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AB-1651 Community colleges: academic employees: involuntary administrative leave and investigations.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 06/27/2017 09:00 PM
AB1651:v95#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  June 27, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  May 26, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 27, 2017
Amended  IN  Assembly  April 18, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 1651


Introduced by Assembly Member Reyes

February 17, 2017


An act to add Section 87623 to the Education Code, relating to community colleges.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1651, as amended, Reyes. Community colleges: academic employees: involuntary administrative leave and investigations.
Existing law establishes the California Community Colleges, under the administration of the Board of Governors of the California Community Colleges, as one of the segments of public postsecondary education in this state. Existing law establishes community college districts throughout the state that employ faculty and provide instruction at the community college campuses they operate. Existing law, for purposes of provisions relating to community college employees, defines an “academic employee” as a person employed by a community college district in a type of service, excluding paraprofessional service, for which minimum qualifications have been established, and thus, for this purpose, the term “academic employee” is synonymous with “certificated employee.”
This bill, at least 2 business days before an academic employee of a community college is placed on involuntary paid administrative leave related to an allegation or allegations of misconduct, would require the employee to be provided with a copy of each written complaint related to the proposed involuntary paid administrative leave or the investigation of the allegation or allegations of misconduct, as applicable, or, if there is no written complaint, a notification in writing of the details of the allegation or allegations upon which the decision to place the employee on involuntary paid administrative leave is based, as specified. The bill would require at least 5 business days before an investigatory interview or other interrogation, the employee to be provided with this same information, except as specified. information if there is no serious risk of physical danger or other documented necessity arising from the specific allegations and with, at minimum, the general nature of the accusations made against him or her, except as provided. The bill would further specify that the parties to an applicable collective bargaining agreement are entitled to negotiate additional policies and procedures relating to the investigation or involuntary paid administrative leave of an academic employee as long as those policies and procedures provide, at minimum, as much notice as required by the bill. The bill would provide that the identity of complainants are required to be disclosed unless otherwise prohibited by state or federal law.
Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: NO   Local Program: NO  

The people of the State of California do enact as follows:


SECTION 1.

 Section 87623 is added to the Education Code, to read:

87623.
 (a) Each academic employee who is subject to accusations of misconduct is entitled to be provided with the accusations made against him or her at least two business days before an academic employee is placed on involuntary paid administrative leave. At least two business days before he or she is placed on involuntary paid administrative leave, the employee shall be provided a copy of each written complaint related to the proposed involuntary paid administrative leave or, if there is no written complaint, a notification in writing of the details of the allegation or allegations of misconduct upon which the decision to place the employee on involuntary paid administrative leave is based. If the information has been provided to the employee pursuant to subdivision (c), it need not be provided again.
(b) The requirements of subdivision (a) do not apply in the event of a serious risk of physical danger or other documented necessity arising from the specific allegations, and the employee may immediately be placed on involuntary paid administrative leave. The employee shall be provided the information described in subdivision (a) and the evidence and reason for actions taken under this section with, at minimum, the general nature of the accusations made against him or her within five business days of the employee being placed on involuntary paid administrative leave.
(c) (1) Except as provided in paragraph (2), as a matter of due process and to improve the effectiveness of employment investigations, at least five business days before an academic employee is subject to an investigatory interview or other interrogation related to an allegation or allegations of misconduct against him or her, the employee shall be provided with, at minimum, the general nature of the accusations made against him or her. If there is no serious risk of physical danger or other documented necessity arising from the specific allegations, the employee shall also be provided a copy of each written complaint related to that investigation of the employee or, if there is no written complaint, notification in writing of the details of the allegation or allegations upon which the decision to conduct an investigatory interview or other interrogation is based.
(2) An employer may withhold a complaint from a respondent employee before his or her interview or other interrogation only when the employer can demonstrate, on an individualized basis, that document in its records the ways in which revealing the complaint to the employee would result in any of the following:
(A) Danger of relevant evidence being destroyed or relevant testimony being fabricated.
(B) Reasonable danger of violence. violence or retaliation.
(C) Disclosure of an on-going, confidential law enforcement investigation of criminal allegations, including where confidentiality has been requested by law enforcement personnel.
(D) Violation of law.
(3) An employer shall not withhold copies of complaints before an interview or other interrogation because of blanket rules or generalized concerns, including an undocumented or a routine assertion that one or more of the outcomes listed in subparagraphs (A) to (D), inclusive, would occur.
(d) The parties to a collective bargaining agreement entered into pursuant to Chapter 10.7 (commencing with Section 3540) of Division 4 of Title 1 of the Government Code shall be entitled to negotiate additional policies and procedures relating to the investigation or involuntary paid administrative leave of an academic employee as long as those policies and procedures provide, at minimum, as much notice as required by this section.
(e) For purposes of this section, the identity of complainants shall be disclosed unless otherwise prohibited by state or federal law.
(f) For purposes of this section, “paid administrative leave” means a temporary leave from a job assignment, with pay and benefits intact.
(g) This section shall not supersede the rights of labor organizations or employees pursuant to the Educational Employment Relations Act established in Chapter 10.7 (commencing with Section 3540) of Division 4 of Title 1 of the Government Code.