2017 LEGISLATIVE SESSION ENDS…OMCE's COMMITMENT FOR RETIREES' PARITY RENEWED
Albany, NY   6/26/2017

The first year of this Legislative Session ended late Wednesday June 21st  without action on major pieces of legislation.

Mayoral control of NYC schools and extension of county sales tax rates remain open items and may hint at a legislative return to Albany in the future. OMCE supported legislation re-establishing the Comptroller’s authority over procurement which stalled and faces various obstacles as new versions of the Governor’s idea of a "Chief Procurement Officer" are floated to the legislators. OMCE believes this authority must be fully restored to the Comptroller.

OMCE’s legislation to create a Retiree Tax Credit (A 5211B, S 3066-A) for those not receiving any parity payment remained stalled in committee.  Meanwhile the OMCE board remains determined to extract some form of remuneration for those MCs that retired and received no parity or little parity money. Discussions at this Spring’s OMCE Lunch and Learns has prompted the Board to consider another alternative to the Tax Credit idea-  A Retiree Parity Rebate

Proposal:  To amend Tax Credit Bill or replace it with an alternative bill which will:

( e.g. 60 months x $70=$4200 rebate... (2009-10 $72000 avg salary x .07 withheld=$5040 avg lost COLA/72 months before parity payments=$70 per month avg lost monthly salary …Source: NYS DOB)

Facts to consider:

OMCE counsel will be drafting bill language and we will seek early 2018 introduction for both budget and “stand alone” consideration by  the legislature.

 

OUR NEWEST BENEFIT!
Albany, NY   6/14/2017

OMCE OFFERS MEMEBERS A SOLAR POWER BENEFIT OMCE has teamed up with American Solar Partners who design, finance, and instals residential and commercial solar power projects. They use only high quality, American-made modules with full warranties, and work exclusively with union electrical contractors. All OMCE members will receive a discount under our member benefits program.  American Solar Partners is committed to bringing all of their customers affordable, renewable power to lower their utility bills and help combat climate change. Ask for a free solar assessment and see how much solar can save you!

Purchase, Lease, and Solar Farm share participation options are all available.

 

Congratulations Scholarship  Winners
Albany, NY   6/10/2017

 

 

 The Lavina Michl Wright Scholarship Committee has approved the award of a scholarship to the children of 2 members of OMCE, Samuel Sonenberg (Lottery) and Gimol James (South Beach Psychiatric Center). Congratulations !

 

 

 

 

OSC RELEASES PAYROLL BULLETIN-RETROACTIVE PAY IS ON ITS WAY



Institution Pay Date for Retroactive 2016 Increase is May 25, 2016
Administrative Pay Date for Retroactive 2016 Increase is May 31, 2016

This bulletin establishes that this retroactive payment will be included in the regular bi-weekly check


For those who wish to read all the details please see: http://www.osc.state.ny.us/agencies/pbull/agencies/2017_2018/bulet1568.htm

2nd NOTICE NOMINATIONS  FOR OMCE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Our Board Member nominations process is underway.  Several members have expressed their interest in running. Now, it’s up to you, to either express your interest or recommend someone you think would be a good Board Member.  

The OMCE Board of Directors is charged with providing guidance and direction and setting policy for the organization.  Board Members are advocates of many and diverse interests and come with different experiences.  As our governing board, they address issue of importance and concern to M/C employees, reach agreement through consensus, and commission the OMCE staff, and law firm to take necessary action.   

The Nominating Committee is seeking active State M/C employees who are willing to commit the time, energy, and talent needed to address issues of concern to the approximately 10,000 public employees/officials in the Executive Branch who are eligible for OMCE membership, and M/C employees in the other branches of NYS government.  

Please act if you are ready, willing and able to invest in OMCE by giving some of your time and energy to address issues such as protection of pension and retiree health insurance benefits, M/C compensation and benefits, conditions of employment, workforce and succession management and many other challenges.  There are 5 seats affected by this year’s election.  

Send your resume and a statement suitable for use on the ballot by June 2, 2017 by E-Mail (nysomce@gmail.com) or regular mail. Again if any additional information is needed, contact OMCE at nysomce@gmail.com, (518) 456-5241 or from outside area code 518, at (800) 828-6623.  


OMCE MEMBER BENEFIT SPOTLIGHT WORKING ADVANTAGE



www.workingadvantage.com is your access point to all professional sports such as NBA Playoff Tickets, MLB Games Nationwide etc. Plus Discounted admission to Disney Parks, Busch Gardens, Universal Studios, Discounted Broadway tickets, Las Vegas Venues, Discounted Tickets to Great Concerts and Events such as Bruno Mars, Ed Sheeran, U2, Lady Gaga and many more including seasonal ski lift tickets. Go to Benefits and Sign In and then to “Working Advantage” It Pays to belong to OMCE (Members are urged to call OMCE @ 800 828-6623 for Benefits "Log In credentials")

NOMINATIONS  FOR OMCE BOARD OF DIRECTORS

Each year at this time, we begin looking for members interested in serving on the OMCE Board of Directors. There are five seats to be filled this year, each for a three-year term. The nomination process is simple, since a member can nominate him/herself. Just submit your resume, a letter stating your interest to run for a Board seat and a statement that can be used with the ballot, describing your background, the issues and priorities you would like to focus on as a Board Member and why you would be a good Board Member. The materials are reviewed by the Nominating Committee members who will present a slate of nominees to the OMCE Board and, if needed, arrange for the mail ballot election. Nominations via email or regular mail, must be received in the OMCE office no later than June 2, 2017.

Board Members are expected to attend by phone or in person four Board Meetings per year (March, June, September/October, December) and to serve on at least one committee. Board Members are not paid to serve on the Board, but travel expenses are reimbursed at State rates. OMCE is a labor organization of, by and for M/C employees who voluntarily choose to join, since designation as an M/C does not mean automatic enrollment as an OMCE member. OMCE officers and committee members are all volunteers for these positions. We need active working State M/C employees who are interested in being leaders in the fight to improve the working conditions of M/C employees and to ensure that their rights and benefits are protected. For additional information, contact OMCE at nysomce@gmail.com, 518 456-5241 or from outside area code 518, at 800 828-6623.

 

 

OMCE’S CONCERNS ON RETIREE HEALTH INSURANCE TRUST FUND ADDRESSED
Albany, NY   4/19/2017

At this year’s Joint Legislative Budget Hearing on Workforce Development OMCE recommended rejection of all the Executive proposals aimed at diminishing state retiree health care financial support. Your calls and "E-letters" to your representatives worked since all such attacks were excluded from the final budget document.

One proposal, the creation of a Retiree Health Benefits Trust Fund has been adopted with definitive language addressing the concerns we raised.

While an interesting concept we urged that any such initiative required scrutiny and safeguards.  In our testimony we stated,

"…Anything that takes a long-range vision that will allow the state to ensure the promise made to state retirees is worthy of consideration. This is in no way an endorsement. The devil is in the details and those are not yet clear. Concepts like this, if properly formulated and implemented, may deter the annual attacks on retiree health insurance benefits.

This proposal calls to mind the disastrous experience of the U.S. Postal Service when it was required to pay an assessment into its retiree trust fund each year for 3 years (to cover the projected 30 year cost). We were told this program would be different – but again details and joint oversight will be needed.

We are continuing to review the proposal but our initial questions include: If implemented:

Section 22D of the now enacted Revenue Bill of this year’s budget created such a trust. It is to be managed by the State Comptroller and has numerous statutory guarantees that the funds can ONLY and SOLELY be used to offset retiree health insurance costs.  DOB does retain discretion to direct an annual contribution ("…up to .51% of the actuarial accrued liability….").

Hopefully this new vision for long range additional financing of this most valued benefit will deter the annual budget attacks upon it.

 

M/C RETROACTIVE PAY AND SALARY INCREASES BUDGET BULLETIN RELEASED-UPDATED
Albany, NY   4/12/2017

 

The NYS Division of the Budget has released the anxiously awaited M/C Budget Bulletin ( D-1135   https://www.budget.ny.gov/guide/bprm/bulletins/d-1135.pdf) authorizing both the 2016 2% retroactive pay back to April 2016 and the 4%+ general salary increase ( 2% COLA and 2% Parity for eligible MCs) for 2017-18 fiscal year.

In short here are the pay dates:

Administrative Payroll Retroactive "Separate" Check will be issued on May 31, 2017

Institution Payroll Retroactive "Separate" Check will be issued on May 25, 2017

Administrative Payroll 2017-18 General Salary Increase & Parity Pay plus Performance Advances (Steps) and longevity for those eligible will be issued in the check of June 14, 2017

Institution Payroll 2017-18 General Salary Increase & Parity Pay plus Performance Advances (Steps) and longevity for those eligible will be issued in the check of June 8, 2017

NOTE:  Check computation instructions and pay periods included will be explained in a pending OSC Payroll Bulletin.

The retroactive April 1, 2016 2% General Salary Increase will be paid to those who were in a M/C position as of March 3, 2017 (the date of enactment of Chapter 8 of the Laws of 2017/Pay Bill). These employees will be… "eligible for this retroactive payment to the later of (1) their date of hire as a MC (2) March 31,2016 (Institutional Payroll) and April 7, 2016 (Administration Payroll)".

Those M/Cs that are not equated to a grade and are designated NS will receive performance advance payments based on the agency’s NS salary plan which must be submitted to DOB from June 16-30, 2017.  Those of you so designated are urged to contact your agency to ensure that a timely submission occurs. Some agencies have historically been granted extensions which results in exceptionally late payments for the effected NS employees. Many agencies will now be submitting these plans electronically to DOB via NYSTEP and hopefully this will speed payment. Payments to NS non-grade equated employees will be made upon plan approval.

Click on this link for the MC Salary Schedules and remember that one must have at least 13 pay periods of service in your grade assigned title to be eligible for a 2017 performance advance/step (1/6 of the difference between the job rate and hiring rate).   Any other questions email OMCE nysomce@gmail.com, or call 800 828-6623

 

 

BUDGET APPROPRIATIONS ARE IN PLACE BUT M/C BUDGET BULLETIN STILL MISSING!
Albany, NY   4/11/2017

Chapter 8 (Part B) of the Laws of 2017, which authorized the 2016-2019 M/C salary schedules including the 2016 2% 2016 retroactive general salary increase and the 2017-18 4% (2% parity and 2% COLA) increase, can now be scheduled for payment.  Appropriations of required funds are in place. The coordination of a Budget Bulletin and then the required OSC Payroll Bulletin is underway and awaiting the final release.

The M/C Budget Bulletin while not a herculean task does require detail and Executive approval.  We are AGAIN told that the plan is to issue one bulletin covering both retroactive 2016 money and the new 2017 increases.  This bulletin will also outline how the salaries of those classified as NS without equation to a grade will be handled.

It is frustrating that once again we are in a "waiting game".  Regardless the April 2017 increases will be effective for the 1st pay period of the new year which are: March 30th for the Institution pay cycle and April 6 for the Administration pay cycle. We anticipate that the 2016 retroactive check will be issued in a separate check and then that new salary will be used for the 2017-18 computation.

 

NEW BENEFIT: OPEIU OFFERS $TUDENT DEBT REDUCTION SCHOLARSHIPS




All members will be eligible to participate in a drawing for four  $2500 awards where the proceeds will be used to pay off your current student debt. Yes OMCE retirees who meet the rules criteria are eligible too.

Complete rules and application can be found at ( 2017 Student Debt Application 3.21.17 final.pdf ).  Basically, you will be eligible for the drawing if you earned a degree and still have in excess of $10,000 of student debt in good standing, plus you are an OMCE membership in good standing and that you MUST submit an application to OMCE by mail:

OMCE
5 Pine West Plaza 
Suite # 513 Albany, NY 12205

or electronically ( nysomce@gmail.com)  or by fax (518 456-3838) by June 23,2017 for verification.  This will allow time to verify all applications before the June 30, 2017 OPEIU deadline. Any applications sent directly to OPEIU may not be returned to OMCE for verification. GOOD LUCK!

 

$153 BILLION STATE BUDGET IS DONE !
Albany, NY   4/07/2017 9:37 P.M.

Seven days after the budget deadline New York State has a budget deal for the 2017-2018 fiscal year. 

Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the deal late Friday night. He said both houses approved the new deal. Lawmakers passed an emergency budget extension that extended the current budget through May 31 to avoid a government shutdown.

Once final bills are printed and voted upon this year’s budget will then face the release of various held funds as appropriations are prepared for release.

The appropriations for retroactive 2016 payments and 2017-18 general salary increases for ALL granted such raises by contract or by statute will now be in place.

There remains no further budget impediment to the issuance of a timely MC budget bulletin calling for the 2016 2% retroactive COLA general salary increase, the 2017-18 4%+ general salary increase, payment of 2017-18 performance advances based on 2017-18 pay scales, the G 17 and below longevity awards and instructions for paying all MCs with a NS salary designation not equated to a salary grade.

All 2017-18 general salary increases will be paid retroactively to the first pay periods of the new fiscal year. The first administrative payroll period for the 2017-18 fiscal year is 4/6-19.  The first institution payroll period for the 2017-18 fiscal year is March 30-April 12.

OMCE will publish the budget bulletin and target pay dates for the institution and administrative payroll checks once they are published.

The other budget highlights are:

 

 

 

Current Budget Extended…2017-18 General Salary Increases Await NEW Budget
Albany, NY   4/06/2017

 

Albany, NY, April 6, 2017:  While OMCE is concerned about the issuance of budget extenders rather than agreement on a complete new budget there would be no authority to issue pay checks without these extenders. So there are a lot of rumors circulating which need to be countered by the facts which are:

 

 

OMCE staff and our legal team are closely monitoring and engaged with all parties hammering out the new budget. Nobody is happy that once again we are caught up in this mess called budget deliberations. The Governor’s Executive Budget authority was enhanced by the court ruling Pataki v Silver. In some respects, the current budget stalemate is a product of that ruling coupled with increased policy pronouncements cloaked in the garb of budget documents over which the legislature feels they must be engaged or else lose whatever remaining budget role they possess.

The legislature is on Easter/Passover recess until April 24th but is poised to return upon the call of their respective leaders

There is no controversy about the modest increases contained in Chapter 8 of the Laws of 2017 (Joint PEF/MC Pay Bill).  We just need the budget to be finished and enacted.

 

 

SENATE AND ASSEMBLY PASS STATE BUDGET EXTENDER TO AVERT GOVERNMENT SHUTDOWN
Albany, NY   4/03/2017

 Both houses of the State Legislature passed budget extender bills  that will keep the current 2016-2017 budget funding levels in place through May 31.  This means that there will be funds available to pay ALL state employees current 2016-17 paychecks except for the legislators.

Special Note from OSC Payroll:

The budget extender passed today and OSC is now authorized to process the April 5 Administration payroll.  Unfortunately, passage came late in the day, so there is a risk that some state employees could get their pay later than usual. OSC is working closely with the Division of the Treasury to process direct deposits expeditiously, and we are hopeful all banks will process those transactions tomorrow.  Employees who receive a paper check on Wednesday should be unaffected, assuming prompt distribution. Direct Deposit Advice Statements will be ready for release on Tuesday, April 4 at 9:00am.  This includes Direct Deposit Advices that are sent via direct mail as well as those sent via courier, UPS/FedEx, USPS or picked up by the agency.   

As is his prerogative (Paterson v Silver) the Governor did insert a few new items into the extender bills.  The cap on Medicaid drug costs is included plus a long awaited increase for direct care workers is in.  Neither item is considered to be an open item any longer since they were in the approved extender bills.

Obviously our MC 2016 Retroactive and 2017-18 General Salary Increase Budget Bulletin is stalled by the ongoing negotiations and remains OMCE’s priority issue.

Qur M/C 2016 retro and 17-18 statutory salary increases are contained in the non-contested State Operations/General Government/ Public Safety drafted part of the new 2017-18 budget BUT cannot be paid until the final budget document is completed in its entirety.

There is no financial crisis.  There is nothing stopping the payment of the MC statutory salary increases EXCEPT for the attainment of a new complete state budget with its allocations needed to support the release of our budget bulletin. If the MC Budget Bulletin had been issued earlier the payments would now be embargoed until the required 2017-18 allocations were authorized by the passage of a new budget.

The “Raise the Age” issue (treatment as an adult offender), the outside NYC ride-sharing/UBER issue, school aid and the extension/increase of the Millionaires’ tax remain as the “big” unresolved issues. The legislature is scheduled to meet the remainder of this week.

 

 

