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Archive for October 6th, 2010|Daily archive page

California Supreme Court Rejects Challenge to Governor’s Furlough Program

In Other Cases of Interest on October 6, 2010 at 10:15 pm
Arnold Schwarzenegger in July 2003
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On Monday, the California Supreme Court held that the California “Legislature’s 2009 enactment of the revisions to the 2008 Budget Act operated to ratify the use of the two-day-a-month furlough program as a permissible means of achieving the reduction of state employee compensation mandated by the act.”  Professional Engineers in California Government v. Schwarzenegger, No. S183411, — Cal.Rptr.3d —-, 2010 WL 3835132, *2 (Cal. Oct. 4, 2010).  Accordingly, the Court concluded that the “2009 budget legislation validated the Governor’s furlough program here at issue, and rejected plaintiffs’ challenge to that program.  Id.

On December 1, 2008 Governor Arnold Schwarzenegger declared a fiscal emergency, called the Legislature into special session, and submitted to the Legislature a comprehensive plan to address the budget problem.  Id. *1.  The Governor’s budget plan included, among many other cost-saving features, two proposed statutory provisions that would impose a mandatory one-day-a-month unpaid furlough of most state employees employed by the executive branch.  Id. The Legislature later passed its own proposed comprehensive budget legislation, but the Legislature’s alternative plan did not include the Governor’s recommended furlough provision.  Id. Read the rest of this entry »

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Judge Illston of Northern District Approves $3.5 Million Non-Reversionary Settlement of Meal and Rest Break Class Action, With Award of 25% of Fund in Attorneys Fees, and Incentive Award of $20,000 to Each Class Representative

In Attorney's Fees, Class Actions, Incentive Award, Meal and Rest Breaks, Settlement on October 6, 2010 at 9:25 am
Seal of the en:United States District Court fo...
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The Northern District of California granted final approval of a settlement in a meal and rest break class action in Ross v. US Bank National Association, No. C 07-02951 SI, 2010 WL 3833922 (N.D. Cal. Sept. 29, 2010).  The complaint was filed on behalf of all hourly employees who worked at a California U.S. Bank in-store branch.  See Memorandum of Points and Authorities in Support of Plaintiff’s Motion for Preliminary Approval of Class Action Settlement (“MPA”) at 1.  Plaintiffs alleged that they and other hourly paid employees have not been provided a legally compliant meal and rest period on Sundays and worked off the clock pre and post shift and during their meal breaks. Id. The parties settled the case, and the settlement agreement provides for the payment of compensation to each Participating Class Member based on his or her total workweeks in a Class position during a certain period.  Ross, 2010 WL 3833922, *1.   The court approved a non-reversionary settlement of $3,500,000 for approximately 3,300 settlement class members.  MPA at 2.

Attorneys’ Fees and Costs

Plaintiffs’ counsel sought an award of 30% of the settlement fund,  $1,050,000.00, as attorneys’ fees.  Ross, 2010 WL 3833922, *1.   Plaintiffs estimate that the total time spent litigating this case, including time overseeing claims administration, will be approximately 2647.7 hours.  Id. Plaintiffs’ counsel listed hourly rates ranging from $185 an hour to $650 an hour.  MPA at 14.  The court reduced the award to 25%: Read the rest of this entry »