Subject: Law
Language: English (U.S.)
Pages: 1
Analyze Garcetti v. Ceballos, to determine whether or not the Pickering balancing test is applicable to this case and state why or why not. Many states are facing budget constraints that are shining a light on public employees’ pay and benefits, which have led to debates about state employees’ collective bargaining rights. From a public administrator perspective, speculate to the short-term and long-term effects if limited collective bargaining is adopted. Hint: Look at all the stakeholders involved.

Law Discussions

Question 1:

           The Pickering balancing test is used to balance an employee’s First Amendment right to free speech and a public employer’s interests. The test determines whether a public official can speak as a private citizen on government actions that affect the public. In the case of Garcetti v. Ceballos, the court needed to determine whether the speech of the employee was in accordance to the DA’s official job duties. The court found that the communication made by memo was done pursuant to Ceballos’ official duties as the District attorney. Thus, his speech was not made as a government official speaking as a private citizen opining on matters of public concern. The First Amendment does not cover his speech in this capacity and Ceballos failed the Pickering test. The court ruled that he was on the wrong and should face dismissal or discipline as his actions did not follow the provisions set for government whistle-blowers. He acted against his employer’s implied instructions.

Question 2:

           If limited collective bargaining were adopted by the states, one of the short-term effects would be a significant decrease in government spending on health and retirement benefits for employees. In addition, many workers would be laid off as a result. This scenario will lead to a decrease in the services that the affected state can offer its citizens. States have the option of increasing taxes to cater to the funding of employee plans, but this will cause friction between the state and the taxpayers. The taxpayers will be unwilling to pay additional taxes when the number of services offered to them has significantly decreased. In the long run, stagnant wages and furloughs will become the norm when limited collective bargaining is adopted. Businesses will opt to move to states where there are lower business taxes. Majority of the states will benefit because there is no increase in taxes.