Chapter 1

Article 1    Purpose; Definitions.

Article 2    Authority; Rights.

Article 3    Representation Units.


9000 Purpose.

This Chapter provides for a portion of the implementing rules and standards pertaining to the city’s Employer-Employee Relations Policy.

Specific Authority: Chap. 2.72 MMC; Resolution No. 2014-06

History: New 1/2014.

9001 Statement of Intent.

This policy is enacted to carry out the provisions of Government Code Sections 3500 et seq., by establishing orderly procedures to promote full communication between the city and its employees by providing a reasonable method of resolving disputes regarding wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment between the city and its employee organizations.

(a)    Nothing in this policy is deemed to supersede existing state law, city charter or ordinances which establish and regulate the city’s merit personnel system, or for other methods of administering employer-employee relations.

9002 No Right to Engage in Labor Actions.

Nothing contained in this Part or the adoption of these rules shall be construed as giving city employees or employee organizations the right to participate in, support, cooperate or encourage, directory or indirectly, any strike, sickout or other total or partial stoppage or slowdown of work In the event employees engage in such actions, they shall be deemed to have abandoned their employment with the city and to have subjected themselves to termination.

9003 Definitions.

The following terms and phrases when used in this Part shall have the meanings set forth in this section, except where the context clearly indicates a different meaning.

(a)    "Confidential Employee" means an employee who regularly participates in the making, or who regularly has knowledge, of decisions of the city affecting employee relations.

(b)    "Employee Organization" or "Recognized Employee Organization" has the meaning specified in Government Code section 3501.

(c)    "Employee Relations Officer" means the City Manager or his duly authorized representative.

(d)    "Impasse" means a deadlock in discussions between a recognized employee organization and the Employee Relations Officer over any matters concerning which they are required to meet and confer in good faith, or over the scope of such subject matter.

(e)    "Management Employee" means an employee having responsibility for formulating, administering, or managing the implementation of city policies and programs.

(f)    "Mediation" has the meaning specified in Government Code section 3504.

(g)    "Proof of employee approval" means (1) an authorization card recently signed by an employee, or (2) employee dues deduction authorizations, using the payroll immediately prior to the date a petition is filed hereunder, provided that deductions for more than one employee organization for the account of any one employee will not be considered proof of employee approval for more than one employee organizations, or (3) a verified authorization petition or petitions recently signed by an employee. For purposes of this paragraph, "recently signed" means signed within one hundred eighty (180) days prior to the filing of a petition hereunder.

(h)    "Professional Employee" means an employee engaged in work (1) predominately intellectual and varied in character as opposed to routine mental, manual, mechanical or physical work, and (2) involving the consistent exercise of discretion and judgment in its performance, and (3) of such a character that the output produced or the result accomplished cannot be standardized in relation to a given period of time, and (4) requiring knowledge of an advance type in a field of science or learning customarily acquired by a prolonged course of specialized intellectual instruction and study in an institution of higher learning or a hospital, as distinguished from a general academic education or from an apprenticeship or from training in the performance of routine mental, manual or physical processes.

(i)    "Scope of Representation" has the meaning specified in Government Code 3504.

(j)    "Supervisory Employee" means an employee having responsibility for assigning and directing the work of other employees, or for rewarding or disciplining them, or for adjusting their grievances, or effectively to recommend such action if, in connection with the foregoing, the exercise of such authority is not of a merely routine or clerical nature, but requires the use of independent judgment.


9010 Authority of City Manager.

The City Council hereby declares that, as a matter of policy, the Council and its members will deal with employee organizations and their representatives solely through the City Manager, except when otherwise expressly provided by the terms of this policy.

9011 Management Rights Retained by the City.

The city retains the exclusive right to determine the methods, means and personnel by which city government operations are to be conducted, to determine the mission of each of its departments, boards and commissions, as well as to set standards of service to be offered to the public, and any and all of the following:

(a)    To administer the city personnel system.

(b)    To classify positions, add or delete positions or classes of positions to or from its staffing complement and salary resolution.

(c)    To establish standards for employment, promotion and transfer of employees.

(d)    To direct its employees.

(e)    To take disciplinary action for proper cause.

(f)    To schedule work, including scheduling planned absences so as to minimize disruptions in service to the public.

(g)    To relieve its employees from duty because of lack of work, lack of funds or other business reasons.

(h)    To take whatever action may be necessary in an emergency situation.

(i)    Any action undertaken by the City concerning the merits, necessity or organization of its services or activities.

(j)    Any other action taken by the City that reflects concerns or relates to its management rights described above.

9012 Employee Rights.

Employees of the city shall have the right to form, join and participate in the activities of employee organizations of their own choosing for the purpose of representation on all matters of employee relations. Employees of the city also shall have the right to refuse to join or participate in the activities of employee organizations; provided, however, that during meet-and-confer session with the city, an employee filling a position allocated to a specific representation unit may be represented only by the recognized employee organization certified to represent that specific unit.

