“California state scientists lose court appeal over pay
ShareBee Metro Staff
Published: Friday, May. 27, 2011 – 12:00 am | Page 4A
Fourteen classifications of state scientists who say they are legally entitled to salary adjustments will have to find another way to get their cause before the Legislature.
The 3rd District Court of Appeal on Wednesday ruled that a Sacramento judge overstepped his authority when he ordered the state Department of Finance to seek an appropriation for salary adjustments for the classifications.
The Department of Personnel Administration in 2008 approved increased salary ranges for 14 supervisory scientist classifications beginning in 2005 and forwarded its report to the Finance Department. In turn, Finance responded that the Legislature had not appropriated funds for the salary adjustments.
The plaintiff, the California Association of Professional Scientists, turned to the court the same year.
Sacramento Superior Court Judge Lloyd Connelly ordered DPA and Finance to give the Legislature information supporting the adjustments until either it appropriated the funds or DPA determined the factual basis supporting the adjustments was no longer valid.
In the 16-page opinion written by Associate Justice George Nicholson, the appellate court said the statutes Connelly relied on do not require Finance to present the proposed salary increases to the Legislature for appropriation. Associate Justices Cole Blease and Harry Hull concurred.