OSA Newsline - March 28, 2016

The good news is that the MTA board signed off on our Transit Authority contract last week. Our Transit Authority members should receive the retroactive raises in April.

Also due is our general membership meeting this coming Thursday. Refreshments will be available at 220 East 23rd Street, 7th Floor, starting at 6pm.

OSA Newsline - March 21, 2016

HHC has confirmed payment of the 2.5% raise is due for April 8th but, of course, don’t spend it until it arrives. Also due is the money for our uniformed Traffic and School Safety Officers.

Actually, the big news this week relates to a “buy out,” but the news is not true. A detailed letter is circulating, allegedly from Claude Fort of Local 375 of DC37, the Architects and Engineers. The letter asserts, in great detail, that the Assembly has passed a bill approving a buyout.

No. No such buyout approval was requested, nor would it be so long as New York City is not in any sort of fiscal crisis.

There are two basic requirements for an early retirement program or buyout. First, there has to be a fiscal problem and second, if there is one, the Mayor has to prefer a buyout to layoffs. Bloomberg, for example, was always happy to lay off employees so he never offered any early retirement options after his first year in office.

De Blasio probably would offer the kinder option, but he has no need at present. Even so, false stories like this are very welcome and spread like wildfire. In this case, not true.

OSA Newsline - March 14, 2016

The New York City Housing Authority went off the rails a bit over the past couple of weeks. They are apparently creating some new positions at a time of downsizing. They did give some of our members the right to apply for these positions, but put a short deadline for the responses and further discussed transferring staff to other agencies.

We contacted the NYCHA labor relations office to no immediate avail and then began sending strong lawyer letters again to no avail. Finally, we were contacted to tell us that some kind of flu had decimated their office and they were not able to respond.

Okay, but we do have certain rights and ignoring them can lead to legal actions, so we hope their labor relations office returns to good health before matters go any further.

On the good news front, we met to begin negotiations on one of our last outstanding contracts, the Board of Education or Department of Education or whatever. Our members have already been paid the money settlement and, at the meeting, we suggested that our City contract be accepted in toto. The management side seemed open to this idea, so this may go fast.

Finally, we attended an important meeting at DC37 last week. Representatives of DCAS met with a number of unions to share personnel procedures related to the moving of civil service lists. It was an excellent meeting and some of those details will go into our next mailing.

OSA Newsline - March 7, 2016

A bit of good news this week. We have been informed that the active members of our School Safety and Traffic Enforcement unit will receive their raises and retroactive monies due during the month of April. The payment is actually scheduled for the first check next month, but long experience warns us to just say April. In any case, even if it has been seven years waiting, do not spend it until you get it.

Our retirees from those units are subject to the complicated payouts mandated by the UFT settlement pattern, with parts of the old 4 & 4 percent raises not due for years. More recent retro monies for those retirees will arrive sooner, but no dates are set.

Last week, our union began negotiating on behalf of our newest members, the Senior Consultants, Management Information Services. The SC(MIS) workers joined us after the conclusion of our recent contract bargaining. There were only four demands, so we would hope that the bargaining will go quickly.