Implementing The State’s Like Pay for Like Work Laws and Policies to Resolve State Scientists’ Pay Inequity

Governor Gavin Newsom


We have reached the time in bargaining where member action and support is crucial. The Governor is having conversations with his agency secretaries right now regarding the budget and, relatedly, employee compensation. It is imperative that we clearly demonstrate to the Administration that membership is united and active in their quest to resolve our salary issues. Please sign all of the petitions, and share with all your colleagues (scientists and engineers alike) immediately. Getting the secretaries to advocate on our behalf to the Governor will increase the bargaining team's chances of convincing CalHR to provide fair pay to all State Scientists. We are aiming for 1,500 signatures by the end of the March, so the petitions can be sent on April 1.

Petition by
CAPS Member
Sacramento, California

To: Governor Gavin Newsom
From: [Your Name]

We, the undersigned State Scientists and supporters of State Scientists, very respectfully urge you to take the following two actions:

1) Direct CalHR to work with the California Association of Professional Scientists to immediately resolve the pay inequity issue impacting rank-and-file level scientists in Bargaining Unit 10; and

2) Reaffirm your commitment to equity, fair pay, and zero tolerance for wage discrimination.

The State is currently not following the intent of Government Code 19826, which states salary ranges shall be based on the principle that like salaries shall be paid for comparable duties and responsibilities, nor the States obligation of maintaining horizontal and vertical relationships that apply to employee compensation. In 2005 and 2014, the State took actions that disrupted the internal pay relationships that had existed in Bargaining Unit 10 since 1981. To comply with the intent of the State’s laws and policies governing employee compensation, State Scientists are requesting that you direct CalHR to resolve this long-standing pay disparity issue.

State Scientists have confidence that, upon realizing the serious nature of this issue and how it is impacting Californians across the state, you will act swiftly to remedy it. Your own Natural Resources and Environmental Protection Agency Secretaries have already concluded that the egregious pay issue is compromising their Agencies’ ability to accomplish their missions. Yet, so far, their requests that CalHR fix the pay issues have gone unanswered.

State Scientists are keenly aware of your passion and commitment to equity and fairness. For these reasons, we are relying on you to intervene now to correct this pay issue that is compromising California’s environmental and public health future and your own values and priorities.

We are sensitive to these fiscally challenging times, but State Scientists are not asking for special treatment – just fair and equitable treatment. State Scientists also want to ensure that the State is prepared to handle the unprecedented environmental and public health challenges on the horizon that pose a threat to all Californians. It is imperative that the State provide competitive pay to recruit and retain State Scientists to address these impending challenges.