Dear SEIU Local 500 Member:
The Unions representing employees of Montgomery County Public Schools - including SEIU Local 500 - have just reached a settlement on terms amending their collective bargaining agreements. The bargaining was triggered when the Montgomery County Council reduced the budget recommended by the Board of Education. By state law and our contract, when this happens, items affected by the budget are subject to reopening for negotiations. We are happy to report that, despite the severe challenges, we have been able to preserve our benefits, and even to make some very slight improvements. Key provisions of the proposed settlement are:
• No reduction in the health care benefit. EMPLOYEE PREMIUM CO-PAYS WILL NOT BE INCREASED. The parties have agreed to continue working together to develop cost containment recommendations.
• Unit members scheduled to work on the Wednesday preceding the Thanksgiving holiday will be allowed to leave work early by one hour (for those working 4 hours or less) or two hours (for those working more than 4 hours) with no loss in pay. Those in jobs where such a reduction is not practical will be credited up to 2 hours of personal leave.
• Salaries continue to be frozen.
• The parties will review usage of tuition reimbursement, to develop recommendations for future bargaining on the topic.
• The settlement includes provision for reopening bargaining over the next three years on those economic provisions which have not been implemented since FY10, as well as other economic provisions of the contract.
This is a tentative agreement and subject to approval by our MCPS membership. In the next couple of weeks, the Union will be mailing ballots to full members of the Union, to vote on ratifying this agreement.
The Union’s bargaining team and the Local 500 Executive Board have expressed their support for this settlement, and recommend that the members vote to ratify the agreement.
Merle Cuttitta, SEIU Local 500 President
Friday, June 3, 2011
Posted by Louis Wilen at 9:00 PM