Oct 29, 2021

Executive Board Election Results

Thank you to everyone who participated in the MassDOT Unit D/Local 368 Executive Board election. The ballots have been tallied and the results are below.
 
Congratulations to Beth Caron and Shawn O'Brien for being elected to fill the Vice President-at-Large seats! 
 
Oct 20, 2021

Update on Vaccine Mandate Bargaining

The NAGE team met with representatives of the Baker Administration again today to continue negotiations over the decision to mandate vaccinations and the impacts of that decision on terms and conditions of employment.
 

The only significant progress we can report is that the administration has agreed in principle to waive the steps of the grievance process so that we will be able to proceed directly to arbitration to challenge disciplinary actions that may be taken against our members for not complying with the vaccination mandate.  The normal process typically takes 18 months or more and we hope that this agreement will shorten that time considerably. We also were able to obtain a commitment that employees who filed timely exemption requests and who did not receive a denial of their request until after October 17 will be allowed three calendar days after the denial to produce evidence of vaccination.
 

On the main question of whether the employer will continue to suspend and terminate non-compliant employees, the administration is adamant that they will.
 

On a more positive note, the number of unvaccinated members continues to drop significantly.  While we will continue to vigorously represent those employees who, for a variety of reasons have not been vaccinated, we are realistic enough to see the trend nationally that has almost uniformly upheld employers who enforce a mandate.  
 

In view of the fact that the administration has unilaterally implemented this program of mandatory discipline without having reached agreement or impasse with NAGE, we will be filing a Charge of Prohibited Practice at the Department of Labor Relations (DLR) this week.  This is the same forum and legal theory that led to our victory in the PFMLA case.
 

We will keep you advised.

 
Oct 20, 2021
Executive Board Ballot Count Zoom
 
For anyone interested in viewing the 9:00AM ballot count on Thursday, October 28, 2021, please register to receive the Zoom link below. 

Register here: Local 368 Ballot Count Zoom 
 
Oct 15, 2021

MA Legislature Authorizes State Contracts

The State legislature has voted to authorize the recently ratified contracts for Units 1,3 and 6, as well as MassDOT Units A and D and the Trial Court.

The authorizations were included in a FY21 Closeout Supplemental Budget that has been transmitted to the Governor's desk for signature. Governor Baker now has 10 days to review the bill. Once the legislation is signed by the Governor, the state can beginning implementing the economic provisions contained in the agreements. 

NAGE will provide you with the expected implementation timeline once Governor Baker has signed this bill into law.

We would like to thank and congratulate all of the leaders and members who worked hard in the midst of difficult circumstances, made more challenging by a global pandemic, to deliver a strong contract that honors the work that our members do every day to keep the Commonwealth running! 

Stay tuned for more information over the next week.

Oct 14, 2021
Bargaining Update On Baker Vaccine Mandate

Update: Linked below is the communication from HRD that was sent to the Executive Branch yesterday. It contains an update from the pervious guidance: Unless expressly directed not to report to work by your manager or Agency Head, all Executive Department employees should report to work on Monday, October 18th. 

 

October 14th Notice from HRD


The NAGE negotiating team met again yesterday with representatives of the Baker administration to continue negotiations over the administration’s decision to require COVID vaccinations of all employees.
 
The most significant thing that happened was that management has not budged at all on, 1) the requirement to be vaccinated, 2) the deadline of October 17 to be fully vaccinated, and 3) their determination to immediately suspend anyone who is not in compliance followed by a ten-day suspension followed by immediately termination. They have rejected our proposals to, 1) establish a mask and test option, 2) delay the deadline to allow for decisions on making on requests for exemptions and, 3) delay the deadline to allow for a pilot program of mask and test.  Management has not even made a counteroffer to any of these proposals.
 
We had also proposed that if employees were required to be vaccinated, any vendors who share the same workspace with our members must be required to do so as well. Surprisingly, management has given no indication that they intend require this of vendors, despite the safety risk and the obvious unfairness. We will continue to press on this issue. We are also pressing on our proposal that any employee on long term leave, or who has been approved for full-time telework, should not be subject to the requirement at least until such time that they will be coming back to the workplace. We have made partial progress on this in that they have agreed that people on long term leaves will not be subject to discipline in the interim.
 
On the more peripheral issues surrounding the implementation of the requirement, we have made at least some progress. We had proposed that unvaccinated employees continue to be paid if they have not received a response to their timely filed request for an exemption, and Management agreed.  We also proposed that any employee who has not been notified to the contrary should continue to report to work until otherwise advised in writing by management. We are expecting that they will adopt this proposal in some form and will communicate to employees shortly.
 
We also have a broad agreement with management on an expedited hearing and appeal process for employees who are subject to discipline.
 

In addition to Secretary Tesler's October 13th attestation 3200 update, which included the agency's FAQ,you should expect to receive an email from management within the next 24 hours, outlining their intentions on these matters. We are in daily contact with management on the myriad of questions and concerns our members have and we have scheduled the next formal bargaining session for next week.
 
We will keep you advised as events unfold.

