In a class action minimum wage suit, a California state appellate court last Friday held that the University of California is exempt from state statutes and regulations governing wages and benefits for public employees, including minimum wage requirements. The case, Gomez v. Regents of Univ. of Cal. involves a class of hourly employees at UC San Diego Medical Center who claim that they were deprived of minimum wage and seek the unpaid balance of wages owed and civil penalties on behalf of the state. Dismissing both claims, the court wrote that, as a public trust, the university system is exempt from statutes covering employee wages and benefits, overtime pay, and prevailing wage.
In accordance with President Joe Biden’s February executive order calling upon DHS to organize a plan “describing the steps the Department will take to advance the administration’s immigration policies,” the US Department of Justice last Friday moved to stay proceedings before the District of Maryland US District Court, indicating that the asylum work permit rules at issue in the case were presently under review by the Department of Homeland Security, and that the outcome of the review may moot or alter the plaintiff’s claims. The rules at issue, which came into effect in August, extended the time asylum seekers must wait before applying for work authorization from 150 days to one year, and voided the requirement that U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services adjudicate asylum seekers’ applications for work permits within 30 days of that workers’ application.
The Florida Senate will this Tuesday consider a bill (SB 1014/HB 835) which requires affirmative consent from public employees to have dues automatically deducted from their paychecks. Public employees must also renew their authorization every three years or each time a collective bargaining agreement is renegotiated — whichever occurs more frequently. The bill also requires a union to revoke an employee’s membership immediately upon request. Florida is already “right-to-work” state—workers already have to consent in order to pay dues to the union that represents them. Thus, according to union leaders, the “revocation at will” provision, as well as the requirement that members must renew their consent to have dues deducted at frequent intervals, is designed to impose administrative burdens on unions and frustrate workplace democracy.