SAN DIEGO (CNS) - A panel of state appellate justices handed the city of San Diego a victory Friday in litigation over the timing of the elimination of certain pension benefits.
The City Attorney's Office had no immediate comment on the decision upholding a Superior Court ruling, penned by 4th District Court of Appeals Justice Gilbert Nares with concurrence by Justices Patricia Benke and Judith McConnell.
The case involved nearly 600 city employees hired between July 1, 2005, and Feb. 16, 2007, who were caught in limbo when San Diego eliminated four special benefits to workers.
According to court documents, city labor contracts with unions that took effect on the first date prohibited new hires from purchasing service credits that could be applied to their later retirement payouts. However, the City Council did not outlaw the practice in the municipal code until January 2007 -- with its action taking effect the next month.
The city filed suit when the San Diego City Employees Retirement System advised employees that the effective date that the benefits were abolished was February 16, 2007, not July 1, 2005, according to the documents.
The defendants, who included the affected workers, claimed the City Council could not apply the ordinance retroactively.
However, the appellate justices affirmed the lower court ruling that the City Council could rescind the benefits on the earlier date, because they weren't offered to the newer employees in their labor contracts, and thus were never vested.
Other benefits no longer offered to municipal employees after July 1, 2005, were the "13th check," in which workers could receive more money if there was a surplus in the retirement system, and the deferred retirement program, in which employees could receive some pension payments while still employed.
With the number of documented hepatitis A cases continuing to rise, Mayor Kevin Faulconer, San Diego County health officials and several civic leaders joined together Tuesday to kick off a “Vaccination, Sanitation and Education” campaign to urge the public to take appropriate precautions.
A magnitude 7.1 earthquake rocked central Mexico on Tuesday, killing at least two people, collapsing buildings and scattering rubble on streets less than two weeks after another quake left 90 dead in the country's south.
One person was taken to a hospital to be treated for smoke inhalation Tuesday after a fire broke out at a Pacific Beach apartment complex, authorities said.
The City Council will be asked Tuesday to rename what had been Qualcomm Stadium to SDCCU Stadium, with San Diego County Credit Union bidding $500,000 for the naming rights.
The San Diego City Council Tuesday unanimously approved a $12.5 million payment to settle a lawsuit brought by a family that contends dangerous driving conditions led to a roadway accident that killed a baby and injured her father.
A plan to turn a historic mansion in Coronado into transitional house for sex trafficking survivors is moving forward, despite strong opposition from neighbors.
Customs and Border Patrol agents monitoring California's ports of entry from Mexico intercepted nearly $5 million worth of drugs and arrested 17 wanted fugitives over the weekend, followed by the seizure Monday of nearly $1 million worth of marijuana seized from a boat that came on shore near Del Mar, the agency said Tuesday.
Cooler weather will continue Tuesday throughout San Diego County with even lower temperatures expected Thursday and Friday.
A San Carlos woman murdered her 14-year-old daughter and her spouse, then planted a gun next to his body and stayed in the family's home with the bodies for several days without calling police, a prosecutor alleged Monday.
San Diego State and students are mourning the loss of a student whose family says died while trying to cross Interstate 8 on foot Saturday night.