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We provide businesses and public agencies with quick updates on legal developments as they happen. These alerts are handy reference guides for staying abreast of current issues impacting your organization.

June 26, 2017

California Legislature Requires Public Employers to Provide Unions with Access to New Employee Orientations and Employees’ Contact Information

Last year, in the Friedrichs v. California Teachers Association decision, the United States Supreme Court split 4-4 over the legality of mandatory agency fees imposed on public employees who decline to join a union. This split allowed the Ninth Circuit’s decision allowing such fees to stand. Several weeks ago, the National Right To Work Foundation appealed a similar case, Janus v. AFSCME, to the Supreme Court. With Republican-appointed Justice Gorsuch now making up the ninth member of the Supreme Court, a decision in this case could make mandatory public sector agency fees illegal and consequently weaken public sector unions.


June 13, 2017

California Court of Appeal Holds That Longevity Performance Bonus Should Be Excluded from Pension Calculations

On June 5, 2017, the California Court of Appeal published DiCarlo v. County of Monterey, holding that employees’ stipends that depended on both longevity and performance were properly excluded from the calculation of public pension benefits. The Court of Appeal ruled that this combined bonus was not expressly authorized by the California Code of Regulations; therefore, it was excluded from recognized special compensation.


May 19, 2017

Supreme Court Lets Flores Ruling Stand, Requiring Some Employers to Include Cash In Lieu of Benefits in Calculating Overtime Pay

On May 15, 2017, the U.S. Supreme Court denied the City of San Gabriel’s ("City") petition for review of the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals’ decision in Flores v. City of San Gabriel, 824 F.3d 890 (9th Cir. 2016). In Flores, the Ninth Circuit held that an employer must include cash payments made in lieu of benefits when calculating an employee’s overtime pay under the FLSA. While Flores is now controlling law within the Ninth Circuit, the case leaves open as many questions as it answers.


May 18, 2017

The “Discovery Rule” Applies to Time-Bar Parent Claims Under the IDEA

On March 30, 2017, the Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals issued a decision in Avila v. Spokane School District 81, 852 F.3d 936 (2017) and applied the "discovery rule" to the two-year statute of limitations for claims brought under the Individuals with Disabilities Education Act ("IDEA").


May 4, 2017

The Impact of SB54 on the Construction Industry

SB54—the 2014 law requiring oil refiners to pay contractors "prevailing wages"—continues to impact the construction industry. The impact will accelerate due to the court decision in December 2016 upholding the validity of the statute and the imminent expiration of the Red Circle contracts.


May 4, 2017

Another Court of Appeal Affirms that Lease-Leaseback Contracts are Exempt from the Competitive Bidding Processes and Rejects Requirements for a "Genuine Lease" and "Contractor Financing"

In the most recent case challenging the validity of lease-leaseback agreements, the First District Court of Appeal (San Francisco) agreed with the Fourth District Court of Appeal (Santa Ana) and the Second District Court of Appeal (Los Angeles) rulings that the lease-leaseback procedures are exempt from the competitive bidding requirements and that the plain language of the statute does not require a "genuine lease" and "contractor financing."


May 4, 2017

Do You Really Understand Travel Pay and the Implications on Company Operations?

There are four well-known sets of questions under which employee travel may be analyzed:


April 25, 2017

Cities and Special Districts’ Election Consolidation Plans Must Be Adopted by January 1, 2018

An important deadline is approaching for certain cities and special districts that hold off-cycle elections. Under the new California Voter Participation Rights Act ("Act"), political subdivisions that hold elections on a date other than a statewide election date and have experienced a significant decrease in voter turnout must adopt a plan by January 1, 2018 to consolidate their future elections with a statewide election not later than the November 8, 2022 statewide general election.


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