Arbitrator Orders Back Pay for Correctional Employers
In a ruling made public Friday, an arbitrator in November 2006 ruled that the state must pay $200 million in back wages and health benefits dating from the 2005 fiscal year to 30,000 prison guards, probation officers and other correctional employees represented by the California Correctional Peace Officers Association, the AP/San Diego Union-Tribune reports. The decision will require the state to revise its budget for the current and upcoming fiscal years.
The arbitrator also ruled that the state owed CCPOA members a 3.1% salary increase, which will cost about $80 million for the current budget and $160 million for the 2007-2008 fiscal year budget (Thompson, AP/San Diego Union-Tribune, 1/20). The union said its members were owed a pay raise because of a new contract awarded earlier by the California Highway Patrol.
H.D. Palmer, Department of Finance spokesperson, said the proposed budget for the upcoming fiscal year will remain balanced. He said the state would use funds from a "price increase" budget for contracts, supplies and other items for all state agencies to offset the payment to correctional employees for FY 2007-2008.
The state will pay for the increase in the current fiscal year with a $147.5 million deficiency appropriation from the state's reserve fund for next year, according to the Department of Finance (Furillo, Sacramento Bee, 1/20).
The ruling was based on provisions of a five-year contract negotiated by former Gov. Gray Davis (D) (AP/San Diego Union-Tribune, 1/20).