Code Section Group

Government Code - GOV

TITLE 8. THE ORGANIZATION AND GOVERNMENT OF COURTS [68070 - 77655]

  ( Title 8 added by Stats. 1953, Ch. 206. )

CHAPTER 7. Trial Court Employment Protection and Governance Act [71600 - 71675]

  ( Chapter 7 added by Stats. 2000, Ch. 1010, Sec. 14. )

ARTICLE 1. General Provisions [71600 - 71618]
  ( Article 1 added by Stats. 2000, Ch. 1010, Sec. 14. )

71600.
  

This chapter may be cited as the Trial Court Employment Protection and Governance Act.

(Added by Stats. 2000, Ch. 1010, Sec. 14. Effective January 1, 2001.)

71601.
  

For purposes of this chapter, the following definitions shall apply:

(a) “Appointment” means the offer to and acceptance by a person of a position in the trial court in accordance with this chapter and the trial court’s personnel policies, procedures, and plans.

(b) “Employee organization” means either of the following:

(1) Any organization that includes trial court employees and has as one of its primary purposes representing those employees in their relations with that trial court.

(2) Any organization that seeks to represent trial court employees in their relations with that trial court.

(c) “Hiring” means appointment as defined in subdivision (a).

(d) “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 trial court and the recognized employee organization or recognized employee organizations through interpretation, suggestion, and advice.

(e) “Meet and confer in good faith” means that a trial court or representatives as it may designate, and representatives of recognized employee organizations, shall have the mutual obligation personally to meet and confer promptly upon request by either party and continue for a reasonable period of time in order to exchange freely information, opinions, and proposals, and to endeavor to reach agreement on matters within the scope of representation. The process should include adequate time for the resolution of impasses where specific procedures for resolution are contained in this chapter or in a local rule, or when the procedures are utilized by mutual consent.

(f) “Personnel rules,” “personnel policies, procedures, and plans,” and “rules and regulations” mean policies, procedures, plans, rules, or regulations adopted by a trial court or its designee pertaining to conditions of employment of trial court employees, subject to meet and confer in good faith.

(g) “Promotion” means promotion within the trial court as defined in the trial court’s personnel policies, procedures, and plans, subject to meet and confer in good faith.

(h) “Recognized employee organization” means an employee organization that has been formally acknowledged to represent trial court employees by the county under Sections 3500 to 3510, inclusive, prior to the implementation date of this chapter, or by the trial court under former Rules 2201 to 2210, inclusive, of the California Rules of Court, as those rules read on April 23, 1997, Sections 70210 to 70219, inclusive, or Article 3 (commencing with Section 71630).

(i) “Subordinate judicial officer” means an officer appointed to perform subordinate judicial duties as authorized by Section 22 of Article VI of the California Constitution, including, but not limited to, a court commissioner, probate commissioner, child support commissioner, referee, traffic referee, juvenile court referee, and juvenile hearing officer.

(j) “Transfer” means transfer within the trial court as defined in the trial court’s personnel policies, procedures, and plans, subject to meet and confer in good faith.

(k) “Trial court” means a superior court.

(l) “Trial court employee” means a person who is both of the following:

(1) Paid from the trial court’s budget, regardless of the funding source. For the purpose of this paragraph, “trial court’s budget” means funds from which the presiding judge of a trial court, or his or her designee, has authority to control, authorize, and direct expenditures, including, but not limited to, local revenues, all grant funds, and trial court operations funds.

(2) Subject to the trial court’s right to control the manner and means of his or her work because of the trial court’s authority to hire, supervise, discipline, and terminate employment. For purposes of this paragraph only, the “trial court” includes the judges of a trial court or their appointees who are vested with or delegated the authority to hire, supervise, discipline, and terminate.

(m) A person is a “trial court employee” if and only if both paragraphs (1) and (2) of subdivision (l) are true irrespective of job classification or whether the functions performed by that person are identified in Rule 10.810 of the California Rules of Court. “Trial court employee” includes those subordinate judicial officers who satisfy paragraphs (1) and (2) of subdivision (l). The phrase “trial court employee” does not include temporary employees hired through agencies, jurors, individuals hired by the trial court pursuant to an independent contractor agreement, individuals for whom the county or trial court reports income to the Internal Revenue Service on a Form 1099 and does not withhold employment taxes, sheriffs, temporary judges, and judges whether elected or appointed. Any temporary employee, whether hired through an agency or not, shall not be employed in the trial court for a period exceeding 180 calendar days, except that for court reporters in a county of the first class, a trial court and a recognized employee organization may provide otherwise by mutual agreement in a memorandum of understanding or other agreement.

(Amended by Stats. 2010, Ch. 212, Sec. 11. (AB 2767) Effective January 1, 2011.)

71612.
  

Except as otherwise expressly provided in this chapter, the enactment of this act shall not be a cause for the modification or elimination of any existing wages, hours, or terms and conditions of employment of trial court employees. However, except as to those procedures, rights, or practices described in this chapter as minimum standards, the enactment of this act shall not prevent the modification or elimination of existing wages, hours or terms and conditions of employment through the meet and confer in good faith process or, in those situations in which the employees are either exempted from representation, or are not represented by a recognized employee organization, through appropriate procedures.

(Added by Stats. 2000, Ch. 1010, Sec. 14. Effective January 1, 2001.)

71614.
  

Nothing in this chapter shall be construed as affecting the interpretation or operation of Sections 70210 to 70219, inclusive, for purposes of unification of the trial courts.

