OSA News - July 1999

Once upon a time, OSA could print a simple chart and cover the proper salaries and increases due to 90 percent of our members. Nowadays, we are victims of our own success. Not only does OSA represent five times as many titles as before, but large numbers of our members are -- thanks to our longevity -- no longer at the minimum salary for each title. No problem.

The way for each member to be sure that he or she has received the correct pay is to:

  1. learn the facts

  2. do the simple calculations as indicated below

  3. compare your pre-raise pay stub against your post-raise pay stubs.

Thereafter, if your Agency has made an error there are ways to obtain a correction.

First, the facts. Longevity Raise. All members of OSA are due a 4.75% raise as of June 1, 1999. All members of OSA -- except those in the Transit Authority -- are also entitled to longevity if they have completed the years of continuous service required.

Some union contracts insist that the time served must be in a particular title or title series. OSA's contract does not. If you are now an Analyst and previously served in another job title, your earlier service counts.

The 10 and 15 year longevities are normally payable on the day you have completed 10 or 15 years of service. The 20 year longevity is payable on the first day of the quarter (January 1, April 1, July 1, or October 1) after you complete twenty years of service.

Members who have completed 20 years of service prior to April 1, 1999 are due to be paid the 20 year longevity as of June 1, 1999. Those who completed the twenty years of service on or after April 1, 1999 must wait until July 1, 1999.

Second, the calculations. Formulas. The City computes all salaries on an annual/fiscal year basis. For the 1999 fiscal year (July 1, 1998 to June 30, 1999) there will be 365 days. For the 2000 fiscal year (July 1, 1999 - June 30, 2000) there will be 366 days.

To convert annual increases to bi-weekly increases use the following formulas:


365 x 14 = biweekly until June 30, 1999 (FY 1999)


366 x 14 = biweekly as of July 1, 1999 (FY 2000)

Start with your paystub for June 11, 1999, just prior to payment of the raise or with any earlier paystub over the past six months that reflects a full biweekly period. (But without overtime payments.)

  1. Regular pay x 1.0475 will equal the old base salary plus the new raise

  2. If there is a SVC/LONG/ED amount listed, (and the member has been receiving that longevity for 15 months), also multiply by 1.0475, since longevity for 10 and 15 years is compoundable.

However, the rules set by this City do not allow the increase in pay resulting from the 4.75% increase to be reflected on the line for SVC/LONG/ED. Instead subtract the old SVC/LONG/ ED amount and just add the raise to the new regular pay.

The longevities are the same for all persons eligible so we can draw up a chart:




10 Year

$ 379*

$ 1,013

10 and 15 Year

$ 1,079**

$ 2,026

10 and 15 and 20 Year


$ 3,024







10 Year

$ 14.54*

$ 38.85

10 and 15 Year

$ 41.39**

$ 77.71

10 and 15 and 20 Year



* HHC members unionized 12/94 did not receive the 10 year longevity prior to June 1, 1999.
** HHC members unionized 12/95 did not receive the 10 or 15 year longevity prior to June 1, 1999.
BOE members did not receive the $700 15 year longevity prior to June 1, 1999.

Third, checking the paystubs. Below you will see the paystub of a senior employee just before the raise was paid.

stub1799.gif - 134.3 K

Following the rules given for calculation:

1. Regular pay... $1850.65 2. Longevity.... $ 41.39
% raise....... x 1.0475 % raise....... x 1.0475
  $1938.56   $ 43.36
    -$ 41.39

Compounded  Compounded 
Longevity.... + $1.97 Longevity... $ 1.97
New Regular Pay... $1940.53   

And since seniority in this case goes back forever, the 10, 15 and 20 year longevity are all involved. (see chart).

Thus, the 6/25/99 paystub should show about $1940.53 for the new regular pay and $115.99 for SVC/LONG/ED. Since the 6/25/99 paystub will cover the period June 6, 1999 - June 19,1999 that would only leave the period June 1, 1999 - June 5, 1999 for monies owed retroactively.

Now we look at the 6/25/99 paystub as it actually showed up on 6/25/99.

stub2799.gif - 139.6 K

3. You will note, we were off by only one cent in our calculation of the regular pay. The error most likely occurred on our end since we did not go from annual salary x 1.0475 divided by 365 and multiplied by 14. Instead we took a short cut and simply multiplied the 1.0475 x the biweekly amounts. Still, a penny is not far off and sometimes the City goes up first then back down one cent on a paycheck every other period.

4. The increase is worth $89.87 biweekly or $6.419 per calendar day. ($1940.52, new regular pay, minus $1850.65, old regular pay.)

Five days x $6.419 (June 1 - June 5) equals $32.095, and again the pay stub is close, again within a penny. There is no problem with the prior period retroactive money 6/1 - 6/5 for regular pay.

5. The SVC/LONG/ED comes in at $77.71, exactly the amount predicted for the 10 and 15 year longevities. Note that there is no 20 year longevity on the stub at all.

6. Meanwhile the $12.97 prior period payment is the correct amount. (New longevity $77.71 minus old longevity $41.39 equals $36.32 biweekly or $2.594 daily x five days.) On the money!

The only significant error found was the lack of the 20 year longevity. In checking with Agency payroll, we were told that the 20 year longevity would not hit the paychecks until July 9th. They are having trouble determining eligibility of the members for the 20 year longevity. We responded that we would be patient for a couple of pay periods.

Members who read the facts, do the calculations, and find an error, are urged to start with either gentle verbal inquiries, or an Agency payroll complaint form or memo to payroll. If matters are not corrected in three pay periods or the answer is unsatisfactory, please call our grievance section promptly with all necessary information.

Failure to grieve within 4 months of discovery of a payroll error can cost you money, so be patient, but not too patient. The grievance process itself may take a few months, but once started the time does not count against you.

And, in times to come. The one final point to note is that as of July 1, 1999, all calculations will change to a 366 day year. As a result all the numbers change slightly.

  1. the ten year longevity goes from $38.85 to $38.75

  2. the ten and fifteen year longevity goes from $77.71 to $77.50

  3. the ten, fifteen and twenty longevity goes from $115.99 to $115.67

The good part is that the reduction ends a year later on July 1, 2000. The bad part is it complicates our arithmetic when we have to check on the eventual retroactive payment.

If the City can do the arithmetic, we can correct the arithmetic. We are, after all, Analysts.

Happy calculating