Whistleblower Protections Strengtitle> <style type="text/css"> .dsx-normal { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; text-decoration: none; font-weight: normal; } .dsx-strikethrough { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; text-decoration: line-through; } .dsx-normal-red { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; color: #FF0000; } .dsx-underline-red { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; color: #FF0000; text-decoration: underline; } .dsx-normal-red-center { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; color: #FF0000; text-align:center; } .dsx-bold-red-center { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; color: #FF0000; text-align:center; font-weight:bold; } .dsx-underline { text-decoration: underline; font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; } .dsx-bold { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; font-weight: bold; } .dsx-bold-center { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; } .dsx-center { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; text-align: center; } .dsx-bold-large { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: large; font-weight: bold; } .dsx-bold-large-center { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: large; font-weight: bold; text-align: center; } .dsx-bold-underline { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; font-weight: bold; text-decoration: underline; } .dsx-title{ font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: x-large; font-weight: bold; text-decoration: underline; } .dsx-italic { font-style: italic; } .dsx-bold-italic-underline { font-style: italic; font-weight: bold; text-decoration: underline; } .dsx-underline-italic { font-style: italic; text-decoration: underline; } .dsx-box { width: 90%; padding: 25px; border: 10px black; margin: 25px; border-style: solid; } .dsx-normal-indented { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; margin-left: 40px; } .dsx-normal-indented-more { font-family: "Times New Roman", Times, serif; font-size: medium; margin-left: 80px; } .dsx-left-side-image { margin: 20px; float: left } </style> </head> <body> <p class="dsx-normal"><span class="dsx-title">MC BUDGET BULLETIN REMAINS AWOL</span><br /> Albany, NY   3/24/2017 </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> <img class="dsx-left-side-image" height="91" src="images/2017_budget.jpg" width="177" /></p> <p class="dsx-normal">MC employees across the state are growing restless and apprehensive that something is wrong.  While conspiracy theories and rumors are alive and well they have no basis.  MCs need the Budget Bulletin authorizing the payment protocol and issuance of the OSC Payroll Bulletin. DOB Labor Relations Unit says that the bulletin is awaiting executive approval and the funds for the retro 2% are encumbered (can't be used for anything else and is carried over to new fiscal year if not disbursed prior to 4/1/17) The delay is due to a complex single bulletin covering the 2% 2016 retro cola plus the 2017 scheduled increases (4%+), performance advances, longevity pay and N/S  increase instructions...no legal issues just logistics...”If the stall on the retro yields a timely 2017 schedule payment then that is an improvement over past years”, said OMCE Executive Director Joe Sano.  Sano continued, “Ever since the 2009 and 2010 salary increase withholding skepticism surrounds any scheduled MC salary improvements but there is no indication that there are any budgetary issues stalling these payments.”  OSC has requested that the retro be done in a separate check preceding the 2017-18 salary increases to avoid recipient confusion and to ease the processing for all tasked to make these changes. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"><span class="dsx-title">ADVANCE NOTICE-JUSTICE CENTER ALTERS REPORTING REQUIREMENT</span><br /> New York City, NY   3/24/2017 </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> <img class="dsx-left-side-image" height="66" src="images/nys_justice_center.png" width="109" />Attention all members working in facilities under the authority of the Justice Center.  The Justice Center is rolling out changes to their incident reporting requirements. Each reporting agency will be working with the Justice Center to disseminate these changes to the workforce. The following is taken from a March 2017 slide presentation in NYC given by the Justice Center. </p> <p class="dsx-bold-large">Multiple Reporting Requirement </p> <ul> <li> <p class="dsx-normal">Guidance will be forthcoming-distributed through State Oversight Agencies </p> </li> <li> <p class="dsx-normal">Multiple Reports of the Same Incident NOT Required IF the Mandated Reporter has actual knowledge that: </p> <ol> <li> <p class="dsx-normal">The incident has been reported; and </p> </li> <li> <p class="dsx-normal">He or she was named in the report as a person with knowledge of the incident </p> </li> </ol> </li> </ul> <p class="dsx-normal">AS stated above this change will be implemented through your agency working in concert with the Justice Center and OMCE will continue to monitor these changes and advise our members accordingly. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-title"> NO ACTION YET ON BUDGET BULLETIN….   LEGISLATIVE BUDGET RESOLUTIONS INTRODUCED /p> <p class="dsx-normal"> <img class="dsx-left-side-image" height="117" src="images/nys_capitol.jpg" width="177" />The required budget bulletin for payment of the 2016 COLA retroactive salary increases remains among the missing.  It will be posted upon its release.  Meanwhile the one house legislative budget bills have been introduced.  Now, the bargaining begins. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> The Assembly proposes an adjusted <span class="dsx-bold-underline">All Funds Budget</span>  (This adjusted All Funds spending removes extraordinary Federal aid of $570 million for Superstorm Sandy relief and $9.3 billion for the Affordable Care Act). Absent these funds, the <span class="dsx-bold-underline">Adjusted All Funds Budget is $153.8 billion</span> </p> <p class="dsx-bold"> </p> <p class="dsx-bold"> </p> <p class="dsx-bold">The summary of the Assembly, The GOP Senate and the IDC Senate (Independent Democrats) budget resolutions can be found at: </p> <ul> <li> <p class="dsx-bold"><a href="http://nyassembly.gov/Reports/WAM/20170313/2017_budget_summary.pdf" target="_blank"> http://nyassembly.gov/Reports/WAM/20170313/2017_budget_summary.pdf</a> </p> </li> <li> <p class="dsx-bold">GOP Senate version <a href="https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation/resolutions/2017/r1050" target="_blank">https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation/resolutions/2017/r1050</a> </p> </li> <li> <p class="dsx-bold">IDC’s version    <a href="https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation/resolutions/2017/r1051" target="_blank">https://www.nysenate.gov/legislation/resolutions/2017/r1051</a> </p> </li> </ul> <p class="dsx-normal">All one house budget resolutions<span class="dsx-bold-underline"> reject the Executive’s attempt to alter State retiree health care reimbursements/premium share.  The Executive proposals to eliminate reimbursement of the Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amount (IRMAA) and to institute a freeze in Medicare Part B premium support, the Executive proposal to implement differential healthcare premiums based on years of service, and the Executive’s proposal to establish a Retired Health Trust Fund, were all rejected in the three legislative budget resolutions filed today.</span>  ( Keep sending e- letters through this website…our fight is not over!) </p> <p class="dsx-bold">Some interesting positions taken are: </p> <ul> <li> <p class="dsx-normal">Assembly disagrees with the Executive on the financing of DOT projects ($270M) with DFS fines/settlements.  The Assembly proposes that a bond issue for the DOT expenditure would be a better source of funding. </p> </li> <li> <p class="dsx-normal">The Assembly modifies some tax brackets and continues and expands the millionaire’s tax scheduled to expire in 2017. The IDC accepts the millionaire’s tax extension proposed by the Executive while the GOP Senate rejects this extension. </p> </li> <li> <p class="dsx-normal">Rejected consolidation of current agency ALJ functions into a single ALJ operation. ( Senate GOP and IDC join in this rejection) </p> </li> <li> <p class="dsx-normal">Senate rejection of authorizing extending and expanding the use of the design-build for capital projects within appropriations </p> </li> <li> <p class="dsx-normal"> IDC and Assembly support the "DREAM ACT"</p> </li> </ul> <p class="dsx-normal">Please refer to the above “hyperlinks” which will bring you to each legislative resolution and the specific agency impacts proposed. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"><span class="dsx-title">MC BUDGET BULLETIN REMAINS PENDING</span><br /> Albany, NY   3/8/2017 </p> <p class="dsx-normal">OSC (Comptroller) State Payroll Unit has issued the PEF Payroll Bulletin stating 2016 COLA retroactive check dates for PEF (3/30/17 for Institutional Pay and 3/22/17, for the Administrative Pay). </p> <p class="dsx-normal">We are in continuous contact with both DOB and OSC on this issue.  OSC is ready to act and awaits DOB's bulletin </p> <p class="dsx-normal">We are anticipating a MC Budget Bulletin to be issued shortly.  It will be published as soon as it is issued.   </p> <p class="dsx-title"> <br /> <p class="dsx-normal"><span class="dsx-title">OMCE PUSHES TAX CREDIT FOR MC RETIREES</span><br /> Albany, NY   3/6/2017 </p> <p class="dsx-normal">Senate Finance Chair Senator Cathy Young and Assembly Member Patricia Fahy have introduced legislation (S.3066-A, A.05211-B) calling for a tax credit process designed to yield some financial relief for MC retirees impacted by the MC salary withholding of 2009 & 2010. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> <a href="http://assembly.state.ny.us/leg/?default_fld=&leg_video=&bn=A05211&term=2017&Summary=Y&Text=Y" target="_blank"> (Click here for text of legislation) </a></p> <p class="dsx-normal">The legislation is currently in the Assembly Ways and Means Committee and most recently moved to the Senate Investigations and Government Operations Committee.  No input is required from the Comptroller’s office since this is not a retirement bill. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">Over the years OMCE has attempted numerous legislative NYS Retirement System initiatives aimed at reducing the financial damage done to MC retirees by that salary withholding.  These past attempts at adjusting the retirement benefit of the impacted MC retirees were met with legislative and Executive resistance due to the initial and recurring costs to the State. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">OMCE’s newest legislation is a different approach designed as a first step to correct the financial harm done to the retirees who have received full benefit from the recent parity increases. Taking a page from the Governor’s playbook this proposed legislation will allow MC retirees (4/1/2009-3/31/2019) the opportunity to receive up to five, tax year credits of up to $1000 for each year and to amend up to 3 years of previous returns as part of their 5 tax years of credits. The maximum cumulative benefit received by an eligible MC employee would total up to $5000. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"><span class="dsx-title">GOVERNOR SIGNS PEF/MC PAY BILL</span><br /> Albany, NY   3/3/2017 </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> <img class="dsx-left-side-image" height="100" src="images/money_bills.jpg" width="180" /></p> <p class="dsx-normal">Congratulations!<br /> <br /> The PEF/MC Pay bill (S4067/A04542) was signed into law today by Governor Cuomo.  It became Chapter 8 of the Laws of 2017 and most of it will be eventually updated into Chapters130-131 of NYS Civil Service Law. (see Salary Schedules in this website..they are now official) </p> <p class="dsx-normal">DOB and OSC can NOW begin the issuance of their respective budget and payroll bulletins. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">We will announce on this website the 2016-2017 fiscal year retroactive check payment dates once the MC Budget Bulletin is released. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">The retroactive checks we are told must be drawn from 2016-2017 allocations which means that they can appear on one of the remaining 2016-17 pay dates which are: <span class="dsx-bold-underline">Administrative Pay Dates of 3/22 or 4/5 or 4/19; Institutional Pay Dates are 3/30 or 4/13. </span> </p> <p class="dsx-bold-underline">Once the <span class="dsx-bold-large">EXACT DATES</span> are published in the new Budget Bulletin we will post them plus the link to the actual bulletin. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">PEF effective dates may be different than MC.  PEF payment does not require an enabling Budget Bulletin.  The MC bulletin will contain information for both graded and NS paid personnel in our unit. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"><span class="dsx-title">PEF/MC PAY BILL SENT TO GOVERNOR </span><br /> Albany, NY   2/22/2017 </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> <img class="dsx-left-side-image" height="100" src="images/money_bills.jpg" width="180" /></p> <p class="dsx-normal">The PEF/MC Pay bill (S4067/A04542) was transmitted today to the Governor for approval. Since this is his Program Bill a quick approval is expected shortly.  </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> <span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0); font-family: "times new roman", times, serif; font-size: medium; font-style: normal; font-variant-ligatures: normal; font-variant-caps: normal; font-weight: normal; letter-spacing: normal; orphans: 2; text-align: start; text-indent: 0px; text-transform: none; white-space: normal; widows: 2; word-spacing: 0px; -webkit-text-stroke-width: 0px; background-color: rgb(255, 255, 255); display: inline !important; float: none;"> DOB and OSC can then begin the issuance of their respective budget and payroll bulletins.</span></p> <p class="dsx-normal">We will announce on this website the 2016-2017 fiscal year retroactive check payment dates once the MC Budget Bulletin is released.</p> <p class="dsx-normal">The current proposed Executive Budget contains allocations required to support the payment of all 2017-2018 increases scheduled for MC and PEF unit employees as contained in the pay bill. Budget discussions will get serious beginning next week.  </p> <p class="dsx-normal">Unlike the past few years,agencies will not be forced to completely fund the 2017-2018 raises from existing personnel service allocations.  Hopefully this will loosen up agency ability to fill authorized vacancies. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"><span class="dsx-title">LEGISLATURE COMPLETES PASSAGE OF PEF/MC PAY BILL </span><br /> Albany, NY   2/14/2017 </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> <img class="dsx-left-side-image" height="100" src="images/money_bills.jpg" width="180" /></p> <p class="dsx-normal">The Assembly version (A04542) of the PEF/MC pay bill was passed on Monday 2/13/17. With the corollary PEF/MC Pay Bill (S4067) passing the Senate last week it should be quickly transmitted to the Governor for approval.  </p> <p class="dsx-normal">DOB and OSC can then begin the issuance of their respective budget and payroll bulletins. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">DOB previously announced its plan to complete the payment of all MC/PEF 2016-2017 retroactive payments spelled out in this pay bill from 2016-2017 budget allocations. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">The current proposed Executive Budget contains allocations required to support the payment of all 2017-2018 increases scheduled for MC and PEF unit employees as contained in the pay bill. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> <span class="dsx-title">State Senate Passes Pay Bill  and  Assembly Moves It Too!</span>   <br /> Albany, NY   2/7/2017 </p> <p class="dsx-normal"><img class="dsx-left-side-image" height="214" src="images/pef_mc_paybill.jpg" width="160" /></p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal">With a 61-0 vote the PEF/MC Pay Bill S4067 was passed. That same day the Government Employees Committee passed their house’s (same) version of the Pay Bill (A04542) and sent it the Ways and Means Committee where it was reported out to the Rules Committee. The Rules committee will schedule it onto an “Active”/Voting Calendar of the Assembly where passage should occur the week of February 13, 2017. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">It should be quickly transmitted to the Governor for approval and then DOB and OSC can then begin the issuance of the payment implementation bulletins. </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-title"><a href="http://www.nysomce.org/salary_schedule_2017.html"> OFFICIAL new MC Salary Schedules 2016-2019 (for more information click here)</a></p> <p class="dsx-bold">UPDATE: Albany: Friday February 3, 2017 </p> <p class="dsx-normal"><span class="dsx-bold-large">PEF/MC Paybill</span>-S4067 (Amedore), is in the  Rules Committee ( the last committee before being place on the Senate's active/voting calendar.  The Assembly corollary bill; A4542,( Abbate) is  on the Government Employees Committee agenda for Tuesday  <span class="dsx-underline">2/7</span>.  Once approved it will go to the Assemnly's Ways and Means Committee ($$ bill) for approval and then placed on the active/voting calendar for a vote.  Each legislative branch requires three readings (placed on three daily agendas) of the bills and then the bill goes from that active calendar to the floor calendar for a vote in each chamber.  This bill remains on schedule to allow payment of retroactive payments in this fiscal year. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">The Governor has introduced his Program Bill* to the legislature that will authorize the proposed increases of 2% COLA for 2016-17 Fiscal Year (retroactively to April 2016) and the 2017-18 COLA increase of 2% compounded onto the existing 2% parity payment and in 2018-2019 Fiscal Year another 2% COLA again onto the last 1% of the previously approved parity payments.  The administration’s plan is that this PEF/MC Pay Bill will be quickly approved by the legislature and signed into law, so that retroactive payments and updated schedules can be implemented prior to the close of the fiscal year (3/31/17). We will update this website on the progress of the OMCE Pay Bill as well as the issuance of the required Budget and Payroll Bulletins which will dictate pay dates once the legislation is signed into law. <br /> <br /> *Complete Text of PEF/MC Pay Bill can be found at: (Part B) <br /> <a href="https://www.governor.ny.gov/sites/governor.ny.gov/files/atoms/files/GPB3_PEFMC_PAYBILL_BILL.pdf" target="_blank"> https://www.governor.ny.gov/sites/governor.ny.gov/files/atoms/files/GPB3_PEFMC_PAYBILL_BILL.pdf</a> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-title">SAVE RETIREE  HEALTH INSURANCE SEND E-LETTERS TO YOUR STATE LEGISLATORS </p> <p class="dsx-normal">The Executive budget (see summary in Budget analysis below) once again seeks to cap spending for retiree health insurance by instituting a sliding scale for the employee's percentage share of  retiree health insurance as well as capping Medicare reimbursement rates and ending reimbursement for the IRMAA Medicare payments.  <span class="dsx-bold-underline"><a href="https://actionnetwork.org/letters/tell-your-representatives-to-oppose-health-insurance-and-reimbursement-rollbacks" target="_blank">Click here</a></span> or on the Action Line menu button to oppose these changes.<br /> <span class="dsx-bold-underline">The coverage you save may be or is your own! </span></p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-title"> <a href="pdf/2017%20-%20Budget%20Testimony.pdf" target="_blank">OMCE Delivers 2017 Executive Budget Testimony </a> </p> <p class="dsx-normal">Wednesday January 25, 2017 Albany. <br /> President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joe Sano testified before the joint legislative hearing on "Workforce Development". The complete written testimony can be found <a href="pdf/2017%20-%20Budget%20Testimony.pdf" target="_blank">here</a>.</p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-title"> <a href="pdf/budget_analysis_state_workforce._2017.pdf" target="_blank">Continuing Analysis of Proposed NYS Executive Budget (for more information click here) </a> </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> </p> <p class="dsx-title">** 2017-18 PROPOSED NYS EXECUTIVE BUDGET.....1st Glance **</p> <p class="dsx-normal">OMCE comments and emphasis are shown as <span class="dsx-bold-italic-underline">bold ,underlined and italicized text</span>.  Updated information will be shared once our Wednesday January briefing by DOB is completed. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">(The following has been taken from the Executive Budget Briefing Book (State Workforce Section p 111-115) </p> <p class="dsx-normal">"The State has reached responsible labor agreements with several employee unions, and is in the midst of negotiations with the remaining groups. Labor agreements are in place with unions representing State Troopers, Officers and Investigators through FY 2018. In addition, three-year agreements have been reached with the Public Employees Federation and with the Graduate Student Employees Union (pending member ratification). Both agreements provide for annual 2 percent general salary increases in FY 2017, FY 2018 and FY 2019, respectively. <span class="dsx-bold">The budget also includes extension of the provisions of these agreements to M/C employees." (Emphasis added) </span></p> <p class="dsx-bold-italic-underline">(Details on the additional 2016-17 (FY 2017), 2017-18 (FY 2018),and 2018-19 (FY2019) COLA increases in addition to currently scheduled (April 2017 2% and April 2018 1%) statutory parity increases will be finalized shortly . Proposed FY salary charts showing ALL M/C compensation increases in this Executive budget will be available shortly. </p> <p class="dsx-bold-large">WHAT'S OLD IS NEW AGAIN...or...Retiree Health Insurance Roll Backs Proposed ..Again! </p> <p class="dsx-normal">(The following has been taken from the Executive Budget Briefing Book (State Workforce Section p 111-115) </p> <p class="dsx-normal">"The Executive Budget includes three proposals to help restrain the growth in State retiree health care costs. Over the past three fiscal years, New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP) costs for retirees have increased about 16%, from $1.11 billion in FY 2014 to $1.28 billion in FY 2016. This is well beyond the benchmark growth rate of 2% per year, and challenges the State’s ability to remain economically competitive. </p> <p class="dsx-normal">"<span class="dsx-bold">Implement Differential Health Care Premium Contributions for Certain New Retirees Based on Years of Service</span>. Currently, the taxpayer cost for a retiree with 10 years or more service is the same as that for a retiree with 30 years of service. Under this proposal, similar to the calculation for pension benefits, taxpayer support for new civilian retirees would vary based on years of service. Those retiring with less than 30 years of service would receive a taxpayer subsidy which is less than that for retirees with 30 or more years of service. Subsidies begin at ten years of service, and gradually increase until they are no different than current levels once an individual reaches 30 years of service. This change would take effect with new civilian retirees as of October 1, 2017." </p> <p class="dsx-bold-italic-underline">( A retread of last year's proposal to create a sliding scale for retiree share of NYSHIP retiree health insurance costs based on years of service.  OMCE once again will join with all public sector AFLCIO Affiates to fight this issue...more details will be posted shortly  </p> <p class="dsx-normal"><span class="dsx-bold">Maintain Reimbursement of the Medicare Part B Standard Premium for New York State Retirees at Current Levels</span>.Currently, New York taxpayers reimburse the standard premium for new and existing retirees at $104.90 per month for those who enrolled in Medicare on or before December 31, 2015 and $121.80 per month for those who enrolled in Medicare on or after January 1, 2016. This proposal would freeze reimbursement at the current levels rather than providing automatic inflationary increases, and make escalators subject to the annual budget process. This change would take effect May 1, 2017, based on rates in effect December 31, 2016. Only five other states reimburse the Standard Part B premium (California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Nevada and New Jersey), and Ohio recently phased out reimbursement. </p> <p class="dsx-bold-italic-underline">(This proposal promotes a rate of reimbursement "freeze" starting in May 2017 on Medicare reimbursements for retirees. This proposal continues to disavow the cumulative billions saved by the state through its historic use of Medicare as the state retirees' primary health insurance. OMCE will once again oppose and fight this proposal) </p> <p class="dsx-normal"> "<span class="dsx-bold">Eliminate Taxpayer Subsidy for the Medicare Part B Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amounts (IRMAA) for High Income State Retirees</span>. The Federal government imposed this supplemental IRMAA premium in 2007 to require high income retirees to pay a greater share of Medicare costs. New York taxpayers currently subsidize the entire IRMAA premium of New York State’s high income retirees. This subsidy is worth $642 annually for retirees with an Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) between $85,000 and $107,000, growing to a subsidy of $3,535 annually for retirees with AGI above $214,000. The Budget eliminates this reimbursement effective January 1, 2017. Connecticut and Hawaii (partial reimbursement) are the only other states that provide reimbursement for IRMAA."  </p> <p class="dsx-bold-italic-underline">(Again...  The court victory forcing IRMAA surcharge reimbursement payments gets challenged again.  OMCE will again oppose and fight this proposal in unison with all affected.) </p> <p class="dsx-normal"><br /> </p> <p class="dsx-box"> <span class="dsx-title">Scholarship Time! </span><br /> <span class="dsx-bold-underline">01/09/2017</span><br /><br /> <img height="83" src="images/scholarship.jpg" width="152" /><br /><br /> <span class="dsx-bold">Members are urged to check the “<a href="http://nysomce.org/LOGIN.htm" target="_self">benefits</a>” section of our website for information on the scholarships offered through OMCE.  Both the 2017 AFL-CIO “Union Plus Scholarship” and the Lavina Wright Scholarships are now open and accepting applications. (3/31/2017 deadlines) The 2017 OPEIU Howard Coughlin and John Kelly Scholarship applications HAVE NOT yet been released.  We anticipate that the 2017 forms will be made available by the end of the month and we will update our website with both the forms and new due dates when they are prepared. </span></p> <!DOCTYPE html PUBLIC "-//W3C//DTD XHTML 1.0 Transitional//EN" "http://www.w3.org/TR/xhtml1/DTD/xhtml1-transitional.dtd"> <html xmlns="http://www.w3.org/1999/xhtml"> <head> <meta content="text/html; charset=utf-8" http-equiv="Content-Type" /> <title>Whistleblower Protections Streng

2017-2018 Proposed Executive Budget

 

OMCE and other statewide labor organizations will receive a complete budget briefing Wednesday evening, January 18th. We will be posting our analysis and agency workforce impacts as soon as possible after that briefing.

