In late May of 2019, PPOA was notified by the Chief Executive Office (CEO) of the Department’s intention to revise the job specifications of Sergeant and Lieutenant, thus eliminating the Dual Track promotional process in the future. As a result, PPOA dedicated significant resources, meeting regularly with the Department, in order to collaborate and discuss Sheriff Villanueva’s ideas for the future promotional process. Sadly, information requests by PPOA went unfulfilled and communications with PPOA by the Department abruptly ceased in mid-August.
PPOA President Tab Rhodes said, “Those of us involved in this conversation with the Department have repeatedly objected to the October 5, 2019 ‘Patrol Track’ only examination, which completely abandons the existing Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) contract language regarding Dual Track.”
Additionally, a new “Rating of Record” component has been introduced to the proposed Sergeants’ promotional criteria, which has yet to be defined, nor described as to weight or implementation.
PPOA’s concerns regarding the violations of our contract have been repeatedly communicated to Department executives, culminating in a personal discussion between Sheriff Villanueva and PPOA President Rhodes. Unfortunately, PPOA’s efforts to resolve the issue of our MOU contract language regarding Dual Track with the Department have failed.
The primary responsibility of any union is to protect the rights of our members, utilizing the legally binding verbiage of an MOU/contract. This attack on our MOU, if successful, could be a thread which could unwind other aspects of our contract. If the language is not adhered to, the entire MOU is in jeopardy and the Department can continue to make arbitrary decisions without restraint. PPOA must now seek legal action to ensure that our MOU is legally adhered to by the County, Department and Sheriff Villanueva.
On September 19, 2019, PPOA filed a complaint in Los Angeles County Superior Court to “Enforce a Public Safety Labor Agreement” naming the County of Los Angeles, the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department and Sheriff Alex Villanueva, as respondents. Additionally, PPOA is seeking a Temporary Restraining Order (TRO) to suspend the upcoming Sergeants’ promotional examination scheduled for October 5, 2019. Additionally, an Order to Show Cause for Preliminary Injunction from violating the MOU between PPOA and the County was filed simultaneously.
PPOA remains optimistic for a collaborative partnership with Sheriff Villanueva and the Department, but will always defend our members’ rights and our legally binding MOU. Please continue to review our communications here and via email, Facebook, and mobile app for additional information as it becomes available.