Santa Clara

Santa Clara County Workers Poised to Go on Strike

It may soon be a lot harder to get any business done with the County of Santa Clara.

That's because more than 10,000 county workers say they're just days away from walking off the jobs. On Tuesday, the workers' strike got some very big support when the South Bay Labor Council voted to sanction a potential strike by the 12,000 union workers.

That means they'll have the full support of every labor organization in the county if the workers walk out. And while the union leaders say they're hopeful they can find a way to avoid it, they are ready to walk out.

"We're prepared to strike. We're getting ready," said Valerie Pickering, a member on the union's negotiating team. "Our members are ready to strike. They voted for a strike."

And that strike could come as soon as Monday. A walkout would mean longer lines in many county offices. In addition, potential delays in obtaining permits or getting other county services.

Both sides are still negotiating, but all indications are they're not close.

"We have some areas that we're trying hard to work closer to in my department," Pickering said.

Sources tell NBC Bay Area the county told supervisors not to approve vacation time for employees over the next two weeks, anticipating a possible strike. The county executive oversees the negotiating team.

On Tuesday, County Supervisor Cindy Chavez said there are contingency plans in place in case there's a strike.

NBC Bay Area has reached out to the County Executive's Office for comment and has yet to hear back.

Both sides are scheduled to return to the bargaining table at 8 a.m. Wednesday.

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