 


NEWS - Oct 7th, 2021
Update on Baker's Vaccine Mandate 

Today, NAGE met with the Baker Administration and MassDOT representatives in our sixth bargaining session over the proposed mandatory covid vaccination requirement.  While the state remained adamant that they would begin taking disciplinary action against employees who fail or refuse to be vaccinated by October 17th, we made a series of proposals designed to mitigate and/or delay the impacts on affected employees.   We have also maintained our position that employees be given a mask and test option as an alternative to termination (similar to the City of Boston policy).
 
We have repeatedly made the point that there are still large numbers of employees who have not been vaccinated and large numbers that have not received a decision on their requests for exemptions.  Today, 78% of Unit 1 employees have been vaccinated, 67% of Unit 3 employees, and 86% of Unit 6 employees.
 
Although we have a long way to reach an agreement, we made some progress today with the state agreeing to a new, temporarily expanded leave benefit for vaccinated employees who have to quarantine or show symptoms. They also agreed that they would not require booster vaccinations without giving NAGE advance notice and an opportunity to bargain.
 
We also discussed but did not reach an agreement on a process to expedite the appeals of employees who may be disciplined or discharged for non-compliance with the Executive Order.
 
As a reminder, the deadline for applications for Medical or Religious Exemptions is October 8th. Our next negotiation session is scheduled for next Wednesday.  We will update you as events unfold.

Please see our previous vaccine mandate updates below:

Sept 28- Vaccine Mandate Update with Exemption Guidance 
Sept 24 - Update on Baker Vaccine Mandate 
Sept 9 - Vaccine Mandate Update
Sept 2- - Vaccine Mandate Questions Answered
Aug 20 - NAGE Files Demand to Bargain 

 


NEWS - Sept 7, 2021
Contract Ratification Results!

With a staggering 98% of the ballots voting to Approve the Proposed Successor Agreement, you have voted to ratify your next contract! 

BUT, we know that you may have some questions. The highlights of the agreement are stated below, along with a FAQ!

The successor agreement MOU highlights are as follows:
  • 2% - including retro, to first payroll period in July 2020
  • .5% - retro to the first payroll period in July 2020, in exchange for settlement of our PFMLA case Because this settlement is a raise, as opposed to a one-time payment, it is far more valuable long-term. Please see FAQs on PFML settlement linked HERE
  • 1.5% one-time COVID Recognition Payment upon signing the contract with a minimum payment of $1,000*
  • 2% - first payroll period in July 2021 (calculated after the 2% and the .5% increases above have been applied) 
  • 2% - first payroll period in July 2022 
*The 1.5% COVID Recognition Payment is calculated after the first three retroactive raises (.5% retro to July 2020 in exchange for PFMLA, 2% retro to July 2020 and 2% retro to July 2021). This is separate from the aforementioned raises, and is contingent upon you being an active employee on payroll at the time the contract was signed. 

Hazard Pay and Telework are being bargained separately. We are currently in negotiations with MassDOT and hope to reach an agreement this month. We expect the Hazard Pay agreement to coincide with the Executive Branch agreement. We will report back as soon as we have more information for you.  

 

NEWS
Contract FAQ

When will we see our raises reflected in our pay?
Answer: The Administration will now be filing a supplemental budget for funds to be appropriated by the legislature for the successor agreement. We anticipate that you will see the 1.5% COVID Recognition Payment, the 2% retro to 7/2021, the 2% retro to 7/2020, and the .5% PFMLA retro to 7/2020 reflected in your paycheck in late Fall.
 
How do I calculate my pay increase?
1)      Multiply your July 2020 annualized salary by 1.025 (that is your 2020 salary) after adding in any step you receive.
2)      Multiply your July 2021 salary by 1.02 (that is your July 2021 salary).
3)      Multiply that figure by .015 (that is your bonus).
4)      Multiply the figure from #2 by 1.02 (that is your July 2022 salary) after adding any steps.
 
Is the 1.5% signing bonus designated as Hazardous Duty Pay?
Answer: No, this is not Hazardous Duty Pay; this is a one-time bonus with a minimum of $1,000 simply for reaching a contract.

Are we getting Hazardous Duty Pay?     
Answer: NAGE is currently in negotiations for this; we will keep you informed as updates come.


I am retiring soon. Am I still eligible for retroactive pay?
Answer: Yes, if you were working during the retroactive term, you are eligible. 
You can read more in the Retirement Board Newsletter linked HERE.

What is the 0.5% PFML settlement?
Answer: Please see FAQs on PFML settlement linked 
HERE

NEWS
Contract Update - Ratification Notice

Dear NAGE MassDOT Unit D Member,

We are happy to report that we have reached an agreement! Please see the highlights and full agreement linked below.

The contract ratification vote for MassDOT Unit D is set to begin on Wednesday, August 25th, via electronic ballot. Voting will run until Friday, September 3rd, at the close of business. 

We would like to thank the NAGE representatives and the Contract Negotiations Team who put forth an incredible effort to get this contract offer. NAGE's advocacy, and our member's advocacy for themselves, allowed us to push MassDOT to the offer that is detailed below. 

In order to give you ample time to read over the successor agreement and weigh the pros and cons, we have provided it here for you. We will also be hosting information sessions VIA ZOOM for those who have any questions. The first of these will be on Monday, August 23rd; an invitation will be sent out shortly. It will also be available to you on your local web page
.

