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Start now. Elect a team by June.


E.T.I. 2009

Catapultam habeo. Isi pecuniam omnem mihi dabis, ad caput tuum saxum immane.


I have even heard members of the Union say we can’t start early.
No one will work on a contract during the summer.
If that is true then we deserve what ever we get.
If we can’t put together a dedicated team that cares for their brothers and their sisters then the critics of the Union were right.
NOT!
These proposals are not put forward to try to achieve them all. They are here to see if anyone likes one or more over the others. Do you want a poll? Want to vote? Let me know.

Hey, (name withheld to protect the guilty) your proposal is in here and a lot more. If you want something and it is not here and not in the side bar on the left, then add it or don’t blame anyone else when your issue is not represented.


July 1, 2009

Start now. They want to take your health care. They want to blame you for every political mistake over the last 40 years.


This first idea depends on our Union more than it depends on the State. Our elected VP, Ginette promised support for early negotiations. We need to get the Negotiations team elected by June 1 2008.

The employer shall approve reasonable preparation time, not to exceed one day per week, during even-numbered years beginning September 1st until negotiations begin for up to FOUR MEMBERS OF EACH BARGAINING UNIT members of the Association’s state-level bargaining team.

While you might not see it every day, the State has worked to have more and more classifications listed as “salaried” to avoid paying overtime. Several years ago I found a copy of an email that agreed that all OIT classifications up to 27 were eligible for overtime but because the man in charge did not publish the memo it never became policy. The State acknowledged the truth of the email but said there is no way we can enforce it and the State refused to honor the findings.

OVERTIME

Overtime Defined: Overtime is authorized work performed in excess of the basic
work week as defined for either a 40 hour week or an 80 hour bi-weekly schedule.

Straight Time Rate: Where the basic pay period is 80 hours (Salaried) in two weeks.

a. Exempt (Salaried) employees shall be entitled to overtime pay at straight time.

b. Exempt(Salaried) employees shall, at the discretion of the Employer, be paid overtime at straight time or given compensatory time off after 80 hours

Time and One Half Rate: Where the basic workweek is 40 hours, all overtime shall be compensated as follows:

a. Non-exempt (Hourly) employees shall be entitled to overtime pay at the rate of time and one half. Shift differentials shall also be included where appropriate.

b. Exempt (Salaried) employees will be given compensatory time off or overtime pay at straight time.

c. All hours that an employee is on pay status will constitute “time worked” for the purpose of determining the workweek required to establish eligibility for overtime compensation.

The State has had a monopoly on deciding who is a Salaried employee and who can get overtime for too long. We need to work this out in Labor Management.

Determining Exemption: The Parties agree that it shall be the responsibility of the Labor Management Committee to determine whether any position in any unit is exempt or non-exempt. The Labor Management Committee shall, in making its determination, consider past practice, pertinent wage and hour law, equity and the ability of employees to control their own work hours.

We have to be realistic. If we demand everything goes one way then the State will deny any improvement. We need to allow the State more lee way to decide whether to pay cash or to pay comp time. Remember in the last contract if an agency has extra cash they can now offer to buy up to ½ of your comp time, but only if you agree.

The Employer may require any employee to accrue by overtime work, compensatory time in an amount not to exceed the maximum number of hours allowed to be accrued for vacation. If an employee is required to work overtime beyond the limits set forth herein, the employee shall be paid.

Compensatory Time: An employee may receive compensatory time off at the rates specified in lieu of overtime pay at the choice of the Employer.

An employee shall not be relieved of duty during the regular shift hours in his/her basic workweek(s) in order to compensate for or offset overtime hours worked unless: (1) he/she agrees to be relieved of duty; (2) it is in the interest of the employee, the employee is exempt from the FLSA and the time off is scheduled at a mutually agreeable time, or it is necessary to the Employer, the Employee, or the general public to relieve the employee of duty for reason of health or safety.

Call Back: Non-exempt (hourly) employees called back to work without prior notice on the same day after once leaving work or before the next regular starting time shall be compensated at one and one half time the hourly rate for the hours worked and shall be guaranteed a minimum of not less than 4 hours of premium pay. Non-exempt employees who are called back to work again, shall receive a three (4) hours minimum straight pay as provided above. Call back hours for Exempt employees shall not be considered a part of the basic workweek for overtime purposes.

Full-time employees called back to work pursuant to the above article shall have the “hours worked” computed from portal to portal.

STANDBY: Any exempt employee, who is subject to being recalled to work, shall receive two hours of pay for every weeknight or portion thereof while in Standby status. An Exempt Employee shall receive 4 hours of pay for each weekend day while in Standby status. The employee shall be notified of when he/she is expected to be in Standby status. The employee does not waive the right to minimum time allowed or the portal to portal pay.

a. Exempt employees shall be entitled to the regular rate of compensation for each hour of overtime worked.

b. Non-exempt employees shall be entitled to time and one-half of compensation for each hour of overtime worked.

“Time Worked” Defined: The following provision constitutes the understanding of the Parties with respect to defining time worked for the purpose of determining the number of hours required for overtime compensation eligibility.

