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Human Resources Department

Labor Agreements for Deputy Sheriffs' Association (DSA)

2019 - 2023 DSA Memorandum of Understanding: Article 5: Association Rights

Deputy Sheriff's Association 750

5.1 Bulletin Boards

County will furnish five (5) reasonable bulletin board spaces measuring no less than 36 x 48 inches. Bulletin boards shall be located in mutually acceptable areas and shall, when reasonably possible, be out of plain view of the public. All materials to be posted on said boards shall be in good taste and strictly impersonal in nature and limited to the legitimate business of the Association. Prior to posting, all material shall be plainly and legibly initialed by an authorized representative of the Association.

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5.2 Communications

The County’s interdepartmental messenger service may be used for individual business-oriented communication between employees who are represented by the Association and between the paid staff of the Association and such employees, provided that paid staff of the Association shall pick up and deliver all written communications outside the County’s normal distribution route. The Association understands that the continuance or discontinuance of the interdepartmental messenger service is a matter within sole discretion of the County.

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5.3 Work Access

Authorized non-employee Association representatives will be given access to work locations during working hours to investigate and process grievances or post bulletins on the bulletin board(s) without unreasonable interference with employee work. The Association shall give the department head and the Employee Relations Manager a written list of such authorized Association Representatives. Only those people whose name appears on the current list shall be granted access under this provision. 

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5.4 Dues Check Off

The County agrees to deduct all Association dues, insurance premiums and assessments from the pay of those employees who have authorized in writing to the County that such deduction be made. The amounts deducted shall be remitted promptly to the Association or its designee, with an alphabetical list of the employees from whom deducted.

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5.5 Successor Memorandum Procedures

The County and the Association will strive to arrive at mutually agreeable ground rules to cover any element of the meet and confer process for a successor Memorandum of Understanding.

Reasonable release time shall be granted to Association representatives for purposes of meeting and conferring toward a successor MOU. Release time shall be afforded for a maximum of four (4) representatives in successor MOU negotiations for purposes of time spent in meeting and conferring.

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5.6 Non-Discrimination

The County will not interfere with or discriminate in respect to any term or condition of employment against any employee covered by this Memorandum of Understanding because of representation by the Association or legitimate union activity, as provided in this Memorandum on behalf of the members of the two Bargaining Units covered by this Memorandum.  

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5.7 Time for Association Activities

The County and the Association agree to the primary principle that the Association activities will normally be carried on outside of employee working hours. It is further recognized that there are reasonable limited deviations from this policy such as posting of Association notices and distribution of information which do not require substantial amounts of time. Where such activities cannot reasonably be performed except during scheduled working hours, and where such activities are performed without disruption of employee work performance, they are authorized and may be done without loss of pay to the employees involved.

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    5.8 Paid Leave "Pool"


    Upon request, the County will grant Association paid leave to Association representative(s) to attend to Association business related to County of Sonoma representation, when such business would conflict with the work schedule of an employee representative(s). “Association business” shall mean Association Executive Board meetings, conventions, seminars or other Association events, all of which must be related to employer-employee relations and involving matters solely pertaining to the bargaining units covered by this Memorandum of Understanding. When on Association business, Bargaining Unit members are on off-duty status, during which the County is not responsible for their actions.

    Association representatives must contact the Association office to request such paid leave. Additional release hours beyond the annual pool of paid Association leave hours may be granted by the County for Association business on an unpaid leave basis or by the employee representative requesting use of accrued vacation and/or compensatory time off. The County shall not unreasonably deny a request for paid Association business leave or unpaid leave, vacation and/or compensatory time off for Association business unless the County determines the number of Association representatives requesting time off for Association business would create an undue hardship on operational effectiveness, including excessive overtime costs to replace the absent Association representative(s).

    All requests for leave under this section shall be made in writing on a form as agreed to by the parties.

    1. Unit Member Contributions
      After one year of service, a represented employee may contribute up to twenty-two (22) hours per year of either accrual, compensatory time off or vacation. There is no minimum contribution amount. A contributor must have 80 hours vacation balance after contribution. There is no compensatory time off minimum balance.
    2. Association Charges
      The County will charge the Association for overtime costs incurred to backfill positions, when paid leave time under this Article is used. The cost shall be deducted by the County from the Association paid leave pool first. If paid leave is exhausted, the Association will be charged for additional time.
    3. Rollover  
      Employee contributions are rolled over to the following year.
    4. County Contribution
      In addition, the County will authorize 140 hours per year for the Association’s use.

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    5.9 Representation Assistance

    Except as otherwise modified by a specific provision of this Memorandum of Understanding, Association employee and non-employee representatives shall have the right to represent or assist employees covered by this Memorandum of Understanding before the Board of Supervisors, the Civil Service Commission, grievance meetings with County management under the Grievance Procedure of this Memorandum of Understanding or other meetings with County management mutually agreed to in advance. 

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    5.10 Use of County Facilities

    Upon request of the Association, the County may provide use of County facilities outside of working hours, provided such space is available and the Association complies with all departmental and Board of Supervisors rules and policies for use of County facilities. The request for use of facilities shall be made in advance to the County and indicate the date, time and purpose of the meeting and facilities needed.

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    5.11 Data Run – All Employees in Units

    At the Association’s request, the County will provide the Association with a data run of the names, class titles, and departments of all employees within the two Bargaining Units covered by this Memorandum of Understanding. The Association recognizes and respects the legal right of each employee to the employee’s privacy and agrees not to use any information obtained pursuant to this Memorandum of Understanding or to allow others to use the information for commercial gain, nor in any manner that would violate those rights. With respect to this promise, the Association agrees to indemnify, defend and hold harmless the County, its officers, employees, and agents, from any claim, liability, or damage arising from the Association’s breach of its duty under this Article 5.11.

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    5.12 Data Run – New Employees in Units

    The County shall, once per month, make available to the Association President a list of the names, home addresses (where the employee so authorizes the release to the County and the Association), and work locations of all newly hired employees. The President of the Association, or designee, shall be entitled to contact all newly hired employees for the purpose of providing the employee with an Association brochure and other information about the Association. These activities will be conducted on the President’s and the newly hired employee’s own time. Upon request, the Association may be authorized to make this contact with newly hired employees at a departmental orientation period if the County agrees that such contacts will not interfere or detract from the purpose of the departmental orientation process.

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    5.13 Board Agenda

    The County will arrange to transmit or make available to the Association President, or designee, two copies each week of the Board of Supervisors’ regular public meeting agenda in advance of the regular Board meeting. The County will also continue to transmit or make available to the Association President, or designee, two copies of the regular Civil Service Commission agenda and classification studies scheduled on that agenda pertaining to classifications represented by the Association in advance of the Commission meeting.

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