The CCPOA Convention was held in Reno July 13th and 14th.  Mike Jimenez returned to his position as President of CCPOA at the state board meeting.  The delegates passed a motion authorizing the CCPOA Executive Council to send ballots out to the membership for a strike vote, if they determine that a strike would be an appropriate course of action.  There was much discussion by members about the legality of such an action, with the fact that we do not have a contract a point that contributes to the ambiguity of the issue.  Members need to ask questions to make an informed decision on this issue.  The implications are serious.

Chuck Alexander, CCPOA Vice President, discussed the MOU that he proposed to the Department of Personnel Administration.  It included a section that allowed the state and employees to not pay towards retirement for one year.  Also, in exchange for stopping the furlough days, BU 6 members would not accrue service credit for that year.  As new policy currently allows, overtime is paid at straight time if you utilize leave credits during that work period until your actual hours worked exceeds 164 hours.  The proposed MOU would have paid forced overtime at time and a half, even if the employee used sick leave during that period.  That entire proposal was rejected by DPA and the letter is available on the website www.ccpoa.org in addition to CCPOA’s response.  The state board of directors was not provided the entire proposed MOU, so I do not know any other specifics.

CCPOA had a court date scheduled in July on the furlough issue.  The court decided to consolidate this hearing with the other state unions and the hearing was rescheduled for October.  The union needs examples of harm employees have suffered as a result of the furloughs.  Contact CCPOA legal division to provide examples.

Chuck Alexander has notified members that a CCPOA Town Hall conference call will occur at 3:50 on Monday, July 20th.  The strike vote will be discussed during that meeting.  You must have your phone number on file at CCPOA to get this call.  Call Rob at 916-372-6060 if you are not being noticed about these calls.  If you are at work when they are scheduled, you can provide your cell phone rather than home number.

We are now subject to three furlough days.  Agents continue to have the same amount of work required in a period that is reduced by 15% if agents use their furlough days.  You should request OT if you need time to complete your workload specs.  If you are denied the OT, let your supervisor know in writing that you will not meet your specs.

We continue to have units with extremely high points.  Compton exceeds 300 points and they have no relief in sight.   I will be going to Compton next Wednesday, July 22nd to talk to agents and see what possible options we might propose to get help to this unit until agents can be hired to fill vacancies.  Agents need to ask for overtime. Overtime is available and is getting paid throughout the state.  If you need it and do not get it, contact your local representative or me immediately.

I also plan to be in the El Monte parole complex on Thursday, July 23rd to talk to agents and answer questions.

DAPO Management said there would be a parole agent academy in September.  Interviews are being scheduled now so job offers can be made. It will be a Region III academy to get some new agents into those areas that desperately need help.  All positions will be Limited Term.  Therefore, they will not jeopardize any parole agents that have received lay off notices.

There is still no definitive direction on what the legislature will do regarding possible direct discharge.  News articles continue to show that law enforcement agencies are opposed to early release and direct discharge.  Most recently, the Los Angeles Police Protective League issued a statement opposing this action.  Once the state budget is finalized, DAPO should know how parole supervision would be changed.  There continues to be discussion of reduced caseloads (45-1).

We had a report of a promotion from a cert list that may have reached to a rank below the top three (3) ranks.  A State Personnel Board appeal has been filed based on this perceived irregularity.  Some agents on the PA II promotion list for Kern County may have been bypassed because they were not on the “Bakersfield” cert list.  Agents need to confirm that they are on the appropriate lists so they are not excluded from promotion opportunities.  This issue has also been sent to the Inspector General and Whistleblower hot line.  We are trying to get definitive clarification, but have not had answers as of this date.  I went to HQ and personally talked to the personnel certification unit staff and the exam unit to determine the difference between county and city cert lists, but I did not get an answer on why they would be different.  

We met on the issue of the new HC PAL teams being established in each region.  As usual, our negotiating team did not agree with management on the workload issues.  We will have to wait until the teams are actually established to determine if they follow their proposed plans.  Parole Service Associates will work in HQ to run databases to provide information to the PAL agents in the field.  Region III and IV have twice the number of HC PALS as Region I and II, so should have twice the positions.

