SCOPE OF REPRESENTATION – In General; Test for Subjects Not Specifically Enumerated

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1000.01000 – In General; Test for Subjects Not Specifically Enumerated

If a decision falls within the third Richmond Firefighters category, PERB first determines whether the decision has “a significant and adverse effect on the wages, hours, or working conditions of the bargaining-unit employees” that “arises from the implementation of a fundamental managerial or policy decision.” (City and County of San Francisco (2022) PERB Decision No. 2846-M, pp. 15-18 (San Francisco), citing International Assn. of Fire Fighters, Local 188, AFL-CIO v. Public Employment Relations Bd. (2011) 51 Cal.4th 259, 272-273 (Richmond Firefighters) and Claremont Police Officers Assn. v. City of Claremont (2006) 39 Cal.4th 623, 638.) The “significant and adverse” standard requires PERB to look at effects from the perspective of a reasonable employee. (County of Sonoma (2023) PERB Decision No. 2772a-M, pp. 16-22.) If there are significant and adverse effects, the remaining question is whether “the employer’s need for unencumbered decision-making in managing its operations is outweighed by the benefit to employer-employee relations of bargaining about the action in question.” (Id. at pp. 14 & 23; San Francisco, supra, PERB Decision No. 2846-M, pp. 18-19.) For most types of decisions, PERB need not “reinvent the wheel” by applying the Richmond Firefighters framework from scratch, because precedent establishes subject-specific standards that show how the framework applies to a given topic. (County of Santa Clara (2023) PERB Decision No. 2876-M, pp. 24-25 [judicial appeal pending]; Oakland Unified School District (2023) PERB Decision No. 2875, p. 16, fn. 11; San Francisco, supra, PERB Decision No. 2846-M, p. 18, fn. 15.) (pp. 14-15.)