“Time worked” shall include all hours actually worked and all hours on approved paid leave status except bona fide meal periods, bona fide rest periods, bona fide commuting time and any time worked for which specific compensation provisions have been established elsewhere in the Agreement.

Overtime Offsets: Non-exempt employees may be relieved of duty upon mutual consent during the regular shift hours in the basic work period or workweek in order to compensate or offset potential overtime.

Return to Work:

Holidays Worked: When a full-time or regularly scheduled part-time employee works on a calendar holiday, he/she shall receive payment of the holiday at the regular rate and in addition, at the discretion of the Employer, (1) be paid at the rate of time and one half for hours actually worked on the holiday or (2) be given compensatory time off equal to one and one half the number of hours actually worked.

Floating Holidays: In addition to authorized holidays each employee shall be authorized two (2) floating holidays of his/her choice per fiscal year.

Equivalence: A day shall be worth one day of an employees regularly scheduled work day.

This next section would also be filed under “Giving to the State”. Bargaining is a two way street if done right.

Payment of Accrued Time: Any employee who terminates for any reason shall be paid for all days earned, if not taken…

No payment for accrued but unused annual leave will be made upon separation from employment within the first twelve (12) months of employment.

The so called Salaried employees are working longer and longer. They don’t get OT and they end up taking work from other employees. Either pay them or give the work to other employees. We can’t get all of the proposals here, but we need to have several approaches to get to fair pay.

Exempt Employees: Exempt employees now excluded from overtime entitlement whether by contract or by FLSA shall be granted personal days per annum according to the schedule below to be deducted from sick leave, such days to be cumulative.

Continuous Personal

Years Worked Leave

1 thru 8 1

9 thru 15 2

16 plus 3

Employees that currently receive 3 days shall not lose any personal days.

Snow Days: When the Governor or his/her designee determines that inclement weather is severe enough to close or delay opening State offices, employees who are already on leave and who are relieved of work due to such a determination, will not be charged leave for the period of closure. Employees who do report to work during periods of closure shall only be entitled to their normal rate of compensation and shall not receive additional leave or compensatory time.


There is a proposal posted for combined Sick/Vacation days in another post.

SICK LEAVE

Entitlement: Full-time employees in the bargaining unit will be entitled to accrue sick leave in accordance with the formula given below. The purpose of sick leave is to afford employees protection against lost income from absences due to illness or injury and, in particular long-term disability due to catastrophic illness or injury. Sick leave is not intended to supplement other leave provisions of this Agreement and is intended to be used only for the purpose set forth herein. Sick leave shall be computed at the end of each completed month of service. Employees rendering seasonal or temporary service in excess of six (6) months shall be entitled to accrue sick leave at the same rate for time actually worked. Sick leave shall be cumulative for not more than the prescribed days and shall not lapse.

Continuous Hours Accrued per Maximum

Years Worked Month Year Accrual Days

0 to 10 1 10 90

10 to 15 12 15 105

15 to 20 14 15 120

20 to 25+ 16 20 127

Employees on a mandatory over 40 hour work week accrue leave at an increased pro-rated level.

Bonus Leave: Unit employees shall be entitled to bonus leave accrual based upon the number of sick leave hours used per fiscal year in accordance with the following formula:

40 Hour Week

Sick Leave Used Bonus Leave Earned

24 hours or less or 3 reg sched days 32 hours

32 hours or less or 4 reg shed days 24 hours

40 hours or less or 5 reg sched days 16 hours

48 hours or less or 6 reg sched days 8 hours

More than 48 hours 0 hours

Bonus leave accrued under this provision shall be earned for completed fiscal years only. Proration of bonus leave will occur for any retirement or reduction in force. Bonus leave is accrued in addition to any other maximums provided in this Agreement.

Bonus leave must be used during the fiscal year following the fiscal year for which it was earned or it shall lapse.

Any employee who retires from State service or who is laid off from State service and who has unused bonus leave to his/her credit from the preceding fiscal year shall be paid for such unused bonus leave at the time of separation.

Payment: Upon retirement an employee shall receive payment in a sum equal to 50% of the number of sick leave days remaining to the employee’s credit. However, the total number of days eligible for payment shall not exceed sixty (60) days.

Go ahead, die while in State Service.

Payment – Termination; Death: Upon the resignation or dismissal of any employee in the bargaining unit the number of days of sick leave remaining to his/her credit shall lapse. In the event of death of any employee while in the state classified service, a sum equal to the number of days sick leave remaining shall be paid to his/her estate.

Training: The Employer agrees to authorize three (3) days off in each contract year, without loss of time or pay for the Steward(s) to attend an Association training program. The Association shall notify the Employer not less than twenty (20) days in advance of such proposed training program.

The State charges far more than Federal Mileage rate for the Fleet vehicles it rents. Why won’t they pay their employees?

