Recently Accreted Titles

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Over the past several months several job Classifications in the "managerial" (MP) pay plans have gone through the lengthy process of joining our union.  If you are in one of these titles, you know the effort and time it took to accomplish that task.  Endless hearings at the State Board of Labor Relations, a determination that your job titles were eligible to be in A&R, then unionization votes - in each case unanimously in favor of joining A&R.

As many of you know, the next step in the process is Impact Bargaining with the state.  At the bargaining table the state and the union have reached common ground on many of the issues regarding accreted classes.  However, the parties have not been able to reach an agreement on two vital issues: (1) placement of the classes onto the existing A&R wage charts, and; (2) payment of the 3.5% general wage increase effective June 19, 2020.  Please know that we continue to vigorously pursue these issues at the bargaining table.  However, if we cannot obtain what we think is a just settlement at the bargaining table we have other means available.  We have filed a grievance about payment of the wage increase.  It is our contention that our contract is clear:  Effective with the pay period that includes July 1, 2020, the base annual salary for all P-5 bargaining unit employees shall be increased by 3.5%.  The accreted classes were by definition in the P-5 bargaining at the time of the wage increase and should therefore receive it.  As to the placement of the accreted titles onto the A&R pay charts, we have strong, compelling arguments to make before an arbitrator, should arbitration become necessary.

Once these issues are resolved we will have just one step left in the process: to have the resulting agreement (or arbitration award) brought to the floor of the state Legislature for approval.  As most of you know, the Legislature has been in extended recess due to the pandemic.  On July 17th the Governor issued a proclamation ordering that a special session of the Legislature be held on July 21st.  The special session is being held so that the Legislature can address just four specific pieces of legislation deemed vital business.  Unfortunately, as you might suspect, the A&R accretions are not one of the four pieces of legislation.  As any agreement (or arbitration award) we reach must be reviewed and voted on by the Legislature, it appears that we will need to wait until September when the regular legislative session is scheduled to begin. Despite the current slow-down, the A&R contract is applicable to all accreted members and we are seeking full retroactivity of any delayed/missed wage adjustments. While it may be frustrating to wait for the final pieces to fit together, we will get this done and get it done right.

posted July 20