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Human Resources Department

Employee Relations Division

Article I - General Provisions

Employee Relations 750

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Board of Supervisors Resolution #NAP 250, DR74460, 74461
Issue Date: June 14, 1983

Table of Contents for Article I

  1. Section 1. Purpose
  2. Section 2. Definitions

Read next: Article II - Representation Proceedings

Section 1. Purpose

The purpose of this resolution is to provide orderly procedures for the administration of employer-employee relations between the County and its employee organizations. Nothing in this policy shall be deemed to supersede the ordinance and rules which establish and regulate the civil service system.

This resolution is intended to provide procedures for meeting and conferring in good faith with recognized employee organizations regarding matters that directly affect and primarily involve the wages, hours, and other terms and conditions of employment of employees in appropriate units and that are not preempted by Federal or State law. Nothing herein shall be construed to restrict any legal or inherent exclusive County rights with respect to matters of general legislative or managerial policy.

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Section 2. Definitions

Any term not defined herein which is defined by the Meyers-Milias-Brown Act shall have the meaning set forth herein.

Active status:
means the time period during which a payroll time record is produced for an employee.
Administrative Management Employee:
means an employee customarily having responsibility for formulating, administering or managing the implementation of County policies and programs.
Appropriate Unit:
means a unit of employee classes or positions established pursuant to Article II hereof.
Confidential Employee:
means an employee who, routinely, in the course of his or her duties, has advance knowledge of decisions relating to the County’s employer-employee relations or advance knowledge of information developed for the purpose of making decisions relating to the County’s administration of employer-employee relations.
Consult/Consultation in Good Faith:
means to communicate orally or in writing for the purpose of presenting and obtaining views; and, as distinguished from meeting and conferring in good faith, is not subject to Article IV hereof.
means the County of Sonoma, the Sonoma County Water Agency and other special districts governed by the Board of Supervisors.
means calendar day unless expressly stated otherwise.
Employee Relations Officer:
means the Director of Personnel and Employee Relations or duly authorized representative.
means that the representative of the County and a recognized employee organization have reached a point in their meeting and conferring in good faith where their differences on matters to be included in a Memorandum of Understanding, and concerning which they are required to meet and confer, remain so substantial and prolonged that further meeting and conferring would be futile.
means the efforts of a neutral third person, or persons, as provided in this Policy, who function as intermediaries to assist the parties in reaching a voluntary resolution to an impasse.
Meet and confer in Good Faith:
means that the representatives of the County and of a recognized employee organization have the mutual obligation to personally meet and communicate privately, either orally or in writing, promptly upon request by either party and continue for a reasonable period of time, including the time necessary for utilization of the interest dispute impasse procedure in Article IV, in order to exchange timely information opinions and proposals and to endeavor to reach agreement on matters within the scope of representation, and to execute a written Memorandum of Understanding, for presentation to the Board of Supervisors, if requested by either party, incorporating any and all such understandings so agreed upon, provided that such obligation does not compel either party to agree to a proposal or to make a concession. The Memorandum of Understanding shall not be binding unless and until it is adopted by the Board of Supervisors.
Professional employee:
means an employee engaged in work:
  1. Predominately intellectual and varied in character as opposed to routing mental, manual, mechanical, or physical work;
  2. Involving the consistent exercise of discretion and judgment in its performance.
  3. Of such a character that the output produced or the result accomplished can not be standardized in relation to a given period of time; and
  4. Requiring knowledge of an advanced type in a field of science or learning customarily acquired by a prolonged course of specialized intellectual instruction and study in an institution of higher learning or a hospital, as distinguished from a general academic education or from an apprenticeship or from training in the performance of routine mental, manual or physical process; or
  5. An employee who has completed the courses of specialized intellectual instruction and study described in (4), above, and is performing related work under the supervision of a professional person to qualify to become a professional employee as defined in (1) through (4), above.
Recognized Employee Organization:
means an employee organization which has been formally acknowledged by the County as the sole employee organization which represents the employees in an appropriate representation unit pursuant to Article II hereof.
Scope of representation:
means all matters relating to employment conditions and employer-employee relations, including, but not limited to, wages, hours and other terms and conditions of employment, except, however, that the scope of representation shall not include consideration of the merits, necessity, or organization of any service or activity provided by law or executive order.
Supervisory Employee:
means any employee having authority, in the interest of the County, to hire, transfer, suspend, lay off, recall, promote, discharge, assign, reward, or discipline other employees, or responsibility to direct them, or to adjust their grievances, or effectively to recommend such action, if, in connection with the foregoing, the exercise of such authority is not of a merely routine or clerical nature, but requires the use of independent judgment.

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