“Judging by the vote counts in each of three VSEA Units covered by this new contract, it’s clear these members were very pleased with the agreements their respective bargaining teams were able to reach with the State,” said VSEA President John Reese.
VSEA Members In Three Bargaining Units Overwhelmingly Ratify New Two-Year Contract
Members of the Vermont State Employees’ Association (VSEA)’s Elections, Rules and Nominating Committee were at union headquarters on February 10 to count the votes from a recent contract ratification election.
VSEA is pleased to report that, by Unit, members belonging to the union’s Non-Management, Corrections and Supervisory Units voted to overwhelmingly ratify a new, two-year contract that grants the employees a return of the 3 percent pay cut they suffered in the last round of negotiations, as well as a 2 percent wage increase in each year of the new contract.
“Judging by the vote counts in each of three VSEA Units covered by this new contract, it’s clear these members were very pleased with the agreements their respective bargaining teams were able to reach with the State,” said VSEA President John Reese. “The results speak to how differently bargaining can go when the two sides are able to negotiate with each other cordially and respectfully, as opposed to the last round of negotiations, when the atmosphere was a lot of times combative. VSEA members look forward to continuing to provide all Vermonters with the quality public services they expect and deserve.”
VSEA NMU Bargaining Team Chair Terry Lefebvre, who is stepping down as Chair after serving many years in the role, thanked her team and Unit members for their support and, like Reese, applauded the tone of this round of negotiations. “I believe this contract is an excellent example of what can be accomplished when our members and the seated administration work together to come to an agreement that is reasonable and fair to both parties,” she said.
VSEA Corrections Unit Bargaining Team Chair Dave Bellini agreed with Lefebvre, calling the vote “a testament to our Governor’s advice to Wisconsin Governor Scott Walker that you really can achieve better relations and results with state employees by using maple sugar instead of vinegar.” He added, “The tenor and tone was certainly different. It was amicable versus hostile. The State’s bargaining representative, Joe McNeil, was a true professional”
The new contract’s terms and conditions are effective July 1, 2012.