The successor agreement MOU highlights are as follows:
  • 2% - including retro, to first payroll period in July 2020
  • .5% - retro to first payroll period in July 2020, in exchange for settlement of our PFMLA case Because this settlement is a raise, as opposed to a one-time payment, it is far more valuable long-term. Please see FAQs on PFML settlement linked HERE
  • 1.5% one-time COVID Recognition Payment upon signing the contract with a minimum payment of $1,000*
  • 2% - first payroll period in July 2021 (calculated after the 2% and the .5% increases above have been applied) 
  • 2% - first payroll period in July 2022

*The 1.5% COVID Recognition Payment is calculated after the first three retroactive raises (.5% retro to July 2020 in exchange for PFMLA, 2% retro to July 2020 and 2% retro to July 2021). This is separate from the aforementioned raises, and is contingent upon you being an active NAGE member on payroll at the time the contract is signed.

If you have any questions on the MOU, please contact Local President Faren Woolery at fwoolery@nage.org


August 2021 NAGE MOU MassDOT Unit D Agreement 

Sept 7, 2021

Update regarding the Baker Vaccine Mandate


As you know, NAGE strongly supports, as a matter of public health and member safety, the efforts being made to get more individuals within our state vaccinated. However, we do not endorse the Baker Administration’s draconian changes in the terms and conditions of employment as expressed in the Executive Order requiring only Commonwealth employees to receive the vaccine. 

NAGE has filed a demand to bargain regarding Governor Baker’s Executive Order issued on August 19th that all Executive Branch employees complete COVID vaccination by October 17, 2021 as a condition of employment.

As reported in the August 25th update, NAGE did not receive tangible answers to questions or proposed alternatives.  Although we resumed bargaining on September 2nd, we did not receive answers from the questions raised from the August 25th meeting.  A copy of the August 25th, 2021 update can be found here. We have no evidence at this point that the Baker Administration is “working with the unions,” as the Executive Order message indicated.

While safety remains our number one priority, NAGE continues to vigorously advocate for other alternatives to vaccination for those who cannot be vaccinated, such as masking/testing options, allowing employees to return to remote working, allowing leaves of absence as safe and healthy alternatives recommended by the CDC.  NAGE argues that the vaccine policies negotiated with other employers in the Commonwealth include these alternatives to vaccination for those who cannot receive the vaccine, as well as incentives for individuals to be vaccinated.

In addition, NAGE has petitioned the legislature to file House Bill 4443, linked HERE, to allow anyone facing termination for not complying with the vaccine mandate to obtain a leave of absence to protect their job.  NAGE has proposed this as another alternative to be included in any vaccine policy.  HRD, however, has not acknowledged any indication or likelihood that these alternatives or options will be entertained. 

In short, NAGE has little information from the Baker Administration and has received no response to our request for information, questions or proposals. The information we did obtained indicates that the Baker Administration plans to move forward with the Mandate.

NAGE has vigorously objected to the language in the Executive Order and the proposed policy that threatens discipline up to and including termination for employees not vaccinated by October 17th.  NAGE is obligated, however, to inform and warn you that HRD has indicated that as of today, that they will follow the Executive Order and will proceed with disciplining anyone not vaccinated by October 17th, over NAGE’s strong objection. 

NAGE is meeting next Wednesday to resume bargaining in this matter.  We will continue to advocate zealously for alternatives, and NAGE will defend any member disciplined for declining to comply with the Governor’s Vaccination order. 

We will provide further updates in the coming days. 

NEWS - August 2021

NAGE Sends Letter to Secretary Tesler, Delay Return to Work

Dear NAGE member,

In light of the growing number of COVID 19 Delta Variant cases in Massachusetts of both unvaccinated and vaccinated citizens, NAGE has written to request that Secretary Tesler delay all return-to-work plans for MassDOT slated for September 2021.

Please find a copy of this letter below. 


Letter to Secretary Tesler, delay return to work

 Aug 30, 2021

MassDOT Unit D/368 Executive Board Nominations 

The MassDOT Unit d/Local 368 Executive Board nomination period is now open.

Nominations can be made using the form that is linked below, and submitted to the Election Officer no later than September 10, 2021 at 4:30PM EST. Nominations submitted after that period will be considered a nullity.

MassDOT Unit D/Local 368 Executive Board Nomination Form
 
Questions about the nomination and election process can be directed to Elections Officer Tom Flynn at tflynn@nage.org.  
 
Jun 11, 2021

MA Emergency Paid Sick Leave Bill

The following memo was distributed to all Agency heads last week, regarding the Massachusetts Emergency Paid Sick Leave bill. The bill was signed into law and provides, in-part:
  • the equivalent of 5 days of paid time off to full-time employees (capped at a total of $850.00) for certain COVID-related absences from work;
  • notice requirements for employees seeking to use Massachusetts COVID-19 Emergency Paid Sick Leave (MEPSL); and 
  • documentation requirements for employers seeking reimbursement of amounts paid under MEPSL. 
The full-text PDF of the memo can be found HERE
 
May 5, 2021
Official Appeal on CERB Decision to Reimburse PFML Tax

As we reported recently, the Commonwealth appealed and moved to stay the Order by the Commonwealth Employment Relations Board (CERB), which ordered the Administration to pay Commonwealth employees an estimated $30 million due to unlawful tax deductions. If the stay is granted, not only will the Commonwealth not have to return the illegally collected funds, but they will continue taxing you throughout the lengthy appeals process. 

