More ‘Rights’ For State Employees

Katy Grimes: Since public employees have so few workplace protections and are so under-paid, Democratic Assemblyman Roger Dickinson has authored legislation to give the unionized state workers more protections from workplace discipline, and priority on state government work over private sector workers.

It’s as if a Junior High School Student Body President is running the state’s Democratic party agenda –  “No School Wednesdays!”  “No homework!”  “Extra Credit Points for Everyone!” “No one can get fired!”

“The average state or local government worker in California makes nearly $70,000 per year,” acording to Union Watch, and “the average state or local government worker in California, if they work 30 years, will retire with a pension that averages $66,864 per year.”

Now Dickinson, a handy tool for the state’s unions, is proposing more goodies, more protections, and more state job guarantees, which he calls “rights.” But these rights are only granted to public employee union members.

Collective bargaining is not a right. The freedom of association is guaranteed and protected under the First Amendment of the Constitution.  Contrast that right  with the special powers granted to unions through collective bargaining.

Despite that California’s government workers are the highest-paid in the nation, and are grossly over-protected, Dickinson wants more. The SEIU wants more. State employees want more.

In the real world, as dictated and determined by labor attorneys, private sector employers must base decisions about employees on work performance. But in state government, performance is irrelevant; protecting the employee from accountability is the priority.

Perhaps the most interesting morsel in AB 1655 is at the end of the bill:

SEC. 2. Section 19635 of the Government Code is amended to read: 19635. No adverse action shall be valid against any state employee for any cause for discipline based on any civil service law of this state, unless notice of the adverse action is served within three years and the investigation is completed within one year after the cause for discipline, upon which the notice is based, first arose. The next sentence was struck out: Adverse action based on fraud, embezzlement, or the falsification of records shall be valid, if notice of the adverse action is served within three years after the discovery of the fraud, embezzlement, or falsification. 

 Did Dickinson strike out fraud, embezzlement, and falsification of records from the bill, as reasons state employees could be disciplined?

The existing protections afforded state employees are unholy, and the primary reason the state has a twisted culture of life-long entitlements for unproductive employees in nowhere jobs, with benefits befitting kings.

The Sacramento Bee summed-up a short list of the delicious new state worker entitlements:

• Gives unionized state employees priority over outside contractors and excluded state workers to fill permanent, overtime and on-call positions.
• Sets a one-year statute of limitations for employers to take an adverse action against a state employee. (The current law allows disciplinary actions up to three years after the discovery of fraud, embezzlement or records falsification.)
• Establishes a peer review committee to provide workplace operations input.
• Guarantees that the state won’t impose “unreasonable quotas” on employees.
 Bans extra work created by vacancies, furloughs of layoffs without “fair compensation.”
• Gives priority to workplace safety and health grievances.
• Explicitly bans workplace discrimination.
• Strengthens whistleblower protections.
• Requires employers exercise “preventive and corrective” actions before administering harsher employee discipline.
• Settles grievances in favor of the employee if the employer misses contractual deadlines for response.
• Defines protections and performance and merit evaluation processes for professionally licensed employees.
• Guarantees independent legal representation for professionally licensed workers named as codefendants in litigation against their employers.

With control of the state Legislature, Democratic lawmakers are strutting around fanning their tail feathers. Arrogant, defiant, anti-business, and destructive legislation such as AB 1655, is just a taste of what is ahead.

FEB. 14, 2012

37 comments

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  1. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 14 February, 2012, 11:19

    It is unreal how deep these politicians heads/noses are in the behinds of the public unions.

    Reply this comment
  2. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 14 February, 2012, 12:05

    The CalWatchdog should do a blog on the medical benefit entitlements that the gophers who answer the phones and do errands for the State senators and assemblymen get.

    If one of these aides works for any senator or assemblyman for FIVE YEARS (doesn’t even have to be consecutive years)starting at AGE 50 they get FREE LIFETIME MEDICAL CARE PAID FOR BY THE STATE!!! Don’t believe me??? Research it!

    So lets say 23 year old Alvin the aide does errands for Senator Correa for 2 years. Takes a year off. Then Alvin gets a job answering the telephone for Assemblyman Dickinson for 3 years then quits and starts his own business.

