When the California Legislature proposes legislation involving higher education employer-employee relations, the Legislature is bound by any memorandum of understanding (MOU) that may be in place. For example, if the Legislature wants to require the California State University to create a new leave of absence for CSU employees, they can do so as long as the proposal does not conflict with the MOU that is in place.
Readers of this type of legislation would likely come across language similar to the following example:
If the provisions of this section conflict with the provisions of a memorandum of understanding reached pursuant to Chapter 12 (commencing with Section 3560) of Division 4 of Title 1 of the Government Code, the memorandum of understanding shall be controlling without further legislative action, except that, if those provisions of a memorandum of understanding require the expenditure of funds, the provisions shall not become effective unless approved by the Legislature in the annual Budget Act.
In Government Code Title 1, Division 4, Chapter 12, Article 4, Sections 3565 – 3572.5 concern rights, obligations, prohibitions, and unfair labor practices. Specifically, Government Code Section 3572.5 provides that, with certain exception, in the case where the following provisions of law are in conflict with a memorandum of understanding, the memorandum of understanding shall be controlling. Thereafter, dozens of sections of the Education Code are listed.
The other option is to have the provisions of a new statute apply if a collective bargaining agreement (CBA) has expired or when a CBA is renewed. A reader might come across language similar to the following example:
To the extent that this section, as amended by Assembly Bill 275 of the 2021–22 Regular Session, conflicts with a provision of a collective bargaining agreement entered into by a public school employer and an exclusive bargaining representative before January 1, 2022, pursuant to Chapter 10.7 (commencing with Section 3540) of Division 4 of Title 1 of the Government Code, the changes made to this section by Assembly Bill 275 of the 2021–22 Regular Session shall not apply to the community college district until expiration or renewal of that collective bargaining agreement.
As a result, bills impacting higher education employees and the actual employment relationship need to be aware of these provisions of law and whether a CBA or MOU is in place.
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