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Long Beach : Benefits for City Employees in Military Reserves Studied

September 20, 1990

The Long Beach City Council has asked the city attorney to look into how the city can provide full salary and health benefits to city employees in the military reserve who have been called to active duty during the Persian Gulf crisis.

Often members of the reserve suffer a salary cut when they leave civilian jobs for active duty.

Responding to concerns that the benefits may not be legal, Councilman Warren Harwood said, "If we've got a potential war going on, I'm willing to face litigation before I see families without health benefits or having their homes taken away from them."

City Atty. John R. Calhoun told the council that he doubts it would come to that since he would try to be as "creative" as possible in figuring out how city laws apply to the situation.

Two city employees are currently in the reserves overseas, said City Manager James C. Hankla, and 48 more could go.

The council will receive Calhoun's report next week. A spokeswoman for the League of California Cities said that she has heard of no similar measure being taken by other cities in the state.

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