Cage cars are not being maintained throughout the state.  The reps need to know if there are not sufficient numbers of caged vehicles in each unit/complex.

CCPOA/PAAC has received a labor notice to remove vehicles from certain HQ positions and PACT agents.  We need to negotiate before the August 10th implementation date.  I have been receiving good arguments from agents for the PACT agents to keep their cars.  If you are in any of the positions that are effected, please email me the rationale for keeping your vehicles.

Do not forget to submit updated EOT applications to the areas that you want to transfer to.  Even though EOTs are currently frozen, it is important to keep your requests on file in the event anything changes.

Our discussions with management from the Division of Addiction and Recovery Services (DARS) indicate that DARS will incur a significant reduction of their budget, which may result in lost positions.  The full impact to BU 6 agents is not yet known.  We will meet with management on July 21st.  Any proposed reduction in agent’s positions will have to be resolved at a negotiating table.  DARS also is proposing removing agent’s vehicles, which must be negotiated per the Dills Act.

Because of two units being dissolved in the South Central District/Complex, Debbie Sallie, Luis Robles and I met with management on July 9th to discuss these changes.  Ten units previously existed within one district in that building.  Now there will be two districts with four units each.  

A job steward in Region I recently received a Letter of Instruction for misuse of state email.  As a reminder, review DOM section 49020.20 for appropriate use.  Many staff send personal emails daily.  You should know the restrictions in the event you come under scrutiny.  Of concern, is the disparate enforcement of this policy.

I received information that Internal Affairs investigators had made phone calls to agents and “informally” questioned them about holds being placed or removed on specific cases.  I called Headquarters to express what I perceived as a violation of employees rights to have written notice of the scope of an investigation and time to obtain a representative.  These rights attach whether you are the subject or witness in an investigation.  DO NOT TALK TO INTERNAL AFFAIRS WITHOUT A REPRESENTATIVE!!!!!!!!  If you are ordered to do so, ask that they tape record your statement that, “I am not waiving my right to a representative of my choice.”   It is very unsettling that this is occurring.   If this has happened to anyone else in the state, please contact me immediately so we can report these incidents to the union.

The Governor’s Executive Order S-13-09 adopts a third furlough day through June 30, 2010.  If you are using your furlough days, it is important that you request overtime in writing (email is good documentation) if you need time to complete your workload specs, training and other requisites of the job.  If your supervisor does not respond or denies your overtime request, contact your local representatives.  Additionally, notify your supervisor in writing that you will not be able to meet your caseload specs.  Either make a copy of that email to place in each file, or note that fact on your ROS.  We are seeing full caseload audits being done on agents with all the deficiencies noted; however, there is no notation that the agent has been off work and/or that they have excessive points.  Direct Adverse Actions are occurring in some areas as a result of these audits.  If you have high caseload points and do not get overtime, protect yourself by documenting that fact.  If you utilize leave credits (furloughs, vacations, FMLA, sick, etc.), let your supervisor know if you need additional time to complete your work and/or ask for modification of specs.   If you are on vacation for one or two weeks, management cannot expect you to do all of your specs with less time.  The 154 points is based on a 164-hour work period.  I have seen cases where agents are responsible for trading ODs when they have vacation and then return and have a high number of ODs, in addition to trying to do casework.  It is your supervisor’s job to schedule coverage when you are gone.

OBIS discrepancies continue to be problematic statewide.  In Region II, we have documentation of inappropriate changes being made to place active parolees back into revocation or preparole status to fix the OBIS discrepancies.   Region IV has also had specific problems.  I need to know how widespread this problem is statewide.  Let your reps or me know if you discover these discrepancies or your supervisor asks you to make them.

PVDMI has NOT been negotiated.   You should request OT if needed for the training and/or extra work associated with it if needed.  COMPAS has been implemented.  Again, this is NEW WORK!  We have met with management on COMPAS but could not come to agreement on the workload impact.  There are also noted problems with these risk assessments within the programs; however, the department continues to use them.

