CASE Bargaining Update [07.10.19]

As you know, CASE’s Memorandum of Understanding with the State expired last week on July 1, 2019. CASE is in negotiations with Governor Newsom’s team at CalHR for a successor contract. There were delays in forming CalHR’s team due to the new administration’s need to replace most of the key staff members at CalHR. The expanded CASE negotiating team has met for several weeks with Governor Newsom’s team and more bargaining dates are scheduled throughout July and August.

The final contract term of our now-expired MOU required an additional .07% payroll deduction to fund retiree health care. You will see the additional deduction on your July pay warrant as part of the OPEB deduction (listed as “CERBT” on your pay warrant), which now totals 2%. This 2% deduction is significantly lower than the retiree-health-care deduction that is paid by most other state employees. Although CASE’s team of negotiators had hoped to reach a new agreement to help offset this deduction before it went into effect, the delays from CalHR in choosing its team made this impossible. Because the delay was not of CASE’s making, we are insisting that any new contract include pay increases that are retroactive to July 1, 2019.

Several other groups of workers are also bargaining with the State. Unit 6, CCPOA, which represents correctional officers at the State prisons, reached an agreement that will provide a 3% salary increase starting in summer 2020. Although this agreement received criticism from independent observers, in part because this salary increase was seen as too high, the CCPOA agreement appears to be headed for ratification by the Legislature. Please click the CCPOA agreement and the Legislative Analyst’s Office review of it which we linked for your convenience.

Currently we are in a phase of exchanging information and educating the new administration about the critical services Unit 2 members provide for all Californians. We are also emphasizing the historical salary disparity that is threatening to destroy the state’s critical legal infrastructure. All of the data, including data provided by CalHR, show that BU 2 members are grossly underpaid compared to their public counterparts.

We have shared a recent report with CalHR from the UCLA Labor Center, Institute for Labor and Employment, that concludes the following:

  • Cities and counties have an average starting salary for attorneys that is 27.6% higher than the starting salary for attorneys in Bargaining Unit 2.

  • Cities and counties have an average maximum salary for attorneys that is 29.5% higher than the maximum salary for attorneys in Bargaining Unit 2.

  • Administrative Law Judges and others in comparable positions at the city, county, and federal level earn 23% more than Administrative Law Judges in Bargaining Unit 2.

We have multiple bargaining sessions scheduled through the rest of July and August. We will update you with any pertinent information whenever possible. As legal professionals, we are confident that you will understand why CASE does not publicly share our specific strategies or plans for bargaining. We can, however, again say that the overall goals of this negotiation are contained in our ‘sunshine’ letter (attached). You can help with our negotiations by providing factual accounts of attorneys or judges who have left state service for better paying jobs in city, county or federal public agencies. Please send the statements to CASE at

This email may not reach all CASE members. Accordingly, CASE encourages you to pass this email along to any of your colleagues who may not have received it. If you are not receiving CASE emails and wish to receive future communications from CASE, please send an email to and request to be added to the distribution list.

CASE also encourages you to send responses from your personal email address as opposed to your state email address. Please keep in mind that all responses will be treated as confidential by CASE.

As always, your support of CASE and your colleagues in Bargaining Unit 2 is greatly appreciated.


The CASE Board of Directors

CASE 2019 Sunshine Proposal

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