1. November 22, 2011

    Dealing With the New Law Limiting Retention to Five Percent on Public Works Projects

    BY: Hugh Lee, Bryce Chastain

    Despite opposition from various public agency groups supporting school and community college districts, Senate Bill 293 was signed into law. The new law limits retention on public works projects to five percent. Codified as Public Contract Code section 7201, the limit on retention applies to all contracts entered into on or after January 1, 2012. […] more

  2. November 15, 2011

    Side Letters Do Not Necessarily Expire When Parties Subsequently Reach Agreement on a Collective Bargaining Agreement

    BY: Jabari Willis, Mark Bresee

    In Palomar Community College District (2011) PERB Decision No. 2213-E, the Public Employment Relations Board (“Board”) clarified that a side letter of agreement between parties does not automatically expire when the parties reach agreement on a subsequent collective bargaining agreement ("CBA"). more

  3. November 9, 2011

    Are Your Acceptable Use Policies Up to Date?

    BY: Peter Sturges, Tony De Marco

    The adoption of acceptable use policies to establish the nature and limits of employee and student access to and use of computer systems is by now a common practice. Once such policies are established, however, districts and county offices of education sometimes fail to review them to ensure they are current.  more

  4. November 3, 2011

    U.S. Supreme Court Will Not Review Federal Court Decision Upholding Student Discipline for Off-campus, Online Speech

    BY: Cathie Fields, Mark Bresee

    In April 2011, the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit (NY, VT, CT) upheld the discipline of a high school student based on an off-campus internet posting.  (Doninger v. Niehoff (2d Cir. 2011) 642 F.3d 334.)The student petitioned the U.S. Supreme Court for review of that decision.  This week, the Court declined to […] more

  5. November 1, 2011

    Community College and University Auxiliary Organizations Must Make Their Records Open to the Public

    BY: Aaron O'Donnell, Sharon Ormond, Cathie Fields

    Effective January 1, 2012, SB 8 amends the higher-education provisions of the Education Code (72690 et seq.; 89913 et seq.; and 92950 et seq.) to require auxiliary organizations of the California Community Colleges, the California State University, and the University of California to comply with disclosure provisions essentially similar to the California Public Records Act, […] more

  6. October 25, 2011

    Union Requests for Information: Has the Law Changed?

    BY: Cathie Fields, Marleen Sacks

    Recently, our clients have been getting bombarded with requests from local unions for information related to pending disciplinary cases and grievances, with the unions claiming that the information is “necessary and relevant” to the representation of their members.  No doubt this recent uptick in such requests is due the June 30, 2011 PERB decision in […] more

  7. October 24, 2011

    Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act Bid Threshold Increases

    BY: Anthony Niccoli, Hugh Lee

    For those school and community college districts (and other public agencies) that have opted into the California Uniform Public Construction Cost Accounting Act (“UCAA”), at Public Contract Code Section 22000 et seq., your flexibility just increased.  Back on July 1, 2011, Assembly Bill 943 increased the formal bidding threshold amount for public agencies that have […] more

  8. October 21, 2011

    Recent Sale of Bonds Yields Needed Funds for School Facility Program Projects

    BY: Bryce Chastain, Hugh Lee

    The Office of Public School Construction (“OPSC”) recently announced that the State successfully sold bonds on October 19th yielding “approximately $1 billion for School Facility Program projects.”  OPSC expects the State Allocation Board (“SAB”) to include disbursement of the available funds “to projects on the unfunded list with valid priority funding certifications” on its December 2011 agenda.  […] more

  9. October 21, 2011

    New Funding Coming Up for Natural Gas Busing

    BY: Stephen McLoughlin, Hugh Lee

    Starting on January 1, 2012, local air quality management districts, aka air pollution control districts (“APCDs”), will have the ability to grant funds to school districts to help retrofit emission control equipment and replace natural gas tanks on school buses, as well as enhance school districts’ existing natural gas fueling stations.  These funds will come […] more

  10. October 19, 2011

    Victims of Bullying May be Given Priority or Additional Consideration for Interdistrict Transfers

    BY: Jabari Willis, Mark Bresee

    On October 9, 2011, Governor Brown signed AB 1156.  The law, similar to AB 9 (also approved by Governor Brown on October 9, 2011, and about which we previously reported), is an anti-bullying measure aimed at giving victims of bullying priority or special consideration for interdistrict transfers.  The law amends Sections 32261 (Interagency School Safety […] more