NAGE is outraged that the Commonwealth continues to deduct the illegal tax from our paychecks. Not only is NAGE opposing the motion to stay, but we are asking the CERB to effectuate its Order by instituting enforcement proceedings. The full-text of NAGE's opposition is can be found here

As always, we will keep you informed of the outcome of our pending litigation.

April 30, 2021
 
Yesterday, the Commonwealth filed an appeal to the decision made by the Baker-appointed Commonwealth Employment Relations Board (CERB), which ordered that the Administration pay Commonwealth employees an estimated $30 million, due to unlawful tax deductions. If the Commonwealth's appeal is granted, the Commonwealth will not only have to not pay back the illegally collected deductions, but will also be able to continue taxing you. The tax will continue to be deducted throughout the appeal process. 

Needless to say, NAGE is vehemently opposing the appeal. NAGE National President David J. Holway stated, “NAGE believes that the Baker Administration should simply do the right thing and immediately cease collecting this illegal tax, which is causing continual harm to our members. The Commonwealth should proceed forthwith to return the Bargaining Unit members’ hard-earned money.”

As reported earlier this month, NAGE is leading the way for the other public sector Unions, and won a decisive victory for our members when the CERB found that the Administration had violated the law by not bargaining with NAGE, and that NAGE members were entitled to be reimbursed for every penny that has been deducted from their paychecks since October of 2019, with interest. NAGE estimated this total at a staggering $30 million, including interest, to be paid out to State Employees. The CERB has also ordered the State to stop collecting this tax from NAGE members and all other state employees, to sign and post a notice to all NAGE members admitting that they had violated the law along, with pledging that they would never do so again. The Administration has been ordered to bargain with NAGE over PFML deductions going forward.
 
As always, we will keep you informed of our filing and its outcome.

Apr 26, 2021

NAGE Members Deserve More Than Baker Is Offering



                                  
Dear NAGE Member,

Each year like clockwork, Governor Baker writes a letter to the state workforce thanking everyone for their dedicated service. This letter will look back over the sacrifices you have all made over the past year as public employees to keep the Commonwealth running efficiently during incredibly difficult times – perhaps a “thank you” has never been more in order or deserved. Governor Baker and his Budget Chief Mike Heffernan like to say, “thank you,” but they never like to show their appreciation in a real, tangible way. Stunningly, this year seems no different.

It has been nearly a year since our contracts expired, and the economic parameters that have been offered by Governor Baker are insulting. The Governor has formally set the following parameters: 1.5% bonus in year one (July 1, 2020), followed by 2% raise in year two, and a 2% raise in year three. Whether working from home or continuing to show up in a public-facing role, you have been on the front lines of this pandemic, working to keep the Commonwealth running for more than a year. Time and again, NAGE members have answered the call to continue serving the public, sometimes at great risk to yourself and your family. Governor Bakers offer is an insult to your service.

Governor Baker’s “nice guy” routine managed to captivate a majority of voters in the past. However, as the years have gone on, the polished veneer has begun to fade, and we can begin to see just how empty the fancy suit and central casting smile are. Governor Baker bills himself as a manager. It is becoming increasingly clear that he is an awful one. An administration that cannot make a decision without paying millions of dollars in fees to an outside consulting firm, only to consistently screw up one project after another - from the Registry of Motor Vehicles to the vaccine rollout. This is not the sign of an effective manager; it is the mark of an incompetent failure.

One year ago, the economic condition of the Commonwealth was admittedly tenuous. Today, growing economic evidence, supported by strong data, suggests that Massachusetts has weathered the fiscal storm and will emerge from the pandemic in a strong position to meet the challenges of tomorrow. To date, tax revenues are nearly $1.4 billion above the original benchmark. Additionally, the state is earmarked to receive $4.55 billion in federal aid alone from the American Rescue Plan. This is on top of more than $3 billion for Massachusetts cities and towns, also in the American Rescue Plan.

After leading us to believe a serious offer was forthcoming since late February, the parameters offered by the Governor are a joke.  You and your family deserve better. You deserve a boss who will have your back. I’m writing to tell you that Governor Baker does not have your back and he doesn’t care what you think about that. The recent PFML decision illustrates the Governors disregard for his workforce. Even in the face of his legal obligation to bargain, he chose to violate the law and was unanimously rebuked by his own appointees. As household income in Massachusetts rises, Governor Baker is leaving his workers behind. You deserve better, and I promise you that we will not sit silently by as the Governor offers more empty praise and continues to turn a blind eye to the needs of our members and their families.

I thank you for you service and truly appreciate everything that you have done, and continue to do every day, to make our Commonwealth strong and resilient. We will not rest until we get a contract that we can all be proud of, a contract that actually reflects the gratitude written in Governor Bakers empty letters.

