All notes for Subtopic 608.03000 – Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position

DecisionDescriptionPERC Vol.PERC IndexDate
2544E Bellflower Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
The Board rejected a school district’s exception that a Board-ordered remedy including restoration of the status quo and make-whole relief conflicted with federal law governing special education. The district’s statement of exceptions and supporting brief included no citation to any provision of the federal statute or decisional law interpreting it, and the district failed to explain how PERB’s customary remedy for a unilateral change would conflict with federal law. The district’s filing both failed to comply with the requirements of PERB Regulation 32300 governing exceptions, and, even if considered, had no merit. Unless a remedial measure positively conflicts with “inflexible standard[s]” or “immutable provisions” set by external law, the fact that it affects matters normally within the jurisdiction of another tribunal does not, by itself, make PERB’s remedy improper. (pp. 10-11.) more or view all topics or full text.
427012/15/17
2518E Los Angeles Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Neither school district’s size nor the low graduation rate of its students excused it from bargaining over the negotiable subject of teacher evaluation criteria. School district did not demonstrate that any failures of its existing observation and evaluation system ever reached emergency proportions. more or view all topics or full text.
4114603/06/17
2433M Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
A hospital’s layoff implementation date is not arbitrary when: (1) it is pegged to economic factors external to the hospital’s decision-making authority and beyond its control; (2) the hospital exercises its management prerogative to reduce staff in light of foreseeably lower patient census numbers and a reduction in revenue; and (3) the union never proposed an alternative date for the layoffs based on a different substantive reason other than that cited by the hospital. more or view all topics or full text.
40406/15/15
2423M County of San Bernardino (Office of the Public Defender)
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Under exceptionally limited circumstances, an employer may be excused from negotiating on the basis of true emergency that provides a basis for claiming that a business necessity excused a unilateral change. However, to establish “operational necessity” or “business necessity” as a defense to a unilateral change, the employer must establish an actual financial or other emergency that leaves no alternative to the action taken and allows no time for meaningful negotiations before taking action. The alleged necessity must be the unavoidable result of a sudden change in circumstance beyond the employer’s control. The Public Defender’s alleged “legitimate business reasons” for unilaterally constraining a union’s authority to choose its representatives for investigatory interviews do not rise to the required level of an unforeseen and unavoidable result due to a sudden change in circumstance beyond the employer’s control. The Public Defender knew of the relevant circumstances two years before it unilaterally implemented its new and expanded policy, and the Public Defender cites no evidence of any exigent circumstances that could justify its unilateral action. more or view all topics or full text.
3916505/15/15
2394C Santa Clara County Superior Court
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
The overriding intent of Government Code section 68106 was to save money so that the judicial branch could continue to function. more or view all topics or full text.
395610/20/14
2388M City of Palo Alto * * * SUPERCEDED by City of Palo Alto (2017) PERB Decision No. 2388a-M
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
A compelling operational necessity may justify an employer acting unilaterally before completing its bargaining obligation. The employer must demonstrate “an actual financial emergency which leaves no real alternative to the action taken and allows no time for meaningful negotiations before taking action. An employer may implement a change prior to completion of bargaining on the effects of a non-negotiable decision but only where: (1) the implementation date was not arbitrary, but based on an immutable externally-established deadline, or on an important managerial interest such that delay beyond the chosen date would undermine the employer’s right to make the decision at all; (2) the employer gave the union notice of the decision and implementation date sufficiently in advance of the implementation date to allow for meaningful meeting and conferring prior to the implementation; and (3) the employer met and negotiated in good faith on implementation and effects prior to the implementation, and thereafter as to those subjects not resolved by virtue of the implementation. more or view all topics or full text.
392508/06/14
2298M Salinas Valley Memorial Healthcare System
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
It is undisputed that the hospital’s layoff decision was driven by labor cost considerations. Thus, the implementation (timing of the layoff, and the number and identity of employees to be laid off) and the impact and effects on remaining employees, including workload and safety, were mandatory subjects for meeting and conferring prior to the implementation of the layoff. (City of Richmond (2011) 51 Cal.4th 259.) more or view all topics or full text.
12/20/12
2380M City of Selma
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Economic exigency does not suspend the duty to bargain in good faith. Nor is an employer’s deadline, such as the beginning of a budget year or the expiration of an MOU, an excuse to avoid bargaining in good faith. more or view all topics or full text.
391106/27/14
2296M City of Long Beach
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Asserted fiscal emergency under MMBA section 3504.5 did not authorize city to impose furloughs, where city did not formally declare fiscal emergency until two months after it unilaterally implemented furlough plan and failed to establish that it had no alternative to unilaterally imposing furloughs rather than complete the meet and confer process. more or view all topics or full text.
12/04/12
2271M City of Davis
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
City failed to establish a business necessity for implementing its last, best and final offer, in that it did not declare a fiscal emergency and had reserves sufficient to face projected shortfall. more or view all topics or full text.
06/08/12
1972E Temple City Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
District declined to ratify tentative agreement following Governor's office announcement of severe mid-year cuts in education funding. No requirement that a party ratify a tentative agreement. However, the duty to bargain is revived following the rejection of a tentative agreement. District ratification of modified tentative agreement with offer to resume negotiations if the adopted tentative agreement was unacceptable was nothing more than a counter proposal. Contract language required the parties to fund originally negotiated salary increase or whatever portion of increase that could be supported by budget cuts. This language did not require that a salary increase be implemented without further negotiations if sufficient funds were available. The agreement did not establish the actual amount of the salary increase once spending cuts were identified. more or view all topics or full text.
3213208/26/08

