Board Meeting 2/17/15

The regularly scheduled Meeting of the ADDA Board of Directors occurred on Tuesday, 2/17/15.

The next regularly scheduled Board Meeting will occur on Monday, March 16th, 2015 commencing at 6:00 pm at the ADDA’s new offices located at 555 W. 5th Street, The Regus Business Center in the Gas Co. Building, on the 31st Floor, Conference Room, downtown Los Angeles. If you would like to attend, you must contact our secretary, Juliana Konze, in advance to arrange admittance due to security screening. She can be reached at (858) 869-3722 or by emailing secretaryadda@laadda.com. The ADDA will not reimburse for parking and parking in this building is expensive.

QUARTERLY MEMBERSHIP MEETING

The First Quarterly Meeting of the Membership as required by the Bylaws for 2015 will also occur on this date: 3/16/15 commencing at 6:00 pm at our new offices. If you would like to attend, you must RSVP by contacting our secretary, Juliana Konze, in advance to arrange admittance due to security screening. She can be reached at (858) 869-3722 or by emailing secretaryadda@laadda.com. The ADDA will not reimburse for parking and parking in this building is expensive.

PREPARATIONS FOR NEGOTIATIONS

The Board began the meeting by discussing preparations for upcoming contract/MOU negotiations currently scheduled for June. We have hired Barbara Maynard to conduct a comparative salary survey, something AFSCME promised us 10 months ago but never delivered. Ms. Maynard does this same service for the County Coalition of Unions and others and has a wealth of experience. Our Executive Director, John Rees, secured Ms. Maynard’s services on our behalf and is solving all ADDA operating issues. As our lead negotiator, Mr. Rees is actively engaged in assessing the current climate, making contact with the County and our Administration, and gearing us up. We are currently pursuing two distinct strategies, and we remain cautiously optimistic about our prospects. Frankly, I think we are pretty lucky to have Mr. Rees on board.

SECURITY SCREENING LEGISLATION

Vice President Michele Hanisee then informed us of the status of our efforts to obtain legislation to address bypassing security screening. She attended the last Public Safety meeting in Sacramento, and met Timothy Yaryan who chairs that working group. Mr. Yaryan is a well-respected, highly experienced, and effective lobbyist in Sacramento. The Board agreed to retain Mr. Yaryan as our lobbyist. His first efforts will involve assisting us in obtaining legislation concerning bypassing security screening. Ms. Hanisee will also contact all DDA organizations in the state to inquire about their issues if any with security screening and to seek their support, and possibly the support of the DA in each County. Our DA, Jackie Lacey, has pledged her support in our effort to secure legislation to address this matter of importance to all DDAs. Ms. Hanisee will, in the near future, write up a brief description of Mr. Yaryan’s qualifications and what he will do for the ADDA and will forward that to you in the near future.

TREASURER JAMES EVANS

Our Treasurer, James Evans, whose function for this Board often involves tedious and unending attention to financial details was thanked profusely by all the Directors for all his efforts in serving the ADDA. He will be attending training to access County payroll and accounting in order to directly add and delete members more expeditiously. He is conferring with our new CPA, Rita Villa, about the Hudson Audit and other matters. Soon we will be hiring a bookkeeper to assist in all these functions because it really is too much for a volunteer, even more reason James deserves our thanks.

COMMUNICATIONS FIRM

Director Eric Siddall has finalized the hiring or our new Public Relations/Communication firm. Very soon you will be receiving news updates entitled Monday Memo, and this is just the beginning. Eric will write up a brief description of this firm and some of our initial plans and forward it to you all in the near future.

WEBSITE DEVELOPMENT

Director Bobby Grace and Juliana Konze, our secretary, with the help of our new website and social media developer, Gary Clarke, have gained access to our website. Gary also participated in our Tuesday conference call with our new Communications Consultants. What we have learned is that the old website publishing system is outdated, and we are systematically migrating to a new system with greater functionality and larger applications. Soon we will have a Facebook and Twitter presence, a forum to share ideas, and a host of other convenient possibilities. Stay tuned.

ENDORSEMENTS

The ADDA endorsed DDA Debra Archuleta for Judge, and DDA Casey Higgins for City Council of San Dimas.

INCREASING MEMBERSHIP

Townhall Meetings continue throughout the County. The principal aim of these meetings is to increase membership. This is a key component of our effort to prepare for negotiations as full support of the ADDA’s efforts by all DDAs sends a powerful signal to both the DA Administration and the County. Membership is only .6% of salary and, we are told, is the lowest dues of any bargaining unit in this County. Full membership is only approximately $10 per month more than the minimal agency fee determined by the Hudson audit which determines the bargaining unit’s minimal operating costs. With that extra $10 the ADDA can engage in legislative efforts, like bypassing security screening, supporting candidates, like the Board of Supervisors who determine whether you get raises or not, etcetera. Also, with that extra $10 the ADDA will seek to protect your confidential information present on websites. This is a service for which some companies charge as much as $100 per year. So, full membership in the ADDA secures you the added protection of demanding that your confidential identifying information be removed. This service alone fully justifies the added nominal membership fee. Please join now and help us to help you.

If you can’t attend, please secure a membership application and an indemnity agreement re your confidential information and fill both out and drop them off.

LEGAL REPRESENTATION PLAN

Our General Counsel, Richard Shinee, updated the Board on pending grievances, etcetera, and also prepared a first draft of our Legal Plan, essentially what is called the DFR or Duty of Fair Representation. The Board will be reviewing that outline and possibly making some decisions concerning the DFR at the next regularly scheduled Board Meeting.

PROMOTIONAL LISTS

First, as I understand it, the County Department of Human Resources decides when to close the promotional list, not the DA Administration. I’m told that HR apparently bases its decision in part on the age of the list and the number of potential candidates who have become eligible during the existence of list.

The list remains open for 6 month intervals. The DA Administration can request to keep the list open or, I suppose, requests to close the list; but Human Resources makes the final decision.

Assistant District Attorney Pam Booth informed me:

1. The Administration’s recent request to extend the promotional list for Grade IVs was granted by Human Resources. Therefore, the DDA IV list will now expire in August. In other words, it remains open for another six months.

2. The DDA Grade III promotional list will expire in June.

As we approach the expiration date for the Grade III list, if someone reminds me I will talk to Pam again to learn whether the Administration will request an extension and whether an extension is granted.

Thanks again to Pam for providing the ADDA with this information for dissemination.

SO, WHY AREN’T YOU THE HIGHEST PAID PROSECUTORS IN THIS STATE?

Our DA Jackie Lacey has decided to “provide training to foreign governments under a new agreement with the U.S. State Department.” The Nation thinks we are the best! Our DA thinks we are the best! Why doesn’t this County think we are the best? As we approach negotiations it is important that we have all DDAs supporting the efforts of your certified bargaining unit to advance your interests. I can’t promise that the ADDA will achieve this goal in the next round of negotiation, but I believe that the DDAs in this office should be the highest paid prosecutors in this state and nation. Obviously this goal is likely to require multiple future contract negotiations over time. Let’s start now! Please join the ADDA now! Please help us to help you.

If you have any questions or concerns, you can contact any Officer or Director on the Board or call me at (818) 489-9603 or email me at president@laadda.com.

Marc Debbaudt
President
Association of Deputy District Attorneys