Track Record of Lawsuits brought by CAPS & PECG


Track Record of Lawsuits Brought by CAPS and PECG
Under Management of Blanning & Baker, 1991-present
Status as of September 1, 2011
http://wp.me/p1OGRw-y

NOTE: Gerald A. James is listed as counsel for CAPS and/or PECG in some of the more recent cases outlined below. Mr. James was admitted to the California State Bar in 1995. His address of record with the State Bar is at the Blanning & Baker office in Sacramento. Blanning & Baker’s website states that he is general counsel to Blanning & Baker’s clients. The website does not reveal whether Mr. James’s legal services are included in the fees Blanning & Baker’s clients pay for general management, or are charged to clients separately, or some combination of the two.

Case Title and Court Docket Number: PECG v. Department of Transportation, A131449
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: First District Court of Appeal, 8/8/11, 198 Cal.App.4th 17
Lawyers for PECG: Jennifer T. Buckman of Somach Simmons & Dunn, and Gerald A. James

Result and Current Status: PECG loses; PECG could still seek review by California Supreme Court, but has not yet done so.
Description: PECG contended that the engineering work on the replacement of Doyle Drive in San Francisco was supposed to be handled by state employee engineers. The court rejected this position and held that the engineering work could be contracted out because the project qualified as a public-private partnership under the changes to section 143 of the Streets and Highway Code made by the Legislature in 2009.

Case Title and Court Docket Number: CAPS v. Department of Finance, C063118
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: Third District Court of Appeal, 5/25/11, 195 Cal.App.4th 1228
Lawyer for CAPS: Gerald A. James
Result and Current Status: CAPS loses; California Supreme Court denied review on 8/10/11; decision is final.
Description: CAPS contended that the Department of Finance was required to seek funding from the Legislature for salary increases that the Department of Personnel Administration found were needed in order to give CAPS members salary parity with comparable positions in other agencies. The court rejected this position, and held that neither the Department of Finance nor the governor were required to ask the Legislature to appropriate enough money to pay the increases, and that the increases do not have to be paid if they are not included in the budget. (Note that even if CAPS had won this case, this would only have required the Department of Finance to tell the Legislature that it should appropriate money to fund the increases; it would not have required the Legislature to actually provide the money.)

Case Title and Court Docket Number: PECG [and CAPS] v. Schwarzenegger, S183411
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: California Supreme Court, 10/4/10, 50 Cal.4th 989
Lawyer for CAPS/PECG: Gerald A. James
Result and Current Status: State employee unions (including CAPS and PECG) lose; California Supreme Court decision is final
Description: The California Supreme Court upheld the legality of mandatory furloughs based on implied approval of them by the Legislature in the 2008 state budget.

Case Title and Court Docket Number: PECG v. Kempton, S139917
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: California Supreme Court, 4/12/07, 40 Cal.4th 1016
Lawyers for PECG: Kelley Stimpel Martinez and James E. McGlamery
Result and Current Status: PECG loses; California Supreme Court decision is final
Description: PECG challenged DOT’s procedures for contracting out engineering work after the passage of Proposition 35 in the 2000 election. The California Supreme Court held that DOT’s contracting out procedures were valid.

Case Title and Court Docket Number: CAPS v. Schwarzenegger, C049928
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: Third District Court of Appeal, 3/6/06, 137 Cal.App.4th 371
Lawyer for CAPS: Gerald A. James

Result and Current Status: CAPS loses; California Supreme Court denied review; decision is final.
Description: CAPS challenged the adoption of a two-tier retirement system excluding new hires from PERS for the first two years of their employment. The court rejected CAPS’s claims that the new law was unconstitutional and/or violated the CAPS MOU.

Case Title and Court Docket Number: PECG v. State Personnel Board, C028402
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: Third District Court of Appeal, 7/11/01 (modified 8/10/01), 90 Cal.App.4th 678
Lawyers for PECG: Dennis F. Moss and Steven Bassoff
Result and Current Status: PECG loses in part; California Supreme Court denied review; decision is final.