 

 

 

 In wake of PEF contract approval, OMCE renews call for parity

The state Organization of Management Confidential Employees took the opportunity of the overwhelming ratification of a three-year contract for the Public Employees Federation to once again call for the state’s roughly 9,000 M/Cs, who due to their job classifications are not represented by a union, to receive raises that keep pace with their unionized co-workers in the years to come. More...

 


Maximum Annual Leave Accruals for Management Confidential Employees (M/C)

Check out the latest announcement:

https://www.bsc.ogs.ny.gov/sites/default/files/MC_Vacation_Leave_Jan_1(002).pdf

 

2017 NYSHIP Program Rates and Annual Option Transfer Period

Please see the following publication link for the 2017 health insurance choices and rates.
https://www.cs.ny.gov/employee-benefits/nyship/shared/publications/rates/2017/ny-active-rates-2017.pdf

 

PEP Program for 2017

Civil Service has published Policy Bulletin 2016-02, Implementation of the Productivity Enhancement Program for 2017. (Surrender of annual or personal leave of reduction of health insurance premium)

Text of the Policy Bulletin as well as information will be found at: http://www.cs.ny.gov/attendance_leave/PolBull16-02.cfm

 

NYS Flex Spending Account 2016 Open Enrollment - Deadline Extended

We have been notified by the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations that the 2016 open enrollment application deadline for the Flex Spending Account has been extended. The online enrollment application will re-open beginning Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 12:01 a.m., ET, and continue through November 24, 2015 at 10:00 p.m. ET.

Click here to view the details

 

PEF REACHES TENTATIVE AGREEMENT..MC PARITY ISSUES MUST BE RESOLVED

The state and PEF have reached a tentative agreement on a 3 year contract starting April 2016 and ending March 31st of 2019. Releases indicate agreement on a 6% COLA agreement spread over three years (2%) FY2016, (2%) FY2017, (2%) FY2018. Apparently they have agreed to continue to explore cost savings measures on health insurance. To date there is no agreement for the CSEA or NYSCOPBA (prison guards) represented state employees. The PEF agreement will require approval by its Executive Board and then its membership. If approved, the next legislature (post January 1, 2017) will address the PEF and any other "pay bill" legislation required to implement the new contractual expenditures. The M/C "pay bill" has traditionally been the "B" version of the first statewide major union's pay bill to be addressed. (This is the 1st time PEF has been the 1st to reach an accord on a large unit statewide agreement.

OMCE, on behalf of the M/C employees, has met with and will continue to engage the administration on the multi-faceted M/C compensation and workplace issues.

We have and will continue to press the administration:

 

OMCE Leadership Team Stays the Course

 

Management/ Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) Repayments Ending September 19, 2016

As part of the  Management/Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP), the balance of each M/C employee’s actual deficit reduction plan deductions was to have been repaid to employees in equal biweekly installments over 39 consecutive pay periods beginning with the paycheck of April 16th, 2015 (Institution) and April 22nd, 2015 (Administration). This repayment plan is now nearing its completion. Repayment of the DRP deductions for M/C employees will end in the paycheck dated September 29th , 2016 (Institution) and October 5th, 2016 (Administration). 

Employees should be aware that they may notice a decrease in their paycheck due to the completion of the DRP repayments.  (Information edited from BSC notice of 9/19/2016)

 

REMINDER !! M/C  Maximum Annual Leave Accruals

The maximum annual leave accrual date for Management Confidential (M/C) employees is January 1, 2017. Annual leave accruals for Management Confidential (M/C) cannot exceed the maximum level of 40 days (300 hours for a 37.50 hour workweek; 320 hours for a 40 hour workweek; and pro-rated for part-time) at the beginning of business, on the January 1, 2017 adjustment date. Any accruals above the maximum accrual level will be forfeited at the beginning of business January 1, 2017. Annual leave may exceed this level at any other point during the year.

 

The annual open enrollment for  FLEX SPENDING ACCOUNTS has been announced please follow this link

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 19)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

August 09, 2016

Thruway M/C Employees Lawsuit Dismissed!

(McRae v. NYS Thruway Authority)

The U.S. District Court, Northern District of New York issued its decision in the lawsuit brought by NYS Thruway Authority M/C employees and retirees challenging the Thruway Authority deferral (withholding) of M/C salary increases in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Many of the same or similar arguments as OMCE used in our Levine v. Paterson salary withholding lawsuit were used here and the Court similarly dismissed the claims and granted the Thruway Authority's motion to dismiss.

No information is yet available on any possible additional action e.g. appeal or state court suit. We will continue to monitor. 

 

 

2016 Legislative Session Summary and OMCE’s Next Steps

Let’s review what happened in the 2016 legislative session.

2% Pay Parity-"Somewhat On Time"

With the passage of the 2016-17 NYS budget the stage was set for the next installment of the Parity Payment for MCs.  This repayment schedule, of the previously authorized but withheld pay increases from 2009 and 2010, was a direct result of OMCE’s continuing pressure on the administration to make MCs whole.  While the 4 year schedule was less than ideal DOB acted fairly quickly in releasing its latest Bulletin (D 1133) on April 25, 2016 to effectuate these payments.  It’s important to note that DOB reversed its previous position held since 2009 that one must be in service at the time increases were paid in order to receive them.  Ultimately it pays to persevere, argue and lobby for change.

A "Zombie Bill" …Attacks on Retiree Health Insurance Expected in 2017 Budget

The Medicare/NYSHIP linkage is based on a time tested statutory arrangement that recognizes the State’s savings, the cost sharing by participants, the cash and productivity value of accumulated sick leave and workplace fairness. It is anticipated that the administration facing an annually renewed hole in  the State’s Medicaid budget caused by Federal budget enacted rate changes for dual eligible individuals (eligible for Medicaid and Medicare e.g. the elderly poor) will once again seek to offset its Medicaid increases by curtailing its expenditure for State retiree health insurance programs.  We beat these changes back in 2016 but expect them to reappear in a same or similar proposal. We remain vigilant in this area and joined with all of labor to fight the administration successfully as it sought to:

VETERANS’ EQUALITY ACT APPROVED!!! 

Veterans’ Equality Act ( S7160/A9531) Chapter 41 of the Laws of 2016  was signed into law 5/31/2016 by Governor Cuomo.  This law will now give all veterans the opportunity to buy back up to 36 months of their military service time for NYS pension service credit.  A tremendous team effort/ a show of support from every veteran’s group and every public employee organization made this happen.  Facing an "in-session" legislature and the possibility of a veto override attempt, the Governor signed the identical bill into law that he vetoed twice previously.  The State Comptroller's Office immediately issued guidelines, procedures and forms needed to apply for the military service credit benefit. This information can be accessed at these links

 

Pay Parity Acceleration Act

The Senate passed S6725B, the Pay Parity Acceleration Bill.  Despite Assembly assurances that the bill was going to be acted on before the end of session, on June 14 as we were meeting with Capitol District Assembly Members for a final push on the bill they were told by Assembly Leadership that the Assembly would not pass the bill---due to concerns about intruding on the Governor's prerogative related to how he deals with Management Confidential employees.

As frustrating and disheartening as this is, we do not give up. Discussions with key legislators and the Cuomo Administration will continue as we develop an action plan for our next steps.  ( See “New” Talks Begin with Cuomo Administration in this report)  

Again a special thanks to Assembly members Phil Steck, Angelo Santabarbara, John McDonald and Patricia Fahy, who collectively represent more than one-third of the MC workforce.  They have actively supported our efforts to obtain fair and equitable treatment for MCs, co-sponsored our bills, immediately responded to our requests for their assistance and pushed leadership for action.

MC retirees who had the 2009 and 2010 salary increases withheld, we have not forgotten about you. Our various withheld pay pension adjustments legislative proposals were all rejected due to the fiscal estimates. We have discussed a Tax Credit concept with fiscal committee staff and counsel and are further refining it to develop legislation to be introduced for next session’s budget discussions.

Restoration of M/C Tuition Reimbursement

The M/C Tuition Reimbursement and License Exam Reimbursement Program restoration is a perfect example of never giving up on an issue.  Acting GOER Director Michael Volforte was a principal proponent of this restoration and we thank him for joining our chorus of need to restore this program.  Application forms and Program Guidelines can be accessed at http://www.goer.ny.gov/Training_Development/Management_Confidential/index.cfm       

Please contact OMCE with any questions and/or if you are unable to download these forms.   Agencies have access to this information and forms too.

Justice Center Reforms   Ensuring OMCE Members Receive Justice Too!

Abuse and neglect of citizens with special needs cannot and should not be tolerated.  Nor can the abuse of M/C employees’ rights be tolerated.  OMCE has joined a coalition of labor organizations and providers who are focused on needed reform of Justice Center practices which OMCE and its partners believe are too broad, duplicative, compromise investigative integrity, lack timely resolution and are in conflict with existing regulations of the 5 covered agencies. Paul Francis, the Administration’s Secretary for Health and Human Services, has received the coalition’s issues and we await further discussion and a plan to resolve these problems.    

OMCE’S NEXT STEPS !

Restoring Fairness for Retired MCs     2009-2019 M/C Retirees Tax Credit Parity Act  

OMCE proposals to provide restored pension benefits to MC retirees whose salary increases were withheld in 2009 and 2010 has run into a wall of resistance. These proposals have gained no traction, in part because of the fiscal estimates. Our new approach proposes an annual Tax Credit of 5 percent of one's pension benefit to a maximum of $3,000 per year for 5 tax years with the ability to do this over a 7 tax year period which allows the opportunity to amend returns back to 2009.

The “draft” of this act is:

"AN ACT to amend the tax law, in relation to establishing a personal income tax credit for certain employees who served in a position or positions in the classified service of the state of New York designated managerial or confidential pursuant to article fourteen of the civil service law

The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assembly, do enact as follows:

Section 1. Section 606 of the tax law is amended by adding a new subsection (ccc) to read as follows:    

(ccc) Management/ confidential personal income tax credit.

(1)     Allowance of credit. A taxpayer who served in a position or positions in the classified service of the state of New York designated managerial or confidential pursuant to article fourteen of the civil service law and retired between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2019 and  had a salary increase authorized under Chapter 100 of the Laws of 2008 which was withheld for the fiscal years 2009 and 2010  shall be allowed a credit against the tax imposed by this article equal to 5 per cent (5%) of their NYSLRS single option pension benefit not to exceed $ 3000 annually for 5 years.

(2)     Application of credit. Any tax credit not used in the taxable year of 2016 may be carried forward or backwards for seven (7) calendar years until the full credit has been allowed.       

                    § 2. This act shall take effect immediately. "

Special Commission on Legislative, Judicial and Executive Compensation

While twice rejecting an M/C pay commission the administration did accept an expanded pay commission for judges, state commissioners and elected officials of the State.  This body completed its work on judges’ salary increases in early 2016 but the "elected" commission is stalled.  A debate, similar to that held in NYC when they created a similar pay commission, has begun.  The basic query is whether or not the legislature is full/part-time and possible limits on outside earnings income.  If this is resolved and the commission adopts a pay plan for 2017 it will become law unless changed by the legislature and approved by the Governor.  There are court challenges to this Commission’s creation but they are slowly moving through the courts. 18 years ago was the last time the legislators received a raise.  So far it is hard to tell if the commission will recommend salary increases for any in this group.   If the Commission fulfills its mission the resultant "elected" pay plan will be monitored closely for both its impact and relationship to the M/C salary schedule in effect and any possible pay gaps created between the M/C workforce and the agency commissioners.    

"New" Talks Begin with Cuomo Administration

President Zaron, Executive Director Sano and Counsel John Black and Matt O’Connor met with Ms. Elizabeth DeLeon-Bhargava Deputy Secretary for Labor, Michael Volforte Acting Director of GOER and Jeremy Hoffman, Special Assistant for Workforce Development soon after the legislative session ended and had a very productive discussion.  Follow–up discussions are pending.

We urged the administration:

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 18)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 15, 2016

MC Fairness - Pay Parity Acceleration Bill

 

Last week we reported that the Senate passed Bill No. S6725B, the Pay Parity Acceleration Bill, and that our discussions with the Assembly were ongoing to ensure passage of the companion bill A7448B. Despite assurances that the bill was going to be acted on before the end of session, on June 14, as we were meeting with Capitol District Assembly Members for a final push on the bill we were told that the Assembly would not pass the bill---due to concerns about intruding on the Governor's prerogative related to how he deals with Management Confidential employees.

As frustrating and disheartening as this is, we do not give up. Discussions with key legislators will continue and we are developing an action plan for the rest of the year.

Special thanks to Assemblymembers Phil Steck, Angelo Santabarbara, John McDonald and Patricia Fahy, who collectively represent more than one-third of the MC workforce.  They have actively supported our efforts to obtain fair and equitable treatment for MCs and immediately respond to our requests for their assistance.

 

 

 

 

 

Retirees

MC retirees who had the 2009 and 2010 salary increases withheld, we have not forgotten about you. Our various withheld pay pension adjustments legislative proposals were all rejected due to the fiscal estimates. We have discussed a Tax Credit concept with fiscal committee staff and counsel and are further refining it to develop legislation to be introduced for next session and the budget discussions.

 

 

Town Hall Teleconference 

 Our next call is on Tuesday, June 21, 2016 at 5:30 pm. Call to reserve your spot.

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 17)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 10, 2016

Veterans Equality Act

Governor Cuomo signed the Veterans Equality Act on May 31, 2016 and the State Comptroller's Office issued guidelines, procedures and forms needed to apply for the military service credit benefit. This information can be accessed at these links

 www.osc.state.ny.us/retire

http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/members/military-service-credit.php#

Important Note: The eligibility criteria include the following condition --- must apply for and purchase military service credit PRIOR TO RETIREMENT. The enacted bill DOES NOT allow retirees one year from May 31, the effective date, to apply for the service credit. We suggest that if you apply for the benefit you ensure that your application is:

 

 

Investigator Title Structure Changes

The Department of Civil Service has recently announced structural changes with the Investigator title.  The action is associated with recommendations made by the Sage Commission, to reduce and consolidate the number of pay grades and job classifications.

We know that some agencies are meeting with affected Investigator staff to explain the impact and implications of this change. If your agency has not scheduled a meeting or otherwise provided you with detailed information ask for it.

Permanent incumbents of titles reallocated to a lower salary grade will be held harmless and are salary protected for performance advancements, awards, and salary calculations as long as they remain in their current positions. However, opportunities for promotion may be limited.

Members who have questions, after talking to your agency supervisory and human resources staff, should contact OMCE.

 

 

Town Hall Teleconference

 

Our next Town Hall teleconference is scheduled for June 21, 2016 at 5:30 pm. Please contact OMCE to reserve your spot.        

 

 

 

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 16)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 3, 2016

Veteran’s Equality Act:  How to File for your Credit.

 





The New York State and Local Retirement System (NYSLRS-OSC) website has listed the procedure and forms needed to apply for the recently enacted Veterans’ Equality Act service credit benefit. This information can be accessed by clicking on this hyperlink     www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/

Application information is available:  http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/members/military-service-credit.php#article-20-eligibility



MC Pay Parity Acceleration Bill (A7448B, S6725B)

Our pay parity acceleration bill which seeks to expedite the April 2017 (2 percent) and the April 2018 (1 percent) payment of wages previously earned is moving in both houses of the legislature.

On Thursday morning it was approved by the Senate Finance Committee and advanced to the Rules Committee.  Under the complex steps associated with Senate procedure, it has appeared on the Senate Calendar and has had its “first reading.”  After three readings it is eligible for action by the entire Senate.

TThe Assembly is scheduled to move the bill to the Ways and Means Committee where the sponsor, Assemblyman Denny Farrell, serves as Committee Chairperson.  OMCE anticipates that the bill will then move quickly to the Assembly Rules Committee for calendar scheduling and action before legislators are released for the summer recess – currently scheduled for June 16.



VETERANS’ EQUALITY ACT APPROVED  !!!

Veterans’ Equality  Act ( S7160/A9531)  has been signed into law. Governor Cuomo signed the bill into law-Chapter 41 of the Laws of 2016. This law will now give all  veterans the opportunity to buy back up to 36 months of their time military service for NYS pension service credit.  A tremendous team effort/ a show of support  from every  veterans’ group and every public employee  organization made this happen.  Facing an “in-session” legislature and the possibility of a veto override attempt, the Governor  signed the identical bill into law that he vetoed twice previously.  OMCE thanks all its members, veterans and their families, Senator Larkin and Assemblywoman Paulin for their long time support of this issue.  A detailed question and answer post about the bill details will appear on our website in the next few days.  CONGRATULATIONS!

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 15)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 31, 2016

 

 

We honor the memory and actions of those who gave their lives while serving the United States. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nine days remain in the Legislative Session. The Senate and Assembly return to the Capitol Wednesday, June 1 to consider key pieces of legislation prior to its recess – currently scheduled for June 16.

 

 

 

 

M/C SALARY FAIRNESS

The Accelerated Payment bill (Senate No. 6725B) is on the Senate Finance Committee agenda for this week and is expected to be on the agenda of the Assembly Government Employees Committee’s next meeting (Assembly No. 7448B). Next step will be the Rules Committees of both houses and inclusion onto the respective Floor Calendars for a final vote.

 VETERANS’EQUALITY ACT  

OMCE and the coalition of labor affiliates continue to advocate for enactment of the legislation authorizing military service time to be applied in the aggregate toward state retirement calculations. In short, if you served, this benefit is deserved.  

The bill was sent to the Governor on May 19, 2016.  Action by the Governor is required before June 1.      

NYSHIP BUY OUT EXPANSION  

Legislation is presently being considered by both the full Senate (Bill No. 7120); and the Assembly Ways and Means Committee (Bill No. 9715) authorizing an expansion of the right to collectively bargain for health insurance buyout programs.  

If enacted into law, this legislation would allow those receiving health insurance through the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP), or via a spouse’s enrollment, the opportunity to have this benefit negotiated.  OMCE interest is to preserve the opportunity for extension and application to Management Confidential employees.

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 14)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 19, 2016

 

 

With 12 days remaining in the 2016 Legislative session we are making progress on two fronts….

 

 

 

MC Fairness

Our MC Pay Parity Accelerated Payment bill, A7448B/S6725B has been amended to fix the technical issue that was raised. The bills were recommitted to the Senate Finance and Assembly Government Employees Committees.  The Assembly Government Employees Committee has scheduled the bill for action of Tuesday May 24, 2016. It will then be poised for final action by both houses of the legislature.

Veterans Equality Bill

The Veterans' Equality Act (Pension Credit bills, A9531/S7160), passed the legislature this week and on Thursday May 19 was sent (*) to the Governor.  The bill provides up to three years of service credit for all state and local employees who served in the military and were honorably discharged. The employee must have at least five years of credited service to be eligible and pay the product of the number of years of service times 3 percent of compensation during the year prior to application for each year of new credit they wish to purchase.  The bill also includes those who retired up to one year prior to it becoming law.

   (*) While the Legislature is in session, the Governor has 10 days (not counting Sundays) to sign or veto bills passed by both houses. Signed bills become law; vetoed bills do not. However, the Governor's failure to sign or veto a bill within the 10-day period means that it becomes law automatically. Vetoed bills are returned to the house that first passed them, together with a statement of the reason for their disapproval. A vetoed bill can become law if two-thirds of the members of each house vote to override the Governor's veto. This marks the first time this bill was passed and sent to the Governor while the legislature was still in session.

 

 

Important Notice

Post-NYS Employment and Consulting- What You Need to Know

The following link will bring you to the restrictions on post-NYS employment and consulting. In light of current events it is important that all MC employees be cognizant of these restrictions. Click here to download the PDF

 

2% PARITY INCREASE- BUDGET BULLETIN RELEASED  

4/25/2016 The Division of the Budget has released the Budget Bulletin (D-1133) authorizing the next pay parity installment (2%) of the previously authorized but withheld MC salaries from 2009 and 2010.

The DOB Full Bulletin can be found Here (Opens in New Window)

 

FIGHT TO ACCELERATE PARITY CONTINUES


With the 2nd parity increase of 2 % now scheduled for payment  it is now time to accelerate the schedule and complete the payment of the remaining 3% in this fiscal year. Ten years to complete this repayment is too long! Use our electronic letter system and contact your legislator to support A7448 (Farrell) and S6725 (Young)-MC Pay Parity Acceleration Bill.

