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MSEA-SEIU Local 1989
65 State Street
PO Box 1072
Augusta, ME 04332-1072


SEIU Local 1989

JOIN MSEA-SEIU Local 1989!

These are the forms you'll need...


Membership Application - Print, fillout and mail or fax. FAX Number: 207-623-4916

Income Protection Questions & Answers

Income Protection Application


Attention MSEA-SEIU members in the Executive Branch! Click here to print out a copy of the MSEA-SEIU 2015 Collective Bargaining Proposal Form for the State of Maine Executive Branch. Be sure to fill it out and send it back to us by Feb. 27.


Nominations sought for MSEA-SEIU Lifetime Achievement Award


Dear MSEA-SEIU Member,


The MSEA-SEIU Retirees Steering Committee will present the third Lifetime Achievement Award to one of our retiree members May 12, 2015, during our 28th Annual MSEA-SEIU Retirees Day at the Augusta Civic Center. Anyone can nominate. Using this two-page nomination form, please nominate a retiree whom you think might be deserving of this award.

These factors (in no particular order) will be considered in selecting the award recipient: 1. Living Person; 2. Active in being a leader; 3. Advocates for MSEA-SEIU retirees through the political process; 4. Promotes spirit of retirees; 5. Supporting the MSEA-SEIU retiree agenda; 6. Community Involvement.


You may nominate someone by email or U.S. mail. Email nominations to Tom Farkas, Communications and Training Coordinator, at or submit them via U.S. mail to: Tom Farkas, MSEA-SEIU Local 1989, P.O. Box 1072, Augusta, ME 04332-1072. You may self-nominate or nominate someone else. In nominating someone else for this award, we need your help by answering some of the criteria above as we don't know what all retirees have done to contribute. Once the deadline has passed, a subcommittee will look over the nominations, score them and select someone. The deadline for submission is March 16, 2015.


In Solidarity, The MSEA-SEIU Retirees Steering Committee

5 goals for 2015

(Click here to print a 2-page flier of this message to post on your Union Bulletin Board!)


There's a lot at stake for all of us in the 127th Maine Legislature. In addition to making sure state legislators pass a responsible state budget funding our contracts, our priorities for the 127th Maine Legislature include:

    • Addressing the serious public employee recruitment and retention problem the State of Maine has been experiencing throughout all branches and departments;

    • Helping to solve the problem of impossible workloads and caseloads many of our members are experiencing as they do the public's work;

    • Improving Maine's mental health service structure;

    • Holding contractors who do the public's work accountable so Maine taxpayers will know whether they are getting their money's worth;

    • Strengthening the retirement security of Maine's retired public workers.

We can win on our issues by building support for our legislative agenda, advancing other legislation helping Maine workers and retirees, and opposing legislation harming Maine workers and retirees. Among the over 1,500 legislative proposals submitted, there are several supporting our priorities this legislative session. We are proud of the following legislative proposals and their bipartisan support:

    "An Act to Improve State Employee Recruitment and Retention," sponsored by State Rep. Lori Fowle. This legislation would require, by statute: funding for merit and longevity pay for workers in all three branches of State of Maine Government: Executive, Judicial and Legislative; full funding for the State of Maine's group health plans; and the negotiation and the implementation of the findings of the three remaining Executive Branch Classification and Compensation Study Committees covering the Operations, Maintenance & Support Services Bargaining Unit; the Professional-Technical Services Bargaining Unit, and the Supervisory Services Bargaining Unit.

    "An Act to Protect Taxpayers by Regulating Personal Services Contracts," sponsored by State Rep. Roland "Danny" Martin. This legislation would provide greater protection to taxpayers by requiring contracts for personal services under Title 5, Section 1816-A, demonstrate long-term cost savings and, if contracts are up for renewal, demonstrate actual savings during the initial contract and projected savings for the renewal. This legislation also would provide ombudsman authority to the Office of Program Evaluation and Government Accountability.

    "Resolve, An Act to Study Staffing Levels of State Agencies," sponsored by State Rep. Peggy Rotundo. This resolve would establish a work group composed of stakeholders (collective bargaining representatives, state agency/department representatives and state legislators) that would review staffing levels, caseloads, workloads and any national standards to assess staffing levels. The work group would report back to the respective committee of jurisdiction, which could then file legislation.

    "An Act to Improve Retirement Security for Retired Public Employees," sponsored by State Rep. Roger Sherman. For the 2015-2016 and 2016-2017 state budget years, this legislation would lock in, at no less than 2.55% on the first $20,000 of pension income, the cost of living adjustment to retiree pensions for retired workers in all three branches of state government and for retired teachers.

    "An Act to Increase the Reimbursement Rate for Direct Care Workers Serving Maine's Seniors," sponsored by House Speaker Mark Eves. This legislation would raise the current low hourly wages for home care workers, including personal care attendants, who help Maine people live independently in their own homes. We represent these workers at Home Care for Maine and Alpha One.

