July 9 --
Maine seniors cannot afford four more years of Gov. LePage,
says MSEA-SEIU President Ginette Rivard
Gov. LePage misrepresented his actions on issues central
to Maine's senior citizens. Over the past three years,
Gov. LePage shifted hundreds of millions of dollars in
State costs onto Maine seniors, families and our communities.
By shifting State costs onto property taxpayers, Gov.
LePage has made it harder for Maine seniors to live independently
in their own homes.
cut municipal revenue sharing for our communities. He
cut general purpose aid to education for our schools.
He cut the Circuit Breaker property tax relief program.
He tried to cut the Medicare Savings Program. He tried
to eliminate the Homestead Exemption and the Drugs for
the Elderly program.
took all of these actions to help pay for his new tax
breaks mostly benefiting Maine's wealthiest residents.
Yet in doing so, Gov. LePage handed a disproportionate
share of the bill to Maine seniors.
own press release last month, Gov. LePage described Social
Security as 'welfare.' Gov. LePage's record is one of
attacking the cornerstones of retirement security for
working families and retired workers. In 2011, Gov. LePage
cut the pensions of Maine's retired public workers to
help pay for his new tax breaks. His own Finance Commissioner,
Sawin Millett, now retired, explained Gov. LePage's pension
cuts this way to the Legislature's Appropriations Committee
on Feb. 28, 2011: 'The
pension savings in this budget allows for taxes to be
cut by $203 million over the biennium.'
senior citizens simply cannot afford another four years
of Gov. LePage."
Statement by MSEA-SEIU President Ginette Rivard on the U.S.
Supreme Court decision in Harris v. Quinn:
"Today's narrowly written
U.S. Supreme Court ruling in Harris v. Quinn has no impact
whatsoever on our members in Maine. We are disappointed,
however, that the 5-4 decision interferes with the rights
of certain home-care workers elsewhere in our nation to
have a voice in their wages, benefits and working conditions.
No decision by the Supreme Court will stop public workers
from advocating for a strong voice for good jobs and quality
services our communities need."
pay resumes July 1, 2014, for Executive Branch workers
MSEA-SEIU Members in the Executive Branch of State Government:
As you may know, the Maine Legislature funded longevity
pay effective July 1, 2014, and merit pay for the fiscal
year starting July 1, 2014. On June 9, we signed a memorandum
of agreement with the State confirming
that Executive Branch workers who were denied longevity
pay or a longevity pay increase prior to July 1, 2014,
will start receiving longevity pay or a longevity pay
increase July 1, 2014.
also confirms that, in accordance with our collective
bargaining agreements, Executive Branch workers who are
eligible for a merit increase in the fiscal year starting
July 1, 2014, will receive a merit increase on their anniversary
date, subject to a satisfactory performance evaluation.
is a direct result of our successful campaign to persuade
the Maine Legislature to pass, by a veto-proof margin,
LD 1843, the supplemental budget funding longevity pay
effective July 1, 2014, and merit pay for the fiscal year
starting July 1, 2014. Thanks go to those MSEA-SEIU members
who talked with their state legislators in support of
passing a responsible supplemental budget.
pay resumes July 1, 2014, for Judicial Branch workers
Attention MSEA-SEIU Members in the Judicial
Branch of State Government: As you may know, the Maine
Legislature authorized longevity pay effective July 1,
2014. On June 2 and 3, we signed agreements with your
management confirming that Judicial Branch workers who
were denied longevity pay or a longevity pay increase
prior to July 1, 2014, will start receiving longevity
pay or a longevity pay increase July 1, 2014.
the agreement for the Judicial Branch Administrative Services,
Supervisory Services and Professional Services bargaining
the agreement for the Law Enforcement Bargaining Unit.
These agreements are a direct result of
our successful campaign to persuade the Maine Legislature
to pass, by a veto-proof margin, LD 1843, the supplemental
state budget authorizing longevity pay effective July
1, 2014. Thanks go to those MSEA-SEIU members who talked
with their state legislators in support of passing a responsible
supplemental state budget.
MSEA-SEIU Local 1989's
2014 Legislative Scorecard
Find out whether your state legislators voted FOR or AGAINST
Maine workers on 11 critical votes; hold them accountable
on Election Day!
Because the Nov. 4 elections are less
than five months away, we are posting our 2014
to make sure you have all the facts.
Use our Scorecard
to find out whether your state legislators voted FOR or
AGAINST Maine workers on 11 critical votes. Then hold
them all accountable on Election Day!