 

Click here for information on Tuition Reimbursement for MCs

OMCE supports Civil Service Department Job Analysis Study of Office Assistant 1  Titles

The Department of Civil Service (DCS) is conducting a job analysis study of the recently consolidated titles of Office Assistant 1, Office Assistant 1 (Keyboarding), Office Assistant 1 (Stores/Mail) and related language parenthetics. These titles serve as a critical entry point for careers in administrative services in NYS government. The information obtained from this job analysis study will provide the foundation for future civil service exams and support selection of the most highly qualified individuals for these positions.

DCS staff have reviewed documentation on the jobs included in the study, conducted group interviews with employees and supervisors, and created an online job questionnaire covering the job tasks and general competencies (related areas of knowledge, skills and abilities) for the Office Assistant 1 titles. DCS plans to send an email this week to Office Assistant 1 employees to tell them   about the online questionnaire survey, and ask HR Directors to select a sample of supervisors to complete the online survey. The actual link to the questionnaire will be sent to participants on or about April 11, 2016. Participants will have 2 weeks to complete the online survey.

Completing the questionnaire gives each employee and supervisor a voice in decisions about the exam program and how the Office Assistant 1 employees will be selected.

We appreciate the DCS using a merit system based competitive exam process for development and implementation of this exam. We urge you to complete the survey. Please contact OMCE if you any questions or concerns about this issue.

 

Your Letters on These Issues are Needed Now !!

You are urged to send personal and electronic letters to your legislators.

   OPPOSE Retiree Health Insurance Cost Shifting Schemes Proposed by the Governor (Legislature Rejects)

    SUPPORT Accelerated Payment of Previously Authorized but Withheld MC Salaries

Clicking these links will allow you to automatically send electronic letters to your representatives.  Your letter can be edited to add personal comments if you wish

Members:

This just in OMCE in Action (Volume No. 13)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 13, 2016

#Fairness...

Town Hall Teleconference – May 24

Can't get to an OMCE Lunch and Learn? Just want to know what's happening?

Join us for our teleconference call on Tuesday, May 24 at 5:30 p.m. to get the latest news.  Contact OMCE at 456-5241 for the dial-in number and to reserve your spot

 

 

 

JCOPE Comprehensive Ethics Training Course (CETC):

The CETC is an ethics training course mandated for New York State officers and employees who file an annual Financial Disclosure Statement  (FDS).

The current salary rate for mandated participants is $91,821 and above. If you have any questions about your status as a designated filer, you should contact your state agency or appointing authority.  It is expected that agency Ethics Officers will continue to deliver the CETC to their FDS filers at regular intervals or as needed to comply with the statutory ethics training deadlines. Please contact your Ethics Officer for additional training dates at your agency.

 

JCOPE will also present live sessions at its Albany office located at 540 Broadway and via video conference at Buffalo and New York City offices. Unless otherwise indicated, two Continuing Legal Education Credits (CLE) are available to State-employed attorneys the first time they attend a CETC session presented by JCOPE.

Upconing Dates:

Tuesday, June 7, 2016, 1-3 p.m. – NOT FOR CLE CREDIT

Tuesday, June 14, 2016, 1-3 p.m. – NOT FOR CLE CREDIT 

Ethics Refresher Training Requirement  - Are You Due?

Everyone who has taken the CETC is required BY LAW to take an ethics refresher every three years thereafter. This means those FDS filers who first took the CETC in 2013, must take an ethics refresher this year in 2016. The CETC previously mentioned satisfies the ethics seminar/refresher training requirement.  

For more information about JCOPE Mandated Training visit: 

 http://www.jcope.ny.gov/training/courseofferings.html.

 

 

Members:

 Back following a short-term pause is OMCE in Action (Volume No. 12)

The start of May brought the return of the legislature to Albany this week, while the legislative accomplishment of the week were few, outside topics and events stemming from scrutiny of past and present officials dominated the headlines.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 6, 2016

Restoring Fairness to MCs in the Post Budget Legislative Session

 

On May 5, OMCE officials and Counsel met with the senior staff representing the Senate Finance and Assembly Ways and Means committees to advance our Pay Parity Acceleration bill (A7448A, S6725A). We are working to resolve a technical issue that was raised. We remain steadfast in our commitment to having this bill considered and passed prior to the June session recess.

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act

 

OMCE Counsel attended a meeting on May 5 with Assemblymember Amy Paulin, Assembly sponsor of the original bill, A9531/S7160 (vetoed by the Governor) to adopt strategy for passage of this bill, since negotiations with the Governor's office have not produced a new agreement.  

The Senate passed Bill No. S1760 and the Assembly is considering the bill prior to advancing Bill No. A9531 for a vote.  On May 9, OMCE and union representatives are planning on attending a meeting of the AFL-CIO and will be taking up the issue.  Assemblymember Paulin will meet with OMCE Counsel to report on status and next steps on May 16.  

 

 

 

 

 

May 2, 2016

News: Comptroller's Office has issued the Payroll Bulletin (1482, 1483, 1484) covering G 17 and below longevity, the 2% parity increase and the performance advance (steps) respectively.

 

Members:

 

OMCE in Action – Volume No. 11  

Late last week, the legislature departed Albany in keeping with a scheduled recess that continues until Tuesday, May 3.  

An interim update follows.

 

 

April 22, 2016

Restoring Fairness for MCs  

OMCE is scheduled to meet in early May with Cuomo Administration representatives, and with Legislative staff to underscore our continued commitment to issues of fairness to MC employees.  Included in our roster of priorities are: acceleration of payment of the withheld salary increases, and a proposal to grant a tax credit/tax rebate for affected MC retirees impacted by the 2009 and 2010 withholdings.    

Budget Bulletin  

Division of Budget (DOB) staff advised us that the Budget Bulletin is drafted and awaiting final approval and sign-off.  The increases are effective April 1, 2016 and the effective pay dates are March 31, 2016 for the Institution payroll and April 7, 2016 for the Administration payroll.  

Please note:  Last year's Budget Bulletin was issued on May 8, 2015

 

Tuition Reimbursement for MCs  

Program Guidelines for MC Tuition Reimbursement are posted on the GOER website and in our OMCE website Member's Only section.  If you are interested and apply, please consider and carefully follow the procedural instructions.     

Rockefeller College asked us to share details on its Information Fair on April 28, 2016. Click here for their announcement. ( Opens in new window ) 

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act  

There is nothing new to report this week.

 

 

April 19, 2016

Nominations for OMCE Board of Directors

Our OMCE nominations process began with last month’s notice and a survey of current incumbents whose terms are expiring re: their interest in running again. Now, it’s up to you, our members, to either express your interest or recommend someone you think would be a good Board Member.

The OMCE Board of Directors is charged with providing guidance and direction and setting policy for the organization. Board Members are advocates of many and diverse interests and come with different experiences. As our governing board, they address issues of importance and concern to M/C employees and retirees, reach agreement through consensus, and commission the OMCE staff, law firm and consultants (computer, public relations, and accounting services) to take necessary action.

The Nominating Committee is seeking active state employees who are willing to commit the time, energy and talent needed to address the issues of concern to the approximately 10,000 non-union public employees/officials in the Executive Branch who are eligible for OMCE membership, and to the M/C employees in the other branches of NYS government.

If you are ready, willing and able to invest in OMCE by giving some of your time and energy to address issues such as protection of pension and health insurance, M/C compensation and benefits, conditions of employment, workforce and succession management, job security and discipline, and many others that we are faced with:

Send OMCE your resume and a statement suitable for use on the ballot by June 10, 2016. E-mail (nysomce@gmail.com) or regular mail  5 Pine West Plaza, Suite 513, Albany, NY 122015, or phone us at (518) 456-5241 or (800) 828-6623 if you have any questions.

Members:

We are pleased to present to you OMCE in Action (Volume No. 10) - a direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

April 8, 2016

 

GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES ONE-YEAR RETROACTIVE CONTRACT AGREEMENT WITH PEF 

 

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that his administration has reached a retroactive one-year labor agreement (2015-2016) with the New York State Public Employees Federation.

The one-year contract agreement includes a two percent salary increase retroactive to April 1, 2015. The cost of the agreement is $73 million. The agreement must be ratified by the PEF Executive Board which is scheduled to meet in May and a pay bill introduced into the legislature to enact its monetary provisions.

MCs received their 2% COLA effective April 2015 plus the first 2% installment (July 2015) of the increases withheld in 2009/2010. OMCE will continue to press for passage of its legislation (A 7448 and S6725) which calls for the remaining 3% of the previously authorized but withheld salaries to be paid this fiscal year.

OMCE President Barbara Zaron stated …“With this pending PEF agreement in place it is imperative that the MC workforce now be made whole for all previously authorized but withheld salaries plus similar cost of living adjustments going forward.”  Without these adjustments, the salary gaps between people in different bargaining units but the same grade level and those supervised to their supervisors will be further exacerbated….”  Zaron concluded, “MCs have been waiting too long for this issue to be fixed--the time is now!”

 

April 7, 2016

 

Restoring Fairness for Retired MCs

OMCE proposals to provide restored pension benefits to MC retirees whose salary increases were withheld in 2009 and 2010 has run into a wall of resistance. These proposals have gained no traction, in part because of the fiscal estimate. Your OMCE representatives are drafting legislation that will yield a benefit to all affected MC retirees but will not be tied to the pension benefit. Our new approach proposes an annual Tax Credit/ Tax Rebate (where taxes do not reach the amount of the credit or for out of state resident retirees) of 5 percent of one's pension benefit to a maximum of $3,000 per year.

 

 

 

Restoring Fairness for MC Employees 

Despite extensive efforts, OMCE's salary increase acceleration bill did not make it into the 2016-17 state budget. The stand-alone bill A.7448 is scheduled to be on the Government Employees Committee agenda at its next scheduled meeting. S.6725 is in the Senate Finance Committee. We are continuing to fight on your behalf to keep this issue moving and to obtain passage this session.

 

 

 

Budget Bulletin? Where is the Budget Bulletin?

The Division of the Budget has not yet released the budget bulletin authorizing payment of the MC performance advances, N/S advances, longevity payments and 2% across the board salary increases for 2016-2017. These increases are effective April 1, 2016 and effective pay dates are March 31, 2016 for Institution payroll and April 7, 2016 for Administration payroll.  Last year's bulletin was issued on May 8, 2015 as a reference point. We will continue to press the Division of Budget to issue the bulletin as soon as possible.

 

 

 

Tuition Reimbursement for MCs

OMCE is pleased to announce the restoration of the M/C Tuition Reimbursement and License Exam Reimbursement Program. Application forms and Program Guidelines can be accessed by clicking here.   Please contact OMCE with any questions and/or if you are unable to download these forms.   Agencies will shortly have access to this information and forms too.

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act

The Veterans Equality Act failed to make it into the final budget agreement. Assembly bill sponsor Amy Paulin said she was "deeply disappointed that the credit was left out of the budget, and that the majority conference was committed to making it a reality by the end of the legislative session in June."  

Senate bill sponsor Bill Larkin said, "We kept fighting for the Veterans Equality Act (VEA) down to the last minute of the budget process. I regret to inform our veterans that Gov. Cuomo has not included the VEA in this year's State Budget. Despite its popularity and bipartisan support in both houses of the State Legislature, Gov. Cuomo has once again refused to recognize the sacrifices made by ALL veterans. The Governor's failure to take action on this issue, in the face of the fact that he committed to doing so, is very disappointing. Be assured, I will not be deterred. The fight for the Veterans Equality Act is not over."

OMCE will continue to work as part of the coalition of unions and veteran’s advocacy groups urging passage in the 2016 legislative session

 

 

Members:

 

The 2016-17 state fiscal year is only hours away.  While our objectives have been crystal clear, the process remains far from transparent.  Here is what appears to be on the horizon.

 

 

March 31, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 9

A Budget Victory: Defeating Higher Health Care Costs for Retirees

It appears our collective advocacy effort, with the support of the Legislature, we have derailed Governor Cuomo’s recommendations to increase health care costs on state retirees. OMCE appreciates the Legislature’s rejection of the Executive’s proposals.

A Sustained Fight:

 

Ensuring OMCE Members Receive Justice Too!

 

Abuse and neglect of citizens with special needs cannot and should not be tolerated.  And, we believe it is equally important that our member’s rights must also be preserved.  OMCE has joined a coalition of six labor organizations who have written to Paul Francis, Governor Cuomo’s Deputy Secretary for Health and Human Services asking for a review of Justice Center practices which OMCE and its partners believe are too broad, duplicative, compromise investigative integrity, lack timely resolution and are in conflict with existing regulations.   

 

 

 

Appellate Division Upholds Unit Determination Cases

The state Appellate Division upheld a lower court decision that commanded the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations to honor a unit determination petition agreement they made with PEF.   Roughly 250 management-confidential employees’ items in various state agencies are subject to this decision.  

The suit resulted from GOER’s attempt to back out of a 2013 agreement in which PEF agreed to withdraw its attempts to absorb some 2,000 positions that the union said were more properly categorized as non-management jobs.  Any further State appeal is unknown at this time.  

It is important to note that while not directly tied to this case, PEF members continue to work without a current contract and its negotiations on a successor agreement continue.  

*    *    *

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate you on going interest and support.

 

Members:

At this writing of OMCE in Action, the state budget countdown clock reads: eight days.

March 24, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 8

Legislative Conference Committees Convene; Staff Negotiations Ongoing

Our top priority remains Assembly Bill 7448 (Senate 6725​).  

OMCE's proposed acceleration of the payments of previously earned and authorized wages were not included in the respective one-house budget bills, however, despite this fact, they have not been forgotten or abandoned and are being discussed during the ongoing budget negotiations.   

Additionally this negotiation process resulted in our bills receiving technical amendments.  These proposals remain as "stand alone bills" and if not included in the final budget document, they remain positioned for action by the legislature

Budget Bulletin Anticipated to Outline Two-Percent Increase for April 2016

Current statute (Section 130 of Civil Service Law) calls for the next 2 percent payment of the previously authorized but withheld monies to be paid effective April 2016.  This payment requires a Budget Bulletin that will also include instructions on the payment of the 2 percent performance advances, longevity payments (G17 and below) and payment procedures for those paid as NS without equation to a salary grade.   

It is customary that the bulletin be issued following the adoption of the state budget.  

OMCE monitors this closely and is in constant contact with the Division of the Budget and Governor’s Office of Employee Relations regarding a timely release of the bulletin.  The increases are effective March 31, 2016 for the Institution Payroll and April 7 for the Administration Payroll.

Tuition Reimbursement for MC Employees

Positive discussions with GOER continue regarding the reestablishment of the Tuition Reimbursement and Professional Development Program.  Details are being finalized and we will share them upon completion.

Veterans' Equity Act

OMCE is a signatory to a letter to the Governor and legislative leaders sent by a coalition of unions, veterans groups and others regarding the potential application of state retirement service credits for military duty.   

The one-house budget bills of the Assembly and Senate seek to extend military service buyback credit to ALL veterans who have served in the military

MC Compensation - Public Employees

OMCE monitors national trends in the compensation of MC public employees as well as litigation involving various parties of interest.  Here are a few notable actions (and inactions):

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate you on going interest and support.

 

 

March 2016 Nominations for OMCE Board of Directors:

Each year at this time, we begin looking for OMCE members in good standing interested in serving on the OMCE Board of Directors. There are five seats to be filled this year, each for a three year term. The nominations process is simple, since a member can nominate him/herself. Submit your resume, a letter stating your interest to run for a Board seat and a statement that can be used with the ballot, describing your background, the issues and priorities you would want to focus on as a Board Member, your participation in OMCE and why you would be a good Board Member. The material is reviewed by the Nominations Committee members who will present a slate of nominees to the OMCE Board and, if needed, arrange for the mail ballot election. Nominations, via e-mail or regular mail, must be received in the OMCE office no later than June 10, 2016.  

Board Members are expected to participate either in person or via teleconference in four Board Meetings per year (March, June, September/October and December) and to serve on at least one committee. Board Members are not paid to serve on the Board, but travel expenses if required are reimbursed at State rates.  

OMCE is an organization of, by and for M/C employees who voluntarily choose to join, since designation as an M/C does not mean automatic enrollment as an OMCE member. OMCE officers and committee members are all volunteers for these positions.  

We need active working State M/C employees who are interested in being leaders in the fight to improve the working conditions of M/C employees and to ensure that their rights and benefits are protected. For additional information, contact OMCE atnysomce@gmail.com518-456-5241 or at 1-800-828-6623.

 

Waiver of Holiday Compensation Deadline for Enrollment - May 15, 2016

March 18, 2016

Each year, between April 1, 2016 and May 15, 2016, employees who are eligible to receive holiday compensation may elect to change the way they receive this compensation. Employees who are now receiving holiday pay for time worked on a holiday may elect to receive leave credits, and employees who now receive leave credits for time worked on a holiday may elect to receive holiday pay. If an employee wishes to keep their existing holiday compensation option, no further action is required.  

Eligibility  

This benefit is available to employees in the CSEA, PEF, Council 82, DC-37, NYSCOPBA, and PBANYS bargaining units. Management-confidential (M/C) employees in salary grades 22 and below are also eligible.  

Completing a Waiver Form  

Employees who want to change their existing holiday compensation option should complete the Waiver of Additional Money for Holiday Work 2016 and return it to the BSC Time and Attendance Unit no later than May 15, 2016.  Forms received after this date will not be processed.  

Completed forms may be emailed to BSCTimeAdmin@ogs.ny.gov or mailed to:

OGS Business Services Center Time & Attendance Unit

Building 5, W. Averell Harriman State Office Campus, 4th Floor 1220 Washington Avenue

Albany, NY 12226-1900

 If you need assistance or have questions, please contact the BSC Time & Attendance Unit at (518) 457-4272 orBSCTimeAdmin@ogs.ny.gov.

 

 

OMCE in Action

SUBJ:  One-House Budget Bills – An Update For Members:

Assembly Bill No. 7448 and Senate Bill No. 6725

Acceleration of Previously Authorized but Withheld M/C Salaries

While not in the one-house bills prepared independently by the Assembly and Senate, OMCE’s "acceleration bill" has been advanced by the Senate Finance and pending for action in the Assembly Government Employees Committee. We anticipate that both the Assembly Ways and Means and the Senate Finance Committees will be considering this legislation following budget resolution.

PLEASE KEEP SENDING YOUR E-LETTERS, AND CALLING YOUR LEGISLATORS.

Your efforts thus far are helping ensure that this legislation is moving in parallel to budget negotiations; and being evaluated on its merits as a "Stand Alone Bill."

 

Governor’s cost shifting attacks on State Retiree Health Insurance Rejected!

 

Both one house budget bills have denied the Governor’s proposed cost shifting retiree health insurance schemes.

 

 

 

Veterans Equity Act

 

Members:

This week’s edition of OMCE in Action (OIA) is once again, focused on tracking legislation of interest and concern to our membership relative to the coming state budget deadline and anticipated passage on or about April 1, 2016.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate your ongoing interest and support.

March 11, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 7 is singularly focused:

State Budget Negotiations Intensify

The Assembly and Senate each announced their budget priorities this week. Both houses are expected to approve their respective one-house budgets – as early as Monday, and then enter into a conference committee process.  Their deliberations are often unpredictable and it is our goal to maintain a top-of-mind position in both the Senate and Assembly.  As reported previously OMCE’s priority is your priority – expediting the payment of wages MCs earned in 2009 and 2010 – which have yet to be paid. 

OMCE’s advocacy efforts this week were heavily skewed toward the Assembly majority conference, which included:

In parallel to our legislative advocacy, OMCE is encouraging senior state officials at GOER to share with Executive Chamber staff the positive programmatic and fiscal impact of the proposed legislation

 

 

Members:

This week’s edition of OMCE in Action (OIA) is focused on tracking legislation of interest and concern to our membership.  We remind you that March calendar brings additional intensity associated with the State budget and related matters impacting our legislative priorities and objectives.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. Our direct subscriber list continues to grow.  We appreciate you interest and support.

