The parties met as scheduled on March 6th, 2012. No settlement was reached and scant progress was made. Much discussion centered on compensation. While there is a fiscal year 2013 salary in place on paper, it is a virtual certainty that the County Exec’s budget will not provide the funding for it. He is obligated to present his recommended budget in mid-April. Other than multi-unit discussions exclusively on the topic of healthcare, no new negotiation dates have been set. It is anticipated that there will be one or two more sessions before there can be either a settlement or a declaration of impasse.
Healthcare negotiations last year left two items unfinished. Those items were:
Agreement on a maximum fund balance level to maintain in the reserve that pays our health care claims.
Determining a method of returning at least some portion of amounts above that balance to employees.
A date for all four employee organizations to return to the bargaining table with the employer in order to finish that work was set recently. TAAAC, AEL, SAAAAC, and AFSCME Local 1693 will be join representatives from the Board on March 28.
These negotiations will have no impact on the settlement from last year. Coverages and employer/employee premium splits will remain in the current proportions. The difference is that we intend to find a method of giving some of the “change” back to employees after the bills are paid.
REVENUE CAP UPDATE
Our sister organizations (AEL, SAAAAC, and AFSCME Local 1693) have joined the revenue cap effort. Over the past three weeks the governing bodies of all three organizations have voted to assist in making the current revenue cap a bit less harmful than it has been. The organizations presented before the Board of Education during its March 7th meeting and support for the effort will be up for a vote at its next meeting.
Coming over the few days from this email address but through a much slower service will be copies of the single-sided petition for everyone’s use. For us and our students, this petition drive is more about working and learning conditions than it is about property taxes. We hope that everyone will collect at least a few signatures and return them to the TAAAC office or give them to their TAAAC Rep. We are still many signatures away from getting the issue on the ballot.
ASSOCIATION REPRESENTATIVE COUNCIL / DATE CHANGE
Due to the spring break the April 4th Association Representative Council has been moved to Wednesday, April 11th, at the usual place and time, Severn River Middle School at 5:00PM.