Posts Tagged ‘negotiations team’

Cheering for East Bay Regional Park District Employees!

Thank you, EVERYONE, for cheering for workers. Your support inspires us to continue speaking up for what is fair.

After a long day with a mediator, Local 2428 Negotiations Team and the EBRPD reached a “tentative” agreement which means there will not be a strike on July 4th and 5th.

Tonight is Local 2428 monthly membership meeting; our Negotiations Team will be presenting the details of the tentative agreement and answering questions.

The ratification vote is scheduled for July 17, 2013.  Let’s see what happens next.  Our last contract expired over 3 months ago.

I shall post updates.

Thank you, Negotiations Team, Coworkers, Friends, Community!

 

In solidarity,

AFSCME Local 2428 Member

 

Sincerely,

 

Teresa LeYung-Ryan

  • Berkeley resident
  • tax payer
  • user of EBRPD parks and trails
  • supporter of Measure WW
  • part-time Sr. Office Assistant for EBRPD
  • fan of all employees at EBRPD
  • published author and writing coach

http://writingcoachTeresa.com for more resources for writers and readers

 

*** Today, June 27, 2013, General Manager of East Bay Regional Park District sent “A Message to our Community – Possible Employee Strike Action at Regional Parks on July 4-5″  As I read the letter, lines from E. B. White’s children book Charlotte’s Web came to mind.

“What are you thinking about, Charlotte?” Wilbur asked.

“I was just thinking,” said the spider, “that people are very gullible.”

“What does ‘gullible’ mean?”

“Easy to fool,” said Charlotte.

If  we are to read the General Manager’s letter and accept the document as the whole truth (without conducting fact-checking), then, yes, we are gullible.

The letter says that the District is offering an overall pay increase of 8.5% over a four-year contract.  Why doesn’t it say that employees’ buying power has eroded by 11.5% over the past four years?

The District is offering 2% wage increase for July 1, 2013–March 31, 2014 (previous contract has already expired on March 31, 2013) while 2013 Consumer Price Index is 2.4%.

CPI figures confirmed by  http://www.bls.gov/ro9/9240.pdf

2010  2.4%

2011  2.1%

2012  3.5%

2013  2.4%

The letter says: ” . . . current average total compensation (wages and benefits) for the basic park maintenance worker as a Park Ranger 2 with a high school education and three years of service is $102,000.”  What it doesn’t say is that (according to District’s website) the minimum monthly salary for Park Ranger II is  $4,310.80 and maximum monthly salary is $4,693.87.  Office Assistant/Senior Office Assistant min. $3,800.88/month; max. $4,286.75/month.

And, those salary figures are gross, not net.  Ask a Park Ranger II or Office Assistant what his/her take-home pay is.  Ask a Park Ranger II or Office Assistant what losing 11.5% buying-power over the past four years means in terms of paying:

  • rent or mortgage and property tax
  • food
  • utilities
  • hygiene products & clothing
  • transportation or gasoline, car maintenance and insurance
  • home owner or tenant’s insurance
  • doctor-visit co-pays
  • living expense for dependents

What the letter doesn’t say is that while the EBRPD board members approve “merit increases” for managers . . . the  job classifications and salary schedules for many non-management positions are outdated.

EBRPD is a special district (not state, not city).  The District reports 2012 General Fund revenues exceeded expenditures by $9.7 million, or 10%, which means General Fund revenues grew by $3.4 million. In 2011, General Fund revenues exceeded expenditures by $9.3 million. In other words, the Park District is indeed financially healthy. Even during the recession, the District had a surplus of $5 million.  Why erode skilled and loyal employees’ wages/benefits/buying power?

How can we say "Thank you" to the employees who make East Bay regional parks and trails clean and beautiful?

On June 26, 2013 AFSCME Local 2428 had released this statement:

AFSCME LOCAL 2428 EAST BAY PARK WORKERS ARE PREPARING TO STRIKE JULY 4TH AND 5TH FOR A FAIR CONTRACT

WHY WOULD WE GO ON STRIKE ?