Nothing in this Part shall be construed to restrict or in any way modify the right of an individual employee to present matters involving his individual employment relationship to the appropriate level of management, provided that any action taken is not inconsistent with the terms of a memorandum of understanding then in effect, and that before any action is taken which could affect the terms and conditions of other employees in the representation unit, such proposed action is communicated to the recognized employee organization for its comments on the merits and the effect of the proposed action.


9020 Establishment.

All classifications for which recognition of an employee organization might be appropriate have been assigned to representation units which may be modified as herein provided. Whenever a new classification is adopted the City Council shall, if appropriate, allocate it to a representation unit after considering the matter at a regular public meeting. A routine title change of an existing classification is not subject to this provision. The following representation units are the appropriate units for representation by recognized employee organizations:

(a)    Public Works & Wastewater Miscellaneous

(b)    City Services Miscellaneous

(c)    Police Sworn

(d)    Police Non-Sworn

(e)    Mid-Management

(f)    Professional Firefighters

Specific Authority: Resolution 2016-56

History: Amended 10/2016

9021 Criteria for Establishing and Modifying Representation Units.

In determining the appropriate employee representation units the following factors, among others, shall be considered:

(a)    Minimizing fragmentation of units by achieving the largest feasible group of employees having a community of interest;

(b)    The effect of the proposed unit on the efficient operation of city services and employee relations;

(c)    The history of employee relations in the unit, among other employees in the city, and in similar public employment and private industry.

(d)    Similarity of duties, skills, wages and working conditions of employees.

(e)    The effect on the existing classification structure of dividing a single classification among two or more units.

(f)    Professional employees shall not be denied the right to be represented separately from nonprofessional employees by a professional employee organization consisting of such employees.

(g)    Management and confidential employees shall not be included in the same unit with non-management or non-confidential employees. Supervisory employees and non-supervisory employees may be included in the same unit. Supervisory employees shall not represent a recognized employee organization in negotiating with management representatives where conflict of interest may occur as determined by the City Manager, subject to appeal to the City Council.

9022 Modification of Representation Units.

A recognized employee organization may request the modification of an established representation unit by submitting to the Personnel Director a petition accompanied by proof of employee approval of the proposed modification signed by not less than sixty percent (60%) of those employees who, if the proposed modification should be granted, would be moved from one representation unit to another.

(a)    A unit modification request may not be submitted until at least thirty-six (36) months have elapsed from the most recent date of certification of the unit from which positions would be removed. Such requests shall be processed only if filed no sooner than one hundred thirty-five (135) and not later than one hundred five (105) calendar days before the expiration of a memorandum of understanding or agreement then in effect covering one or more positions which would be removed.

(b)    All petitions for modified units shall be accompanied by a list of all classifications to be included in the modified unit, the number of employees in each classification, and the divisions and departments to which they belong.

(c)    Notwithstanding any other provisions of this Part, the city may petition for modification of a representation unit at any time that it appears to the City Manager that such an action is warranted because of substantial changes in city functions, organizational structure or classifications.

(d)    The Personnel Director shall give notice of the request for modification of an established representation unit to the employees who would be affected by the proposed modification, to the employee organization which is then certified as the representative of the unit from which one or more positions would be transferred, and to any recognized employee organization that has filed a written request for such notice. The Personnel Director shall give such notice within five (5) working days following receipt of the request.

(e)    All petitions for modification of units shall be set for hearing before the City Council, which shall make the final determination on the appropriateness of all units. In making such determination, the Council shall not be limited to consideration of the unit or units requested, provided, however, that if the Council is considering the establishment of a representation unit other than one described in a petition, the following procedure shall be followed:

(1)    The Council shall set a date when it will act on establishing the representation unit or units, and shall direct the Personnel Director to cause timely notice of the date and purposes of said hearing to be given to all employees whose removal is being considered, and to all recognized employee organizations.

(2)    At the time set for the hearing, the Council shall afford all persons present an opportunity to be heard on the question of establishing the representation unit or units which were not described in a petition or petitions

(3)    After all persons who wish to be heard on the matter have been afforded an opportunity to be heard, the Council shall render its decision on establishing the representation unit or units.

(f)    If, in the opinion of the City Manager, a decision of the City Council has the result of moving from one representation unit to another a sufficient number of employees to possibly affect the representative status of the recognized employee organization representing the unit from which or to which such employees were transferred, a secret ballot election shall be held to determine the wishes of the employees remaining in the unit from which or to which other employees were transferred as to the employee organization to represent the units from which or to which these employees were transferred. Any recognized employee organization may be listed on said secret ballot if that organization has petitioned for a place on said ballot and submitted proof as defined in Section 9003(g) to the Personnel Director signed by at least thirty percent (30%) of the employees in the unit. The ballot submitted to said employees shall include a "No Representative Organization" choice.

(g)    Should the decision of the City Council have the result of moving some employees from one representation unit to another, such employees will continue to work at the rate of pay, and under the same terms and conditions of employment which they had in the unit from which they were transferred until the memorandum of understanding for the unit from which they were transferred expires.

Specific Authority: Resolution No. 2015-32.

History: Amended 7/2015.