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Thursday, September 17, 2009

What was in that tentative agreement?

The Governor's Office was kind enough to pass along the summary of the tentative agreement that they reached with the State Employees Assocation back in July. Here's what was in that deal at that time.
The major components of the agreement are:

* 18 furlough days over biennium, 12 of which shall come from state government shut-downs.

* Shut-downs would be similar to state holidays, with essential health and public safety functions continuing. Instead of taking furloughs, employees who work at 24-hour operations will forego 18 days of holiday pay for this biennium.

* No additional layoffs. There will not be any additional layoffs of generally funded positions, other than those anticipated by the budget, or necessary because of a reduction of federal funds or grants or closing of facilities or suspension of programs.

* Freeze on step increases in FY 2011.

* Health plan changes, including wellness program and required mail-order refills for certain maintenance prescription drugs.

* Partial restoration of "bumping" for the biennium that limits it to one "bump." An employee with more than 10 years of service may bump an employee with less than 10 years of service within a division.

* Lay-offs shall first apply to part-time workers within a facility or community where the layoffs are to occur.

* Employees receive 18 vacation days, spread over four years beginning in FY 2012. The vacation days will not lapse but will have no cash value at retirement or termination.

Daniel Barrack's piece in the Monitor this morning outlines the areas still being contested.
• Pay cuts at the Department of Corrections, where workers are seeking a new pay structure to account for the time they spend getting ready at the beginning and end of shifts.

• The structure of a new state employee health plan, which state officials say could save nearly $1 million a year but that union leaders say would be costlier to workers.

• Whether to allow retroactive "bumping rights," which allow more experienced state workers to take the jobs of less experienced workers in the case of a layoff. State officials say allowing retroactive "bumps" for workers who have already been laid off would create chaos.

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