the 2nd Annual CASE Public Service Scholars Award. CASE Members and their dependents pursuing higher education are invited to apply between now and May 1. The award honors applicants who are currently in a career, or plan to pursue a career, in government or another form of service supporting the common good, or applicants who can demonstrate meaningful commitment to serving others by participation in service-oriented academic pursuits, volunteer, or community service. Apply here (pw: membersmatter22). Tracking Return-to-Office Mandates. Your feedback on the impact of return-to-office mandates is invaluable in helping CASE prepare to meet and confer with departments and agencies as well as preparing grievances and for arbitration as necessary. Consider sharing the impact of the proposed policy changes with us via this form.

Member Center
CASE Supervisory Files Newsletter