    We are monitoring legislation relating to worker and patient safety at Riverview Psychiatric Center. One proposal is "An Act to Improve Inpatient Mental Health Services," sponsored by State Rep. Andrew Gattine. This legislation would improve inpatient services for mental health by providing more effective assessment, improved staffing, better staff education and more effective treatment options.

    In addition, we are supporting legislation raising Maine's minimum wage. Maine's minimum wage has been stuck at $7.50 since October 2009, yet the cost of living has been going up. Raising the wage merely will help low-wage earners catch up to the rising cost of living. Raising the wage also will reduce the need of low-wage earners to resort to public assistance programs to survive.

We are disappointed the Governor once again is pushing so-called "right-to-work-for-less" legislation. We oppose any attempts to weaken the ability of labor unions to advocate for Maine's working families. Stagnating wages, rising income inequality and retirement insecurity are plaguing the American workforce. If anything, Maine's elected leaders should make it easier, not harder, for workers to organize.


In order for us to win on our issues, we need you to begin a conversation with your state senator and state representative. Please pull out and save our 2015 Guide to Contacting Your State Legislators arriving with your Maine Stater in mailboxes this week. Keep the Guide handy. We will follow up with you in the coming weeks and months on key hearing dates, legislation and facts so you can have informed and persuasive conversations with your state senator and state representative in support of our issues. Together, we can win for Maine's working families and retirees.


Attention MSEA-SEIU members in the Executive Branch!

What do you want in your next contract?


Dear MSEA-SEIU Members Working for the State of Maine Executive Branch,


This is a key bargaining year, with all of our contracts expiring in the State of Maine's Executive Branch. Now more than ever, we need to work together to deliver fair contracts for everyone.


Your union is establishing a Contract Action Team consisting of MSEA-SEIU Local 1989 members who will guide the Union Negotiating Team. This is your invitation to become part of the Contract Action Team.


Please join the Contract Action Team and attend the Contract Action Team's kickoff meeting from 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Jan. 31, at Augusta Civic Center, with registration starting at 8:30 a.m. To participate, sign up by calling MSEA-SEIU Member Support Specialist Terry Baillargeon by 5 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 27, at 1-800-452-8794 or 622-3151 or


At the Contract Action Team meeting Jan. 31, team members will start the process for us to win new Executive Branch contracts. Our current contracts expiring June 30, 2015, cover state workers in four bargaining units: Administrative Services; Professional-Technical Services; Operations, Maintenance & Support Services; and Supervisory Services. If you want to be part of the actual Union Negotiating Team, you need to have someone attending the Jan. 31 meeting nominate you to serve on the Union Negotiating Team.


On Jan. 31, members of the Contract Action Team will elect one at-large Union Negotiating Team member from each of the four bargaining units and take nominations for the remaining slots, which will then be elected by a mail-in ballot. Candidates who are nominated will have until Friday, Feb. 6, to submit written biographies in support of their nominations to MSEA-SEIU Local 1989 headquarters. At that point, ballot elections will be held via mail for MSEA-SEIU Local 1989 members in each of the four Executive Branch bargaining units to elect members to the Union Negotiating Team. All ballots will be due at MSEA-SEIU Local 1989 headquarters by 5 p.m. Friday, March 6, and MSEA-SEIU members will count them immediately thereafter.


Again, all MSEA-SEIU Local 1989 members in the four Executive Branch bargaining units are encouraged to serve on the Contract Action Team meeting Jan. 31. Preregistration is necessary as explained above. All MSEA-SEIU members in the Executive Branch also are encouraged to submit bargaining proposals using this bargaining proposal form on our website.


A copy of the bargaining proposal form also will appear in the Maine Stater arriving in your mailboxes the week of Jan. 26-30. There are two requirements in submitting bargaining proposals:


1) Only one proposal will be accepted per form, so if you are submitting more than one proposal, please either photocopy the form or download and print copies from our website; and


2) Your contact information (name, home and work phones, and home and work email) is required on the bargaining proposal form for your proposal to be considered.


Once the Union Negotiating Team is elected, the next step is for members of the Union Negotiating Team to meet from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. Saturday, March 14, at MSEA-SEIU headquarters in Augusta to undergo training in bargaining, review bargaining proposals, and solicit meeting dates from management.


Thank you and we look forward toward your participation in determining your next contract.


In Solidarity,


Ginette Rivard
President, MSEA-SEIU Local 1989


P.S. Here is our timeline for Executive Branch bargaining:


Saturday, Jan. 31: First meeting of the Contract Action Team, 9 a.m.-2 p.m., Augusta Civic Center, Augusta Room, Upstairs, with registration beginning at 8:30 a.m. Nominations for Union Negotiating Team candidates, election of four at-large Union Negotiating Team members (one per bargaining unit), review proposals, and set goals and priorities.


Friday, Feb. 6: Deadline for nominees to the Union Negotiating Team to submit written statements to MSEA-SEIU Local 1989 headquarters.


