AB 119 – Requires Public Employers to Give Unions Access to New Employee Orientation and Provide Unions with Employees’ Personal Contact Information

Category: Public Agencies
Date: Dec 1, 2017 11:39 AM

AB 119, a trailer bill to the 2017-18 state budget, imposes two new requirements on public employers with regard to union access to employees:

The bill requires a public employer to give a union that currently represents its employees notice regarding a new employee orientation of new employees of that unit at least 10 days prior to the orientation unless there is an unforeseeable urgent need requiring a shorter notice period. If a union requests access to such new employee orientation, the “structure, time and manner” of such access are subject to negotiation before access to the orientation is provided.  If the union and employer do not reach agreement within either 45 days of the first negotiation or 60 days from the initial request to negotiate, either party may demand interest arbitration, whereby a third-party arbitrator will establish the terms of access to such new employee orientations with the cost of the arbitrator split between the parties. In lieu of a third-party arbitrator, the bill allows a city or county to choose to have a PERB staff member conduct the compulsory interest arbitration proceeding over orientation access, with such agency covering the full costs of the PERB staff member.

The bill also requires the employer to provide a union representing its employees with the name, job title, department, work location, work, home, and personal cellular telephone numbers, personal email addresses on file with the employer, and home address of new employees within 30 days of hire or the first pay period of the month after hire. The employer must provide each union with this information for all employees it represents at least every 120 days. Employees have the ability to opt out in writing of the disclosure of their home address, home telephone number, personal cellular telephone number and personal email address on file with the employer.

AB 119 grants the Public Employment Relations Board jurisdiction over alleged violations of these provisions.

AB 119 was an urgency statute that took effect on June 27, 2017.  While many public agencies have already been addressing the requirements of AB 119, those agencies who have not yet implemented its provisions should seek legal counsel to ensure compliance with these provisions.

(AB 119 adds Sections 3555-3559 to the Government Code.)

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