In Solidarity,
 
 
Faren Woolery
President
MassDOT Unit D/Local 368
 

November 9, 2020
Update to MassDOT Unit D/Local 368
From snow blowers to leaf blowers, from snowflakes to sunny skies;
With teleworking, remote learning, social distancing, face covering…

 
Although 2020 has been a year of change, one thing that remains consistent:  our ability and willingness to persevere and rise to the occasion.  While this year has presented challenges in many ways, including fiscally, I am happy to report that we recently met with some of the senior leaders of MassDOT and at this time the agency doesn’t foresee a change in staffing levels, such as cuts and/or layoffs, this fiscal year or in FY22.
 
I’m also happy to report MassDOT has confirmed that the remaining portions surrounding the implementation of the classification study are underway!  This pay period we expect outstanding reclassifications with an effective date of July 10, 2016 to take effect and be reflected in the upcoming pay-advice (November 13, 2020).    For some of you whose new classification is lower than your current position/job classification, this change may not be reflected in HR/CMS and you will not see any change in your pay. For those of you whose position is higher, your new rate will be reflected in the November 13, 2020 pay advice.  Please note that any retro payments owed will not be reflected in this paycheck.  
 
Next up in reclassifications, the final recommendations will be processed for positions with an effective date of February 16, 2020.  These changes will be reflected in the November 27th pay advice.  Once these classification changes become effective, the $700.00 increase to Unit B, Step 12 will be implemented.
 
Regarding the retroactive payments, they must be manually calculated and will take time.  Any retroactive payments will be calculated after all other changes have been completed.  As we receive information regarding the pay-out of these payments, we will provide an update that includes the pay-out schedule.  We expect the appeal process will begin shortly after the remaining portions of the study have been fully implemented.
 
Regarding equipment at the Districts, MassDOT addressed our concerns surrounding equipment:  Millions of dollars have been allotted to Districts. These funds will be used to purchase and/or replace equipment. Should you have concerns surrounding equipment, we encourage you to reach out to both your local officials and your immediate supervisor.
 
On October 23rd, the Local officials including Stewards and contacts participated in our annual Stewards training.  We are energized and further equipped to continue to fight the changes that violate our CBA, Executive Orders, the terms and conditions of your employment and for justice and what’s right, such as:

 
  • Hazard pay;
  • Change to telework schedules;
  • Conducive workspaces;
  • Contracting Out;
  • PFML, and;
  • Implementation of Virtual Observer.
 
To list just a few.  We thank you for continuing to bring these matters to our attention and we ask that you continue to do so.
 
Save the Date: Saturday, December 5, 2020.  Our annual General Membership Meeting will be held on this date.  We are looking forward to this virtual experience and seeing all of you.  More information to follow.
 
If you haven’t already, join us on FB at @NAGE#368
 
As always, thank you for the work that you do. Please stay safe. 

Faren Woolery
President
MassDOT Unit D
 
 
November 2020
General Membership Meeting

 
Virtual General Membership Meeting
MassDOT Units C & D

Saturday, December 5, 2020
9:00AM - 12:00NOON
For the safety of our members, our general membership meeting will be held virtually this year via Zoom. 

Members must register prior to the meeting to receive the Zoom link. You can register for the meeting HERE


 
We will be accepting questions prior to the meeting through the registration form. If there is anything you would like to be addressed at the meeting, please note it in the box on the form
 
We look forward to seeing you!

September 1, 2020
Fall Update

As we begin to plan for Autumn, we continue to work towards settling in to our new normal.  So much has changed; the way in which we conduct our business, how we engage with family and friends, the planning of back school and so much more!  As we plan for the new season, let’s embrace one of its characteristics: New Beginnings.

For some of us, our new beginning may look like a new job title, either through a promotional opportunity or an upgrade to a new job title.  We would like to take this opportunity to welcome our newest members to NAGE Unit D and congratulate our members who were promoted within the Bargaining Unit or upgraded either through a Chapter 30 appeal or through the Classification Study.

To our members whose recommendation was delayed due to the approval for funding of the Unit B contract, we thank you for your patience and ask for your continued support as MassDOT works to implement the Unit B Classification study. 

MassDOT is reporting that the required approvals to implement the study have been received to move forward with implementation. 
We are working to obtain the payout schedule and will report when these payments will be reflected in your paycheck once this information becomes available. 

As with the implementation of the Unit C and D Classification Study, payments associated with the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA), and retroactive payments, will be made prior to the implementation of the study.  The agency is reporting that the Unit B CBA increases are tentatively scheduled to be reflected in the September 4, 2020 paycheck.  Retroactive payments associated with the CBA will be made following these payments.  These payments are specific to employees who are currently in Unit B, as we received increases associated with our CBA earlier this year.  Once both payments are made, the remaining elements of the Unit B Classification study will be implemented. We will continue to work to obtain the payout schedules and will provide you with this information once it becomes available.

To our members who are aggrieved by the final recommendation and wish to exercise your appeal rights, please remember you have ninety(90) days from the date your received the email from HR advising of your final recommendation, not ninety(90) days from the date of the correspondence was sent to you.   Please forward all completed appeals and supporting documents, if any to fwoolery@nage.org by the deadline date.

If you have submitted your appeal to your manager/supervisor for completion and have not received the completed form back, please email me to advise the date you submitted your appeal documents to your supervisor.  A copy of the email communication you sent would be helpful.  This information should be sent to fwoolery@nage.org. Also, if you have not received information from HR regarding your final recommendation, please email me at the email address listed above to advise.