Friday, Feb. 20: Ballots and written statements from nominees for Union Negotiating Team to be mailed out to union members in respective bargaining units.


Friday, Feb. 27: Deadline to submit bargaining proposals to MSEA-SEIU Local 1989 headquarters.


Friday, March 6: Ballots due at MSEA-SEIU Local 1989 headquarters by 5 p.m. Ballots will be counted immediately thereafter.


Saturday, March 14: Union Negotiating Team meets from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. at MSEA-SEIU headquarters to undergo training, review bargaining proposals and solicit meeting dates from management.

Tom Feeley named as our union's general counsel

The MSEA-SEIU Board of Directors has named Tom Feeley as our union's general counsel. He started working for us Jan. 12.


For the last seven years, Tom worked at a union-side labor firm in New York City, where he represented both public sector and private sector employees in a variety of forums. Prior to that, he worked with an immigration organization in New York City, clerked with the SEIU's General Counsel office in Washington, D.C., and worked as a public defender in Palmer, Alaska. Tom earned his law degree at Northeastern University School of Law in 2006 and his bachelor's degree from Reed College in Portland, Ore.


"MSEA-SEIU members provide myriad essential services throughout the state, from keeping our roads safe and clear to protecting our parks and wildlife to performing the day-to-day administrative functions of our state government," Tom said. "MSEA-SEIU members are the backbone of Maine's communities and economy. Through decades of organizing and bargaining, they have secured contractual rights ensuring fair wages, fair treatment, and healthy and safe working conditions. I am thrilled and honored to fight to enforce these rights."


Tom was raised in Andover, Mass. He currently resides in Topsham with his wife, Alexis, and children, Clementine and James.

January 15, 2015

Making Our Voice Heard

(Click here for a poster of this message for your Union Bulletin Board!)


Dear MSEA-SEIU Members,


Happy New Year! Together, we can make the voice of our members heard in 2015 as we advocate for a responsible two-year state budget that funds our contracts and delivers quality public services to all Maine people. Here's our initial assessment of the Governor's proposed two-year state budget:


Funding contractual merit and longevity: We are encouraged the Governor's proposed two-year state budget funds contractual merit and longevity pay for Executive Branch workers for the fiscal years starting July 1, 2015, and ending June 30, 2017. Contractual merit and longevity are central elements of our state employee contracts.


The State Employee Health Plan: We are encouraged the Governor's proposed budget contains an increase in funding for the State Employee Health Plan for both budget years. We will work to ensure this level of funding stays in the proposed budget.


Proposed layoffs and job eliminations: While the Governor's proposed budget adds much-needed staff at Riverview Psychiatric Hospital, many state departments or bureaus would experience layoffs or position eliminations. Some of our members have received intention-to-lay-off notices. If you received such a notice or any written communication potentially impacting the status or potential status of your job, please:

-- Contact MSEA-SEIU Director of Politics and Legislation Mary Anne Turowski at or 1-800-452-8794 or 622-3151. Provide her with any information that can help us advocate in the Legislature for the work you do;

-- Call our Member Support Specialists on our staff at MSEA-SEIU headquarters at 1-800-452-8794 or 622-3151 so we can ensure your contractual rights are respected.

The Governor's proposed tax breaks and tax increases: We are concerned about how the Governor's latest proposed tax breaks - and tax increases - would impact our members and the ability to deliver quality public services throughout Maine. Shifting the tax burden from corporations and the wealthy onto Maine workers and retirees was wrong in 2011, and it's still wrong now.


Your Maine Stater includes our 2015 Guide to Contacting Your State Legislators. Please pull out the guide and keep it handy so you can talk with your state senator and state representative in support of Maine's working families and retirees throughout the legislative session.


Stay tuned. We will roll out our legislative agenda in the coming week.


In Solidarity,


Ginette Rivard President
MSEA-SEIU Local 1989

Latest News Stories and Feature Links


Attention MSEA-SEIU Stewards! Mark your calendars for the 2015 MSEA-SEIU Steward Training Programs listed below. Registration begins at 8 a.m. at all locations. All training programs run from 8:30 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. Click here for a poster to post on your Union Bulletin Board:


2015 MSEA-SEIU Statewide Steward Skills Training Program: Thursday, May 28, 2015, Augusta Civic Center.


2015 MSEA-SEIU Regional Steward Skills Training Programs:

  • Bangor: Wednesday, Sept. 23, 2015, Spectacular Event;
  • Presque Isle: Thursday, Sept. 24, 2015, Hampton Inn;
  • Augusta: Wednesday, Sept. 30, 2015, Augusta Civic Center;
  • Portland: Wednesday, Oct. 7, 2015,Clarion Hotel, Portland.


Bangor Daily News editorial: Maine's new leaders should make Riverview a priority


Central Maine Newspapers editorial: Hepatitis A case shows state CDC shortcomings


Attention MSEA-SEIU members: Please update your Union Bulletin Boards using the handy Union Bulletin Board posters available here.

Our four State of Maine Executive Branch contracts for state employees are now online in PDF format