608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
City's need for unencumbered decisionmaking outweighed the benefit to employer-employee relations of bargaining about fire commission's alteration of past practice of requesting immediate replacement when a promotional eligibility list is about to expire. The action had a very narrow impact on promotional opportunities and wages, and served the important goal of protecting the integrity of the integration process established in the fire department. more or view all topics or full text.

608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
County ordinance labeled an urgency measure effective immediately and declared necessary to "protect the public health and safety" and "to prevent the substantial impairment of County departmental operations" allowing suspension of employees during rolling job actions found valid. County introduction of ordinance declaring emergency provided prima facie evidence of emergency, shifting burden to employee organization to show invalidity. Emergency is an unforseen situation calling for immediate action with an imminent and substantial threat to public health or safety. An emergency must have a substantial likelihood that serious harm will be experienced unless immediate action is taken, not simple speculation. Emergency is not synonymous with expediency, convenience, or best interest. more or view all topics or full text.

608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Order for employee to submit to drug testing was a matter "relating to employment conditions" not requiring "consideration of the merits, necessity, or organization of any service or activity provided by law" in light of absence of evidence showing that cities' primary purpose was protection of public safety. City therefore violated bargaining obligation under MMBA by unilaterally ordering employee to submit to drug testing. Before issuing order city was required to meet and confer in good faith with the employees' bargaining organization and fully consider the presentations of the organization. more or view all topics or full text.

608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Decision to transfer bargaining unit work to non unit employees had no effect on the services provided by hospital, but directly affected the wages, hours, and working conditions of the hospital employees therefore was a suitable subject for bargaining under the fundamental management decision balancing test. more or view all topics or full text.