We are in receipt of some appeal applications and inquires.  We are working to respond to all of them and expect to have done so by the end of the week.  We thank you for your continued patience.

As WE transition into our new beginnings, remember WE are Union Strong and It’s All About You!  COVID may have changed how we engage but it hasn’t changed the support you have of your union! Remember our strength is in our #’s.  Join us on our new Local FB page @NAGE#368 to stay connected and remember, if you have already, please be certain to 'like' the main NAGE FB page @NAGEUNION for official news and updates!

In solidarity,
Faren L. Woolery
President-NAGE Local 368

 
June 4, 2020
Further Update on PFMLA

Following our last update on the status of our litigation with the Commonwealth (seen below) over implementation of the new Law, we received several inquiries about whether NAGE supports the Law.
 
The answer is an emphatic yes!  We supported it in the legislature and we continue to do so.
 
Our concerns surrounding the implementation of the Law are focused on two fairly narrow but important aspects of it.   The PFMLA needs to have a revenue stream to make it work. The question is, who will pay for it: the employer, the employee or a combination of the two?  

Our view is that in the case of the State, the employer should bear the entire cost.  Most major employers in Massachusetts provide, or at least contribute to, short and long term disability insurance for their employees.  Unlike other big employers, the State does not contribute a nickel for this purpose.  The second reason is that the Baker Administration essentially imposed a contract on State Unions in 2017, which left us lagging behind the rate of inflation.  For these reasons, we have sought to have the State pay the full freight rather than employees having to bear additional costs.
 
Aside from the question of who bears the cost, we also have a significant problem with the way the State is interpreting the Law.
 
The Law seems to be very clear that employees can use PFMLA in combination with accrued sick leave they may have, so long as the total doesn’t exceed 100% of their regular salary.   We think this provision is of great value to our members and we have no quarrel with 100% limitation. The problem, however, is that the State is taking the position that you have to choose between PFMLA or your sick leave and that your cannot use them in combination.     
 
If they prevail on this, the value of the program to our members will be significantly diluted.  We will be continuing to pursue this.
 
With these two exceptions, we support the PFMLA and believe it is a significant step forward for public and private sector employees in Massachusetts.

 
May 29, 2020
MassDOT Update on PFMLA
In September of last year, MassDOT unilaterally began deducting a tax or fee of about one half of one percent from your paychecks. This amount was what MassDOT had decided was going to be “your share” of the payments needed to fund the new Paid Family and Medical Leave Act (PFMLA). 
 
When this occurred, NAGE did not believe that MassDOT had the right to make this deduction without first coming to an agreement with NAGE or, at least, bargaining to impasse.  They did neither.   When MassDOT acted unilaterally, we immediately filed a charge at the Department of Labor Relations (DLR) alleging that they had committed a Prohibited Practice within the meaning of Section 10 of Chapter 150E of the General Laws ("Law").
 
The DLR conducted an investigation under its rules, and on May 29, 2020, found probable cause that MassDOT had violated the Law.  The DLR also issued a complaint specifying the particulars of the violation.    
 
Unless MassDOT agrees to a settlement in the meantime, the next step will be a formal evidentiary hearing.  We believe that we have a strong case.  If NAGE prevails at the formal hearing, the traditional remedy includes three orders:
  1. An order to cease and desist, which, in this case, would mean that MassDOT would have to stop deducting the fee from employee paychecks;
  2. A “make whole” order, which would mean that MassDOT would have to reimburse employees for all the deductions that have been made since September of 2019, and;
  3. An order that requires the employer to sign and post prominently in workplaces a notice that includes an admission that MassDOT broke the law and a promise that MassDOT will stop.
In the event that we prevail, we will be seeking all three components of the remedy.
 
This case is far from over, but with this finding of probable cause, we have taken a big step toward our goal of taking this financial burden off the shoulders of our members.
 
We will keep you  advised as the matter proceeds.
 
In solidarity,

John Mann
President, Unit 1/MassDOT Unit A


Leo Munroe
President, Unit 3/MassDOT Unit C


Faren Woolery
President, MassDOT Unit D/Local 368

 
 
Apr 10, 2020
Administration and Press Response to Request to Close RMVs

As you know, we have written to the Governor numerous times, urging the closure of all RMV branches during the COVID-19 crisis. When the administration did not respond to our letters, we turned to the press to expose the dangers of continuing to leave RMV branches open.  You can find NAGE's press release HERE.  The Boston Globe has written in support of our mission, you can read the article HERE.  

We finally received a response from the Governor and Secretary Pollack, which you can find HERE.  We continue to disagree with the administration, and demand full closure of all RMV branches, as many other states across the nation have done.  We will proceed with notifying the RMV/MassDOT multiple times a day of the frequent violations of their co-called plan.  Our fight to keep our members healthy and safe is not over, and will remain a top priority.

We will keep you updated as any further information becomes available.

 
April 8, 2020
 
Third Request to Governor Baker, Close the RMVs
 
We have once again written to Governor Baker, imploring him to close all branches of the RMV to protect the health and safety of our members.  You can find the letter HERE.  
 
