OSA Newsline - November 28, 2005

The union is receiving many phone calls from our retired members asking about Medicare Part D. Mail went out last week answering most questions. The reason why the change is so important is because our retirees over 65 years of age had been paying really high premiums, higher by far than the rest of us.

However, to give one positive example of the change. GHI Senior Care's drug rider currently costs $183 per person, offset by $50 from the union welfare fund, for a final cost of $133 per month. As of January, the costs drop to $83, offset by our welfare fund contribution of $50, for a final cost of $33 a month.

Actually, that works out to being a pretty nice New Year's present for our retirees covered by GHI, at least for next year. Long run, the price of drugs, indeed the cost of US healthcare in general, probably needs a lot more attention by the government.

If there is any news on negotiations by Thursday of this week, there will be a report at Thursday's general membership meeting, 6pm at 220 East 23rd Street, 7th floor. Of course, there might not be any news.

Finally, a web-only bit of news. OSA member Reza Delghavi, who works for DOT as an Associate Staff Analyst brings to our attention a website of his photographic work. Members are encouraged to visit and enjoy Brother Delghavi's artistic work by clicking on this link.

OSA Newsline - November 21, 2005

There was news last week, but it was very strange. If you had followed the contracts reported upon in the Chief over the past month, you would have noted that some contracts went on past the three year term of DC37's contract. In effect, a fourth year was tacked on with a value of 3.15%.

And then, last week, two items came to our union's attention. It turns out that managerial employees will shortly be receiving a one percent raise effective 7/1/04 and a further raise of 3.15% effective 7/1/05. In addition, the original jurisdiction raises are also being approved for, you guessed it, one percent on 7/1/04 and 3.15% on 7/1/05.

We have, of course, been in negotiations seeking the one percent since July, with no success for us nor for any of the other civilian non-pedagogical unions, thus far. And now, with no talks at all about productivity savings, the one percent is being approved for thousands of non-represented workers and 3.15% more as well.

This is strange.

It is not bad news. It is an interesting interpretation of the pattern. It is even pretty good news, but it is definitely unusual. OSA, as you would imagine, has now filed to open bargaining for the 3.15% immediately with our only caveat that we insist upon our right to the prior one percent as well. Negotiations are getting interesting at last.

OSA Newsline - November 14, 2005

There were no negotiations last week due to the election, but we can hope they will resume soon.

Our Holiday Party time is approaching. OSA will be hosting our party on Thursday, December 15. We outgrew that lovely restaurant at the Armory, so we have had to find a larger place. Our new site will be in Queens Astoria actually. It is close to the N line subway and details will be in the mail. The place is changing, but the Charlotte Russes will be the same only there will be more of them.

OSA Newsline - November 7, 2005

The November Edition of News From OSA was posted on this site last week and there is not much to add to the information updated there.

On Tuesday, we all have both the privilege and the right to vote and we should all do so.

The OSA leadership has strongly endorsed Freddy Ferrer for mayor, but no matter how you vote, it is very important that you do vote. See you at the polls.