Another update: Victory for Ferry Service workers, islanders

At our urging, the Maine Legislature on Friday, April 29, overrode the Governor’s veto of LD 1468, the emergency legislation helping workers for the Maine State Ferry Service and the island communities they serve. Thanks go to our ferry service captains, crews, shore crews and everyone else who called their legislators in support of LD 1468.


State of Maine Executive Branch OM&S bargaining update —

We secured a tentative agreement

Dear MSEA-SEIU Member of Our OM&S Bargaining Unit,

On Friday, April 29, we reached a tentative contractual agreement with management on a new contract for workers in the Operations, Maintenance and Support Services Bargaining Unit. The tentative agreement will now go to the MSEA-SEIU Board of Directors for review and authorization of a membership ratification vote.

We are preparing a detailed summary of the tentative agreement. The summary will be mailed to your home. We also are scheduling regional meetings to explain the tentative agreement and answer questions. The meeting schedule will be included in the mailing and posted on our website.


Victory for Riverview and Dorothea Dix workers

At our urging, the Maine Legislature on Friday, April 29, overrode the Governor’s veto of LD 1645, the emergency legislation helping workers at Riverview Psychiatric Center and Dorothea Dix Psychiatric Center, and the people they serve. LD 1645 is now law. Thanks go to all of you who took the time over the past few months to speak with your state senator and state representative in support of LD 1645.


Thank you for your service, Beth Cousins

03-28-16 Beth Cousins retirement party cropped

Our union threw a retirement luncheon March 28 for MSEA-SEIU Director of Finance and Administration Beth Cousins. She is retiring from our union’s staff after 10 years of service.

Before joining our union’s staff in 2006, Beth belonged to our union as a state worker. Throughout her 26 years of state service, Beth served as a business manager for the Maine DHHS Women, Infants and Children Nutrition Program and for the Maine Bureau of Motor Vehicles within the Department of the Secretary of State. She also worked for the Baxter State Park Authority.

While employed by the state, Beth served as a union steward for 20 years. She served on three of our union negotiating teams for the State of Maine Executive Branch. She served on our Board of Directors and as a union chapter delegate.

During her retirement luncheon, we presented Beth with a purple plant and some mementos, including a clock inscribed as follows: “Elizabeth Cousins – In honor of your many years of dedication and commitment to the members and staff of MSEA-SEIU Local 1989. Best wishes in your retirement and thank you for your service.”

Beth is a member of our Area II Retirees Chapter since 2006. She serves as a retiree delegate to our Annual Meeting.


Bangor Daily News editorial:

State employee pay raises shouldn’t be a popularity contest

“Lawmakers are considering proposals to give pay raises to several groups of state employees, including law enforcement officers and workers at the Riverview Psychiatric Recovery Center. Strong arguments were made in favor of the pay increases, but having lawmakers pick which employees are worthy of raises isn’t the best way to determine whether state pay and benefits are adequate to attract and retain state employees.

“Lawmakers should amend one of the pay raise bills to create a panel to review state employee compensation and assess its impact on state government job vacancies, recruitment and retention. Comparisons to the private sector and other states should be part of this review. If they determine higher pay and/or benefits are needed, the group would develop a plan to implement — and pay for — the increases.” Full editorial here.


Updated: April 29, 2016 — 4:58 pm
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