Dear MSEA-SEIU Members,
On July 31, MSEA-SEIU members in all four of our Executive Branch bargaining units overwhelmingly approved their tentative contractual agreements. The new contracts took effect Aug. 1. Highlights:
— Pay raises: A 3 percent across-the-board pay raise at the start of the pay week commencing closest to Sept. 1, 2019; and a 4 percent raise via adding a step/dropping a step with the start of the pay week commencing closest to Dec. 31, 2020.
— New longevity step at 10 years (20 cents) starts in October 2019; and an additional 10 cents to the 25-year longevity step, increasing it from 50 cents to 60 cents, starts Dec. 31, 2020.
— Department of Transportation Winter allowance doubles moving forward, retroactive additional $25 per week for the 2018-2019 season; there’s no change to overtime equalization.
— Greater parity among Maine DHHS caseworkers by increasing base wages of Adult Protective Caseworkers.
— Comprehensive compensation and classification study for state employees funded: This study will provide a thorough examination of the state’s classification and compensation system for state employees in the context of how other public and private sector workers are paid for comparable work. The administration will fund the study with the goal of completing it by Aug. 1, 2020, in time for its findings to become the subject of future collective bargaining. We’ll be involved in selecting the consultant to perform the study. Over the coming year, the study will provide us with data we can use to fight for solutions to the kinds of problems many of you and your coworkers identified in our worksite surveys.
— Paid parental leave: 14 days of paid parental leave for either parent relating to the birth or adoption of a child.
— No takebacks: We went into these negotiations determined to protect and build upon your contractual rights. All rights in the prior contracts continue.
You and your coworkers stepped up in a big way throughout the negotiations. Thousands of you signed our letter to Governor Mills asking her to respect public service. Many of you also identified issues through our worksite surveys, talked with your state legislators in support of the quality public services you provide, and, in late June, rallied in support of your bargaining team to help secure the best contracts possible.
There’s still a lot of work to do, both in our worksites and in the Legislature, in support of quality services, public workers, and retirement security. However, with these new contracts, we made good progress. The contracts position you and your coworkers for future gains. Let’s keep our momentum going!
Your MSEA-SEIU Bargaining Team:
Administrative Services: Sherri Beaulieu, Tracy Bonnevie and Cindy Proulx
Operations, Maintenance and Support Services: Mike Bathory, Carl Holbrook and Brian Markey
Professional-Technical Services: Robyn Egan, Tom Maher and Dan Russell
Supervisory Services: David Projansky, Maureen Sullivan and Jon Woodard
Ramona Welton, President
Dean Staffieri, Vice President