March 4, 2016

 

OIA – Edition No. 6 has three significant topics:

 

Senate Committee Expected to Begin Acting on Salary Restoration Bill

Next week, the Senate Civil Service Committee is expected to consider Senate Bill  No. 6725 – legislation specifically prepared to expedite the payment of wages MCs earned in 2009 and 2010 – which have yet to be paid.  The Chairman of the Committee, Senator Martin Golden is a co-sponsor of this legislation. 

We encourage you to contact Senator Golden’s office via telephone:  518.455.2760; email golden@nysenate.gov; or advance a letter via the OMCE Action Line.

 

 

 

 

Budget Negotiations to Include Opportunity to Be Credited for Military Service

We have been advised that legislation authorizing recognition by the New York State Retirement System of specific military service will be supported by the Assembly and Senate as they prepare one-house budgets and advance topics to be considered during the 2016-17 budget negotiations.  Senator Bill Larkin and Assembly member Amy Paulin have championed this legislation which was vetoed last year by Governor Cuomo.

 

 

 

 

 

Action Line Letters Target Unacceptable Changes to Retiree Health Insurance

Last week we encouraged your direct grassroots involvement via our Action Line postings.  If you have not yet had the opportunity to take a moment to become involved with this important initiative – it is not too late.  

In particular, OMCE urges you to visit OMCE Action Line and submit an electronic letter outlining our opposition to changes that if enacted would:

 

 

Members:

We advance to you for review the latest edition of OMCE in Action (Volume No. 5) – an ongoing update and direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

February 26, 2016

Highlights from the Telephone Town Hall 

 

Thank you to those of you who participated in Wednesday evening’s conversation. 

The session focused on our top priorities for 2016:       

 

 

Action Line Letters are Live and Available 

 

 

In a related matter, members are encouraged to review our latest Action Line postings available at www.nysomce.org.  

The material allows for direct targeting of legislative members and ensures that you are recognized as an active and involved member of OMCE.  It is important that we sustain our advocacy as the budget season accelerates and escalates in intensity.

 

 

A Respected Senator Signs on OMCE Priority Legislation  

 

 OMCE learned this week that Senator Martin Golden of Brooklyn will co-sponsor the bill requiring accelerated payment of wages earned by MCs and withheld in 2009 and 2010.  The Senator is chairman of the Civil Service and Pension Committee.

 

 

 

 

Salary Commission Comments Draw a Connection to State Deputies and Managers.

During this week’s meeting of the Legislative, Judicial and Executive Pay Commission, several members made interesting connections between their charge and the impact on MC employees.  The Albany Times Union reports:

For one, commission member Roman Hedges, an appointee of the Democratic Assembly majority, said salary data for more senior civil servants — who are not under the commission's purview — should be considered as the panel forms its opinions on what those workers' bosses should be paid.

While there are mounds of data to absorb and public comments to solicit, commission member James Lack, an appointee of the Senate Republican conference, gave an indication that pay — at least within the executive branch — needed to rise by a significant amount.

"In the weight of all things, once these poor people who haven't had raises for 18 years finally get a raise — and obviously it's not going to be a 3 percent raise — their deputies for all these years ... are certainly going to be looking to fill the gap between whatever their salaries are and the new department head salary," Lack said. "We don't set those, but we in effect are doing that."

 

February 23, 2016

CIVIL SERVICE  PREPS TO EXPAND PCO (Professional  Career Opportunities) EXAM - Click for Story

 

Members:

We are pleased to present to you OMCE in Action (Volume No. 4) - a direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

February 18, 2016

 

 State of Politics Blog Reports on OMCE Legislation

Last week’s edition of OMCE in Action shared news of commitments by Senator Catharine Young and Assemblyman Denny Farrell to sponsor bills that would require payment of wages you earned in 2009 and 2010 which were unfairly and unjustly withheld.  The well-read and regarded State of Politics political blog published a piece on the development.   

The complete posting is available here: 
 http://www.nystateofpolitics.com/2016/02/bill-would-bump-up-pay-raise-schedule-for-mc-employees/

 

 

OMCE’s Top Legislative Priority to be sponsored by Senator Catherine Young and Assemblyman Farrell (Update).  

In a related matter, OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joseph Sano met with the Assembly Program and Counsel staff to discuss details of Assembly Bill No. 7448.

 

 

OMCE Participates in New York State AFL-CIO Pension and Taylor Law Task Force Meetings.

 

OMCE’s Joseph Sano represented OMCE at the recent session. 

Discussions focused on Veterans pension equity and proposed changes to retiree health insurance outlined in the executive budget. OMCE opposes these changes to retiree health insurance, and included its position during testimony offered at the joint legislative budget hearings conducted on February 3.

 

 

 

Legislative, Judicial and Executive Pay Commission Announces Upcoming Meeting

Earlier this week, it was announced that the Commission charged with maintaining appropriate salary levels for the state judges, legislators and high-ranking administration appointees such as Commissioners. It will convene on February 22 in New York City.

For additional information on the Commission, please visit:
http://www.nyscommissiononcompensation.org

 

 

 

Scalia Passing to Impact Key Supreme Court Cases

The unexpected death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia will have a significant impact on a number of important matters under consideration by the U.S. Supreme Court, and which have the potential to impact those who work in the public sector.  Many are beginning to contemplate the broad based impact on a potential shift in the court’s ideology.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/scalia-public-sector unions_us_56bfdb1ce4b0b40245c6f855

 

 

 

 

 

REMINDER: OMCE Telephone Town Hall February 24 at 5:30 pm.

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

 

 

OMCE at Caucus Weekend

Our thanks and appreciation to our colleague and representative George Delamar who staffed OMCE’s table along with President Barbara Zaron at the Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Conference on Saturday, February 13.

 

 

 

 

 

 Members:

Welcome to Week No. 3 of OMCE in Action a direct communication intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

We continue to hear from you that you find these brief summaries informative and the list of direct email subscribers is growing each week.  While you are free to review the content on our website, others have expressed appreciation that it is being shared directly via personal email accounts.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

 

February 11, 2016

OMCE’s Top Legislative Priority to be sponsored by Senator Catherine Young and Assemblyman Farrell.

OMCE is pleased to announce that the respective chairs of the Senate Finance Committee, and Assembly Ways and Means Committee have endorsed and agreed to sponsor legislation expediting payment to MC employees earned, and withheld during the state’s deficit reduction efforts in 2009 and 2010.

The bill numbers associated with the legislation are Senate 6725 and Assembly 7448.

Please Note:  Beginning Wednesday, February 10, State Legislators will be in their home districts.  The Senate and Assembly will reconvene in Albany on February 24, 2016

 

Zaron and Sano meet with Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan.

On Monday, February 8, OMCE President Barbara Zaron, and Executive Director Joseph Sano met with Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan at the Capitol. 

The Majority Leader has been a long-term advocate for OMCE and MCs.  In fact, in 2014, Senator Flanagan, led an effort calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to restore wages of MC’s earned and withheld across the state, including 500 on Long Island

 

 

 

Comptroller DiNapoli’s Advisory Council Provides Input on the Management of the Common Retirement Fund.  

The Comptroller’s advisory council meets periodically to provide independent, expert assistance associated with guiding the state’s $184 billion retirement fund.  OMCE President Barbara Zaron, a member of the Council, attended the session which included a summary of enhanced services being planned to better serve retirement system members and beneficiaries.

 

 

 

 

OMCE to be active at 2016 Caucus Weekend.

Look for OMCE representatives this weekend at the 45th Annual Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators annual conference in Albany.  

 

REMINDER: OMCE Telephone Town Hall February 24 at 5:30 pm.

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

Members:

This is the second edition of OMCE in Action a direct communication intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

Many of you provided positive feedback to last week’s update.  In addition to posting on the OMCE website, we are advancing it to our members (for whom we have email addresses)

Please email us with your personal e-mail if you wish to have it sent directly to you.

February 4, 2016

OMCE Delivers Testimony to Legislative Commission Calling for Expedited Payment of Salary Withheld and Owed to MCs    

On Wednesday, February 3, OMCE President Barbara Zaron, and Executive Director Joseph Sano offered testimony to the Joint Legislative Budget Hearing on the Workforce .   OMCE outlined its priorities that included:

To view the archived video testimony visit:  http://assembly.state.ny.us/av/hearings/ Then select: 2-3-16 Joint Budget Hearing – Workforce Development.  OMCE testimony begins at the (3:13:30).  You can advance directly to OMCE content by using the arrow keys -->

To review the complete written testimony submitted to the joint committee visit: OMCE Testimony_20160205.pdf 

Direct lobbying and advocacy of key members and Senior legislative staff.

Since our most recent report, OMCE leadership has met with the staff of:

These sessions are important to advancing OMCE’s priorities.  They provide opportunities to discuss active sponsorship of our key bills, and allow us to reinforce OMCE’s position.  

OMCE Announces Town Meeting via Toll-Free Conference Call on Wednesday, February 24 at 5:30 pm

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

 

Fiscal Policy Institute Offers Briefing on New York Economic Outlook

Prior to offering its testimony on February 3, OMCE representative attended a detailed briefing conducted by the Fiscal Policy Institute.

The most significant issue discussed was the 2016-17 Executive Budget and its impact.   

For more information visit:  http://fiscalpolicy.org.  

 

  

 

Members:

This is the first of a new series of direct communications intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

We are calling it – OMCE in Action. It will be a regular email that we send to you, our members (for whom we have email addresses), to keep you informed of our activities on your behalf.  It will also be posted on our website.  Please email us with your personal e-mail if you wish to have it sent directly to you.

January 26, 2016

OMCE is a trusted source for Capitol-based reporters and broadcasters

On Friday, January 15, Times Union reporter Rick Karlin interviewed OMCE President Barbara Zaron for an article about the proposed changes shifting additional costs to retirees for their health care. http://www.timesunion.com/local/article/State-proposes-to-change-retiree-health-care-costs-6763043.php      

 

OMCE is amplifying the voice and concerns of MC employees

On Wednesday, February 3rd OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joe Sano will provide testimony during the Joint Legislative Budget Committee’s Workforce Development hearing. They will be aggressively pushing OMCE’s legislative agenda including accelerating payments of all previously authorized and withheld salaries as well as seeking support for fixing the diminished pension benefits for those already retired since 2009 and those nearing retirement.  

Testimony presented to the joint-fiscal committees of the Senate and the Assembly will be archived.  OMCE will provide a recap of its testimony and provide links for easy viewing following delivery.

OMCE is keeping an eye on developing trends and issues of importance to its membership

In recent weeks the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in an important case that has its roots in California but will effect labor organizations across the country, and here in New York.  The case, Friedrichs vs. California Teachers Association is focused on the collection of mandatory dues by unions used to support various collective bargaining activities. If successful such an attack will weaken us all.  

OMCE membership provides protection if your position is threatened or challenged due to professional action or judgement

Your membership in OMCE provides you with access to legal defense and protections in investigations, disciplinary proceedings and grievances.  Your membership in OMCE provides access to qualified legal representation during a dispute with the state.   

 

January 14, 2016  

2016-2017 Proposed Executive Budget

At the January 13, 2016 budget briefing for all labor organizations, The Division of the Budget announced: (Complete Budget Synopsis by OMCE Counsel is in Members’ Only Section)

 

January 06, 2016  

Scholarships

Click Here and login to the member area to view the Links for the Union Plus, Lavina Michl Wright, and the Howard Coughlin scholarship links. The John Kelly Scholarship, and the Corbeil/Beauregard Summer Camp Scholarship are now available.

 

December 29, 2015  

Whistleblower Protections Strengthened

A 7951 was signed into law by Governor Cuomo. This law as now enacted will remove the requirement that public employee whistleblowers first notify their supervisors of the improper activity, in order to protect employees where it is the supervisors themselves who are engaged in the improper activity which the whistleblower seeks to report. OMCE has defended its members in past instances where wrongdoing was reported, high level (exempt class) supervisors did nothing with the information and then our members were subsequently brought up on dismissal charges. According to the Commission on Public Integrity, over the years there have been cases where state employees requested anonymity when reporting unethical conduct to avoid retaliation, have refused to cooperate with investigations out of fear of reprisal or, at least in one reported case, been summarily fired, This act modifies the civil service law to remove the early disclosure requirement and thereby protects whistleblowers and enables them to expose improper actions by their superiors.

December 19, 2015

OMCE SETS LEGISLATIVE AGENDA FOR 2016 SESSION

At the December 11, 2015 meeting the OMCE Board of Directors adopted the 2016 Legislative Agenda. It is focused on speeding up payment of the withheld 2009-2010 across the board pay increases currently being piecemealed through 2019. The Board additionally recognized the need to continue the fight to remedy the retirement benefit losses suffered by MCs retiring since 2009.

To fix the ongoing across the board pay increase issue OMCE has had A7448 (Farrell) introduced in the State Assembly and is awaiting the appointment of a new Senate Finance Chair for the introduction of the same legislation. Our bills call for the remaining 5% of withheld across the board pay increases from 2009-10 to be paid in April 2016. Our quest will be to have these bills included in the adopted budget for 2016-2017.

Current law (Civil Service Law Section 130) calls for 2% to be paid in April 2016, 2% in April 2017 and 1% effective April 0f 2018. This creates an unacceptable 10 year pay scenario from the time the increases were withheld through the date of complete pay restoration. Pending union negotiations could result in the MC wage gap with other units becoming even worse. Also scheduled this year will be the recommended pay increase proposals for the Judiciary, Legislature and Statewide elected officials as recommended by the Pay Commission. During this time of “fixing salaries”, it is the perfect opportunity to fix the MC pay debacle without any further delay!

Equally important is the need for pension correction for those MCs who have or will be retiring before the full restoration and impact of that restoration is considered for their final average salary (FAS) computation. OMCE’s agenda has called for the adoption of two distinct bills aimed at addressing these pension losses. They are referred to as the WPPAA bills-Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Acts.

WPPAA Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Act- MCs Retired between 4/1/2009 through 3/31/2014

This proposal will provide an additional month of retirement service credit, but not in excess of 24 months, for each month of employment from April 1, 2009 through 3/31/2014 for members either in the classified service of the state of New York in a position designated managerial or confidential pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service law or in the service of a public authority under the jurisdiction of the state civil service department, Such members must have been in active service during the previously stated time period and had previously authorized general salary increases withheld in fiscal years 2009 and 2010. These changes shall become effective notwithstanding any other law, rule or regulation.

WPPAA Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Act -MCs Retired between 4/1/2014 through 3/31/2019

This proposal will provide that those retirement system members designated managerial or confidential pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service law or in the service of a public authority under the jurisdiction of the state civil service department and had previously authorized general salary increases withheld in fiscal years 2009 and 2010 shall have their annual pension benefit adjusted as follows:

When computing the FAS (Final Average Salary) using the highest average of wages earned during any three consecutive years, each year of wages earned that is utilized in the FAS computation shall be increased by the annual cost of living index percentage for that year ( All Urban Consumers –CPI Index). The resulting FAS will reflect the original highest average of wages earned as stated above, increased by the applicable cost of living index for that respective time period. These changes shall become effective notwithstanding any other law, rule or regulation.

The WPPAA bills are currently being reviewed by the retirement system actuary for cost analysis. Such analysis is required and must be attached to the bills upon introduction. We expect introduction in January upon the legislature’s return. The OMCE board recognizes the challenge of obtaining successful retirement legislation but it is a goal that cannot be abandoned.

Veteran’s Pension Equity although vetoed twice by the Governor has now been targeted by the Executive for a cooperative effort to achieve passage. OMCE supported and continues to support Veterans’ Pension Equity and will continue our work with all other AFL-CIO affiliated unions to achieve a fair resolution of this issue.

The Governor has announced that his State of the State message will be combined with his 2016-2017 Fiscal Year Budget message on January 13, 2016.

DEFFERED COMPENSATION MAXIMUM CONTRIBUTION LIMITS-- CALENDAR YEAR 2016

Maximum contribution limits for employees enrolled in the New York State Deferred Compensation Plan for calendar year 2016.

An additional deferment is available to employees age 50 and over.  These employees can defer up to $6,000 in addition to their regular contribution amount, for a combined total contribution limit of $24,000 in 2016.  Employees are not eligible to choose both the “Retirement Catch-Up” and the “50 and Over Catch-Up” in the same calendar year.

November 24, 2015

2ND Phase – Job Analysis Project

Civil Service Department’s Testing Services Division has contracted for a second phase of a job analysis project which will involve a review of entry level professional titles G-14-18 and traineeships. Incumbents in these titles may be asked to participate in project study/focus groups during December2015 and/or to  take an on-line questionnaire in February 2016 . OMCE supports projects which foster and strengthen the merit system. If you are asked to participate and have any questions or concerns, please contact OMCE.

November 12, 2015  

GOVERNOR CUOMO, SENATOR LARKIN AND ASSEMBLYMEMBER PAULIN AGREE TO ADVANCE LEGISLATION TO EXPAND MILITARY PENSION CREDIT PROGRAM

Governor Also Signs Two Additional Bills on Behalf of New York State Veterans

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, and two legislative bill sponsors, Senator William Larkin and Assemblymember Amy Paulin, today agreed to advance legislation during the next State budget to provide up to three years of additional public pension credit for an expanded pool of eligible state and local employees who served in the military. Governor Cuomo also signed legislation today to provide additional benefits to veterans throughout the State.

“Our Veterans exemplify dedication, patriotism, and sacrifice – and we owe them a debt that can never be repaid. As we celebrate Veterans Day, we honor not only the extraordinary sacrifices they’ve made on our behalf, and their service here and abroad, but also the contributions they make to our communities once they return to private life,” said Governor Cuomo. “New York is one community and one family. Together we hope and pray for the safe return of our military men and women serving around the world. Above all, we remember those who have paid the ultimate price to protect our freedom and security. To our Veterans and military families, on behalf of all New Yorkers, thank you.”

Veteran Pension Credit Legislation

The agreement between the Governor and the legislative bill sponsors will amend existing law to expand the scope of veterans who can receive pension credits for military service.

Current law allows active members of the New York State public retirement systems to purchase service credit for up to three years of military service if the member was honorably discharged, has five years of existing public pension credit, and served during World War II, the Korean War, or the Vietnam Era; or received an Armed Forces, Navy or Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal in connection with service in Lebanon, Grenada, or Panama; or served during theatre of operations in Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman, the Gulf of Aden, the Gulf of Oman, the Persian Gulf, the Red Sea and the airspace above these locations.

New legislation to be introduced will balance the needs of New York State’s deserving veterans with the State’s larger fiscal goals. The proposal will expand the pool of eligible veterans that were not previously covered by law and will also remove restrictions that prevented women from being eligible for the additional pension credit because of prior military policy that barred women from being deployed to a military conflict. The military ended its policy against women being deployed to combat in 2013.

The Governor and legislative sponsors plan to work over the next two months to refine the proposal for introduction in the next budget.

 

November 06, 2015

Management Confidential Employees

Flex Spending Account - UPDATED The 2016 Open Enrollment period is now through November 24, 2015. The enrollment process is on line and is quick and easy. You will need your most recent pay check stub. If you should need assistance with your enrollment call 1-800-358-7202 or visit the website hppt://www.flexspend.ny.gov/. Representatives are available 7 am to 10 pm daily, and will be available until midnight on November 24, 2015.

Health Insurance Choices for 2016 plan year - The annual NYSHIP Option Transfer period will be open after the 2016 health insurance premiums are approved. We will post the dates as soon as they are approved.

Productivity Enhancement Program - Under the Productivity Enhancement Program (PEP) eligible full and part-time employees SG 23 and below may exchange previously accrued annual and or personal leave in return for a credit to be applied toward the employee share of their NYSHIP premium. The credit will be included in biweekly paychecks and divided evenly during the plan year. Credits vary by grade. Please see link: https://bsc.ogs.ny.gov/sites/default/files/2016_PEP.pdf

Full-time employees in positions at or equated to Salary Grade 17 and below:

Employee Group:
Management Confidential:

Forfeited Days NYSHIP Credit
3 $500.00
6 $1000.00  

Full-time employees in positions at or equated to Salary Grade 18-23:


Employee Group:

Management Confidential:
Forfeited Days NYSHIP Credit
2 $500.00
4 $1000.00

To elect PEP for 2016, you must apply between October 26 and November 27, 2015. Ask your HBA for details and an application.

