Prop B Carries on After Judge Denies Injunction

Meet-and-confer obligations were met, judge writes

An effort to halt San Diego’s recently-passed pension overhaul measure was blocked Tuesday in court.

San Diego Superior Court Judge Luis Vargas denied an injunction that would have postponed the city’s implementation of Proposition B.

The state’s Public Employees Relations Board accused the city of violating labor laws by implementing the measure, which would transition new city hires from a pension plan to a 401(k)-style plan – except for police officers – and cap pensionable pay.

Earlier this month, PERB was granted a temporary restraining order, but it has since expired.

Tuesday’s ruling gave supporters of Prop B the green light to start the transition and negotiate with labor unions.

In his ruling, Vargas said the injunction was not necessary, since a large majority of voters supported Prop. B, and had no reason to believe an unfair labor practice had been committed.

Mayoral candidate and Councilman Carl DeMaio pushed for the measure’s passage in his run before the primary election. He, Councilman Kevin Faulconer and current mayor Jerry Sanders crafted the measure.

“Today San Diego citizens scored a big win for pension reform,” DeMaio said in a statement. “Judge Vargas’ decision clears the way for the City to respect the mandate of 66 percent of San Diego voters who approved Prop B’s pension reforms.”

The ruling on Tuesday comes after DeMaio's opponent U.S. Rep. Bob Filner stated that he would implement Prop. B if elected mayor. Filner previously staunchly opposed the plan, saying it threw city workers under the bus.

Now he said he's the only candidate who can overcome its many legal hurdles and negotiate the five-year pay freeze with unions.

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