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Trick or Treat?

Trick or treat? That’s the question on the bargaining table this week. 
Trick: The State’s proposal is a scheme that is contingent on general fund revenues dramatically outstripping estimates. This is  so uncertain that the criteria for a raise would have been met in just 3 of the last six years—we might as well flip a coin for a raise if the State has its way.
Treat: The bargaining team has proposed a fair and equitable wage increase for members—a 3.5 percent across the board raise. 
We’ve been knocking at the door, but the lights are off at Governor Hogan’s, and it’s unclear if anyone is home. 
We’re using every tool in our toolbox to fight back and push for the raises that you deserve. That’s why today, at the conclusion of the negotiating session, we initiated the fact-finding process under Maryland law. This is uncharted territory, but we know that it will give us the opportunity to press our case to an independent fact-finder. 
During fact-finding, we’ll make the case that you deserve a fair and equitable wage increase.
The fact is Maryland state employees have been left behind. State employees earn about 4.5 percent less than their counterparts in neighboring states. The numbers are even worse when compared with cities and counties in Maryland, with state employees making approximately 20 percent less than their peers.
Over the last 16 years, Maryland state employees haven’t received a cost of living adjustment seven times. Employees have only had a funded step increase 50% of the time.

We will continue to fight for the for the respect and dignity state employees deserve.    
This is the first time that the fact-finding process has been invoked. By November 1, we’ll choose a neutral fact-finder, who will make a recommendation by November 20. In the meantime, we’ll continue to meet every Wednesday with the State to forge a deal. 
Our next bargaining session with the State is this Wednesday, November 1st. 
Wear your blue on Wednesdays and talk to your coworkers about the negotiations. Let them know that the State doesn’t believe you deserve a fair raise. 
If you haven’t had a chance, don’t forget to tell me what a fair and equitable wage increase means to you and your families here.
As always, click here to view upcoming events. If your agency isn’t listed click here, to contact MPEC HQ to help with setting up meetings at your agency.
Thank you for all you do.
In Solidarity,

Jerry Smith, President


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