We scored every legislator on 11 key pieces
of legislation impacting the everyday lives of Maine workers
and families in the first and second sessions of the 126th
Maine Legislature spanning 2013 and 2014. Legislators
who scored 100 percent voted perfectly. Legislators who
scored zero percent voted against Maine workers and families
every time. You should know that as a result of our electoral
work in the 2012 elections, a majority of the legislators
in the recently concluded 126th Maine Legislature voted
in support of quality public services and the workers
who provide them.
During the 2014 session of the 126th Legislature,
-- Secured the votes necessary to fund
merit and longevity pay for workers in all three branches
of state government for the fiscal year starting July
-- Funded numerous reclassifications and
reallocations for State of Maine workers;
-- Ensured that IF surplus (Cascade) funds
are available at the end of this fiscal year, that any
"one time only" or "ad hoc" retiree cost of living adjustment
will be based on up to $30,000 of pension base.
Once you have used the Scorecard
to determine whether your legislators voted FOR or AGAINST
Maine workers, please be sure to share that information
and this Scorecard
with your family and friends. Together, we can win for
Maine workers. Onward to the elections on Nov. 4!
3 important gains for our members
The second session of the 126th Maine
Legislature concluded with three important gains for our
1. RECLASSIFICATIONS AUTHORIZED
At our urging, state legislators overrode
Gov. LePage's veto of LD 1858, the bipartisan Second Supplemental
Budget authorizing reclassifications, stipend increases
and reallocations for MSEA-SEIU members working in classifications
that include nurses at the state psychiatric hospitals,
marine scientists, military firefighters at Bangor International
Airport, and rangers at Baxter State Park.
2. MERIT AND LONGEVITY PAY FUNDED EFFECTIVE JULY 1,
2014 FOR WORKERS IN ALL THREE BRANCHES OF STATE GOVERNMENT
The Highway Fund Budget, LD 1788, became
law without the Governor's signature. LD 1788 funds merit
and longevity pay starting July 1, 2014, for state employees
whose positions are funded through the Highway Fund Budget.
On a related note, last month, the state budget compromise
funding merit and longevity pay effective July 1, 2014,
for all other workers in all three branches of state government
became law without the Governor's signature. As a result
of these two actions:
MERIT PAY: Workers
in all three branches of state government who are
eligible for a contractual merit increase will get
one on their anniversary date in the fiscal year starting
July 1, 2014, subject to a satisfactory performance
LONGEVITY PAY: Workers who were denied their
15-, 20- or 25-year contractual longevity pay due
to the longevity freeze will begin receiving longevity
pay July 1, 2014. The Bipartisan Supplemental Budget
that went into law without the Governor's signature
includes full funding for longevity pay effective
July 1, 2014.
3. ANY ONE-TIME-ONLY RETIREE AD-HOC
COST OF LIVING ADJUSTMENT THAT POTENTIALLY COULD BE
AWARDED IN 2014 WILL BE BASED ON UP TO $30,000 OF PENSION
INCOME INSTEAD OF $20,000
Enacted into law without the Governor's
signature, LD 232 ensures that if the State of Maine
has enough of a state budget surplus at the end of the
current fiscal year to trigger a one-time-only "ad-hoc"
or "cash" cost of living adjustment to the pensions
of State of Maine retirees, then this "ad hoc" or "cash"
cost of living adjustment would be based on up to $30,000
of pension income rather than the $20,000 that applies
to any yearly cost of living adjustments. To be sure,
LD 232 is unrelated to the cumulative COLAs that will
resume in September of 2014 based on the consumer price
DISAPPOINTING DEVELOPMENT: LAID-OFF
WORKERS AT MAINE MILITARY AUTHORITY DENIED SEVERANCE
Also in this year's short legislative
session, we asked MSEA-SEIU members to call their state
legislators and urge them to override the Governor's
veto of LD 1837. This legislation would have provided
the 147 laid-off workers at Maine Military Authority
in Limestone with the opportunity to present their case
in a court of law for the severance pay the State of
Maine denied them last fall. We are disappointed that
enough state senators voted with Gov. LePage to deny
these laid-off workers the opportunity to present their
case for severance pay.
ALL IN ALL:
MSEA-SEIU members made our voice heard in this short
session of the 126th Maine Legislature by taking the
time to talk to their state representatives and state
senators in support of our issues. Now it's up to all
of us to keep our momentum going throughout 2014 and