A grievance is any dispute which involves the interpretation or application of any provision of this Memorandum of Understanding excluding, however, those provisions of this Memorandum of Understanding which specifically provide that the decision of any County official shall be final, the interpretation or application of those provisions not being subject to the grievance procedure. If a unit member files an EEOC, DFEH or administrative EEO Complaint with the EEO Coordinator, the issue will no longer be subject to this grievance procedure, but will be processed in accordance with regulations or procedures governing the processing of said complaints.
Grievances shall be processed in the following manner:
- Step One, Management Official and/or Union Representative: Any unit member who believes that they have a grievance may discuss their complaint with such management official in the department in which they work as the department head may designate. If the issue is not resolved within the department, or if the unit member elects to submit their grievance directly to the Union, the procedures hereinafter specified may be invoked.
- Step Two, Human Resources Department Director: Any unit member or any official of the Union may notify Human Resources Department Director in writing that a grievance exists, stating the particulars of the grievance and, if possible, the nature of the determination desired. Such notification must be received within twenty eight (28) calendar days from the date of the alleged grievance. The Human Resources Department Director, or their designated representative, who in the case of a grievance alleging discrimination shall be the EEO Coordinator, shall have twenty-five (25) workdays in which to investigate the merits of the complaint, to meet with the complainant, and, if the complainant is not the Union, to meet also with the officials of the Union, and to settle the grievance. No grievance may be processed under paragraph (3) below which has not first been filed and investigated in accordance with this paragraph (2).
- Step Three, Adjustment Board: If the parties are unable to reach a mutually satisfactory accord on any grievance which arises and is presented during the term of this MOU, the Union may advance the grievance to an Adjustment Board by submitting a written request to Employee Relations no later than twenty-eight (28) calendar days of written notice from Employee Relations that the grievance is denied at Step 2. The Adjustment Board shall be comprised of two (2) representatives designated by the Union and two (2) designated by the County. A majority decision of the Adjustment Board on all issues, including procedural issues, is final and binding.
- Step Four, Arbitration: In the event an Adjustment Board is unable to arrive at a majority decision, either the Union or the County may require that the grievance be referred to an impartial arbitrator, if within twenty-eight (28) calendar days of the date upon which the Adjustment Board hearing was held, the moving party notifies the other in writing of its desire to arbitrate. The question shall be submitted to an arbitrator mutually agreed upon by the parties or, failing mutual agreement, to that arbitrator who is selected by lot from an agreed upon panel. The fees and expenses of the arbitrator and of a Court Reporter shall be shared equally by the Union and the County. Each party, however, shall bear the cost of its own presentation, including preparation and post-hearing briefs, if any.
30.3 Scope of Adjustment Board and Arbitration Divisions:
Decisions of Adjustment Boards and arbitrators on matters properly before them shall be final and binding on the parties hereto, to the extent permitted by the Charter of the County. No Adjustment Board and no arbitrator shall entertain, hear, decide or make recommendations on any dispute unless such dispute involves a position in a unit represented by this Union and unless such dispute falls within the definition of a grievance as set forth in subsection 31.1.
Proposals to add to or change this MOU or written agreements or addenda supplementary hereto shall not be arbitral and no proposal to modify, amend or terminate this MOU, nor any matter or subject arising out of or in connection with such proposal, may be referred to arbitration under this Section. Neither any Adjustment Board nor any arbitrator shall have the power to amend or modify this MOU or written agreements or addenda supplementary hereto or to establish any new terms or conditions of employment.
30.4 No grievance involving demotion, suspension, reduction in step or dismissal will be entertained unless it is filed in writing with Employee Relations within five (5) working days of the time at which the affected unit member was notified of such action.
30.5 If the Human Resources Department Director in pursuance of the procedures outlined in subsection 31.2 (2) resolves a grievance which involves suspension or discharge, they may agree to payment for lost time or to reinstatement with or without payment for lost time, but in the event the dispute is referred to arbitration and the arbitrator finds that the County had the right to take the action complained of, the arbitrator may not substitute their judgment for the judgment of management and if they find that the County had such right, they may not order reinstatement and may not assess any penalty upon the County.
30.6 Compensation Complaints (MOU Complaints)
All complaints involving or concerning the payment of compensation shall be initially filed in writing with the Human Resources Department Director. Only complaints which allege that unit members are not being compensated in accordance with the provisions of this MOU shall be considered as grievances. Any other matters of compensation are to be resolved in the meet and confer process and if not detailed in the Memorandum of Understanding which results from such meet and confer process shall be deemed withdrawn until the meet and confer process is next opened for such discussion.
No change in this MOU or interpretations thereof (except interpretations resulting from Adjustment Board or arbitration proceedings here under) will be recognized unless agreed to by the County and the Union.
30.8 No Strike
The Union, its members and representatives, agree that it and they will not engage in, authorize, sanction or support any strike, slowdown, stoppage of work, curtailment of production, refusal to operate designated equipment (provided such equipment is safe and sound) or to perform customary duties; and neither the Union nor any representatives thereof shall engage in job action for the purpose of effecting changes in the directives or decisions of management of the County, nor to effect a change of personnel or operations of management or of employees not covered by this Memorandum of Understanding.
30.9 County Charter and Civil Service Commission:
- The provisions of this Section shall not abridge any rights to which a unit member may be entitled under the County Charter, nor shall it be administered in a manner which would abrogate any power which, under the County Charter, may be within the sole province and discretion of the Civil Service Commission.
- All grievances of unit members in the representation unit represented by the Union shall be processed under this Section. If the County Charter requires that a differing option be available to the unit member, no action under paragraph (2) of subsection 31.2 above shall be taken unless it is determined that the unit member is not availing himself/herself of such option.
- No action under paragraph (2) of subsection 31.2 shall be taken if action on the complaint or grievance has been taken by the Civil Service Commission or if the complaint or grievance is pending before the Civil Service Commission.
- If any award by an Adjustment Board or arbitrator requires action by the Board of Supervisors or the Civil Service Commission before it can be placed in effect, the County Manager and the Human Resources Department Director will recommend to the Board of Supervisors or the Civil Service Commission, as appropriate, that it follow such award.