    At AGE 50 Alvin qualifies for FREE HEALTH CARE PAID FOR BY THE STATE OF CALIFORNIA for the FIVE YEARS he worked for the legislators. Sound crazy? Sure it does. But it’s the honest to God truth.

    You don’t hear any of the fiscally conservative republican legislators questioning this or introducing legislation to stop it, do you???

    Where in the private sector could you work for FIVE YEARS then quit and have that company pay for all your healthcare needs starting at AGE 50??

    This crap is borderline criminal IMO!!!

    Reply this comment
  3. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 14 February, 2012, 17:15

    Vallejo had the exact same deal, except you they it forever after 5 years and didn’t have to wait until age 50. Are you sure they have to wait?????

    Reply this comment
  4. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 14 February, 2012, 18:31

    “Are you sure they have to wait?????”

    Yes, according to the Register’s article.

    It just goes to show how corrupted and rotted out the system is. What makes some knuckle dragger who answers the phone so special that he or she should get free lifetime medical at age 50 after working 5 years for the state legislators??? How could that be justified with a straight face??? It’s just more theft of public funds. Call up a republican state senator or assemblyman’s office and ask the turd who answers the phone whether he gets free lifetime medical at age 50 after 5 years service. Then ask him how he could take it with a clear conscience. Doesn’t matter if they are repugs or dems – all of them are greedy hypocrites.

    Reply this comment
  5. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 14 February, 2012, 18:32

    Let’s face it, rex.

    The bulk of lifetime medical costs for an individual occur after age 50.

    Reply this comment
  6. NTHEOC
    NTHEOC 14 February, 2012, 20:16

    Rex The Wonder Dog! says:
    It is unreal how deep these politicians heads/noses are in the behinds of the public unions.
    ===========
    Don’t forget they are much,much deeper in the behinds of the private sector big business and corp’s!!! We have to have a level playing field here….

    Reply this comment
  7. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 14 February, 2012, 21:18

    Don’t forget they are much,much deeper in the behinds of the private sector big business and corp’s!!! We have to have a level playing field here….

    I have always said this. Big Business and Public Unions have corrupted and destroyed the country.

    No Argument from me on the problems of Big Business/Wall Street and the others who are ripping us all off. And now the Public Unions are just as big of a problem, bigger on the local/state level.

    Reply this comment
  8. NTHEOCR
    NTHEOCR 14 February, 2012, 21:25

    Well Katy Slimes seems to leave out those facts and just goes on her tantrum about public employees! Sounds like you need some cheese with that whine Katy, booooohooooo!

    Reply this comment
  9. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 14 February, 2012, 21:44

    Wall Street is the modern day mob that owns the pols and runs the government. Look at the revolving door with Wall Street goons getting appointed to high gov positions for a few years – then returning to WS and controlling Capital Hill with their political influence and bribes.

    Really no different from the way the mob operated in the 20’s/30’s – just on a MUCH larger scale.

    Reply this comment
  10. CalWatchdog
    CalWatchdog Author 15 February, 2012, 08:30

    NTHEOCR – Not sure what facts I left out of the story, but I’ll take some Brie with my Chardonnay.

    I don’t have a beef with most public employees – just the unaccountable, bad attitude, paper shuffling, human paper weights, and the politicians and union bosses who have schemed to prevent them from ever being fired, even for good cause.

    Most public employees are conscientious, knowledgeable, good people. And they’d be good employees anywhere.

    What public agency do you work for?

    – Katy

    Reply this comment
  11. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 15 February, 2012, 09:55

    Most public employees are conscientious, knowledgeable, good people. And they’d be good employees anywhere.

    Earth to Katy, Earth to Katy.

    Come on, you cannot be serious, not after you stated in the same post that they cannot fire lazy and incompetent gov “paper weights”.

    I have worked extensively in the public sector and can guarantee you that the level of incompetent employees is about 6 times that of the private sector. In the real world maybe 5% of employees are bad-because they get fired, in gov that number is around 30% because they cannot be fired.

    Reply this comment
  12. CalWatchdog
    CalWatchdog Author 15 February, 2012, 10:02

    Incompetence abounds in certain agencies. Other agencies seem to work well – at least some of the agencies I’ve investigated. And I find that there are some really exceptional, talented employees who work in the Legislature, inside of the caucuses.

