OSA Newsline - December 24, 2012

On December 20th, OSA’s Holiday Party went off beautifully, with 460 members and guests. Music, food and drink were appreciated by all and the weather cooperated nicely as well.

One member left behind an attractive set of eyeglasses and, if that was you, or one of your guests, please call George at the union office so we can send them to you.

The newsline will now take a two week holiday. So, happy holidays to us all and check this page again in 2013.

OSA Newsline - December 17, 2012

For those planning to attend this Thursday’s holiday party, our Transit Authority members suggest the use of the N Train to Atlantic Avenue/Barclays Center and then a transfer to the R Train to Prospect Avenue/ 4th Avenue.

If you are planning to come, but did not get your tickets yet, call George at the union office and hurry.

We met with the city last week and learned that a problem of coordination of benefits did occur. Some retirees are covered for city benefits and their spouse for state benefits. Recent changes in the state program resulted in some city retirees being transferred from the city-sponsored HIP program into state coverage with little notice and no clear explanation. The problem is being corrected, but is sure to have unsettled the retirees who were affected. Computers make many things possible including, of course, giant errors.

We'd like to remind you that we are regularly posting articles we think will be of interest to you on this website. Click on the button for "Articles of Interest" in the row of buttons to the far left of this message. The latest material concerns the threat to unions from the passage of so-called "right to work" legislation in Michigan. There's also a nicely done animation narrated by actor Ed Asner reminding us of the importance of proper taxation of the wealthy in ensuring a fair society. We regularly add to the materials in that section so check back periodically.

OSA Newsline - December 10, 2012

Members are reminded that the holiday party will be on December 20th. Tickets are still available. If you have lost the flier, call George at 212-686-1229 or download another copy by clicking this link. Please be aware that R Train service to Grand Prospect Hall from Manhattan is a little disrupte by superstorm Sandy. Take the N Train to Atlantic Avenue/Barclays Center and switch there for the R Train to Prospect Avenue/4th Avenue.

The nomination period for officers in the OSA/OSARC elections closed this evening with no new nominations received. Therefore, the candidates nominated at November’s general membership meeting will be sworn in at our January meeting.

OSA Chair Bob Croghan, expressing his appreciation, noted, "on behalf of myself and all those nominated, I wish to express our gratitude for having the opportunity to serve the membership. True, this is a time of slow progress for unions. 2012 saw the start of pension tier VI and no new contract for any city union. Even so, the day-to-day work of grievance and organization goes on and is important, now and for the future."

OSA Newsline - December 3, 2012

Many members have called in to complain that their agency is not excusing the absences caused by Sandy. Our grievance section will be submitting a group grievance on this problem, but there will be no clear answer for months to come. Any members who are being denied excused leave due to the storm conditions should call our office at 212-686-1229 to add their own information to the data being collected.

We had good news last week. The city has agreed to supply the union with a full list of names of all Administrative Staff Analysts levels II and III. The list is due in one month. Then, a month after that, all eligible II’s and III’s will be added to the OSA Welfare Fund and will be eligible for the protections accorded union members. This includes, of course, pay for any involuntary overtime, as well as due process for all permanent employees and all provisional employees with two years in their title.

This is a great victory for organization and for our members. It will have taken nine years from 2004 to 2013 to accomplish this, but it was worth the effort. Thanks are due to Sheila Gorsky, our executive director, Tim Collins, our negotiator, and to Joan Kiok and Len Shrier, our chief counsels during that fight. Thanks are also due to the many administrative analysts who helped us to succeed. Over nine years there were a lot of individuals who did help. Good job. Well done.

Nominations for union offices were accepted at last Thursday’s general membership meeting and will stay open in case of mail nominations until next Monday.

A reminder that our Holiday Party is scheduled for Thursday, December 20, 2012 at the Grand Prospect Hall in Brooklyn. The coupon to order tickets to theparty can be downloaded at this link. Directions to Grand Prospect Hall can be downloaded at this link. If you have any questions about tickets to the party, please call George Morgan at the union office.

New slide shows of photos from the September Labor Day Parade and the November Women's Committee presentation on health and wellness are now posted on this website under the OSA Photo Gallery tab, featuring photos taken by OSA Director of Media Services Rob Spencer.