If you are currently enrolled in PEP and are still eligible to participate, you must re-enroll to continue your benefits in 2016.

 

October 26, 2015

Governor Cuomo Vetoes Veterans' Equality Act - Again

In his second consecutive veto of essentially identical bills, Governor Cuomo again strikes a blow against veterans' equality.

The bill again went through the NY state legislature in bipartisan fashion and, in fact, a total of just one legislator voted against it.  

As the law now stands, certain combat veterans are included by the dates and place of their service and certain combat veterans are excluded; certain wartime era veterans are included and certain wartime era veterans are excluded; and all peacetime veterans remain excluded.

The Governor’s veto (#221) contained the Vet’s Equality Act and 4 additional retirement bills. Lumping these together allowed the Governor to postulate that these (5) bills would impose costs that …”were not accounted for in the State’s financial plan and the unfunded costs and expenses would impose a substantial burden on New York State taxpayers….” . This bill (S 5937-A) did provide for a $31 Million appropriation to cover anticipated employer costs but obviously this was dismissed by the Governor as inadequate.

The Governor continues to claim that the near term costs of this bill approaches $60 Million. That figure is dismissed by bill supporters as excessive and based on all possible eligible veterans (again an extremely high estimated number) immediately taking the benefit and then retiring.

http://www.MoveOn.org has also created a petition campaign urging legislators to override the Governor’s veto.

There remains the possibility that a compromise can be worked out with the Executive Branch and this issue can be finally resolved as part of the 2016-2017 budget negotiations which just happens to also be an election year for the legislature.

October 14, 2015

Veterans’ Buy Back Bill (S5937-A Larkin) (A8174-A Paulin) sent to Governor Cuomo  

The Veterans’ Buy Back Bill has been sent to the Governor.  He has 10 days excluding Sundays to act on this bill.  

Supporters may send electronic messages to the Governor urging his approval by using the automated link on www.nysaflcio.org website.  

This bill in enacted into law will provide up to three years of service credit to members of public retirement systems of the state for military service rendered during times of peace; removes requirement that such military service occur during specified periods of hostilities; requires such members have at least five years of credited service, not including military service; This bill appropriates $24,800,000 to cover the expense of providing this benefit.

 

 

 

 

October 6, 2015

NYSHIP ALERTS!  

Excellus Health partners (a NYSHIP plan partner) has suffered a cyber attack where personal information of plan enrollees  may have been obtained. Those at possible risk will receive written notification and instructions on how to register for free identitiy theft protection. OMCE MEMBERS ALREADY ENJOY FREE IDENTITY THEFT PROTECTION THROUGH OUR OPEIU AFFILIATION WITH InfoArmor.

Please see the original notification regarding this newest data breach as posted by NYSHIP/Civil Service which can be found at: https://www.cs.ny.gov/employee-benefits/nyship/shared/apps/whats-new/index.cfm

 

 

September 22, 2015

OMCE Board Elections:

Our recent Board of Directors election produced the following results:
Mark MacConnell, Chad Shelmidine, Robert Perez, Caroline Westbrook, and Rosa Castillo-Kesper were re-elected.

Subsequent to the completion of the election process, Lew Pulver resigned from the Board. Raemel Pascual was approved by the Board of Directors to serve on the Board for one year, the remainder of Pulver’s term.

Officers Elected:
At the September 11th Board meeting the following officers were elected:
President – Barbara Zaron
1st VP - Mark MacConnell
2nd VP - William McCartney
Secretary - Rosa Castillo-Kesper
Treasurer - Robert Perez

August 24, 2015

OMCE President Zaron Comments on Thruway M/C Employees Lawsuit

President Barbara Zaron was the featured guest on Monday's Edition (August 24, 2015) of Capital Tonight, the Time Warner Cable statewide political news and public affairs program.

Similar to the Federal lawsuit filed by OMCE in 2009 when executive branch M/Cs had their previously authorized salary withheld, a group of Thruway M/C employees have now filed a Federal suit and Court of Claims action seeking the restoration of their salaries.

The interview on the treatment of M/C employees can beviewed by Clicking Here, or select tv images on left.

 

 

 

 

August 20, 2015

M/C Lawsuit Versus New York State Thruway Authority

 8/19/2015 Earlier today OMCE learned through media reports that legal actions have been initiated against the New York State Thruway Authority and by extension the State of New York by a group of current and former M/C employees involving wages that have been withheld. More specifically, the plaintiffs have filed a Notice of Intent to File Claim was filed in the New York State Court of Claims, and a separate a Class Action Complaint was filed in U.S. District Court. OMCE litigated similar issues (Levine v. Paterson) in Federal Court (New York Northern District) unsuccessfully in 2011. Our legal team is reviewing the content of what was filed today.

In June, OMCE shared with its members an analysis of relevant Federal and New York State precedent on the viability of litigation to recover salary withholdings occurring in fiscal years 2009-10 and 2010-11 as it relates to current and retired management and confidential employees.

The memo may be accessed by members (Click Here).

August 3, 2015

Senator DeFrancisco Named New Deputy Majority Leader

NY State Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan recently announced that Senator John DeFrancisco (R/C/I-District 50) would serve as the Deputy Majority Leader of the New York State Senate . As a longtime fervent supporter of MC pay parity issues, he introduced and fought for OMCE sponsored legislation seeking an MC Salary Commission. While serving as the Senate Finance Committee Chair he was an outspoken advocate for MC pay parity and an end to the compensation injustice heaped upon those designated MC. OMCE applauds this announcement and looks forward to our continuing cooperation as we seek complete pay parity for MC employees.

 

 

 

 

July 8, 2015

Budget Bulletin Released For July 2015 General Salary Increase

DOB has officially released Budget Bulletin D1132 (https://www.budget.ny.gov/guide/bprm/bulletins/d-1132.pdf) authorizing the July 2015 general salary increase. As OMCE published earlier, the pay dates will be:     

       July 23, 2015 for Institution Payroll employees (June 25th pay period)     

       July 29, 2015 for Administration Payroll employees (July 2nd pay period)

Please note the following excerpted from the bulletin:

Additionally, Part H of Chapter 55 of the Laws of 2015 (i.e., the M/C Parity Bill) provides a situation where certain M/C employees are NOT eligible to receive the increase and a situation where others may only receive a partial increase.

The intent is to prevent State employees who received the collectively negotiated General Salary Increases in their union-represented positions from receiving │ them again as parity increases in their Management/Confidential positions when the resultant M/C salary would exceed the job rate of the employee’s position on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule.

 The two situations include:

 1. Not Eligible for 2% Parity Increase. M/C officers or employees who were promoted or appointed to M/C positions from positions represented by one of the State’s public employee unions and whose salary, immediately prior to July 1, 2015, is at or above the job rate of their M/C salary grade or equated salary grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule are not eligible to receive the 2% Parity Increase;

2. Eligible for Partial Parity Increase. M/C officers or employees who were promoted or appointed to M/C positions from positions represented by one of the State’s public employee unions are prohibited from receiving any portion of the increase which causes such officer’s or employee’s salary to exceed the job rate of their M/C salary grade or equated grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule. Such employees may only receive a partial increase capped at the job rate of their salary grade or equated grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule. Nevertheless, even in these two situations, it may be appropriate to provide the 2% Parity Increase if the employee’s salary does not properly reflect the effect of the three percent general salary increase effective April 1, 2009 or the four percent general salary increase effective April 1, 2010. For these cases, or other situations that may transpire, agencies will be contacted to review the salary histories of certain employees and will work with the Division of the Budget to provide these increases, if appropriate, retroactive to July 1, 2015.

June 26, 2015

Vets' Buyback Bill Passes Both Houses:

The Veterans' Buyback bill (S.5937/A.8174A) passed in the Assembly on Wednesday and, therefore, has now passed both houses of the legislature. This bill was vetoed last year by the Governor. Aside from updated fiscal notes the bill is the same as last year's bill.  

The bill will allow members of public retirement systems who are veterans of the military to purchase up to three years of retirement credit for their service to our nation. Currently, pension buyback for veterans only applies to those who served during times of foreign conflict and who served in the theatre of action. OMCE has worked as part of the coalition of AFL-CIO unions, veterans groups and all those who support equitable pension treatment and parity.

The passage of this bill indicates that pension parity can be considered, passed and hopefully be made law. No date has been set for submission of this bill to the Governor for consideration.

June 26, 2015

APRIL PAYMENTS MADE...JULY 2% RAISE AWAITS BUDGET BULLETIN...STILL!

April 2015 general salary increases, performance advances and applicable (to M/C-17 and below) longevity awards have now all been paid to both Administration and Institution Payroll M/C employees. MCs with an N/S salary designation should inquire with their agency about the status of their respective agency submissions of the N/S salary plan covering advances for those so designated as N/S. July Budget Bulletin has not yet been issued. Regardless, the pay period schedule (the majority of which occurs on and after the effective date of an increase) indicates that given the effective date of July 1, 2015, the Institution Payroll period of 6/25-7/8/2015 will be used to effect the next pending increase for Institution Payroll M/Cs and the Administration Payroll will utilize the 7/2-7/15 pay period. This is not yet official, but reflects the application of pertinent law, rule and practice.

Since no official Budget Bulletin has yet been issued, no official dates have yet been established for the paychecks that will contain the 2% general salary increase. 

May 20, 2015

Last Call for OMCE Board Nominations:

A reminder that the deadline for submitting nominations to the OMCE Board of Directors is fast approaching: Friday, June 12th. For information (in case you missed it), scroll down to the 4/30/15 announcement below.

 

May 19, 2015

Update: Payroll Bulletin #1408, April 2015 M/C Performance Advances, issued May 19 and included below.

 

May 17, 2015

Payroll Bulletins Issued for April 2015 M/C Salary Increase, Performance Advances and Longevity Payments: 

The Office of State Comptroller has issued bulletins with payroll instructions (#1407 April 2015 M/C Salary Increase, #1408 April 2015 M/C Performance Advances, and #1405 April 2015 M/C Longevity Lump Sum Payment) providing for payment of the 2% April 2015 M/C Salary Increase and the fiscal year 2015-16 M/C Performance Advances and Longevities, as authorized by the Division of the Budget (Budget Bulletin 1131). The Salary Increase and Performance Advances will be paid, using the following payment effective dates and check dates:

               Administration Payroll Employees, effective 3/26/15, check dated 6/17/15
              Institution Payroll Employees, effective 4/2/15, check dated 6/25/15

For Longevities, payment will be made as a one-time, lump sum payment (in the amount of $1,250 or $2,500, depending on eligibility - minimum of 5 or 10 years at the job rate), effective 4/1/15, and processed in a separate check dated 6/17/15 (Administration) or 6/25/15 (Institution). There is no direct deposit for the longevity payment.

Questions concerning payments and eligibility should be addressed to your agency/facility payroll office.

Related M/C payroll bulletin affecting employees of the State University Construction Fund: #Other-26 April 2015 State University Construction Fund M/C Salary Increase

In May 2014 Senator Flanagan seized the initiative in soliciting support from his fellow Long Island Republican Senators for a letter (Click Here) urging the Cuomo Administration to find a way to achieve pay fairness and parity for M/C employees. He was a strong supporter of the 2015 Senate budget draft that called for a 2-year pay restoration (3% July 2015 and 4% April 2016), rather than the Governor's 4-year restoration of the previously authorized, but withheld pay increases of 2009 and 2010. Without the Assembly's support in their budget draft, the Governor's 4-year pay restoration plan was adopted as part of the enacted budget.

Congratulations to Majority Leader Flanagan! We look forward to continuing our joint efforts on behalf of fairness and pay parity for MCs. 

 

May 8, 2015

Division of the Budget Releases April 2015 MC Pay Budget Bulletin:

Division of the Budget released the April 2015 Budget Bulletin authorizing payment of the 2% M/C general salary increase, performance advances for employees eligible to receive them, and longevity awards for eligible job-rate employees in Grades 17 and below. The bulletin also contains instructions for agencies to submit salary plans for employees in NS (non-statutory) positions that are not equated to grades. OMCE will closely monitor agencies whose N/S plan submissions have historically been exceptionally tardy.

Employees who were on the payroll as of March 26, 2015 (Administration Payroll) and April 2, 2015 (Institution Payroll) will automatically receive payment (retroactive to the start of the fiscal year), as follows:

          June 17, 2015 (Administration Payroll employees)
          June 25, 2015 (Institution Payroll employees)

OMCE has and will continue to urge DOB to develop a timely Bulletin for the scheduled July M/C general salary increase.

Budget Bulletin D-1131

Management/Confidential Salary Actions - 2% General Salary Increase, Effective April 1, 2015; Performance Advances; Longevity Payments

          Effective May 8, 2015

TO: ALL DEPARTMENT AND AGENCY HEADS

FROM: Mary Beth Labate

Subject: Management / Confidential Salary Actions 2% General Salary Increase, Effective April 1, 2015; Performance Advances; Longevity Payments

Pursuant to Chapter 491 of the Laws of 2011, this bulletin provides guidelines for the payment of a 2% General Salary Increase to Management/Confidential (M/C) employees and other unrepresented employees in the Executive Branch, retroactive to April 1, 2015.  This is the same increase recently paid to union-represented employees with collective bargaining agreements expiring March 31, 2016 and beyond.

Guidelines are also provided for payment of FY 2016 Performance Advances and Longevity Payments.  Agencies are expected to pay for these increases from existing resources through increased productivity.  No additional resources will be provided. . . . More ►►

April 30, 2015

Nominations to OMCE Board: 

Here's an opportunity to use your talents while broadening your professional experience. Consider running for a seat on the OMCE Board of Directors!

The Board is responsible for setting policy and providing guidance and direction to the organization. The Board is a diverse body that fights to improve the working conditions of M/C employees, while protecting their rights and benefits. Board members attend four meetings per year and serve on one or more committees. It is an unpaid position, but travel expenses are reimbursed at the state rate. The fifteen member board serves staggered three-year terms. Five seats will be up for election or re-election this year.

All that is necessary to run for a seat on the Board is to submit your resume and a cover statement outlining the qualities you would be bringing to the Board and what issues and priorities you would like to focus on. This statement will be sent with the ballot for consideration by the voting membership. Submissions may be mailed, e-mailed or faxed and must be received at the OMCE office no later than Friday, June 12. The Nominating Committee will review all submissions and present a slate of nominees to the Board. The election by mail ballot, if there are more than five candidates, will take place during July/August. Results will be announced at our Annual Meeting in September.

The Nomination Committee is seeking active state M/C employees who are willing to commit their time, energy and talent to address the issues of concern to M/C employees, such as M/C compensation and benefits, protection of pension and health insurance benefits, workforce and succession management, conditions of employment, etc. If you're thinking of taking advantage of this opportunity, but would like more information, contact OMCE at 800.828.6623.

April 23, 2015

Independence Day Holiday:

The State has determined that another day will not be designated to be observed as a holiday by State employees in lieu of July 4, 2015.

Instead, full-time M/C employees and other full-time employees who are entitled to observe holidays, and for whom Saturday, July 4, is a regular day off, should be credited with compensatory time off in lieu of the Independence Day holiday; i.e. holiday compensatory time. Part-time employees who are regularly scheduled to work at least half-time, and who do not work on Saturday, July 4, but who are regularly scheduled to work on Friday, July 3, will be credited with holiday leave equivalent to the number of hours in the employee's regular Friday schedule not to exceed 7½ or 8 hours.

We have updated our Calendar page to reflect this determination. In response to OMCE's inquiry, the Department of Civil Service advises that MC employees will be given "Pass day Holiday Leave" which, unlike holiday leave, will not expire. Further information is available here or by contacting your agency/facility personnel office.

April 15, 2015

Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) Repayment Update:

Payroll Bulletin No. 1382, dated February 23, 2015 stated: As part of the Management/Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) created pursuant to Section 7 of Part A and Subsection 3 of Section 13 of Part B of Chapter 491 of the Laws of 2011 and the Division of the Budget Bulletin B-1197 issued November 14, 2011, the balance of each employee's actual deficit reduction plan reductions will be repaid to the employee in equal biweekly installments over 39 consecutive pay periods beginning with the paycheck which includes compensation for April 1, 2015. (emphasis added)

Dates for payment are: 4/16 Institution Lag Payroll, 4/22 Administration Lag Payroll.

This has been confirmed with OSC (Office of the State Comptroller).

April 15, 2015

Budget Overview:

The following is a brief overview of certain portions of the State Fiscal Year 2015-16 Budget related to the workforce, pension, ethics and financial disclosure. These are in addition to the budget's advancement of legislation providing for the July 1, 2015 (2%), April 1, 2016 (2%), April 1, 2007 (2%) and April 1,2018 (1%) M/C general salary increases.  

Forfeiture of Pensions for All Public Officials Convicted of Felonies The Budget, in conjunction with a stand-alone proposed constitutional amendment to Section 7 of Article V of the New York State Constitution (A.6722 / S.4611), contains language that would authorize the forfeiture of public officials' pension for a felony conviction related to public office regardless of when they became a member of the New York State and Local Employees' Retirement System and the New York City Employees' Retirement System (hereinafter collectively "Retirement Systems").

In 2011, the Legislature enacted Sections 156 and 157 of the Retirement and Social Security Law (RSSL), authorizing the forfeiture of certain public officials' pensions in the event they were convicted of a crime related to public office.  At the time, the statute only applied to public officials who became a member of one of the Retirement Systems after November 13, 2011.  Such limited applicability was due to . . . more

For Immediate Release:
March 31, 2015
Contact: Barbara Zaron
518.456.5241

STATE BUDGET INCLUDES PAYMENTS TO M/C EMPLOYEES FOR WITHHELD EARNINGS

OMCE to Pursue Legislation to Accelerate Payments in 2016; and Retiree Pension Benefits Adjustments

The Organization of New York State Management Confidential Employees (OMCE) today announced that nearly 10,000 M/Cs will receive a four percent combined salary increase and adjustment along with additional increases over the next three years.   In total, the payments approach $42 million under the 2015-16 state budget.  When combined with a general salary increase in 2014, M/C employees will have realized and received $63 million in current and previously withheld earnings in the last 15 months.In addition, OMCE's advocacy efforts have ensured that active M/C employees, irrespective of promotions and transfers, are also entitled to these benefits.  Prior to OMCE's direct involvement in this issue . . .  more

March 31, 2015

 Budget Update:

Public Protection and General Government budget bill A.3005B/S.2005B was passed and is expected to be acted upon soon by the Governor. This bill provides for the M/C salary adjustments, beginning July 1, 2015, to pay the previously authorized, earned and withheld 7% salary increases.

Budget and payroll bulletins are necessary to pay the April 2% salary increase, performance advance and longevity payments and the July 2015 2% payments. Although we anticipate the April bulletins soon, the specific bulletin release dates are not yet available.

The salary schedules for the April and July 2015 salary increases are here. We are calculating the salary schedule steps and will then post these expanded schedules.

In addition, DRL withheld payments begin effective April 1, 2015 and will be paid out over 39 pay periods.

March 28, 2015

Update:

Budget bill A.3005B/S.2005B has been introduced and provides for the Governor's 4-year schedule of payment of the withheld 7% M/C salary increases from 2009 and 2010. The first 2% increase to pay the withheld monies is effective July 1, 2015. As angry and upset as some of you may be, this action does finally acknowledge that withheld monies must be paid, albeit in this instance on an unacceptably long schedule. OMCE will continue to address the need for an accelerated schedule with the administration and the legislature. Obviously, the outcome of pending union negotiations could negate any M/C parity gains, so we will continue to press that issue too.

While the budget bill removes language aimed at excluding bargaining unit promotees from these increases, it adds new language to ensure that an employee's salary does not exceed the job rate of the applicable salary schedule - and, in the event that the increase is withheld, provides for an effective date for the formal grievance process to challenge the withholding. So, if an employee believes that his/her salary calculation is not appropriate, it can be challenged through the grievance process. OMCE will assist members with this process, as needed.

