The 2021 Scholarship opportinities for NAGE members and their families can be found HERE.
NAGE members have access to a variety of discounts through Colonial Life! Check out more information 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.
President, Local 207
April 23, 2021
2021 Executive Branch Training And Career Ladder Program - Update!
The 2021 Training and Career Ladder (TCL) Program has provided us with several updates on technical skill building classes. As a NAGE members, you are eligible to participate in both the "Union-versal" and "Union-specific" Training and Career Ladder courses!
As always, please please communicate with your supervisor and obtain prior approval before registering for any courses. Agencies may approve or deny requests based on their operational needs.
NAGE is happy to announce that the 2021 Training and Career Ladder (TCL) Program
has been newly redesigned and launched for our members in Units 1, 3 and 6!
On March 22nd, the HRD-administered TCL program will begin. Due to the pandemic, the new training approach will allow our members to take classes that are both online and on-demand, allowing for maximum flexibility.
This year, other Unions will be able to follow NAGE's lead and offer training classes to their members. These union-only courses have been termed "Union-versal Courses," though there are still many options that are available to NAGE members exclusively. There are more than 30 skill-building topics to chose from, offered by live instructors online or pre-recoded to watch at your own pace.
All registration and sign ups for the TCL courses is done through PACE.
As always, please communicate with and ensure your supervisor's approval prior to registering for or attending courses. Agencies may approve or decline requests based on their operational needs.
The TCL Program website can be found HERE
How to register for courses:
Register for Instructor-Led Courses via PACE
· Login to PACE
· Select “Course Catalog” from the left navigation
· Select “Course Catalog” from the middle of the screen
Search by keywords "Union-versal" or
· Select the course name to enroll
*Note: Webinar login instructions will be sent prior to the training
Register for Web-based Courses via the “Visioneer Learning” website
· Go to TCL OnDemand Learning
· Enter passcode: TCL21
At checkout enter your union code:
· Courses are offered at NO COST to you once your union code is entered.
Instructions are available on the Visioneer site for how to select courses.
For additional information about the program, please visit the HRD Training and Career Ladder website.
If you have questions, please contact email@example.com for assistance.
If you have questions related to the on-demand courses offered by Visioneer Learning, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
If you need a reasonable accommodation, please contact email@example.com at least two weeks prior to the start of your instructor-led course. In the subject line please include – “Reasonable Accommodation Needs”, the course name and the date of the course.
Apr 15, 2021
NAGE Advocates for Economic Increases with Commonwealth
As you may know, Massachusetts is due to receive over $4.55 billion under the America Rescue Plan. NAGE has begun to push the Commonwealth to keep our members, who have been working tirelessly through the pandemic, at the forefront of their plans for usage of these funds.
NAGE's letters to Senate President Spilka and Speaker Mariano can be found below. NAGE is urging both the House and Senate to support the working people of Massachusetts, and not take the silent route of the Baker Administration. NAGE is looking to the legislature to support our members financially when you have supported the Commonwealth through the state of emergency, putting yourselves and your families at risk in the process.
We will keep you updated as our advocacy on this matter progresses.
Letter to Senate President Spilka
Letter to Speaker Mariano
Mar 31, 2021
Panel Orders Baker Administration to Pay Estimated $30 Million to State Employees
In a decision earlier this week, the Baker-appointed Commonwealth Employment Relations Board (CERB) ordered the Administration to pay Commonwealth employees an estimated $30 million due to unlawful tax deductions. The National Association of Government Employees (NAGE) led the charge against the Governor’s unilateral tax implementation after failing to bargain over the tax to fund the new law.
Nearly two years ago, the Baker Administration imposed a .5% tax on the hard-earned wages of our State members to fund their new law, called “Paid Family and Medical Leave” (PFML). The Administration failed to bargain with the NAGE and proceeded to implement the highest tax amount permittable under law.
NAGE, leading the way for the other public sector Unions, brought this case to trial.
Yesterday, the CERB, the members of which were appointed by Baker, found that the Administration had violated the law 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. NAGE Executive Vice President Theresa McGoldrick said “The union’s collective bargaining power has never been so transparently important. Without it, we would not be able to fight for a fair outcome when our members have been wronged.”