We still do not know status of layoffs.  CCPOA had a layoff negotiation table scheduled for June.  I was on that table, along with other chapter presidents from CCPOA.  We met for one day to review documents provided by the state.  Negotiations were postponed by the State and we do not currently have any dates set to resume.   I have reviewed the parole information and it does not appear to be accurate.  Hopefully, we will get better information in the future, if the department continues with layoff plans.  I know this is a difficult time for all of those agents that received layoff notices.  Since we do not yet know the final cost cutting to CDCR, it is impossible to know when or if agents will actually be laid off.

In the midst of the layoff talks, information was received from Tom Hoffman and Terri MacDonald that a Region III academy was going to occur this summer.  Region III was directed to make job offers.  I was assured that all positions would be limited term and those positions would be ended before actual layoffs would occur. 

HC PAL negotiations will take place on July 8th.  Team members are Ron Dunne, Craig King and Jesse Chavez.  This policy creates new HC PAL agents/teams that will not have caseloads.  A PA III in each Region HQ will supervise the teams.

The Mentally Ill Offender policy was released. We did NOT negotiate, however, I hope to get to the table this month. 

South Central Parole is closing two units and has now become two separate districts.  We will be negotiating this topic on July 9th.  If you have any concerns contact Luis Robles, Johnny Verdugo, Debbie Sallie or me.

I received numerous calls about compensation of overtime when there is a holiday in the month, specifically May with Memorial Day.  Some agents were compensated with straight time on the books, while others were paid time and a half.  We received different answers from different personnel specialists.  Since we could not get a definitive answer, Leo Pierini authored a class action grievance for all parole agents in the different divisions regarding this issue.  It was taken to Labor Relations who was going to file directly with DPA.  If any of you have encountered this problem, send me an email so we can document all the harmed parties.  July may also be problematic, with it unknown how personnel will view a weekend holiday.  The change in OT compensation is Government Code Section 19844.1 that was added which states:

“For the purpose of computing the number of hours worked, time when an employee is excused from work because of holidays, sick leave, vacation, annual leave, compensating time off, or any other leave shall not be considered as time worked by the employee for the purpose of computing cash or compensating time off for overtime.”

Based on overcrowding at the reception centers where CDCR is not capable of receiving revoked parolees, a new process has been initiated for submitting a Miscellaneous Decision to have a RTC modified and reduce the revocation time.  It may also include locations where local jail caps are exceeded.  I received information that stated the Agent of Record or designee would review the case and determine if early release should be recommended on the Miscellaneous Decision.  There were reportedly in excess of 400 cases with less than 60 days to RRD that were to be reviewed.   Please let your local reps know if this process is being utilized in your area.  Again, this is NEW work and the union was not noticed on this change.  The most immediate reviews were cases at CIM/CIMRC.

CCPOA Convention will be held in Reno at the Atlantis Hotel on July 13 (state board meeting) and 14th.  The convention was reduced to one day due to budget issues.

Paul Labbe and I are actively trying to maintain the EOT process in some form.  Sideletter 19 is basically in the process of being gutted.  My concern is that many agents are hired and start in locations away from their homes, with the knowledge that they could transfer with seniority after they completed their apprenticeship program.  With this possibly going away, the implication to agents is noteworthy.  We continue to try to get a compromise so we maintain a very important part of our MOU/LBF.

Terry Gibbs, Region I Representative, resigned effective June 1, 2009 in conjunction with his retirement from DAPO.  I will be appointing someone from Region I to fill behind him.  If you are interested in being considered for this position, contact me immediately.

I am having problems with different parts of the webpage and will continue to try to fix.  If you sign on to the contact us, it is not going through.  Email me if you have questions, concerns or issues.  These are difficult times and we are all working hard to maintain a working relationship with management.  As caseloads and associated work increases, we need to document requests for OT and work that cannot be completed.  Training has increased significantly over the last few years.