  • We are trying to reach a fair contract with our employer the EBRPD. If we do not reach agreement by the evening of July 3rd, then, yes, we shall proceed with work-stoppage on July 4th and 5th; Local 2428 had already notified the public on June 26.
  • Our wages are 17% less than our counterparts in other public agencies.
  • The District’s offer does not keep pace with inflation (our buying power has already eroded by 11.5% over the past four years)
  • The District’s offer amounts to a net wage increase of 1.125% each year over 4 years; if CPI stays at 2.4% each year, we would fall further and further behind.
  • If Board Members grant merit increases to one group of employees (highest-paid group), then it’s only fair to not erode the wages of the lower-paid groups.

What is Local 2428 Negotiations Team asking on behalf of their 600+ members?

a 3-year contract April 1, 2013 — March 31, 2016 that offers:

  • Year 1 – current CPI of 2.4 plus 1% = 3.4%
  • Year 2 – CPI plus 1.75% — with 2.5% floor /  4.75% ceiling
  • Year 3 – CPI plus 1.75% — with 2.5% floor /  4.75% ceiling
Since no one can predict future years’ CPI, percentages for floors and ceiling  are used.
Please write letters or emails to the EBRPD Board Members and General Manager (and cc AFSCME Local 2428 President) to express our concern for fair treatment to ALL employees of a public agency that is thriving because of our property taxes (Measure WW), our patronage, our support, and employees’ dedication and labor.

Here are names and email addresses of the 7 EBRPD Board Members and General Manager:

“EBRPD Board President John Sutter” <jsutter@ebparks.org>

“EBRPD Board Vice President Ayn Wieskamp” <awieskamp@ebparks.org>

“EBRPD Board Secretary Ted Radke”  <tradke@ebparks.org>

“EBRPD Board Treasurer Whitney Dotson” <wdotson@ebparks.org>

“EBRPD Board Member Beverly Lane” <blane@ebparks.org>

“EBRPD Board Member Doug Siden” <dsiden@ebparks.org>

“EBRPD Board Member Carol Severin” <cseverin@ebparks.org>

“EBRPD GM Robert E. Doyle” <bdoyle@ebparks.org>

Please cc   “AFSCME Local 2428 President Cliff Rocha” local2428negotiations@gmail.com 510-566-5985

U.S. mailing address to Board Members and General Manager:    EBRPD Board, 2950 Peralta Oaks Court, Oakland, CA 94605    1-888-EBPARKS (1-888-327-2757), extension 2020 for Clerk of the Board

Please cc Local 2428 President Cliff Rocha:  Local 2428 East Bay Parks, 80 Swan Way, Suite 110, Oakland, CA 94621   Tel:  510-566-5985

Yes, I am one of the 276 employees who voted “NO” to the District’s proposed contract that would further diminish my buying power and narrow negotiating parameters for  future contracts.
* * * * * *
I cheer for all EBRPD coworkers (Local 2428 members, seasonal and temporary employees, management, confidentials, public safety) current and future, retirees, volunteers, family, friends, neighbors, Alameda County and Contra Costa County property tax payers, advocates of Measure WW,  EBRPD board members, all EBRPD park and trail users, all the Charlotte(s), Wilbur(s), Templeton(s), and Fern(s)!
* * * * * *
Thank you, Local 2428 Executive Board, Negotiations Team, and Business Manager Brenda Wood!
I am Writing Coach Teresa, asking YOU to also speak up for current and future East Bay Regional Park District workers.
* * * * * * * * * *
Sincerely,
  • Berkeley resident
  • tax payer
  • user of EBRPD parks and trails
  • supporter of Measure WW
  • part-time Sr. Office Assistant for EBRPD
  • fan of all employees at EBRPD
  • published author and writing coach
http://writingcoachTeresa.com  for more resources for writers and readers
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