We will keep you updated on any response that we receive. 
 

Mar 31, 2020 Second Request to Governor Baker, Close the RMVs

As a follow up to our March 26th letter to Governor Baker, President Holway has written to again request immediate closure of all RMV branches.  You can find the letter HERE, and below.    

We will keep you updated on any response that we receive.  




 
NEWS
Dear NAGE Member:
 
As you know, NAGE has been actively advocating for the Administration to provide health and safety measures for our NAGE members in the workplace to combat the spread of COVID-19.  Please click HERE to view all NAGE is working on to protect our members at this time.   We have been successful in getting the administration to move thousands of employees out of the workplace and to full-time telecommuting. 
 
However, some NAGE members remain in the offices who have been deemed CORE.  The RMV, DPH, DUA, Highway Division and many other agencies are continuing most operations and our members are on the “Front Line” in the response to COVID-19.  NAGE is committed to getting our FRONT LINE members the most protections we can and will fight for a benefit for their sacrifices made in risking their health to serve the citizens. 
 
If you are still working in an office and do not believe you are doing CORE work, please know that NAGE is challenging whether these folks are really CORE.  CORE is NOT day-to-day business, it is essential functions of the agency that cannot be performed outside the office, such as payroll, records and some management-only functions.  Additionally, CORE in a limited number of agencies is in place in response to the COVID-19 virus but they have moved to reduce staff/hours/shifts and keep them at FULL PAY. 
 
I am asking that you send me an email if you have any members or departments in your agencies working in the office that have been deemed CORE that should NOT be.  We are seeing a few agencies keeping almost full staff and deeming day to day work CORE because of a lack of equipment.  Additionally, they are not reducing hours to limit exposure.  Please advise me ASAP if this is the case for anyone in your workplace or any department. 

We have written to Governor Baker, expressing our concerns that many agencies are not following his directives to reduce the in-person workforce to comply with social distancing, and have failed to evaluate true core functions that are necessary during this pandemic.  You can find the letter HERE.  
 
Lastly, and most importantly, here is a video message from NAGE National President David J. Holway to all NAGE members.

Thank you for all you do!! Please stay safe!!
 

Faren Woolery
617-376-7281

NAGE Member Action Center
617-376-7227


 
NEWS
March 23, 2020

In accordance with Governor Baker’s restrictions on public gatherings, GIC's nine Benefit Fair events scheduled between Friday, April 10 and Monday, April 27 are canceled.
 
Please note that GIC will extend the deadline for Annual Enrollment from Friday, May 1 to Monday, June 1, 2020 in order to alleviate some of the processing limitations that may arise from staffing capacity.
 
Open Enrollment materials will be shared with you as they become available.
 
In the meantime, please visit GIC’s website to view all the available resources the GIC has to offer members and public employees in response to COVID-19:
 
https://www.mass.gov/info-details/what-you-should-know-about-gic-health-benefits-and-the-covid-19-outbreak


 
NEWS
Dear NAGE Unit D Members,

In the interest of the health and safety of our members, we will be cancelling the in-person information session scheduled on Saturday 3/14.  We are in the process of scheduling virtual sessions so that our members can safely get the information necessary regarding the classification appeals.  

If you are interested in attending a virtual information session, please register through the link below.  We will be sending out dates and times for the virtual sessions once we gauge the interest of our Local members.  

In solidarity,


Faren Woolery
President
NAGE Local 368/MassDOT Unit D

 
March 10, 2020

Dear NAGE Unit D Members,

 
We are having a Classification Appeal Information Session on:
 
Saturday March 14, 2020
NAGE Headquarters Office

159 Burgin Parkway
Quincy MA
10am to 12pm
 
If you were recommended to maintain your job title under the Unit D Classification study and are considering filing an appeal, we encourage you to attend this meeting!
 
Please register for this session HERE to obtain helpful documents to assist you in this process. 
 
We are working to secure additional meeting locations.  Once these locations have been confirmed we will post the information on the 368 website.  Please check back frequently.  
 
In solidarity,


Faren Woolery
President
NAGE Local 368/MassDOT Unit D

 
NEWS
Mar 5, 2020
Unit D Classification UpdateNAGE Unit D Members,

We are writing today to update you on the Unit D Classification study.  Below you will find the most recent documents relating to the final recommendations for the study.  We have been working to compare this data against the documents obtained at the time of agreement last summer.  As we work to identify and address any concerns with these documents, we ask that you take the time to review the documents yourself.  Feedback will be welcomed at the meetings detailed below. 

If the recommendation is for you to maintain your job title, and you are considering exercising your rights and file for an appeal, we encourage you to begin preparing for the appeal process.  To do this, we will need to identify the duties and responsibilities you were hired to perform in your current position. We will also need to identify the duties that you have been assigned to perform outside of your normal duties, that are of a higher title.   It may help for you to obtain a copy of your personnel file to collect the original job positing for which you applied, your EPRS’, Form 30’s and any other documents assigning you the duties that are in dispute. 
Please maintain these documents for your appeal.

As we work to implement the study, we will begin holding meetings to answer any questions you may have regarding the results.  Please note that the appeal process has not begun. These efforts are being taken to assist you in the process once it does open up.