Federal Mileage Rate: The Parties agree that all full-time and part-time employees who are required to use their private vehicles for State business shall be reimbursed for all miles incurred at the maximum rate then allowable by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service for the first mile of travel. The Parties further agree that changes in the mileage reimbursement rate, as a result of U.S. Internal Revenue Service action, shall be made prospectively. The Parties further agree that an employee shall record mileage incurred on State business from the odometer readings on his/her vehicle and the Employer shall reimburse for all reasonable travel incurred. In no instance, however, shall the Employer reimburse for travel incurred from an employee’s home to or through the site of his/her official headquarters, or vice versa, unless such reimbursement is specifically authorized by this Agreement.

a. Out-of-State Travel: When associated with State business, employees shall be reimbursed for meals at rates consistent with the General Services Administration (GSA) Travel Per Diem Rates, in effect at the time of travel, without a receipt.

All employees shall be considered in work status for all time spent traveling, minus normal commute time to and from work and normal meal breaks.

Discount at State Recreational Areas: Any full-time bargaining unit employee shall be entitled to a fifty-percent (50%) discount on the admission price of any state-owned recreational area.

Personnel Classification Advisory Committee: The parties agree to appoint a personnel classification advisory committee composed of four members appointed by the Employer and four members appointed by the Association which shall serve for the term of the 2009-2011 Collective Bargaining Agreement.

a. The purpose of the committee is: (1) to review the current personnel classification system; and (2) to make recommendations to the Employer for changes in the current personnel classification system.

b. The committee shall be entitled to receive any information relevant to its mission and which is not confidential.

c. The Employer shall make available to the committee such expert advice and assistance as is reasonably necessary to accomplish its mission.

d. The committee shall submit a written report to the Employer, including but not limited to any recommended changes to the personnel classification system not later than October 1, 2008.

e. The Employer and the Association shall receive a copy of any report or recommendations prepared by the Personnel Classification Advisory Committee.

Educational Discount: Any full-time unit employee who has completed one year of continuous full-time service shall be entitled to a fifty percent (50%) discount on the tuition of up to three (3) courses that bear credit per fiscal year (limited to one course per semester) on a space available basis, at any of the state regional community technical colleges.

a. Courses, for the purposes of registration, will be made available three (3) days prior to the start of classes.

b. The institution offering the course may, at its discretion, cancel the course.

c. The institution offering the course shall be the sole determining agent as to whether or not space is available.

d. Decisions regarding the availability of space, course cancellations and other administrative decisions are not grievable.

e. When payment for a course is being made by the Employer or person(s) other than the employee, or, a course is taken on other than a space available basis; there will be no discount in the tuition.

f. An employee is not eligible for this benefit in a semester in which he/she has withdrawn from a credit bearing course.

Why don’t we use contract re-opening language? If you drive for the State in your own car you will wish we had that language when gas hits $4.00 a gallon and you have to sell your cat for fuel oil.

Renegotiation: Renegotiation of this Agreement or parts thereof will be effected by written notice by one Party to the other not later than October 18, 2010 or earlier by mutual agreement. Negotiations shall commence within fifteen (15) days after the receipt of such notice.

We have to start early to bargain. The State always puts us up against the end of the budget year and threatens that they will stop step raises and deny benefits. The late start to bargaining is killing our ability to bargain. We must have a team elected by June 2008.

Impasse Procedures: The Parties shall seek to reach agreement relative to the appointment of a mediator not later than the ninetieth (90) day preceding the budget submission date. The Parties shall seek to reach agreement relative to the appointment of a fact finder not later than the sixtieth (60) day preceding the budget submission date.

Another Re-opener. The State is always hinting that if we don’t fold they will give some small unit a bigger raise and embarrass us in that way. We need to put this in the contract.

In the event that the Employer agrees to grant a general wage increase greater than that provided for in this Agreement to any other bargaining unit during the term of this Agreement, the Parties shall reopen wage negotiations within thirty (30) days after the Association makes a written demand upon the Employer to exercise this reopener

E.T.I. 2009
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November 1st, 2007 Posted by narsbars | MSEA, MSEA Dues, MSEA ELECTIONS, MSEA-SEIU, MSEASEIU, Maine State Employees, Maine Turnpike Authority, SEIU, SEIU 1984, SEIU 1989, TECHNORATI, UNIONMAINE | 2 comments

2 Comments

  1. There is no way the Union will grow any **** and stand up and fight. They have never wanted to reopen contract talks because it would cost dues money. I am glad someone is trying to start talks early but it won’t happen.
    Thanks for trying Narsbars but you wait and see the members will just sit on their butts and do nothing.
    We are going to lose our health care and we will get another lousy raise and still dues will go up.

    Comment by Anonymous | November 1, 2007

  2. I don’t think that the bargaining teams need to be elected real early, but clearly the bargaining committees need to be formed early to start their work. Currently the Executive Branch bargaining team sets the priority for every group that negotiates for a state-funded contract. I believe that is a disservice to membership, especially in those groups outside of the Exec Branch. I’d like to see all of the bargaining units have the bargaining committees meet very early in the process and work to form joint priorities for all MSEA negotiations.

    We need to make certain our contracts are consistent on issues that are important for union governance such as fair share, organizational leave, grievance processes, investigations, etc.

    Maybe I’m dreaming, but I don’t see why we can’t do this.

    Comment by Anonymous | November 2, 2007

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