Minutes

LOS ANGELES CITY ATTORNEYS ASSOCIATION
BOARD MEETING MINUTES

Meeting Date: January 12, 2006

Board Members Present: Michael Duran (Vice-President), Judith Reel (Secretary), Garcelle Embry (Civil Director), Rosemary Chavez (Criminal Director)

SEIU Local 347 Representative Present: Bob Hunt (General Counsel)

I. New Business

A. Proprietary Department Training

The Board received inquiries as to whether management has curtailed training opportunities for attorneys assigned to the Airport. It is our understanding that due to the federal and international aspects of airport regulations and procedures, attorneys have historically attended training seminars with other attorneys throughout the country at locations outside of the state. The Board agreed to raise this issue with management because it potentially affects matters within the scope of mandatory bargaining and thus subject to meet and confer requirements prior to implementation.

After the Board meeting, Board representatives met with Rich Llewellyn, who said that he did not believe that there had been any prohibition on attorneys at the airport receiving training outside the City. He did say that he would look into the matter and let us know whether there had been any curtailment.
We will inform you of our findings and the status of this issue. In the meantime, if attorneys believe they are experiencing a diminution in the opportunity to receive training outside of the office, or whether they are aware of any changes in management policy, please let a Board member or Bob Hunt know so that we can look into the matter.

II. Old Business

A. Career Advancement Opportunities

1. PRP Award Announcement

The Office announced its Performance Recognition Program award announcements. Anyone seeking a list of persons receiving a promotion or merit step advancement should contact Board Secretary Judy Reel.

The Office awarded promotions or merit step advancement to 139 applicants, an number far in excess of management’s initial estimates. Of the 139 people selected, 59 received promotions and 80 received merit step advancement. On an anecdotal level, Board members have heard both praise and criticism of the program.

At first glance, the awards appear to have been distributed throughout practice areas and pay levels but we need additional information to truly assess the program. To that end, we have requested management to provide a list of all attorneys receiving awards that identifies not only the salary level from which and to which they were advanced, but also their assignments and hire date. We have also requested that management identify the total number of applicants. We will make that information available to our members when we receive it.

We also need to hear from our members since both LACAA. and the Office have pledged to work toward a credible process for handling career advancement issues. In our next update which will be mailed shortly, we will seek your views on the PRP process. Based on our members’ input we will be able to assess whether the PRP process works as is, should be amended or jettisoned altogether.

2. Access to management recommendations re: PRP application

Management informed us that any employee who wants to review management’s recommendations regarding their PRP application may do so by contacting their Branch Chief. The Branch Chiefs have a copy of the evaluations, and will either personally review them with the employee or have the Division Manager or someone else review the evaluations with the employee.

B. Status Report re: Involuntary Transfers and Green Sheets

As discussed in the previous minutes, Board members learned that five line deputies assigned to the Proprietary Branch departments were involuntarily transferred to new assignments; the number in fact may be larger because management has not provided the information we requested regarding the transfers. In addition, the previous minutes discussed the selections of attorneys to serve in supervisory positions without issuance of a green sheet or opportunity for others to apply. Given that the recent PRP advancements appear to require supervisory duties in order to receive promotion to Assistant City Attorney, the opportunity to apply for such positions seems all the more critical to our attorneys.

The Board proffered a demand to meet and confer with management regarding its authority to effect a reorganization by way of forced transfers, and management rejected the request.

The Board voted to authorize the filing of an Unfair Labor Practices Charge against management arising out of the forced transfers and selections of supervisors without providing members the opportunity to apply for the positions. Bob Hunt drafted the Charges but management has requested to meet and attempt to resolve the matters prior to our formally filing the Charges. The Board has agreed to meet to attempt to resolve the matter but will proceed with the formal filing if the matter is not resolved promptly. We will keep our members apprised of further developments.

C. PAC Account

At our last meeting, the Board voted to authorize sending a letter to members, allowing a refund of monies allocated during the past year to our Political Action Committee (“PAC”). Our PAC account is used exclusively for city-wide elections and ballot issues affecting employment conditions. The Board has historically allocated 50 cents per member per month to the PAC account for a total of $6.00 per year. The next update will carry a notice with instructions on how members can request a rebate of funds allocated to the PAC account.

 

As you know, our new MOU includes annual reimbursement for MCLE-related expenses. To ensure that you receive complete and timely reimbursement, we encourage you to follow the instructions contained in the MCLE protocol provided by City Attorney Management. You must complete and submit a reimbursement form in order to receive reimbursement.

You can reimburse expenses related to attending MCLE programs that are accepted by the California State Bar, even if the program takes place in another state. Eligible expenses include the cost of the program, travel, and per diems.

Please be judicious when choosing lodging and which food/drink expenses you submit for reimbursement.


The Board is pleased to announce that LACAA has retained the law firm of MASTAGNI, HOLSTEDT, AMICK, MILLER & JOHNSEN as General Counsel.


To sign up for the LACAA newsletter and email updates from Oscar Winslow,
LACAA's President, send a request to lacaapresident@gmail.com.