We are working to confirm meeting space in the following locations:
  • Quincy, MA
  • Northampton, MA
  • Marlboro, MA
  • Worcester, MA
The first meeting has been confirmed for Saturday, March 14, 2020 10am to 12pm at the NAGE Headquarters office located at 159 Burgin Parkway Quincy, MA.  Additional information will follow.

As we work to confirm additional locations, please continue to visit the website for updated information regarding the classification meetings.
In solidarity

In solidarity,

 


Faren Woolery
President, Local 368

fwoolery@nage.org 


Classification Appendix A

Classification Appendix F



 
Mar 3, 2020GIC Healthcare FY21 Premiums AnnouncedOn February 27, 2020, the GIC Commissioners voted to approve the FY21 Health Insurance Premium Rates. Bobbi Kaplan, Executive Vice-President of Local 207 and Vice Chair of the Group Insurance Commission strongly advocated against the rise in premiums. She argued the unfairness of raising premiums more than twice what our members receive annually in salary increases but was unable to succeed in changing the minds of her fellow commissioners. The motion to increase premiums was approved by a majority of the commissioners who do not represent labor interests, though Kaplan maintained her strong vote against. 

Kaplan said “The increase is just another pay cut for our members who are left further and further behind every year. We intend to fight for raises at the bargaining table that are equal to the value our members bring to the citizens of the Commonwealth every day.”
 
Please review the increases which become effective July 1, 2020 and attend the Health Fairs to ask questions of your current carriers. If you wish to change carriers, you must make that decision during open enrollment April 6th – May 1st.  Please find all documents and link to the Health Fair schedule below.  

FY21 Health Insurance Premium Rates

FY21 Full Cost Monthly Premiums and Percent Increases 

GIC Health Fair Schedule 2020

 

Mar 02, 2020

NAGE offers Secretary Pollack coronavirus prevention assistance

NAGE has written to Secretary Pollack, offering any assistance possible in light of coronavirus worries in Massachusetts.  The letter can be found below or HERE.  Members should refer to any of the following sites for tips in preventing the spread of illness.

Mass.gov
Center for Disease Control
World Health Organization


 
Feb 18, 2020
Seniority List Update

Dear NAGE members,

Please find the Seniority List that MassDOT will be using to determine employees rights under the Unit D Collective Bargaining Agreement HERE.  It is important that this information is accurate. If you disagree with your seniority date or any of the information provided by DOT, please email me at fwoolery@nage.org by the close of business Friday, February 21, 2020

In your email, please provide the specifics relating to the disagreement and include any supporting documents you may have to challenge the information provided. 
 
The list contains information relating to the bargaining unit you will become a member of upon implementation of the classification plan.  We are comparing this information against the information we agreed to .  We are working with MassDOT regarding the implementation of the study and will be forwarding more detailed information once it becomes available.
 
In solidarity,
 


Faren Woolery
President, Local 368
fwoolery@nage.org 
 

MassDOT Locals
  NAGE Main No.
Toll Free (866) 412-7762
 
 
  Dental and Optical
(800) 641-0700
 
 
 Faren Woolery 
President
FWoolery@nage.org
w: (617) 376-7281

Mark Kratman
Executive Vice President

Christopher D. Barry
Secretary/Treasurer
857-368-7549
Christopher.Barry@MassMail.state.ma.us
RMV Quincy HQ

 
 
 
Beth Caron
Vice President-at-Large
Beth.Caron@state.ma.us
10 Park Plaza
 
Shawn O'Brien
Vice President-at-Large
Shawn.O'Brien@state.ma.us
Wilmongton RMV

 


Steward Contact Information

Jon Costa
Depot

Annmarie Conway
10 Park Palza - MassDOT
857-368-9029
Annmarie.Conway@state.ma.us

Adam Swan
10 Park Plaza
857-368-xxxx
adam.swan@state.ma.us

Joseph Mucci
District 4 - Highways
781-641-8455
Joseph.Mucci@state.ma.us

Tri Nguyen
Information and Technology
857-368-9880
Tri.Nguyen@state.ma.us

Patricia Ruffin
RMV Quincy - HQ MRB
857-368-7674

Kerry E. (Walsh) Poniatowksi
RMV Springfield
413-732-3090
Kerry.Walsh@state.ma.us

Ernest Tomascik
Taunton RMV
617-921-3505
Ernest.Tomascik@state.ma.us

LaDawn Baker
Braintree Service Center
Christopher Lucier
Milford Service Center
Christopher.Lucier@dot.state.ma.us
 
Paul Cadigan
Highway Operations Center
Paul.Cadigan@dot.state.ma.us
 
Michelle Waring
RMV QHQ-Titles
Michelle.Waring@dot.state.ma.us
 
The American Labor Movement has consistently demonstrated its devotion to the public interest. It is, and has been, good for all America. - John F. Kennedy
NAGE HEADQUARTERS 159 Burgin Parkway
Quincy, MA 02169
Main Phone: (617)376-0220
Main Fax: (617)984-5695
Union Local Tax Issues Federal law now requires that every local union file an annual information return—Form 990, 990-EZ, or 990-N—with the IRS. If your local fails to file under this new requirement.. Read more