    Many of the rank-and file state employees would perform better if they had a reason to. But the unions have sucked the life out of so many, that most are unhappy sheeple merely waiting for retirement. It’s pathetic.

    – Katy

    Reply this comment
  13. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 15 February, 2012, 10:55

    The FACT is that if you rig a system so that it cannot go bankrupt and so that it is virtually impossible to fire people for incompetence, laziness, dereliction of duty, malfeasance OR FOR EVEN BREAKING THE DAMN LAW – that system will a complete and utter failure.

    Imagine if a private company like Home Depot ran it’s business this way??? It would collapse within 2 years.

    Two county social workers in Orange were found liable in civil court for LYING to the judge in a case which resulted in a mother having her two children illegally taken away from her for 6 years. The LIES were MATERIAL as they resulted in the separation of the mother and her children. The judgment was $10.6M. One of those social workers still works for SSA and was even promoted to a supervisor. The other has retired on full benefits. NEITHER were punished or disciplined. The head of the SSA – EVEN IN THE FACE OF THE VERDICTS HANDED DOWN BY A SUPERIOR COURT CIVIL JURY WHO HEARD ALL THE FACTS – refused to acknowledge that his social workers lied.

    I have talked to numerous relatives, friends and acquaintances who have worked in government. It’s the SAME STORY EVERYWHERE. Widespread incompetence, malfeasance, laziness and dereliction of duty. The outcome is the same everywhere. The miscreants keep their jobs and retire in their 50’s with full benefits.

    Reply this comment
  14. NTHEOC
    NTHEOC 15 February, 2012, 11:13

    Most public employees are conscientious, knowledgeable, good people. And they’d be good employees anywhere.
    What public agency do you work for?
    – Katy
    ===========
    Now that would have been a much better way to start out your column.Instead it sounded as though you were putting all public employee’s into one category of “lazy and incompetent gov “paper weights”.Btw, I work for a fire dept in so cal as a ff/medic.Great, now i have to probably here your ranting tirade about my profession!!

    Reply this comment
  15. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 15 February, 2012, 11:27

    “Great, now i have to probably here your ranting tirade about my profession!!”

    Pay special note to “here your”.

    This is one example why our public employment system is failing.

    Reply this comment
  16. NTHEOCR
    NTHEOCR 15 February, 2012, 12:16

    Sorry, hear! Sometimes I get ahead of myself….

    Reply this comment
  17. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 15 February, 2012, 16:00

    Btw, I work for a fire dept in so cal as a ff/medic.Great, now i have to probably here your ranting tirade about my profession!!

    If you look up ntheoc in a dictionary you see a paper weight 🙂

    Reply this comment
  18. David H
    David H 15 February, 2012, 17:26

    California should was once a right to work state. But you can’t get hired in a California government job if you oppose unionship. Most firemen I know are freeloaders of the union sort. They have become idols in their own eyes. Saviors of the people.

    Reply this comment
  19. David H
    David H 15 February, 2012, 18:15

    You have to protect the brotherhood.

    Convicted arsonist keeping CFD pension
    http://abclocal.go.com/wls/story?section=news/local&id=7108896

    2 Firefighters Accused of Arson
    http://www.nytimes.com/2007/10/29/nyregion/29firefighters.html

    Firefighter charged with arson in fire
    http://www.todaystmj4.com/news/local/133525483.html

    Former firefighter convicted of arson in Conn.
    http://www.firerescue1.com/fire-news/827376-former-firefighter-convicted-of-arson-in-conn/

    http://www.hcn.org/issues/42.13/some-notable-arson-wildfires-in-the-west

    1996 Jeffrey Alan Avila paid a guy $2,000 to start a blaze near Big Sur, Calif., and then made $80,000 by renting firefighting equipment to the U.S. Forest Service.

    2002 Terry Lynn Barton, a seasonal Forest Service worker, ignited Colorado’s Hayman Fire, which burned 138,000 acres and 133 houses — the largest fire in Colorado’s recorded history.

    2002 Leonard Gregg, an occasional Bureau of Indian Affairs firefighter, started the Rodeo Fire on an Arizona Apache reservation, hoping to get a job on the fire crew.

