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AB-1603 Meyers-Milias-Brown Act: local public agencies.(2017-2018)

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Date Published: 08/24/2017 09:00 PM
AB1603:v98#DOCUMENT

Amended  IN  Senate  August 24, 2017

CALIFORNIA LEGISLATURE— 2017–2018 REGULAR SESSION

Assembly Bill No. 1603


Introduced by Assembly Member Ridley-Thomas

February 17, 2017


An act to amend Sections 3501, 3507, and 3507.1 of the Government Code, relating to public employment.


LEGISLATIVE COUNSEL'S DIGEST


AB 1603, as amended, Ridley-Thomas. Meyers-Milias-Brown Act: local public agencies.

The

Under the Meyers-Milias-Brown Act (MMBA) (MMBA), employees of local public agencies have the right to form, join, and participate in the activities of employee organizations of their own choosing for the purpose of representation on all matters of employer-employee relations. The MMBA authorizes a local public agency to adopt reasonable rules and regulations after consultation in good faith with representatives of an employer-employee a recognized employee organization or organizations for the administration of employer-employee relations under the act. The Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) has jurisdiction over certain disputes arising pursuant to the MMBA. The MMBA defines “public employee” to mean any person employed by a public agency, in addition to other specified employees. The MMBA rules and regulations may include exclusive recognition of employee organizations formally recognized pursuant to a vote of the employees of the agency or an appropriate unit thereof, subject to the right of an employee to represent himself or herself.
This bill would revise the definition of “public employee” for the purpose of the act to also include persons jointly employed by a public agency and any other employer at specified clinics and hospitals. The bill instead would specify that those rules and regulations may provide for exclusive recognition of employee organizations formally recognized pursuant to a vote of the employees of the agency or an appropriate unit thereof, subject to the employee’s right to represent himself or herself, and provided that determination of an otherwise appropriate unit of a public agency and one or more joint employers do of, or including, these jointly employed public employees is not contingent upon, and does not otherwise require the agency or joint employer’s consent.
Under the MMBA, unit determinations and representation elections are determined and processed in accordance with rules adopted by a public agency and in accordance with the MMBA. Existing law requires, in a representation election, a majority vote of the employees in the appropriate bargaining unit.
This bill also would specify that the appropriate bargaining unit includes a unit that consists of a public agency and one or more joint employers. of, or includes, the jointly employed public employees described above.
The MMBA requires a public agency to grant exclusive or majority recognition to an employee organization based on a signed petition, authorization cards, or union membership cards showing that the majority of the employees in the appropriate bargaining unit desire the representation, unless another labor organization has previously been lawfully recognized as exclusive or majority representative or all or part of the same unit.
This bill would specify that the requirement of that a majority of the employees in an appropriate bargaining unit desire the representation also includes an appropriate bargaining unit consisting of a public agency and one or more joint employers. that consists of, or includes, the jointly employed public employees described above.

The MMBA defines “public employee” to mean any person employed by a public agency, in addition to other specified employees.

This bill would revise the definition of “public employee” for the purpose of the act to include persons jointly employed by a public agency.

Vote: MAJORITY   Appropriation: NO   Fiscal Committee: YES   Local Program: NO  

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


SECTION 1.

 Section 3501 of the Government Code is amended to read:

3501.
 As used in this chapter:
(a) “Employee organization” means either of the following:
(1) Any organization that includes employees of a public agency and that has as one of its primary purposes representing those employees in their relations with that public agency.
(2) Any organization that seeks to represent employees of a public agency in their relations with that public agency.
(b) “Recognized employee organization” means an employee organization which has been formally acknowledged by the public agency as an employee organization that represents employees of the public agency.
(c) Except as otherwise provided in this subdivision, “public agency” means every governmental subdivision, every district, every public and quasi-public corporation, every public agency and public service corporation and every town, city, county, city and county and municipal corporation, whether incorporated or not and whether chartered or not. As used in this chapter, “public agency” does not mean a school district or a county board of education or a county superintendent of schools or a personnel commission in a school district having a merit system as provided in Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 45100) of Part 25 and Chapter 4 (commencing with Section 88000) of Part 51 of the Education Code or the State of California.
(d) (1) “Public employee” means any person employed by any public agency, including persons jointly employed by a public agency, and employees of the fire departments and fire services of counties, cities, cities and counties, districts, and other political subdivisions of the state, excepting those persons elected by popular vote or appointed to office by the Governor of this state.
(2) “Public employee” also includes any person jointly employed by a public agency and any other employer at the following:
(A) A clinic or hospital operated for the purpose of medical education, as described in subdivision (a) of Section 2401 of the Business and Professions Code.
(B) A nonprofit community clinic, such as a primary care clinic or charitable clinic, as described in subdivision (a) of Section 1204 of the Health and Safety Code.
(C) The county hospital.
(e) “Mediation” means effort by an impartial third party to assist in reconciling a dispute regarding wages, hours and other terms and conditions of employment between representatives of the public agency and the recognized employee organization or recognized employee organizations through interpretation, suggestion and advice.
(f) “Board” means the Public Employment Relations Board established pursuant to Section 3541.

