First, we wanted to let you know that the tentative NYSCOPBA agreement we told you about previously has been now voted on, and the ballots were counted this past Monday. The members of NYSCOPBA voted down that proposal. That is helpful to us, particularly because of the proposed health insurance changes included in that deal. Since that agreement no longer exists, the State cannot use it as a wedge in our negotiations.

Your CSEA negotiating team just concluded another week of fighting for the best contract possible. For the first time in a long time we can report that there was positive progress. The state responded to our latest proposal with a counter that removed many of their concessionary demands.   The proposal addressed many concerns, but Health Insurance is still a sticking point.   While the state reduced some of their health insurance demands, your team still believes that the cost shifts the state is seeking are too harmful to you, your family, and your fellow members.

So how can this week be best summarized? We have made more progress this week than we have in the last 11 months. It appears the state has finally come to the partial realization that they can not dictate the terms of the agreement, but must truly negotiate in a manner that gives recognition to the workers that make this state work. While we would not necessarily say that a final agreement is imminent, we are certainly more hopeful than we have been in the past.

Your team is also happy to report that we were able to get the state to agree to negotiate for 3 consecutive weeks to attempt to get to a tentative agreement.  We will be fighting for you on the weeks of March 20, March 27, and April 3.  

Thank you again for standing with us.

If you know any co-workers who would like to receive our Contract Updates, send them to:
https://cseany.org/state-contract-update -- make sure they provide a non-work email address!


State Contract Update

This past week the State rejected your team’s 5 year contract proposal. They did not go into the specific issues they had with our proposal. Instead, they requested time to put forward a counter proposal for your team to review at the next session of negotiations, scheduled for the week of February 6th.

Thank you again for standing with us.

If you know any co-workers who would like to receive our Contract Updates, send them to:

https://cseany.org/state-contract-update -- make sure they provide a non-work email address!

As you are aware we provided the Governor’s team with a 5 year comprehensive proposal in December. The state has since responded to our proposal. In a nutshell: their counter proposal was terrible!

Since we last met PEF has ratified a 3 year agreement and NYSCOPA has come to terms on a 5 year agreement which is scheduled to be voted on by their membership at the end of February.

This week your team put forward a new 5 year proposal to the state. The goal of this new proposal is to maximize the good and minimize the bad of the PEF and NYSCOPBA agreements and negotiate a contract that best represents the interests of the CSEA membership.

We will be meeting again with the Governor’s team next week, January 23-27.

Thank you again for standing with us.

If you know any co-workers who would like to receive our Contract Updates, send them to:

https://cseany.org/state-contract-update -- make sure they provide a non-work email address!

Your CSEA negotiating team has just concluded another week of negotiations with the Governor’s administration. This past week was dedicated to the Administrative Service Unit, Department of Military and Naval Affairs, Workers Compensation (Article 11), and Disciplinary and Contract Grievance Procedures (Article 33 and 34).

We spent the first part of the week fighting to convince the Governor’s staff that Workers Compensation costs could be reduced if the state focused on prevention and an injury prevention program. The state is starting from a perspective that reducing the current benefits our members receive under Article 11 of the negotiated agreement is the place to save money. The team argued that there needs to be a commitment from the Governor on a true injury prevention program if we want to see Workers Compensation costs go down.

We concluded the week with very little movement from the state on this topic.  On Article 33 Discipline, the state is looking to review the current expedited discipline process to determine what types of cases should be directed to Article 33. The state is also interested in management having more flexibility in the expedited process to opt out on certain cases and go directly to Article 33, as well as looking to change the penalty structure in time and attendance cases since the schedule has not changed since the 1985-1988 negotiations.

The state also has not agreed with many arbitrators' decisions in disciplinary matters. The Governor’s focus seems to be to increase penalties and to increase the opportunities for management to discipline members. Your team put forward proposals that primarily focused on increasing the time a member has to appeal notices of discipline and to deliver justice in a more expedited manner.

The team then negotiated with the Governor’s staff on the Administrative Services Unit contract (ASU-green book). The Governor’s administration had little of meaningful proposals for the ASU bargaining unit. The team fought to allow Gaming Commission employees to ability to use accrued leave credits to cover the additional 13 dark days in the racing season. The team argued that these additional 13 days are an economic hardship and the state should allow our membership to use accruals so that the economic harm is mitigated.

The team also argued that ASU bargaining unit members in appropriate titles should receive a clothing allowance if they are not provided clothes. The ASU bargaining unit member are exposed to blood, urine, oil, and are exposed to other elements that we believe it is time to compensate our membership for their clothing.  

CSEA provided DMNA and the state with more detailed proposals and presented additional justifications on pre-shift briefing pay, uniform maintenance allowances, out-of-title grievance and job posting procedures, and on a variety of firefighter issues.

It is important to remember that the information above is just a summary of the negotiations of the week and is not inclusive of all the arguments and contractual enhancements we fought for in these areas.

While the team argued for enhancements in these areas of the contract, the Governor’s administration put forward proposals that included concessions and other language changes that are not in your best interest.  

Many of you have responded to our last request for personal stories of what an increase in your health insurance costs would mean for you and we are greatly appreciative for your responses. We now need you and your co-workers stories on any Workers Compensation injury you may have had.

We believe you are working hard each day and when you are injured at work the Governor and his administration should go above and beyond to make sure you receive every bit of support you need. Well, the problem is they don’t. And we need the Governor to understand when you are hurt or assaulted at work it has a devastating impact on you and your family.  

Please email us your story of a Worker’s Compensation Injury to: getactive@cseainc.org

Note: You are welcome to share this email with other CSEA members and encourage your co-workers to sign up for Contract Updates at: https://cseany.org/state-contract-update

Please make sure you and other CSEA members use only personal email addresses, no work emails, for receiving and replying to these updates. Work email addresses are prohibited.