    2004 Van Bateman, a respected Forest Service fire crew boss who had 30 years of experience around the West, was charged with arson for setting two small fires (total 22.6 acres) in Arizona’s Coconino National Forest

    2006 Volunteer firefighter Robert Eric Eason was charged with setting at least a dozen wildfires that burned a thousand acres of grass and 200 sheep in Northern California.

    Reply this comment
  20. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 15 February, 2012, 18:41

    “Most firemen I know are freeloaders of the union sort”

    Pseudo-hero parasites.

    Reply this comment
  21. NTHEOC
    NTHEOC 15 February, 2012, 19:28

    Beelz and David h,
    Sure you know a couple of ff’s,sure you do! If you did you would know we are nothing like you portrey and we cannot help the HERO label the media puts upon us.That’s right, the media! Freeloaders huh? Now that comment does not even deserve a response,what an ignorant statement. Actually you two sound like a couple guys who mabye tried to be ff’s and never could,or you are just bitter about the life path YOU picked!! Good luck with your agenda ,hah,,,

    Reply this comment
  22. NTHEOC
    NTHEOC 15 February, 2012, 20:15

    David h, are you serious? Really dude, you are posting a few articles! Lmao!!! With the exception of the two NYFD morons, the people you posted about are all volunteers or seasonal forestry guys! Oh, I like the private contractor guy or the bureau of Indian affairs ff,hahahhaa. This is far from the brotherhood you speak of. Now, I will tell you I do support taking away the pension of any legit ff who is convicted of a crime. Btw,thanks for the laugh David h!!!!

    Reply this comment
  23. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 15 February, 2012, 21:42

    What was the FF name who had all the kiddie porn on his home computer (and he lived with his Mom!!!)???

    It was in OC…..I think, Ntheoc would know who that clown was………..

    Reply this comment
  24. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 15 February, 2012, 22:05

    Hey David H –

    Did you read about this FF yahoo from SoCal???

    Captain from Long Beach. He was arrested for drunken driving hit and run for causing grave bodily injury to a bicyclist in HB. Sentenced to only a year in jail. Now they caught him drinking hand sanitizer to get high in the slammer!!! 😀 I read his bio. His dad was a chief and he’s from a long line of FF’s. Being a captain he was probably making a buck and a half or maybe even two bucks a year!!! That’s the kinda crap your taxdollars are buying!!!

    http://www.ocregister.com/articles/beach-336690-hines-probation.html

    Reply this comment
  25. NTHEOC
    NTHEOC 15 February, 2012, 22:38

    Rex, I remember the story about that guy, but I thought he was one of the ocfa paid call ff’s a while back. Not sure, but that makes me sick! And TL, yes that LB Captain is a fricken idiot and he was fired!!

    Reply this comment
  26. NTHEOC
    NTHEOC 15 February, 2012, 22:40

    David h, what kind of work do you do for a living?

    Reply this comment
  27. NTHEOC
    NTHEOC 15 February, 2012, 22:51

    SANTA ANA, Orange County – An Orange County doctor at Kaiser Hospital was charged with sexually assaulting a female patient of him when he was examing her. The victim sued him for sexual assault and sued the hospital for failing to fire the doctor despite previous sexual assault complaints.
    —————————————————
    Omg! TL and David h, does this mean all Doctors are rapist!!!

    Reply this comment
  28. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 16 February, 2012, 00:52

    I read his bio. His dad was a chief and he’s from a long line of FF’s.

    Beelz, how many times have I told you this, the ONLY way you’re getting hired into a FF or cop job is if you’re connected in. 90% of FF jobs go to family and friends. 90% of cop jobs go to family friends and ex military-if you’re not in those two groups for FF you are not getting hired, if you are not in those two groups or ex military you’re not getting a cop job. They are simply all fixed. I told you LAPD Chief Charlie Beck has FIVE-count em FIVE members of his family working as LAPD cops, including two of his children. There are HUNDREDS of applicants per opening, what are the chances of 5 family members working in the LAPD without being connected in?? Billions to one.

    There were 125,000 applicants for 900 prison guard openings last year-that si 140 applicants per job opening. For a GED job. The only people who get hired have inside connections.

