OSATS (DARS) reductions in PA II positions continue.  The negotiation team has had numerous Employee Placement Meetings at prisons throughout state.  The team has spent many hours traveling and meeting with staff that are impacted or may be impacted.  The vacancy lists provided by management have not been accurate and we have been trying to provide factual data to staff.  The “award” letters to staff whose positions have been eliminated should be mailed out next week.  I am optimistic that job assignments will be fair and according to the state’s processes.  If you do not receive the job assignment you have selected and believe that it is a true vacant position, contact me immediately.

Converting PA II Specialists to PA II Supervisors continues to move forward as a management decision.  I have met with Matt Cate, Brett Morgan, Scott Kernan, Robert Ambroselli and Margarita Perez to voice PAAC’s concern with this proposal.  While there are aspects of the conversion that are understandable, I believe that the same things (i.e. training and assisting supervisors) can be accomplished while leaving the positions as rank and file specialists.  Caseloads could be reduced significantly to allow the PA II to do more training of agents and assisting PA III Supervisors.  Thanks for all of you who took the time to send me emails providing input on this topic.

CCPOA/PAAC has received a negotiation notice regarding the newly established Parole Agent I transportation positions with OSATS (DARS).  We have not yet scheduled negotiation dates. I do not know the full implications of these new positions.  Correctional Officers currently do transportation of parolees to ICDTP programs.

We have also received a negotiation notice for the Non Revocable Parole.
This process will be starting on January 25, 2010.  Thousands of parolees will cease to be supervised and will be moved off caseloads.  They are still subject to search and seizure, but parole cannot be revoked.

The parole reform task force continues to meet weekly and has been working on work specs.  There has been much discussion regarding the changes that should occur.  However, it does not appear that we have gained a better work product as of this date.  The word “quality” is used regarding home and office visits.  That has mostly been defined by being twenty (20) minutes in duration, giving adequate verbal rewards for positive behavior and monitoring participation in cognitive behavior training.   This will reduce caseloads, with the legislature supporting 45-1 caseloads.  The task force has been advised those numbers could go to 48 or 50-1.  These work changes have not yet been negotiated.

GPS Sex Offender caseload numbers are unknown.  A previous task force had been convening for the last few years with labor and management  working on a mutually agreed upon workload.  The task force has now been eliminated and we do not know what direction management is going to take on these caseloads.  It appears the Garrido case is driving all decisions in this arena.

There will be many changes in caseloads, units, how we supervise, etc. in the next year.  Stay in touch with your PAAC reps if you are encountering problems with these transitions and work expectations.

We are still trying to resolve the merit step pay increase problems in Region III.  I have talked to Alfred Martinez and Robert Ambroselli and forwarded specific cases to them.  Information was received this week that they are now being corrected and agents should be receiving retroactive payment back to the dates they completed their apprenticeship program.  If you are having problems relative to your apprenticeship status, contact your reps.

Despite a freeze on lateral moves, staff are still moving throughout the state.  EOT transfers are not being considered.  It is frustrating that we will never get those moves back in the immediate future.  There have been some moves to get agents within the 65-mile home storage permit requirement.  EOT negotiations will, hopefully, resume after the first of the year.  We are trying to get management to allow agents to transfer to more favorable locations, before new agents are hired and placed in academies.

I have recently received calls regarding agents not answering personal cell phones timely.  It is a benefit for CDCR that individual agents provide their personal cell phones for work related calls, however, I disagree with a supervisor’s attempt to write corrective action for not answering a phone call on a personal phone.  Region IV has state issued cell phones for virtually all parole agents which would be an appropriate fix if DAPO wants us to be available during our field work.  Another possible option might be to submit our cell phone bills for partial reimbursement if the department prefers.

There are reports of supervisors who require CDCR 1502b and board reports to be submitted prior to the time frames we have established through negotiations and policy.  Supervisors can ask, but we have fought for the minimal times frames that we have and they need to be maintained.

Agents continue to be denied adequate overtime to complete the functions of their job.  Supervisors are not complying with Policy 08-08 and logs are not being kept.  We have continuously reported this to all levels of management, only to be told we are not correct in our statements.  Many agents continue to work for free on their caseloads and for training.  You put yourself in jeopardy if you are driving your vehicle outside of your work schedule.  If you don’t put all the hours that you work on your 998, it is impossible for CCPOA/PAAC to show that we can’t get our work done within the 164-hour work period.  This is especially true if you are using your furloughs.  I do not think anyone believes the new work expectations on the reduced caseloads can be accomplished with 15% fewer work hours.  We must be united in our efforts to show the actual work that we can do in a work period.  Send emails to your supervisors if you cannot get your work done and ask for direction on how to deal with missed workload specs.

Assembly Select Committee on Re-entry in California is scheduled to meet in early 2010.  Assembly Speaker Karen Bass selected the members to examine ways to enhance the transition of inmates from prison into society.  Assembly members are: Chair Isadore Hall (D-Compton), Tom Ammiano, Marty Block, Steve Bradford, Nathan Fletcher, Felipe Fuentes, Warren Furutani, Dave Jones, Jim Nielsen, Sandre Swanson, Alberto Torrico and Norma Torres.  I encourage all of you to contact your local legislators to let them know what we do as agents.

On December 8th the Assembly Budget Subcommittee No. 4 met on CDCR budget issues and discussed the effect of the $250 million cuts in CDCR programs as part of a $1.2 billion unallocated cuts to the CDCR 2009-2010 budget.  

Alameda Superior Court Judge Frank Roesch ruled in favor of CCPOA on the Governors “work for free” Executive Order regarding furloughs.  Judge Roesch ruled that the state must: “. . . rescind the portions of Executive Orders . . . that are in violation of State law that will and have resulted in salary reductions to those employees represented by . . .” CCPOA.  We know there will probably not be resolution in the near future, while the Governor appeals this decision.

If you were terminated or retired with furlough time unused, you should contact Division of Labor Standards Enforcement and submit a claim for lost wages.

Use of force policies are being changed.  I have asked DAPO Director Robert Ambroselli to consider creating a policy specific to DAPO.  The current policy talks about  “warning shots” and other institution situations that do not pertain to our job duties.  

On December 11th, I met with Board Revocation Representatives (BRRs) from BPH that work in Regions I and II.  We discussed the plan to remove their home storage permits and the need for them to accurately report actual work hours on CDCR 998s.  If you work 12 hours on one day and 4 the next, your time sheet should report that time.  There are apparently emails from managers directing staff to put 8 hours daily on their 998, however, that is not a factual time sheet.  Additionally, they have previously been “home headquartered” and they will now be assigned to specific work locations.  There are many problems associated with these changes and we are meeting with BPH managers to deal with issues individually.

Parole Agent academies are scheduled throughout 2010, with double academies beginning in some months.  If you know someone who is coming from an outside agency, advise him or her to ask about starting at a pay scale above entry level.  The “Hiring Above Minimum” HAM is now in effect, but individuals must apply and be approved before they accept a job offer.  The forms are online.

The next PAAC General Membership meeting will be held:

 January 23, 2010
Yosemite Falls Café
4278 West Ashlan Avenue
Fresno, CA  93722
559-275-6060

We will discuss parole reform, status of layoffs/SROA moves, furloughs, GPS caseloads and other topics. 

Job Steward training will be held in Region I on Friday, January 15, 2010:

Marie Callender’s
3602 W. Shaw
Fresno, CA  93711
559-271-0148

Contact CCPOA Fresno office at 800-832-1415 or 559-431-5390 to sign up and walk-ins are welcome.