Search This Blog

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Edgerly v. City of Oakland: Violations of Charter City's Municipal Law Do Not Support Labor Code Whistleblower Cause of Action

Just a brief note on this case: Edgerly v. City of Oakland (12/12/12, mod. 12/13/12) --- Cal.App.4th ---. The Court describes the case and its holding very concisely, so here it is (with a few edits):
Deborah Edgerly is the former city administrator of the City of Oakland. Edgerly sued the City in 2009, alleging that then-Mayor Ron Dellums wrongfully terminated Edgerly's employment in retaliation for her refusal to violate the City's charter, municipal code, and civil service rules and resolutions.  
Edgerly claims that the trial court erred when it sustained a demurrer to the first two of her three causes of action for violation of the statewide whistleblower statute set forth in Labor Code section 1102.5(c).  Edgerly also claims that the trial court erred when it dismissed the third whistleblower cause of action on a motion for summary adjudication.  
The primary question presented by this appeal is a question of first impression under California law: Should alleged violations of a charter city's municipal law be deemed violations of state law for purposes of section 1102.5(c)? Based on principles of statutory construction and public policy considerations, we hold that they should not, and accordingly, we affirm. 
The Court explained: 
Here, the plain language of section 1102.5 provides that it applies to "a violation of state or federal statute, or a violation or noncompliance with a state or federal rule or regulation." Based on the unambiguous statutory language, we presume that the Legislature meant what it said—section 1102.5 pertains, as relevant here, to state statutes, rules, or regulations.
The opinion is available here.  

No comments:

Post a Comment

Note: Only a member of this blog may post a comment.