Description: PECG (and other state employee unions not listed by name in the opinion, which may or may not have included CAPS) challenged the legality of the Career Executive Assignment program for filling high-level executive positions. The court rejected the claim that the program as a whole violated civil service law, but held that competitive (ranked) examinations must be held for transfers into CEA positions by non-CEA personnel, and the appointing authority must consider the results of those examinations.

Case Title and Court Docket Number: CAPS v. Department of Fish & Game, C023075 & C023184
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: Third District Court of Appeal, 4/10/00, 79 Cal.App.4th 935
Lawyer for CAPS: Dennis F. Moss
Result and Current Status: CAPS wins; California Supreme Court denied review; decision is final.

Description: An individual challenged a statute imposing a flat fee for environmental impact reviews of proposed projects, and setting a higher fee for reviews of projects that are claimed not to have any significant environmental impact. The individual settled with the Department of Fish & Game, and CAPS intervened, seeking to require the Department to continue collecting the fees. The court sided with CAPS, rejecting the individual’s claim that the fee was a tax that had to be adopted by a two-thirds vote in the Legislature. (Note that this case had no direct effect on the salaries, benefits, or rights of CAPS members. It may have had an indirect effect by maintaining Fish & Game’s ability to collect the fees, thereby adding to the budget. It is not clear from the court opinion, however, why CAPS felt it necessary to take on the burden of defending the employer’s right to charge money for its services.)

Case Title and Court Docket Number: PECG v. Wilson, C023360 & C023368
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: Third District Court of Appeal, 2/25/98 (modified 3/19/98), 61 Cal.App.4th 1013
Lawyers for PECG: Loren E. McMaster (and Harry J. Gibbons for CSEA)
Result and Current Status: PECG loses (mostly). Decision is final.

Description: PECG (joined by CSEA) claimed that funds in the State Highway Account (SHA) could not be transferred to the general fund in order to repay bonds issued for the development of passenger railways and public transit. (The transfers had contribute to budget shortfalls at the Department of Transportation (DOT), resulting in layoffs of some PECG and CSEA members who worked at DOT.) The court rejected PECG’s arguments for the most part, ruling that SHA funds not derived from gasoline taxes could properly be used to pay the bonds. As to SHA funds derived from gasoline taxes, the court agreed with PECG that these could not be used to pay the bonds. However, the court also held that PECG had only proved that a relatively small portion of the funds used to make payments on the bonds actually came from gasoline taxes. The court only ruled in PECG’s favor as to that portion of the funds ($12.3 million out of $77 million). (Note that this case had no direct effect on the salaries, benefits, or rights of PECG members. At best, it helped avoid a few layoffs by requiring the gasoline taxes to be returned to DOT’s budget.)

Case Title and Court Docket Number: PECG v. Department of Transportation, S042591
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: California Supreme Court, 5/15/97, 15 Cal.4th 543
Lawyer for PECG: Loren E. McMaster
Result and Current Status: PECG wins, but the effect of the court decision was later overturned by Proposition 35, passed in 2000.
Description: After the Legislature passed a statute allowing the Department of Transportation (DOT) to contract out work when necessary to get it done on time, DOT asked the court to set aside an earlier order prohibiting DOT from contracting out certain highway construction functions. The Supreme Court agreed with PECG that under the civil service laws, DOT was not allowed to contract out the work, and held that the new statute did not change that.

Case Title and Court Docket Number: PECG v. Department of Transportation, A057897
Court, Date of Decision, and Legal Citation: First District Court of Appeal, 2/17/93, 13 Cal.App.4th 585
Lawyer for PECG: Dennis F. Moss.
Result and Current Status: PEGC loses. California Supreme Court denied review; decision is final.

Description: PECG challenged DOT’s authority to lease rights-of-way to private companies to construct and operate toll roads. The court held that the law permitting DOT to enter into contracts for private toll roads was not unconstitutional and did not violate the civil service laws.

by anonymous

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About Mad Scientist

Member of California Association of Professional Scientists
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