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San Jose Councilman Proposes Change In Seniority Rules

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(AP)

(AP)

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SAN JOSE (KCBS) – Under present civil service rules, layoffs of city workers in San Jose are based on seniority. But a city councilman is looking at changing the rules.

San Jose is facing the possibility of laying off hundreds of city employees because of a $90 million budget deficit.

Councilmember Pierluigi Oliverio is proposing that cutbacks shouldn’t solely be based on seniority.

“What we’re seeing is that in certain departments, when we have to do layoffs and lay off the most junior people in seniority, some of them are actually top performers,” Oliverio said. “If we lose them, it’s a loss to the city. I’m saying we need a combination of both seniority as well as performance in that final selection.”

KCBS’ Mike Colgan Reports:

His proposal is not sitting well with the unions or some other members of the city council, like Ash Kalra.

“Putting it into practice would be like changing an entire system overnight,” Kalra said. “That’s why things like this need to be discussed before you just put ideas out there without knowing what the ramifications are.”

Oliverio is asking the San Jose Civil Service Commission to study the idea and come back with a recommendation in 90 days.

(© 2011 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.)

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