    I have said this for years, and it is 100% true-if you’re not a family member, a good friend, ex military or part of a lawsuit consent decree you will NEVER get hired into a gov job, ESPECIALLY a FF job. It is not uncommon to get 5,000 FF applicants for 5-10 job openings at the LAFD.

    Reply this comment
  29. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 16 February, 2012, 00:56

    ntheoc, what city do you work in?? Are you a muni FF or Cal-Fire (contracted)???

    How many years have you put in and when will you retire (with 30 years or less??).

    If I had the 3%@50 scam, and it is a scam, I would not wait to tap out at 90%, I would retire at age 50 even if I only had 25 years in. I would take 75% of highest years pay at age 50.

    Reply this comment
  30. NTHEOC
    NTHEOC 16 February, 2012, 11:12

    Rex,
    I am a muni ff and have the [email protected] We now tiered that for new hires to [email protected] which I would also be ok with for us current ff’s . I actually willl have to work till I’m 56 to hit 30 yrs anyway. That is the case with 99percent of all ff’s and very few actually retire at 50! We also have given up recent pay raises and now pay more into our retirement . You should be happy about that since we had no obligation to due so! We are doing our part…….

    Reply this comment
  31. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 16 February, 2012, 16:58

    I actually willl have to work till I’m 56 to hit 30 yrs anyway.

    I would retire at 50, and take the hit. 69% of highest years salary would be fine wioth me.

    Since very few are actually hired at age 20, 21 or 22, 55 should have been the age from the get go.

    Reply this comment
  32. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 16 February, 2012, 17:02

    bWe also have given up recent pay raises and now pay more into our retirement . You should be happy about that since we had no obligation to due so! We are doing our part…….

    Well, considering nearly all of the so called “public safety” jobs have nearly doubled their base salary in the last decade, much higher increases than CPI inflation, it is not really a hit to give up a raise.

    Also-Since most public safety also had their portion of the pension contribution “picked up” paying into the pension is also not much of a hit, should have been that way all along.

    Reply this comment
  33. Rex The Wonder Dog!
    Rex The Wonder Dog! 16 February, 2012, 17:02

    We also have given up recent pay raises and now pay more into our retirement . You should be happy about that since we had no obligation to due so! We are doing our part…….

    Well, considering nearly all of the so called “public safety” jobs have nearly doubled their base salary in the last decade, much higher increases than CPI inflation, it is not really a hit to give up a raise.

    Also-Since most public safety also had their portion of the pension contribution “picked up” paying into the pension is also not much of a hit, should have been that way all along.

    Reply this comment
  34. David H
    David H 16 February, 2012, 18:43

    I know it seemed a little base to post those links, but they were all from the first google page with the keywords “fire fighter arson.” I personally have noticed over the last decade that quite a few fires have been lit by government employees, and it’s disgusting. I think the largest fire in Arizona history was lit by an government employee. One link I didn’t post was how Homeland Security has actually profiled firefighters in a paper. The “union freeloader” phrase is not exclusive to firefighters, it really applies to a lot of self important government employees with an authority complex. I respect authority and try to obey all the laws, so I’m not referring to lawlessness, but to the exclusive, arrogant, self important characteristics typified in the article. Exempted from prosecution based on a technicality. I would have much more respect for firefighters if they didn’t engage in union thuggery.

    Reply this comment
  35. Beelzebub
    Beelzebub 17 February, 2012, 09:52

    Any FF who is caught intentionally starting a fire which threatens or takes human lives and destroys perosnal property should be subject to the death penalty.

    Reply this comment
  36. Nathan
    Nathan 20 February, 2012, 10:41

    The more government the worse we are all. Unions pay the politicians, and we are forced to buy our own safety equipment from sites like this http://www.viewbritesafetyproducts.com

    Reply this comment
  37. gottagetoutahere
    gottagetoutahere 9 May, 2012, 22:19

    I came to state employment a few years ago from industry and academia. I am grossly underpaid compared to my colleagues in the same profession (IT) and I could never have imagined that such an overtly hostile work environment could exist. In my (albeit limited) experience, management does not have a bottom line and that’s a major difference between industry and state. With no bottom line, management is a haven for bullies and the state protects them at the expense of everyone else. I appreciate any assistance Mr. Dickinson can provide until I can get the heck out of here.

    Reply this comment

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