608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Cost alone is not a sufficient basis to exclude a rule from meet and confer. more or view all topics or full text.
1440E Lucia Mar Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Employer must demonstrate that the necessity is the unavoidable result of a sudden change in circumstances beyond the employer's control in order to justify unilateral action. The timing of emergency must preclude opportunity for negotiation and there must be no alternative. more or view all topics or full text.
253207305/24/01
1255H Regents of the University of California (California Nurses Association)
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
While earthquake created unanticipated and devastating situation, Board finds no business necessity where University maintained unilaterally implemented change after emergency had subsided and no facts support emergency transfer of work; p. 37, proposed dec. more or view all topics or full text.
222906603/20/98
1045E Oakland Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
To excuse a unilateral change due to business necessity, the district must prove that the financial crisis offered no real alternative to the unilateral action and prevented any opportunity for meaningful negotiations; p. 10, proposed decision. Although the district was clearly having financial difficulties, several options, short of unilaterally terminiating the existing health plan, were available to the district. The district also failed to prove that its financial condition allowed no additional time for further negotiations or for completion of the impasse procedures; p. 11, proposed decision. more or view all topics or full text.
182507305/03/94
0911E Cloverdale Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
An employer may sucessfully defend a unilateral change in the status quo on the basis of business necessity. The District failed to establish that an emergency existed which was sufficient to necessitate the revision of the teachers' schedule; p. 21. more or view all topics or full text.
152217911/20/91
0784E Compton Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
An employer may not take unilateral action on negotiable subjects, even if faced with actual economic collapse of unknown proportions. It may bring its concerns to the bargaining table. District's claim that it was required by operational necessity to unilaterally reduce overtime to allow students to complete a work study program did not constitute a defense of economic necessity. more or view all topics or full text.
142102912/29/89
0684E Los Rios Community College District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Employer faced with a true emergency and a recalcitrant union may sucessfully defend a unilateral change on the basis of business necessity. more or view all topics or full text.
121911206/23/88
0625E Fountain Valley Elementary School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
No business necessity shown in implementing nonmandatory provisions of SB 813. more or view all topics or full text.
111811506/23/87
0488E Pleasant Valley School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Fiscal hardship and program comparability requirements do not excuse unilateral reduction in instructional aide hours; ignorance of own operations no excuse for unilateral action, even if it were, there was sufficient time to bargain. more or view all topics or full text.
91609302/27/85
0373E Mt. Diablo Unified School District  * * * REVERSED IN PART BY Mt. Diablo Unified School District (1984) PERB Decision No. 373b
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Fact that Education Code contains certain deadlines regarding layoff notices did not constitute "business necessity" justifying a failure to negotiate implementation of layoff; p. 36. more or view all topics or full text.
81501712/30/83
0367E Oakland Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Unilateral action of implementing school calendar not justified by operational necessity based on community pressure and potential confusion in education program; pp. 36-37. more or view all topics or full text.
81500812/16/83
0357E Calexico Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Employer must, to establish business necessity defense, to unilateral action on salaries, show actual financial emergency which leaves no real alternative to the action taken and allows no time for meaningful negotiations before taking action. more or view all topics or full text.
71429111/22/83
0318E Pittsburg Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Employer's reduction of 12 to 10 month of clerical employees for all time is not reduction to perceived funding crisis. more or view all topics or full text.
71417606/10/83
0275E Oakland Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
As District's position of maintaining seniority pursuant to Education Code was based on legitimate concerns, District fulfilled its obligation to negotiate over proposal in good faith; p. 19. more or view all topics or full text.
71402912/29/82
0269S State of California (Department of Health Services)
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Education Code section 42694.5, which gives county superintendent ultimate authority over pay warrants, does not allow the employer to assert the defense of "impossibility" with respect to its ability to negotiate lump-sum payments; pp. 14-16. more or view all topics or full text.
71402312/22/82
0236E Oakland Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Employer cannot defend charge of unilateral change on the basis that it is faced with an economic crisis of unknown dimensions where the facts do not reveal an acute time frame in which it must act; p. 14. more or view all topics or full text.
61320108/31/82
0206E Moreno Valley Unified School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Financial uncertainty, resulting from passage of Proposition 13, does not enable an employer to take unilateral action on matters within scope. The employer must fulfill negotiating responsibility; pp. 17-18, proposed dec. more or view all topics or full text.
61310704/30/82
0201E Anaheim Union High School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
District's claim it acted on good faith belief that it had to reduce teachers' salaries by July 1 (Proposition 13) rejected. District under no such legal obligation; p. 5. more or view all topics or full text.
61307803/26/82
0175E Sutter Union High School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
School employer contention that it had to increase length of school day in order to meet University of California admission standards and is rejected. School district, knowing it must make curriculum change, cannot sit back until last minute and then make change unilaterally. more or view all topics or full text.
51212810/07/81
0146E San Francisco Community College District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Fears of economic problems in the wake of passage of Proposition 13 do not justify employer's unilateral elimination of supervisory stipends, certain fringe benefits and salary step increments. more or view all topics or full text.
41119911/25/80
0116E Davis Unified School District/New Haven Unified School District/Newark Unified School District/State Center Community College District/Centinela Valley Union High School District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Financial situation does not excuse unilateral change where District had early knowledge of its financial problems and sufficient time to negotiate prior to implementation of salary freeze; pp. 28-29. more or view all topics or full text.
41103102/22/80
0105E San Francisco Community College District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Passage of Prop. 13 insufficient to justify refusal to bargain; pp. 8-11. When confronted with economic reversal of unknown proportions, district may not take unilateral action on matters within scope; pp. 10-11. more or view all topics or full text.
31012710/12/79
0094E San Mateo County Community College District
608.3000: EMPLOYER REFUSAL TO BARGAIN IN GOOD FAITH; DEFENSES; Business Necessity; Employer Financial Position
Subjective good faith is not sufficient even in face of Prop. 13 budget cuts; inability to pay is a negotiations issue, not a rationale for unilateral change; Board rejects "publication date" argument, no evidence that situation couldn't have been addressed in negotiations; p. 10. "Public interest" defense rejected as duplicative of business necessity defense; pp. 25-26. more or view all topics or full text.
31008006/08/79