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Summary of the Outstanding (Non-TA’d) Items between the State and CAPS in the State’s Last, Best, and Final Offer presented to the CAPS Bargaining Team December 19, 2023.

On Tuesday, December 19, the State presented your CAPS Bargaining Team (CAPS Team) with their Last, Best, and Final Offer (LBFO). A summary of the entire LBFO can be found here

In short, the LBFO simply does not address the increasingly severe problems caused by inequities in Unit 10 since the early 2000s. The State remains stagnant in its position. After lengthy and careful deliberation of whether to accept or reject the LBFO, your CAPS Team voted unanimously to reject the State’s woefully inadequate LBFO. The LBFO was rejected by the the CAPS Team. Your CAPS Bargaining Team notified the State of the rejection on December 20.

Summary of the State’s LBFO Compared to CAPS’ Proposals

The State proposed a contract term of December 1, 2023 – July 1, 2026, unless a specific provision provides for a different effective date (an example is 2.1 Salaries). Sections previously TA’d made up a majority of the State’s LBFO. A summary of outstanding sections are listed below:

 CAPS’ ProposalProposal within State’s LBFO
2.1 Salaries

CAPS’ latest proposal on August 31, 2023, would be effective July 1, 2023, and provide increases July 1, 2023, July 1, 2024 and July 1, 2025. See CAPS’ August 31 counterproposal here. 

  • In year 1: the CAPS proposal would address the salary inequities of the Unit through classification-specific Special Salary Adjustments (SSAs). Each proposed SSA would acknowledge like pay for like work and ensure classifications will have reporting relationships and promotional pathways that are standard and restore the pay structures which were established with the series. These SSAs also address specific classification needs – whether that be recruitment, retention, helping to recognize the minimum qualifications, level of responsibility or expertise of the class.
  • In year 2: a General Salary Increase (GSI) of 5% would be provided to all rank-and-file Scientists.
  • In year 3: a 3.5% GSI would be provided.

See CAPS’ August 31 proposal here.

The proposal within the LBFO is the same proposal CalHR passed August 29, which is summarized here

The proposal does not include any retroactivity, instead their proposal would be effective first pay period following ratification. The proposal includes raises the first pay period following ratification, July 1, 2024, July 1, 2025. There are no raises in 2026, the last year of the proposed contract term. 

The salary proposal included in the State’s LBFO creates deeper pay inequities, for most State Scientists, by providing different salary increases to those at the top of a salary range and those who aren’t. The State wants to divide us even further. Only ~38% of rank-and-file State Scientists are at the top of their pay range, with variation between classifications.

Increasing a pay range at the top only means that it takes longer to get to the top of the pay range. Typically, a pay range takes five years to move through. Adding more to the top (and less to the bottom) means that some State Scientists may never make it to the top of their pay range because the median retention for a rank-and-file State Scientist is only five years. Not by choice, but because they are forced to leave since the State treats State Scientists like we are disposable. 

NEW 2.18 Geographical Pay Differential

Effective July 1, 2023, $800 monthly Pay Differential for all rank-and-file State Scientists working in San Mateo, San Francisco, Santa Clara, Marin, Alameda, Santa Cruz, and Orange; $550 monthly Pay Differential for rank-and-file State Scientists working in Santa Barbara, Napa, Contra Costa, Monterey, Ventura, San Diego, San Luis Obispo, Los Angeles, San Benito and Sonoma

See CAPS’ August 29 counterproposal here.

Not included in the LBFO presented by the State. 
NEW 2.19 Longevity Pay

Beginning July 1, 2023, rank-and-file State Scientists with 15+ years of State service would receive a longevity pay differential.

  • 15 years of State Service: 2% differential
  • 16 years of State Service: 3% differential
  • 17 years of State Service: 4% differential
  • 18+ years of State Service: 5.5% differential

Percentages are non-cumulative. 

See CAPS’ May 9 proposal here.

Not included in the LBFO presented by the State.
NEW 2.25 Emergency Response Recognition Pay

A $1,250 one-time benefit for rank-and-file State Scientists working at CalFIRE in recognition of heavy fire seasons, and at the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) for their work protecting the public health of California.

See CAPS’ August 15 proposal here.

Not included in the LBFO presented by the State.
5.1 Health, Dental, Vision

Increase employer health benefits contributions to 85/80 from the current 80/80 formula.

See CAPS’ May 9 proposal here.

Rollover of previous section 5.1 language, which keeps the employer health benefits contributions at the current 80/80 formula, rather than CAPS’ proposed increase to 85/80 employer contributions.
13.1 No Strike

CAPS’ proposal would allow for rank-and-file State Scientists to participate in solidarity strikes without discipline or adverse action from the State, which aligns with AB 504 which was passed by the legislature but vetoed by the governor last year.

See CAPS’ September 1 counterproposal here.

The State included a proposed rollover of previous 13.1 language, which would prevent State Scientists from striking during the terms of the MOU. This cannot be imposed upon us by the governor. 
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