An Orange County Superior Court Judge has ruled that Costa Mesa must not proceed with its plan to outsource, saying that the city did not have the authority to layoff its employees and it had not followed proper procedures.

Answers to certain questions, however, remain unclear. For instance, what did the ruling actually do?

In March, Costa Mesa issued layoff notices to 213 employees. However, those notices were neither final nor binding. It was the first step in a process that could result in outsourcing. The city was still requesting proposals for services, and according to Mayor Pro Tem Jim Righeimer, if the dollars didn’t make sense, they’d come up with something new. So does this ruling stop the Council and city staff from thinking about outsourcing?

And what are the procedures that the city hasn’t followed?

As it turns out, the judge didn’t specify.

From the Los Angeles Times:

Costa Mesa cannot lay off employees by outsourcing their jobs to private companies until the city goes through proper legal steps, an Orange County Superior Court judge ruled Tuesday.

In a preliminary injunction barring the city from implementing its outsourcing plans, Judge Tam Nomoto Schumann said Costa Mesa must follow necessary steps if it plans to replace 213 employees primarily with private workers. The city issued the layoff notices in March.

City officials, meanwhile, said they believed they were in compliance with the law and should be able to execute their austerity measures.

Read the full article here.