(Added by Stats. 2000, Ch. 1010, Sec. 14. Effective January 1, 2001.)

71615.
  

(a) Except as provided in subdivision (b), the effective date of this section shall be January 1, 2004.

(b) Representatives of a trial court and representatives of recognized employee organizations may mutually agree to an implementation date of this section later than January 1, 2004. However, if any provisions of this chapter are governed by an existing memorandum of understanding or agreement covering trial court employees, as to those provisions the implementation date shall be either the date a successor memorandum of understanding or agreement is effective or, if no agreement for a successor memorandum of understanding or agreement is reached, 90 days from the date of the expiration of the predecessor memorandum of understanding or agreement, unless representatives of the trial court and representatives of recognized employee organizations mutually agree otherwise.

(c) As of the implementation date of this chapter, all of the following shall apply:

(1) All persons who meet the definition of trial court employee shall become trial court employees at their existing or equivalent classifications.

(2) Employment seniority of a trial court employee, as calculated and used under the system in effect prior to the implementation of this act, shall be calculated and used in the same manner by the trial court.

(3) A trial court employee shall have the same status he or she had as a probationary, permanent, or regular employee under the system in effect prior to January 1, 2004. A probationary employee shall not be required to serve a new probationary period and shall continue the existing probationary period under the terms of hire.

(4) Subject to the agreement of the county, and unless prohibited or limited by charter provisions, the policies regarding transfer between the trial court and the county that are in place as of January 1, 2004, shall be continued while an existing memorandum of understanding or agreement remains in effect or for two years, whichever is longer, and any further rights of trial court employees to transfer between the trial court and the county shall be subject to the obligation to meet and confer in good faith at the local level between representatives of the trial court and representatives of recognized employee organizations and local negotiation between the trial court and the county. Subject to the agreement of the county, and unless prohibited or limited by charter provisions, the policies regarding the portability of seniority, accrued leave credits, and leave accrual rates that are in effect January 1, 2004, shall be continued if trial court or county employees transfer between the trial court and the county or the county and the trial court while an existing memorandum of understanding or agreement remains in effect, or for a period of two years, whichever is longer. Any further right of trial court employees to portability is subject to the obligation to meet and confer in good faith between representatives of the trial court and representatives of recognized employee organizations and local negotiation between the trial court and the county.

(5) Each trial court shall be deemed the successor employer of all trial court employees in the county in which the trial court is located.

(d) In establishing local personnel structures for trial court employees in accordance with this chapter, the trial court shall comply with contractual obligations, and consideration shall be given to minimizing disruption of the trial court workforce and protecting the rights accrued by trial court employees under their current systems. However, prior contractual obligations and rights may be reconsidered subject to the obligation to meet and confer in good faith, provided both parties give consideration to past contractual obligations and rights.

(e) Unrepresented trial court employees are governed by a trial court’s personnel policies, procedures, and plans. The implementation of this section may not be a cause for changing a trial court’s personnel policies, procedures, and plans applicable to unrepresented trial court employees except where required to bring those policies, procedures, and plans into conformity with this chapter. Except as otherwise expressly provided in this section, a trial court retains all existing rights with respect to revising its personnel policies, procedures, and plans as applied to unrepresented trial court employees.

(f) Upon implementation of this section in a trial court, Sections 68650 to 68655, inclusive, and Rules 10.650 to 10.659, inclusive, of the California Rules of Court, shall be inoperative as to that trial court.

(g) Notwithstanding paragraph (4) of subdivision (c), both of the following shall apply:

(1) Unless prohibited or limited by charter provisions, the policies regarding transfer between either the trial court and the county or the county and the trial court that were in effect as of January 1, 2001, shall be continued while an existing memorandum of understanding or agreement remains in effect or until January 1, 2005, whichever period is longer. Thereafter, any rights of trial court employees to transfer between the trial court and the county shall be subject to the obligation to meet and confer in good faith at the local level between representatives of the trial court and representatives of recognized employee organizations, and local negotiation between the trial court and the county.

(2) Unless prohibited or limited by charter provisions, the policies regarding the portability of seniority, accrued leave credits, and leave accrual rates that were in effect on January 1, 2001, shall be continued if trial court or county employees transfer between either the trial court and the county or the county and the trial court while an existing memorandum of understanding or agreement remains in effect, or until January 1, 2005, whichever period is longer. Thereafter, any right of trial court employees to portability is subject to the obligation to meet and confer in good faith between representatives of the trial court and representatives of recognized employee organizations and local negotiation between the trial court and the county.

(Amended by Stats. 2007, Ch. 130, Sec. 137. Effective January 1, 2008.)

71616.
  

If any provision of this chapter, or the application thereof, to any person or circumstances, is held invalid, the invalidity shall not affect other provisions or application of the chapter which can be given effect without the invalid provisions or application and, to this end the provisions of this chapter are severable.

(Added by Stats. 2000, Ch. 1010, Sec. 14. Effective January 1, 2001.)

71618.
  

The Legislature hereby finds and declares that the status, rights, and protections provided to court employees under this chapter constitute a matter of statewide concern. Therefore, this chapter is applicable to all counties, notwithstanding charter provisions to the contrary. In order to ensure that effective court services are provided to all people of this state and to ensure stable court employer-employee relations, it is necessary that this chapter be applicable to all trial courts and court employees, as defined in this chapter, wherever situated within the State of California.

(Added by Stats. 2000, Ch. 1010, Sec. 14. Effective January 1, 2001.)

GOVGovernment Code - GOV1