As previously announced, M/Cs will receive a 2% salary increase - and performance advances and longevity payments, if eligible for them - effective April 1, 2015 (as authorized in Ch. 491, Laws of 2011) and the payment of the Deficit Reduction Leave (DRL) withheld payments, also beginning in April 2015. Once the budget is passed, we will post the new salary schedules on this site.

OMCE ACTIONS ALREADY PLANNED:

   Continuing advocacy with the Legislature and Administration;

   Introduction of legislation that will provide for payment of an additional 3% in next year's budget (on top of the 2% planned payment for April 2016), in order to complete payment of the withheld 7%

   Discussions with Budget Division and Executive Chamber staff as contract negotiations progress, so that contract agreements that include salary increases result in a new or revised MC pay bill

   Introduction of legislation to provide for a "Withheld Pay Adjustment" for pension purposes for MCs who retired since 2009 and who will retire before the withheld 7% is fully paid

   Current legal evaluation of potential litigation re the non-payment of retirees . . .

March 19, 2015

Payroll Bulletin Update:

Payroll Bulletins for various union-represented employees have been issued (or are pending issuance) that provide for the April 1, 2015 general salary increase (where applicable, e.g. to CSEA, but not PEF) and for performance advances, longevity payments, and other collectively-bargained payments.

The 2% general salary increase for M/C employees, also due April 1, is provided for pursuant to Civil Service Law, Section 130. However, before payment can be made, an authorizing Budget Bulletin (followed by a Payroll Bulletin) must be issued that provides for actual payment of the M/C general salary increase, performance advances and longevity payments, as well as for the N/S salary plan process.

Payments should be effective and paid, as follows:

   Administration Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective March 26 - Check dated April 22

   Institution Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective April 2 - Check dated April 30

While it is quite possible that a late or last minute budget would impact timely payment of the M/C increases, nevertheless, once the authorizations are made, the March 26 and April 2 effective dates will be used in calculating the amounts of any retroa

March 24, 2015

M/C Pay Parity Update:

We are now in our third week of meetings (10 in the past week, including today) with the Senate and Assembly leadership and members of both houses and want you to know that M/C pay parity continues to be a part of the budget negotiations. The issues we have raised - accelerate the Executive Budget's proposed M/C pay parity schedule to 2 years (4% July 2015, 3% April 2016) and eliminate the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions - are still very much in play. Your letters are very much in evidence, too - they are important, you are being heard - keep your letters coming!!

March 19, 2015

Payroll Bulletin Update:

Payroll Bulletins for various union-represented employees have been issued (or are pending issuance) that provide for the April 1, 2015 general salary increase (where applicable, e.g. to CSEA, but not PEF) and for performance advances, longevity payments, and other collectively-bargained payments.

The 2% general salary increase for M/C employees, also due April 1, is provided for pursuant to Civil Service Law, Section 130. However, before payment can be made, an authorizing Budget Bulletin (followed by a Payroll Bulletin) must be issued that provides for actual payment of the M/C general salary increase, performance advances and longevity payments, as well as for the N/S salary plan process.

Payments should be effective and paid, as follows:

   Administration Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective March 26 - Check dated April 22

   Institution Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective April 2 - Check dated April 30

While it is quite possible that a late or last minute budget would impact timely payment of the M/C increases, nevertheless, once the authorizations are made, the March 26 and April 2 effective dates will be used in calculating the amounts of any retroactive adjustments that are due to be included in future payments.

March 11, 2015

Update: OMCE Leaders Engaging Legislative Leaders:

OMCE President Barbara Zaron, Executive Director Joe Sano and Counsel John Black are engaged all week in meetings with the legislative leaders, key legislators, and program and fiscal staff of the legislature.

Your e-letters (below) and individualized letters and contacts are making a difference. WE are moving closer to pay parity. The Senate's one-house budget resolution (S.4205) accelerates M/C parity to 2 years (4% July 2015 and 3% April 2016) and eliminates the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions. The Assembly's resolution (A.6005) also eliminates the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions, but it adopts the Executive's 4-year schedule of payments. The Assembly is reviewing the Senate's proposal and the opportunity to accelerate the schedule, as well. Joint legislative committee discussions begin soon and MC pay parity is an issue on the agenda.

We constantly hear about your letters in our meetings with legislators. PLEASE keep sending letters and calling and urging them to resolve this pay parity issue NOW!. The M/C pay parity issue issue is alive, and moving forward.

March 10, 2015

Update:

We have been meeting with Senate and Assembly legislative leaders this week - and will be the remainder of the week, with meetings scheduled Wednesday and Thursday -  urging them to include our OMCE M/C Pay Parity Proposal in their respective house budgets, as negotiations continue between the legislature and the executive toward adoption (on or about April 1) of a final budget for fiscal year 2015-16.

"Ten years is too long to wait for Management/Confidential state employees to get full payment of withheld salary increases!"

On Monday, February 27, OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joseph Sano presented OMCE's testimony (read here) to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee on Workforce Development at its hearing on the 2015-16 Executive Budget proposal. 

February, 25, 2015

Send your letters today!

The 30-day budget amendment period ended without Governor Cuomo taking action on our request to amend his 2015-2016 Executive Budget Article VII, Part H, Phase-In Management/Confidential (M/C) Salary Parity Proposal. During the next several weeks, the Governor and Legislature will be negotiating toward a final budget to be in place on or about April 1.

We have three (3) e-letters for you to send - to the Governor and to your individual representatives in the Senate and Assembly, with copies to the Senate and Assembly leaders - urging them to negotiate amendments to the M/C Salary Parity Proposal that will (1) accelerate the schedule, so that pay parity can be fully achieved in the upcoming fiscal year, (2) include former bargaining unit employees, now M/C, who the Governor's proposal excludes, and (3) achieve pension parity for those already retired who were subject to the pay withholdings. Please send these e-letters and urge them to take action today!

Instructions: Once you take action on your letter to the Governor and click submit, the Senate letter will appear on your screen. After you do the same with the Senate letter, the Assembly letter will appear on your screen for action and submission. Please send these e-letters and urge action today! Write to them HERE - Send your Letters TODAY (ended 3/28/15) 

 

Comptroller Tom DiNapoli stops by the OMCE Table at the 44th Annual Conference of the NYS Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators, which was held the weekend of February 13-15 at the Empire State Plaza in Albany. Shown here with the Comptroller (left) are OMCE President Barbara Zaron and George Delamar, OMCE Representative.

February 23, 2015

OMCE in the News: Editorial,

Albany Times Union: "The Missing State Raises" ISSUE: Non-unionized state workers who haven't seen raises in years will get them - eventually. THE STAKES: How long will one group of employees have to balance the governor's budget? Click Here to Read >>

February 6, 2015

Data Security Breach:

We have received an advisory from the Civil Service Department's Employee Benefits Division (reproduced below ▼) concerning today's news of a data security breach experienced by the hospital administrator for The Empire Plan and the NYSHIP Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield HMO.

We will post updates here as as additional information become available to us. Meanwhile, we call your attention to our ID Theft Protection benefit, which is available to OMCE members at no cost (Login Here and scroll down to Improved Free ID Theft Protection to register, or call OMCE at 800.828.6623 for information). If you haven't done so, sign up today - incidents like this highlight the importance of this free ID Theft Protection member benefit.

Anthem, Inc., the parent organization for Empire BlueCross and BlueShield (the hospital administrator for The Empire Plan and the NYSHIP Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield HMO). today reported an extensive security breach of their member data. Names, dates of birth, member IDs/Social Security numbers, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and employment information of current and former members were impacted. In the coming weeks, Anthem will send letters to impacted members with an offer of free credit monitoring and identity protection services.

NYSHIP recognizes that enrollees are concerned about this situation and that they will have questions about their personal information. Please direct inquiries to www.anthemfacts.com or 1-877-263-7995. The web site includes a FAQ and will be updated as additional information becomes available.

 

 

Click Here for the latest News

2016 – 2017  We Are Not Done! M/C Pay and Benefit Parity Now! Protect M/C Employees!



Lunch and Learn – The Albany Room, Empire State Plaza, Albany, NY, on Thursday, October 13, 2016 from 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm  

Dinner Meeting – Islandia Buffet, 1704 Veterans Memorial Highway, Islandia, NY, (Islandia Shopping Center, Off Exit 57 of the LI Expressway) on Tuesday, November 1, 2016 for Dinner at 5:30 pm

Lunch and Learn – White Horse Tavern, 25 Bridge St., New York, NY, (between Whitehall and Broad Streets) on Wednesday, November 2, 2016 from 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm  

Lunch and Learn – South Beach P.C., Ocean Breeze Room, 777 Seaview Ave., Staten Island, NY, on Thursday, November 3, 2016 from 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm   Lunch and Learn – Buca di Beppo, 44 Wolf Rd., Albany, NY, on Tuesday, November 15, 2016 from 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm

 TOWN MEETING/PHONE CONFERENCE CALLS  WILL ALSO BE SCHEDULED….Check back for Dates      


Topics: M/C Compensation and Proposed Improvements; 2017 OMCE Legislation; Your questions.    


New Challenges on the Horizon!  

MEMBERS AND NON-MEMBERS INVITED!!  

RESERVATIONS REQUIRED!! PLEASE CALL:  1-800-828-6623 OR 518-456-5241 TO RESERVE YOUR SEAT!

 

PEP Program for 2017

Civil Service has published Policy Bulletin 2016-02, Implementation of the Productivity Enhancement Program for 2017. (Surrender of annual or personal leave of reduction of health insurance premium)

Text of the Policy Bulletin as well as information will be found at: http://www.cs.ny.gov/attendance_leave/PolBull16-02.cfm

 

NYS Flex Spending Account 2016 Open Enrollment - Deadline Extended

We have been notified by the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations that the 2016 open enrollment application deadline for the Flex Spending Account has been extended. The online enrollment application will re-open beginning Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 12:01 a.m., ET, and continue through November 24, 2015 at 10:00 p.m. ET.

Click here to view the details

 

PEF REACHES TENTATIVE AGREEMENT..MC PARITY ISSUES MUST BE RESOLVED

The state and PEF have reached a tentative agreement on a 3 year contract starting April 2016 and ending March 31st of 2019. Releases indicate agreement on a 6% COLA agreement spread over three years (2%) FY2016, (2%) FY2017, (2%) FY2018. Apparently they have agreed to continue to explore cost savings measures on health insurance. To date there is no agreement for the CSEA or NYSCOPBA (prison guards) represented state employees. The PEF agreement will require approval by its Executive Board and then its membership. If approved, the next legislature (post January 1, 2017) will address the PEF and any other "pay bill" legislation required to implement the new contractual expenditures. The M/C "pay bill" has traditionally been the "B" version of the first statewide major union's pay bill to be addressed. (This is the 1st time PEF has been the 1st to reach an accord on a large unit statewide agreement.)

OMCE, on behalf of the M/C employees, has met with and will continue to engage the administration on the multi-faceted M/C compensation and workplace issues.

We have and will continue to press the administration:

 

OMCE Leadership Team Stays the Course

 

Management/ Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) Repayments Ending September 19, 2016

As part of the  Management/Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP), the balance of each M/C employee’s actual deficit reduction plan deductions was to have been repaid to employees in equal biweekly installments over 39 consecutive pay periods beginning with the paycheck of April 16th, 2015 (Institution) and April 22nd, 2015 (Administration). This repayment plan is now nearing its completion. Repayment of the DRP deductions for M/C employees will end in the paycheck dated September 29th , 2016 (Institution) and October 5th, 2016 (Administration). 

Employees should be aware that they may notice a decrease in their paycheck due to the completion of the DRP repayments.  (Information edited from BSC notice of 9/19/2016)

 

REMINDER !! M/C  Maximum Annual Leave Accruals

The maximum annual leave accrual date for Management Confidential (M/C) employees is January 1, 2017. Annual leave accruals for Management Confidential (M/C) cannot exceed the maximum level of 40 days (300 hours for a 37.50 hour workweek; 320 hours for a 40 hour workweek; and pro-rated for part-time) at the beginning of business, on the January 1, 2017 adjustment date. Any accruals above the maximum accrual level will be forfeited at the beginning of business January 1, 2017. Annual leave may exceed this level at any other point during the year.

 

The annual open enrollment for  FLEX SPENDING ACCOUNTS has been announced please follow this link

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 19)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

August 09, 2016

Thruway M/C Employees Lawsuit Dismissed!

(McRae v. NYS Thruway Authority)

The U.S. District Court, Northern District of New York issued its decision in the lawsuit brought by NYS Thruway Authority M/C employees and retirees challenging the Thruway Authority deferral (withholding) of M/C salary increases in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Many of the same or similar arguments as OMCE used in our Levine v. Paterson salary withholding lawsuit were used here and the Court similarly dismissed the claims and granted the Thruway Authority's motion to dismiss.

No information is yet available on any possible additional action e.g. appeal or state court suit. We will continue to monitor. 

 

 

2016 Legislative Session Summary and OMCE’s Next Steps

Let’s review what happened in the 2016 legislative session.

2% Pay Parity-"Somewhat On Time"

With the passage of the 2016-17 NYS budget the stage was set for the next installment of the Parity Payment for MCs.  This repayment schedule, of the previously authorized but withheld pay increases from 2009 and 2010, was a direct result of OMCE’s continuing pressure on the administration to make MCs whole.  While the 4 year schedule was less than ideal DOB acted fairly quickly in releasing its latest Bulletin (D 1133) on April 25, 2016 to effectuate these payments.  It’s important to note that DOB reversed its previous position held since 2009 that one must be in service at the time increases were paid in order to receive them.  Ultimately it pays to persevere, argue and lobby for change.

A "Zombie Bill" …Attacks on Retiree Health Insurance Expected in 2017 Budget

The Medicare/NYSHIP linkage is based on a time tested statutory arrangement that recognizes the State’s savings, the cost sharing by participants, the cash and productivity value of accumulated sick leave and workplace fairness. It is anticipated that the administration facing an annually renewed hole in  the State’s Medicaid budget caused by Federal budget enacted rate changes for dual eligible individuals (eligible for Medicaid and Medicare e.g. the elderly poor) will once again seek to offset its Medicaid increases by curtailing its expenditure for State retiree health insurance programs.  We beat these changes back in 2016 but expect them to reappear in a same or similar proposal. We remain vigilant in this area and joined with all of labor to fight the administration successfully as it sought to:

VETERANS’ EQUALITY ACT APPROVED!!! 

Veterans’ Equality Act ( S7160/A9531) Chapter 41 of the Laws of 2016  was signed into law 5/31/2016 by Governor Cuomo.  This law will now give all veterans the opportunity to buy back up to 36 months of their military service time for NYS pension service credit.  A tremendous team effort/ a show of support from every veteran’s group and every public employee organization made this happen.  Facing an "in-session" legislature and the possibility of a veto override attempt, the Governor signed the identical bill into law that he vetoed twice previously.  The State Comptroller's Office immediately issued guidelines, procedures and forms needed to apply for the military service credit benefit. This information can be accessed at these links

 

Pay Parity Acceleration Act

The Senate passed S6725B, the Pay Parity Acceleration Bill.  Despite Assembly assurances that the bill was going to be acted on before the end of session, on June 14 as we were meeting with Capitol District Assembly Members for a final push on the bill they were told by Assembly Leadership that the Assembly would not pass the bill---due to concerns about intruding on the Governor's prerogative related to how he deals with Management Confidential employees.

As frustrating and disheartening as this is, we do not give up. Discussions with key legislators and the Cuomo Administration will continue as we develop an action plan for our next steps.  ( See “New” Talks Begin with Cuomo Administration in this report)  

Again a special thanks to Assembly members Phil Steck, Angelo Santabarbara, John McDonald and Patricia Fahy, who collectively represent more than one-third of the MC workforce.  They have actively supported our efforts to obtain fair and equitable treatment for MCs, co-sponsored our bills, immediately responded to our requests for their assistance and pushed leadership for action.

MC retirees who had the 2009 and 2010 salary increases withheld, we have not forgotten about you. Our various withheld pay pension adjustments legislative proposals were all rejected due to the fiscal estimates. We have discussed a Tax Credit concept with fiscal committee staff and counsel and are further refining it to develop legislation to be introduced for next session’s budget discussions.

Restoration of M/C Tuition Reimbursement

The M/C Tuition Reimbursement and License Exam Reimbursement Program restoration is a perfect example of never giving up on an issue.  Acting GOER Director Michael Volforte was a principal proponent of this restoration and we thank him for joining our chorus of need to restore this program.  Application forms and Program Guidelines can be accessed at http://www.goer.ny.gov/Training_Development/Management_Confidential/index.cfm       

Please contact OMCE with any questions and/or if you are unable to download these forms.   Agencies have access to this information and forms too.

Justice Center Reforms   Ensuring OMCE Members Receive Justice Too!

Abuse and neglect of citizens with special needs cannot and should not be tolerated.  Nor can the abuse of M/C employees’ rights be tolerated.  OMCE has joined a coalition of labor organizations and providers who are focused on needed reform of Justice Center practices which OMCE and its partners believe are too broad, duplicative, compromise investigative integrity, lack timely resolution and are in conflict with existing regulations of the 5 covered agencies. Paul Francis, the Administration’s Secretary for Health and Human Services, has received the coalition’s issues and we await further discussion and a plan to resolve these problems.    

OMCE’S NEXT STEPS !

Restoring Fairness for Retired MCs     2009-2019 M/C Retirees Tax Credit Parity Act  

OMCE proposals to provide restored pension benefits to MC retirees whose salary increases were withheld in 2009 and 2010 has run into a wall of resistance. These proposals have gained no traction, in part because of the fiscal estimates. Our new approach proposes an annual Tax Credit of 5 percent of one's pension benefit to a maximum of $3,000 per year for 5 tax years with the ability to do this over a 7 tax year period which allows the opportunity to amend returns back to 2009.

The “draft” of this act is:

"AN ACT to amend the tax law, in relation to establishing a personal income tax credit for certain employees who served in a position or positions in the classified service of the state of New York designated managerial or confidential pursuant to article fourteen of the civil service law

The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assembly, do enact as follows:

Section 1. Section 606 of the tax law is amended by adding a new subsection (ccc) to read as follows:    

(ccc) Management/ confidential personal income tax credit.

(1)     Allowance of credit. A taxpayer who served in a position or positions in the classified service of the state of New York designated managerial or confidential pursuant to article fourteen of the civil service law and retired between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2019 and  had a salary increase authorized under Chapter 100 of the Laws of 2008 which was withheld for the fiscal years 2009 and 2010  shall be allowed a credit against the tax imposed by this article equal to 5 per cent (5%) of their NYSLRS single option pension benefit not to exceed $ 3000 annually for 5 years.

(2)     Application of credit. Any tax credit not used in the taxable year of 2016 may be carried forward or backwards for seven (7) calendar years until the full credit has been allowed.       

                    § 2. This act shall take effect immediately. "

Special Commission on Legislative, Judicial and Executive Compensation

While twice rejecting an M/C pay commission the administration did accept an expanded pay commission for judges, state commissioners and elected officials of the State.  This body completed its work on judges’ salary increases in early 2016 but the "elected" commission is stalled.  A debate, similar to that held in NYC when they created a similar pay commission, has begun.  The basic query is whether or not the legislature is full/part-time and possible limits on outside earnings income.  If this is resolved and the commission adopts a pay plan for 2017 it will become law unless changed by the legislature and approved by the Governor.  There are court challenges to this Commission’s creation but they are slowly moving through the courts. 18 years ago was the last time the legislators received a raise.  So far it is hard to tell if the commission will recommend salary increases for any in this group.   If the Commission fulfills its mission the resultant "elected" pay plan will be monitored closely for both its impact and relationship to the M/C salary schedule in effect and any possible pay gaps created between the M/C workforce and the agency commissioners.    

"New" Talks Begin with Cuomo Administration

President Zaron, Executive Director Sano and Counsel John Black and Matt O’Connor met with Ms. Elizabeth DeLeon-Bhargava Deputy Secretary for Labor, Michael Volforte Acting Director of GOER and Jeremy Hoffman, Special Assistant for Workforce Development soon after the legislative session ended and had a very productive discussion.  Follow–up discussions are pending.