The CERB has also ordered the State to stop collecting this tax from NAGE members and all other state employees. The State was ordered 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.
NAGE National President David J. Holway stated, “NAGE believes that the Baker Administration should do the right thing and implement CERB’s unanimous decision for ALL state employees who were affected by the implementation of the PFML tax, regardless of bargaining with the Union. We implore Baker to not appeal this decision, and fairly compensate the employees who were unfairly taxed.” Holway went on to acknowledge the work of the CERB, thanking them for their adherence to the letter of the law.
The full-text decision can be found HERE.
Mar 09, 2021 | Back to NewsExec. Branch Use or Lose Time ExtensionNAGE is excited to announce that the Commonwealth has agreed to extend NAGE members “Use or Lose” time! Your current “Use or Lose” time has been extended from April 24, 2021 to January 1, 2022. Please see the agreement for this information and the following extension dates through 2024.
NAGE has advocated for this extension in light of the fact that our members have been unable to use their accrued leave during the pandemic. We are pleased that the Baker administration has agreed to extend “Use or Lose” time for our members benefit.
An explanation of the Use or Lose Agreement can be found here.
Mar 05, 2021MA Legislative UpdateAlthough we are beginning to see the light at the end of the pandemic tunnel, we are still very much in its grips. NAGE members like you have been there since the beginning to help keep the Commonwealth running. In response to the pandemic and the role that our members have played, NAGE has filed a series of legislative initiatives for the 2021-2022 legislative session, designed to support core* workers and their families. We encourage all NAGE members to reach out to your State Representative and State Senator today, to ask them to support the following bills, filed at NAGE’s request, by signing on as a co-sponsor:
House Docket 876 – Hazard Pay for Core Employees – This bill. field by Rep. Tackey Chan. would give public employees who have worked on the front lines of the pandemic hazard pay in the form of comp time of premium pay for the hours worked since the beginning of the state emergency.
House Docket 999 – COVID-19 Presumption – This legislation, filed by Rep. Jim Hawkins, would create a presumption for any front line workers who contracts COVID-19, that it was transmitted in the line of duty. If an employee were to pass away as a result of COVID-19 infection, their family would receive the same pension and payout benefits as a police officer or firefighter killed in the line of duty.
House Docket 2303 – Pandemic Overtime – This bill would allow core employees to have overtime earned during the duration of the state emergency to count toward their pension calculation.
To find out the names of your legislators, please go to www.wheredoivotema.com.
*core workers are defined as any employee who has reported to a work location outside of their home for the duration of the state of emergency.
Call your legislator today and urge them to support NAGE’s pandemic legislative package!
Any questions on NAGE's pandemic legislation package can be directed to Legislative Director Jim Redmond at firstname.lastname@example.org or Local 207 President Theresa McGoldrick at email@example.com.
Mar 01, 2021NAGE to Baker: Compensate Our Members FairlyWe would like to update you on NAGE’s fight to obtain a Collective Bargaining Agreement that contains a fair and just economic proposal for our members, to keep up with the increases in the cost of living. As you know, contract negotiations were suspended a year ago due to the ongoing pandemic. Since then, no economic proposal has been forthcoming from the Baker Administration, resulting in a delay of returning to the negotiations table. Today, NAGE National President David J. Holway wrote to Governor Baker and asked the administration to correct this inequity, see letter below.
Obtaining fair and just cost of living adjustments and a new Collective Bargaining Agreement are our number one priorities for our members. NAGE will continue to fight for our members and we will keep you updated on this important matter.
The PDF of the letter can be found HERE.
Jan 29, 2021
Executive Branch Teleworking Update
We are pleased to report that the Commonwealth has extended the existing telework schedules for NAGE members until June 1, 2021, please see below.
For the past 20 years, NAGE has fought for telework as it is a top request from our members; saving time, gas and providing convenience, health and safety. NAGE has fought throughout the pandemic and successfully achieved telework for thousands of our members across the Commonwealth. We will continue to advocate for a telework policy to remain in place beyond the pandemic.
Please contact your Local President if you have any questions.
Jan 6, 2021
|Thank you and stay safe!
NAGE Member Action Center