Decision 2910M – Eastern Municipal Water District

LA-CE-1335-M and LA-CE-1355-M

Decision Date: July 8, 2024

Decision Type: PERB Decision (Non-Precedential)

Description:  Dorian Francis Corliss, an employee of Eastern Municipal Water District, alleged that the District terminated him in retaliation for protected activities and interfered with his rights under the MMBA. The ALJ dismissed the retaliation claim, finding that, even absent protected activity, the District would have taken the exact same action against Corliss based on a non-discriminatory reason. In contrast, the ALJ found that the District interfered with protected activities when it: (1) alleged that protected activity constituted wrongdoing; and (2) required Corliss to obtain District permission before accessing District property or contacting any District employee other than his designated representative. Corliss excepted to the ALJ’s decision on his retaliation claim, as well as to the ALJ’s proposed remedy.

Disposition:  In a non-precedential decision, the Board affirmed the ALJ’s conclusions as to the merits but revised the proposed remedial order. The Board disagreed with Corliss’s argument in favor of reinstatement and backpay, as the District would have terminated Corliss for a legitimate reason even absent the District’s unlawful interference. However, the Board issued a tailored remedy ordering the District to cease and desist from violating the MMBA in the manner that it did here, post a notice, and expunge those portions of the discharge documents that assert protected activities constituted wrongdoing.

Decision Headnotes

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