Less than 24 hours after Gov. Jerry Brown briefed labor leaders on the major pension changes he will propose this morning, labor interests that helped elect the Democratic governor suggested he is in for a fight.
"The governor has indicated that labor will not like many of his proposals," Dave Low, chairman of the union coalition Californians for Retirement Security, said in a prepared statement. "He is right."
Low said many of Brown's proposals would circumvent collective bargaining, a cause Brown championed when he was governor before, from 1975 to 1983.
At a press conference this morning, Brown will propose a higher retirement age and less-generous pension benefits for newly-hired state employees. He will also propose prohibiting the purchase of additional retirement service credit, or "airtime."
"Unions across California have negotiated major retirement concessions, including increased payments by employees and two-tier benefits," Low said. "These concessions have already saved the state, cities, counties and other entities hundreds of millions of dollars. We are strongly opposed to imposing additional retirement rollbacks without bargaining."