The hundred million dollar sick-out & housekeeping matters

Posted on January 17, 2013

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Please note that every underlined item is a link to another article or document.

We’re going to take on the housekeeping matters first. Nearly every day readers find JCW because Yen Interactive Media and others have made it their goal that we own the internet globally on certain issues. For quite awhile, JCW results on all search engines have either immediately followed or topped all returns of the California court system.

This does not come without some pain. Between 50 and 100 times a day each day, JCW is spammed by those that wish to promote their products or services. Nearly every day, we reject posts from those who try to bring their cases to JCW and attack individual courts or individual judges for their work from the bench. Utilizing the ‘benevolent dictator’ model of site moderation straight from Yen’s own site operations manual, we strive to curtail these posts  utilizing diplomatic means, inviting prospective posters to post, yet firmly asserting our responsibility to stay on message. We also invite these posters to use a signature line on their posts pointing to their own site on the internet where they have the right to make their own case.  All of this is spelled out on our about and privacy page.

Due to an increasing influx of such posts, a reminder is in order that while we respect your first amendment right to free speech, this site is run by a private entity that has no obligation towards preserving those rights. Our focus of this site is the mismanagement of the AOC and the abdication of Judicial Council oversight responsibility, which we refer to as the proverbial head of the snake. While we discourage attacking judicial officers or whole courts for their official acts and decisions, their administrative acts in support of or how they relate to the judicial council and the AOC are fair game and this is often how we (and others) toss the sycophants under the bus regardless of who they are or how well respected others believe they should be.

If you don’t wish to end up in digital purgatory or ridiculed on these pages for your administrative acts, the solution is simple. Don’t be a dumbass. Don’t lie to (or come up with another version of the truth to) the branch or the public. Don’t purport to represent something you clearly have no interest in (like AOC access and diversity, transparency or accountability) Don’t be a brown-nosing sycophant and toss the rest of the branch and the public under the bus just to move your own career aspirations forward  & don’t be an overpaid mismanager that manages to keep their job.

We also wish to remind our detractors that we accept and are willing to publish articles in opposition to us so feel free to give us your best shot. (Where’s Dredd?)

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On to documents of curiosity that you might be interested in. Stephen Jahr’s report to the council on AOC activities. While most of this report is interesting, we would like to call your attention to page 13 titled AOC staffing metrics. At the top of this page is this language: In the last month, 32 long-term employment agency temporary staff were converted to regular employees. Were these competitive job announcements? No. Were they announced on the AOC’s website? No Why could they not wait until after January 1 to make these conversions and do you believe like we do that it was irresponsible to not have competitive job announcements or that they made these hires BEFORE the new pension rules kicked in? Way to go Jahr. Can we have your resignation please? It would have been much worse we’re told but a certain article dampened the partying mood over at the AOC.

On page 14 of this document we’d like to call you attention to the definition of contractors employed by the AOC.  There are 63.5 contractors still employed by the AOC. The AOC defines a contractor as Individuals augmenting the work of the AOC and providing services for a limited period of time or on a specific project, where a particular skill set is required that is either (1) not within an existing AOC classification and/or job description or (2) where recruitment issues require the use of a contractor.

This is where all the really high-paying jobs are. If you conduct one-man studies for the AOC, you can bill out a half million dollars a year. Since the recruitment issue is that they don’t wish to put these types of contracts out to competitive bid and wish to employ someone in particular with a really high paying job, they have them hide behind a corporate veil. The 63.5 contractors employed by the AOC amount to an incalculable multi-million dollar expenditure. We’re going to toss out  number and tell you first that it’s not accurate but representative. Are you ready? These contractors cost you in excess of 15 million dollars a year in direct billables. Indirect billables are the projects they’re attached to.

Right now, the AOC is authorized 815 positions. They claim they have only filled 703 positions and have a 13.7% vacancy rate, yet have 801 people employed.  The Governors proposed budget raises the AOC head count to 844.4, adding approximately 30 new positions to the AOC and it appears that most of these jobs are being added to the facilities program.  Build less facilities, hire more people to do it. That’s the AOC way.

The total proposed AOC budget is 414 million dollars and the headcount continues to grow, grow grow.

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Contact: Sacramento County Superior Court Judge Maryanne Gilliard
We are pleased to announce that Ninth Circuit Federal Court Judge Carlos Bea will deliver the keynote address on Saturday evening, March 2, 2012, at the Alliance of California Judges Inaugural Judicial Education Conference. Judge Bea is more than just an interesting jurist. He is a former San Francisco Superior Court Judge with a fascinating life that stretches from Spain to Cuba to Helsinki to California.

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Judge Bea was born in 1934 in San Sebastián, Spain, and emigrated with his family in 1939 to Cuba to avoid the Nazis. He represented Cuba as a member of the country’s basketball team in the 1952 Helsinki Olympics. Some time after moving to the United States, he was put into deportation proceedings for allegedly avoiding the draft. He offered to be drafted in order to cure the apparent violation, but the immigration judge refused as the Korean War had already ended. He won his appeal at the Board of Immigration Appeals, which opined that the lower court had abused its discretion.Judge Bea is a graduate of Stanford University. He received his BA in 1956 and his JD from Stanford Law School in 1958. He became a naturalized citizen in 1959. In 1990 he took the bench in San Francisco as a Superior Court Judge. He served there until his appointment to the Ninth Circuit in 2003. The Senate confirmed him on September 29, 2003, by a vote of 86–0. His son is former Olympic rower Sebastian Bea.

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This will be an interesting, educational and entertaining conference that will have 120 judges in attendance. Respected First District Court of Appeal Justice J. Anthony Kline, when informed about the conference, said: “This sounds to me like the type of educational program that ought to be promoted.”

Attached is the conference agenda. Alliance board members will be made available on site to the press.
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The hundred million dollar sickout

You know, if, on June 30th a budget passes that permits the AOC to raise their head count, a budget that costs the people of the state of California 414 million dollars misdirected to the judicial council and court facilities over the courts, a budget that continues to permit them to claw back tens of millions more from the trial courts,  I hear you’re going to be sick as a dog, unable to work for a whole week between July 1 and July 5. Word on the street is that thousands of other judicial branch employees, judges and clerks alike will also be catching this virus.  Of course if  a hundred million dollars is redirected from the judicial council budget to the trial courts, I’m told that this will serve as an innoculation. I don’t know how much truth there is to this story but I hear the press is asking about it and planning on visiting the mausoleums to justice during that week….