SEC. 2.

 Section 3507 of the Government Code is amended to read:

3507.
 (a) A public agency may adopt reasonable rules and regulations after consultation in good faith with representatives of a recognized employee organization or organizations for the administration of employer-employee relations under this chapter.
The rules and regulations may include provisions for all of the following:
(1) Verifying that an organization does in fact represent employees of the public agency.
(2) Verifying the official status of employee organization officers and representatives.
(3) Recognition of employee organizations.
(4) Exclusive recognition of employee organizations formally recognized pursuant to a vote of the employees of the agency or an appropriate unit thereof, subject to the right of an employee to represent himself or herself as provided in Section 3502, and provided that determination of an otherwise appropriate unit of a public agency and one or more joint employers does not require of, or including, public employees described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (d) of Section 3501 as appropriate shall not be contingent upon, or otherwise require, the consent of the any agency or joint employer.
(5) Additional procedures for the resolution of disputes involving wages, hours and other terms and conditions of employment.
(6) Access of employee organization officers and representatives to work locations.
(7) Use of official bulletin boards and other means of communication by employee organizations.
(8) Furnishing nonconfidential information pertaining to employment relations to employee organizations.
(9) Any other matters that are necessary to carry out the purposes of this chapter.
(b) Exclusive recognition of employee organizations formally recognized as majority representatives pursuant to a vote of the employees may be revoked by a majority vote of the employees only after a period of not less than 12 months following the date of recognition.
(c) No public agency shall unreasonably withhold recognition of employee organizations.
(d) Employees and employee organizations shall be able to challenge a rule or regulation of a public agency as a violation of this chapter. This subdivision shall not be construed to restrict or expand the board’s jurisdiction or authority as set forth in subdivisions (a) to (c), inclusive, of Section 3509.

SEC. 3.

 Section 3507.1 of the Government Code is amended to read:

3507.1.
 (a) Unit determinations and representation elections shall be determined and processed in accordance with rules adopted by a public agency in accordance with this chapter. In a representation election, a majority of the votes cast by the employees in the appropriate bargaining unit, including an appropriate bargaining unit consisting of a public agency and one or more joint employers, that consists of or includes employees described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (d) of Section 3501, shall be required.
(b) Notwithstanding subdivision (a) and rules adopted by a public agency pursuant to Section 3507, a bargaining unit in effect as of the effective date of this section shall continue in effect unless changed under the rules adopted by a public agency pursuant to Section 3507.
(c) A public agency shall grant exclusive or majority recognition to an employee organization based on a signed petition, authorization cards, or union membership cards showing that a majority of the employees in an appropriate bargaining unit desire the representation, including an appropriate bargaining unit consisting of a public agency and one or more joint employers, that consists of or includes employees described in paragraph (2) of subdivision (d) of Section 3501, unless another labor organization has previously been lawfully recognized as exclusive or majority representative of all or part of the same unit. Exclusive or majority representation shall be determined by a neutral third party selected by the public agency and the employee organization who shall review the signed petition, authorization cards, or union membership cards to verify the exclusive or majority status of the employee organization. In the event the public agency and the employee organization cannot agree on a neutral third party, the California State Mediation and Conciliation Service shall be the neutral third party and shall verify the exclusive or majority status of the employee organization. In the event that the neutral third party determines, based on a signed petition, authorization cards, or union membership cards, that a second labor organization has the support of at least 30 percent of the employees in the unit in which recognition is sought, the neutral third party shall order an election to establish which labor organization, if any, has majority status.