By: Orange County Supervisor Todd Spitzer
On Tuesday, the Board of Supervisors unanimously approved the first reading of the Civic Openness in Negotiations (COIN) proposal. The proposal increases levels of transparency and public disclosure regarding labor negotiations before the agreements can be approved by the Board of Supervisors.
“This changes the way we do labor negotiations in Orange County,” Supervisor Todd Spitzer said. “COIN will bring increased transparency allowing taxpayers to be better informed about the County’s labor agreements.”
Applicable to new labor negotiations over contracts that expire after COIN takes effect, the proposal requires:
- Each formal offer and counteroffer must be disclosed to the public within 24 hours during the negotiation process
- Disclosure of each negotiating session information, including the date, the session length, the location, and a list of all people who attended
- The Auditor-Controller must prepare an Independent Economic Analysis summarizing the fiscal costs of current benefit and pay components in comparison to the costs in each offer or counteroffer
- No labor agreement can be voted on by the Board of Supervisors until the matter has been heard at two meetings of the Board where the public has the right to review and comment on the proposed labor contract
- An outside party must represent the County in labor negotiations unless waived by a majority vote of the Board of Supervisors
Modeled on Costa Mesa’s COIN ordinance, the County’s COIN proposal must come back to the Board of Supervisors on July 15 for a second reading. If the second reading is approved, then COIN will take effect 30 days later on August 14.