We urged the administration:

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 18)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 15, 2016

MC Fairness - Pay Parity Acceleration Bill

 

Last week we reported that the Senate passed Bill No. S6725B, the Pay Parity Acceleration Bill, and that our discussions with the Assembly were ongoing to ensure passage of the companion bill A7448B. Despite assurances that the bill was going to be acted on before the end of session, on June 14, as we were meeting with Capitol District Assembly Members for a final push on the bill we were told that the Assembly would not pass the bill---due to concerns about intruding on the Governor's prerogative related to how he deals with Management Confidential employees.

As frustrating and disheartening as this is, we do not give up. Discussions with key legislators will continue and we are developing an action plan for the rest of the year.

Special thanks to Assemblymembers Phil Steck, Angelo Santabarbara, John McDonald and Patricia Fahy, who collectively represent more than one-third of the MC workforce.  They have actively supported our efforts to obtain fair and equitable treatment for MCs and immediately respond to our requests for their assistance.

 

 

 

 

 

Retirees

MC retirees who had the 2009 and 2010 salary increases withheld, we have not forgotten about you. Our various withheld pay pension adjustments legislative proposals were all rejected due to the fiscal estimates. We have discussed a Tax Credit concept with fiscal committee staff and counsel and are further refining it to develop legislation to be introduced for next session and the budget discussions.

 

 

Town Hall Teleconference 

 Our next call is on Tuesday, June 21, 2016 at 5:30 pm. Call to reserve your spot.

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 17)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 10, 2016

Veterans Equality Act

Governor Cuomo signed the Veterans Equality Act on May 31, 2016 and the State Comptroller's Office issued guidelines, procedures and forms needed to apply for the military service credit benefit. This information can be accessed at these links

 www.osc.state.ny.us/retire

http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/members/military-service-credit.php#

Important Note: The eligibility criteria include the following condition --- must apply for and purchase military service credit PRIOR TO RETIREMENT. The enacted bill DOES NOT allow retirees one year from May 31, the effective date, to apply for the service credit. We suggest that if you apply for the benefit you ensure that your application is:

 

 

Investigator Title Structure Changes

The Department of Civil Service has recently announced structural changes with the Investigator title.  The action is associated with recommendations made by the Sage Commission, to reduce and consolidate the number of pay grades and job classifications.

We know that some agencies are meeting with affected Investigator staff to explain the impact and implications of this change. If your agency has not scheduled a meeting or otherwise provided you with detailed information ask for it.

Permanent incumbents of titles reallocated to a lower salary grade will be held harmless and are salary protected for performance advancements, awards, and salary calculations as long as they remain in their current positions. However, opportunities for promotion may be limited.

Members who have questions, after talking to your agency supervisory and human resources staff, should contact OMCE.

 

 

Town Hall Teleconference

 

Our next Town Hall teleconference is scheduled for June 21, 2016 at 5:30 pm. Please contact OMCE to reserve your spot.        

 

 

 

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 16)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 3, 2016

Veteran’s Equality Act:  How to File for your Credit.

 





The New York State and Local Retirement System (NYSLRS-OSC) website has listed the procedure and forms needed to apply for the recently enacted Veterans’ Equality Act service credit benefit. This information can be accessed by clicking on this hyperlink     www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/

Application information is available:  http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/members/military-service-credit.php#article-20-eligibility



MC Pay Parity Acceleration Bill (A7448B, S6725B)

Our pay parity acceleration bill which seeks to expedite the April 2017 (2 percent) and the April 2018 (1 percent) payment of wages previously earned is moving in both houses of the legislature.

On Thursday morning it was approved by the Senate Finance Committee and advanced to the Rules Committee.  Under the complex steps associated with Senate procedure, it has appeared on the Senate Calendar and has had its “first reading.”  After three readings it is eligible for action by the entire Senate.

TThe Assembly is scheduled to move the bill to the Ways and Means Committee where the sponsor, Assemblyman Denny Farrell, serves as Committee Chairperson.  OMCE anticipates that the bill will then move quickly to the Assembly Rules Committee for calendar scheduling and action before legislators are released for the summer recess – currently scheduled for June 16.



VETERANS’ EQUALITY ACT APPROVED  !!!

Veterans’ Equality  Act ( S7160/A9531)  has been signed into law. Governor Cuomo signed the bill into law-Chapter 41 of the Laws of 2016. This law will now give all  veterans the opportunity to buy back up to 36 months of their time military service for NYS pension service credit.  A tremendous team effort/ a show of support  from every  veterans’ group and every public employee  organization made this happen.  Facing an “in-session” legislature and the possibility of a veto override attempt, the Governor  signed the identical bill into law that he vetoed twice previously.  OMCE thanks all its members, veterans and their families, Senator Larkin and Assemblywoman Paulin for their long time support of this issue.  A detailed question and answer post about the bill details will appear on our website in the next few days.  CONGRATULATIONS!

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 15)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 31, 2016

 

 

We honor the memory and actions of those who gave their lives while serving the United States. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nine days remain in the Legislative Session. The Senate and Assembly return to the Capitol Wednesday, June 1 to consider key pieces of legislation prior to its recess – currently scheduled for June 16.

 

 

 

 

M/C SALARY FAIRNESS

The Accelerated Payment bill (Senate No. 6725B) is on the Senate Finance Committee agenda for this week and is expected to be on the agenda of the Assembly Government Employees Committee’s next meeting (Assembly No. 7448B). Next step will be the Rules Committees of both houses and inclusion onto the respective Floor Calendars for a final vote.

 VETERANS’EQUALITY ACT  

OMCE and the coalition of labor affiliates continue to advocate for enactment of the legislation authorizing military service time to be applied in the aggregate toward state retirement calculations. In short, if you served, this benefit is deserved.  

The bill was sent to the Governor on May 19, 2016.  Action by the Governor is required before June 1.      

NYSHIP BUY OUT EXPANSION  

Legislation is presently being considered by both the full Senate (Bill No. 7120); and the Assembly Ways and Means Committee (Bill No. 9715) authorizing an expansion of the right to collectively bargain for health insurance buyout programs.  

If enacted into law, this legislation would allow those receiving health insurance through the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP), or via a spouse’s enrollment, the opportunity to have this benefit negotiated.  OMCE interest is to preserve the opportunity for extension and application to Management Confidential employees.

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 14)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 19, 2016

 

 

With 12 days remaining in the 2016 Legislative session we are making progress on two fronts….

 

 

 

MC Fairness

Our MC Pay Parity Accelerated Payment bill, A7448B/S6725B has been amended to fix the technical issue that was raised. The bills were recommitted to the Senate Finance and Assembly Government Employees Committees.  The Assembly Government Employees Committee has scheduled the bill for action of Tuesday May 24, 2016. It will then be poised for final action by both houses of the legislature.

Veterans Equality Bill

The Veterans' Equality Act (Pension Credit bills, A9531/S7160), passed the legislature this week and on Thursday May 19 was sent (*) to the Governor.  The bill provides up to three years of service credit for all state and local employees who served in the military and were honorably discharged. The employee must have at least five years of credited service to be eligible and pay the product of the number of years of service times 3 percent of compensation during the year prior to application for each year of new credit they wish to purchase.  The bill also includes those who retired up to one year prior to it becoming law.

   (*) While the Legislature is in session, the Governor has 10 days (not counting Sundays) to sign or veto bills passed by both houses. Signed bills become law; vetoed bills do not. However, the Governor's failure to sign or veto a bill within the 10-day period means that it becomes law automatically. Vetoed bills are returned to the house that first passed them, together with a statement of the reason for their disapproval. A vetoed bill can become law if two-thirds of the members of each house vote to override the Governor's veto. This marks the first time this bill was passed and sent to the Governor while the legislature was still in session.

 

 

Important Notice

Post-NYS Employment and Consulting- What You Need to Know

The following link will bring you to the restrictions on post-NYS employment and consulting. In light of current events it is important that all MC employees be cognizant of these restrictions. Click here to download the PDF

 

2% PARITY INCREASE- BUDGET BULLETIN RELEASED  

4/25/2016 The Division of the Budget has released the Budget Bulletin (D-1133) authorizing the next pay parity installment (2%) of the previously authorized but withheld MC salaries from 2009 and 2010.

The DOB Full Bulletin can be found Here (Opens in New Window)

 

FIGHT TO ACCELERATE PARITY CONTINUES


With the 2nd parity increase of 2 % now scheduled for payment  it is now time to accelerate the schedule and complete the payment of the remaining 3% in this fiscal year. Ten years to complete this repayment is too long! Use our electronic letter system and contact your legislator to support A7448 (Farrell) and S6725 (Young)-MC Pay Parity Acceleration Bill.

 

Click here for information on Tuition Reimbursement for MCs

OMCE supports Civil Service Department Job Analysis Study of Office Assistant 1  Titles

The Department of Civil Service (DCS) is conducting a job analysis study of the recently consolidated titles of Office Assistant 1, Office Assistant 1 (Keyboarding), Office Assistant 1 (Stores/Mail) and related language parenthetics. These titles serve as a critical entry point for careers in administrative services in NYS government. The information obtained from this job analysis study will provide the foundation for future civil service exams and support selection of the most highly qualified individuals for these positions.

DCS staff have reviewed documentation on the jobs included in the study, conducted group interviews with employees and supervisors, and created an online job questionnaire covering the job tasks and general competencies (related areas of knowledge, skills and abilities) for the Office Assistant 1 titles. DCS plans to send an email this week to Office Assistant 1 employees to tell them   about the online questionnaire survey, and ask HR Directors to select a sample of supervisors to complete the online survey. The actual link to the questionnaire will be sent to participants on or about April 11, 2016. Participants will have 2 weeks to complete the online survey.

Completing the questionnaire gives each employee and supervisor a voice in decisions about the exam program and how the Office Assistant 1 employees will be selected.

We appreciate the DCS using a merit system based competitive exam process for development and implementation of this exam. We urge you to complete the survey. Please contact OMCE if you any questions or concerns about this issue.

 

Your Letters on These Issues are Needed Now !!

You are urged to send personal and electronic letters to your legislators.

   OPPOSE Retiree Health Insurance Cost Shifting Schemes Proposed by the Governor (Legislature Rejects)

    SUPPORT Accelerated Payment of Previously Authorized but Withheld MC Salaries

Clicking these links will allow you to automatically send electronic letters to your representatives.  Your letter can be edited to add personal comments if you wish

Members:

This just in OMCE in Action (Volume No. 13)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 13, 2016

#Fairness...

Town Hall Teleconference – May 24

Can't get to an OMCE Lunch and Learn? Just want to know what's happening?

Join us for our teleconference call on Tuesday, May 24 at 5:30 p.m. to get the latest news.  Contact OMCE at 456-5241 for the dial-in number and to reserve your spot

 

 

 

JCOPE Comprehensive Ethics Training Course (CETC):

The CETC is an ethics training course mandated for New York State officers and employees who file an annual Financial Disclosure Statement  (FDS).

The current salary rate for mandated participants is $91,821 and above. If you have any questions about your status as a designated filer, you should contact your state agency or appointing authority.  It is expected that agency Ethics Officers will continue to deliver the CETC to their FDS filers at regular intervals or as needed to comply with the statutory ethics training deadlines. Please contact your Ethics Officer for additional training dates at your agency.

 

JCOPE will also present live sessions at its Albany office located at 540 Broadway and via video conference at Buffalo and New York City offices. Unless otherwise indicated, two Continuing Legal Education Credits (CLE) are available to State-employed attorneys the first time they attend a CETC session presented by JCOPE.

Upconing Dates:

Tuesday, June 7, 2016, 1-3 p.m. – NOT FOR CLE CREDIT

Tuesday, June 14, 2016, 1-3 p.m. – NOT FOR CLE CREDIT 

Ethics Refresher Training Requirement  - Are You Due?

Everyone who has taken the CETC is required BY LAW to take an ethics refresher every three years thereafter. This means those FDS filers who first took the CETC in 2013, must take an ethics refresher this year in 2016. The CETC previously mentioned satisfies the ethics seminar/refresher training requirement.  

For more information about JCOPE Mandated Training visit: 

 http://www.jcope.ny.gov/training/courseofferings.html.

 

 

Members:

 Back following a short-term pause is OMCE in Action (Volume No. 12)

The start of May brought the return of the legislature to Albany this week, while the legislative accomplishment of the week were few, outside topics and events stemming from scrutiny of past and present officials dominated the headlines.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 6, 2016

Restoring Fairness to MCs in the Post Budget Legislative Session

 

On May 5, OMCE officials and Counsel met with the senior staff representing the Senate Finance and Assembly Ways and Means committees to advance our Pay Parity Acceleration bill (A7448A, S6725A). We are working to resolve a technical issue that was raised. We remain steadfast in our commitment to having this bill considered and passed prior to the June session recess.

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act

 

OMCE Counsel attended a meeting on May 5 with Assemblymember Amy Paulin, Assembly sponsor of the original bill, A9531/S7160 (vetoed by the Governor) to adopt strategy for passage of this bill, since negotiations with the Governor's office have not produced a new agreement.  

The Senate passed Bill No. S1760 and the Assembly is considering the bill prior to advancing Bill No. A9531 for a vote.  On May 9, OMCE and union representatives are planning on attending a meeting of the AFL-CIO and will be taking up the issue.  Assemblymember Paulin will meet with OMCE Counsel to report on status and next steps on May 16.  

 

 

 

 

 

May 2, 2016

News: Comptroller's Office has issued the Payroll Bulletin (1482, 1483, 1484) covering G 17 and below longevity, the 2% parity increase and the performance advance (steps) respectively.

 

Members:

 

OMCE in Action – Volume No. 11  

Late last week, the legislature departed Albany in keeping with a scheduled recess that continues until Tuesday, May 3.  

An interim update follows.

 

 

April 22, 2016

Restoring Fairness for MCs  

OMCE is scheduled to meet in early May with Cuomo Administration representatives, and with Legislative staff to underscore our continued commitment to issues of fairness to MC employees.  Included in our roster of priorities are: acceleration of payment of the withheld salary increases, and a proposal to grant a tax credit/tax rebate for affected MC retirees impacted by the 2009 and 2010 withholdings.    

Budget Bulletin  

Division of Budget (DOB) staff advised us that the Budget Bulletin is drafted and awaiting final approval and sign-off.  The increases are effective April 1, 2016 and the effective pay dates are March 31, 2016 for the Institution payroll and April 7, 2016 for the Administration payroll.  

Please note:  Last year's Budget Bulletin was issued on May 8, 2015

 

Tuition Reimbursement for MCs  

Program Guidelines for MC Tuition Reimbursement are posted on the GOER website and in our OMCE website Member's Only section.  If you are interested and apply, please consider and carefully follow the procedural instructions.     

Rockefeller College asked us to share details on its Information Fair on April 28, 2016. Click here for their announcement. ( Opens in new window ) 

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act  

There is nothing new to report this week.

 

 

April 19, 2016

Nominations for OMCE Board of Directors

Our OMCE nominations process began with last month’s notice and a survey of current incumbents whose terms are expiring re: their interest in running again. Now, it’s up to you, our members, to either express your interest or recommend someone you think would be a good Board Member.

The OMCE Board of Directors is charged with providing guidance and direction and setting policy for the organization. Board Members are advocates of many and diverse interests and come with different experiences. As our governing board, they address issues of importance and concern to M/C employees and retirees, reach agreement through consensus, and commission the OMCE staff, law firm and consultants (computer, public relations, and accounting services) to take necessary action.

The Nominating Committee is seeking active state employees who are willing to commit the time, energy and talent needed to address the issues of concern to the approximately 10,000 non-union public employees/officials in the Executive Branch who are eligible for OMCE membership, and to the M/C employees in the other branches of NYS government.

If you are ready, willing and able to invest in OMCE by giving some of your time and energy to address issues such as protection of pension and health insurance, M/C compensation and benefits, conditions of employment, workforce and succession management, job security and discipline, and many others that we are faced with:

Send OMCE your resume and a statement suitable for use on the ballot by June 10, 2016. E-mail (nysomce@gmail.com) or regular mail  5 Pine West Plaza, Suite 513, Albany, NY 122015, or phone us at (518) 456-5241 or (800) 828-6623 if you have any questions.

Members:

We are pleased to present to you OMCE in Action (Volume No. 10) - a direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

April 8, 2016

 

GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES ONE-YEAR RETROACTIVE CONTRACT AGREEMENT WITH PEF 

 

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that his administration has reached a retroactive one-year labor agreement (2015-2016) with the New York State Public Employees Federation.

The one-year contract agreement includes a two percent salary increase retroactive to April 1, 2015. The cost of the agreement is $73 million. The agreement must be ratified by the PEF Executive Board which is scheduled to meet in May and a pay bill introduced into the legislature to enact its monetary provisions.

MCs received their 2% COLA effective April 2015 plus the first 2% installment (July 2015) of the increases withheld in 2009/2010. OMCE will continue to press for passage of its legislation (A 7448 and S6725) which calls for the remaining 3% of the previously authorized but withheld salaries to be paid this fiscal year.

OMCE President Barbara Zaron stated …“With this pending PEF agreement in place it is imperative that the MC workforce now be made whole for all previously authorized but withheld salaries plus similar cost of living adjustments going forward.”  Without these adjustments, the salary gaps between people in different bargaining units but the same grade level and those supervised to their supervisors will be further exacerbated….”  Zaron concluded, “MCs have been waiting too long for this issue to be fixed--the time is now!”

 

April 7, 2016

 

Restoring Fairness for Retired MCs

OMCE proposals to provide restored pension benefits to MC retirees whose salary increases were withheld in 2009 and 2010 has run into a wall of resistance. These proposals have gained no traction, in part because of the fiscal estimate. Your OMCE representatives are drafting legislation that will yield a benefit to all affected MC retirees but will not be tied to the pension benefit. Our new approach proposes an annual Tax Credit/ Tax Rebate (where taxes do not reach the amount of the credit or for out of state resident retirees) of 5 percent of one's pension benefit to a maximum of $3,000 per year.

 

 

 

Restoring Fairness for MC Employees 

Despite extensive efforts, OMCE's salary increase acceleration bill did not make it into the 2016-17 state budget. The stand-alone bill A.7448 is scheduled to be on the Government Employees Committee agenda at its next scheduled meeting. S.6725 is in the Senate Finance Committee. We are continuing to fight on your behalf to keep this issue moving and to obtain passage this session.

 

 

 

Budget Bulletin? Where is the Budget Bulletin?

The Division of the Budget has not yet released the budget bulletin authorizing payment of the MC performance advances, N/S advances, longevity payments and 2% across the board salary increases for 2016-2017. These increases are effective April 1, 2016 and effective pay dates are March 31, 2016 for Institution payroll and April 7, 2016 for Administration payroll.  Last year's bulletin was issued on May 8, 2015 as a reference point. We will continue to press the Division of Budget to issue the bulletin as soon as possible.

 

 

 

Tuition Reimbursement for MCs

OMCE is pleased to announce the restoration of the M/C Tuition Reimbursement and License Exam Reimbursement Program. Application forms and Program Guidelines can be accessed by clicking here.   Please contact OMCE with any questions and/or if you are unable to download these forms.   Agencies will shortly have access to this information and forms too.

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act

The Veterans Equality Act failed to make it into the final budget agreement. Assembly bill sponsor Amy Paulin said she was "deeply disappointed that the credit was left out of the budget, and that the majority conference was committed to making it a reality by the end of the legislative session in June."  

Senate bill sponsor Bill Larkin said, "We kept fighting for the Veterans Equality Act (VEA) down to the last minute of the budget process. I regret to inform our veterans that Gov. Cuomo has not included the VEA in this year's State Budget. Despite its popularity and bipartisan support in both houses of the State Legislature, Gov. Cuomo has once again refused to recognize the sacrifices made by ALL veterans. The Governor's failure to take action on this issue, in the face of the fact that he committed to doing so, is very disappointing. Be assured, I will not be deterred. The fight for the Veterans Equality Act is not over."

OMCE will continue to work as part of the coalition of unions and veteran’s advocacy groups urging passage in the 2016 legislative session

 

 

Members:

 

The 2016-17 state fiscal year is only hours away.  While our objectives have been crystal clear, the process remains far from transparent.  Here is what appears to be on the horizon.

 

 

March 31, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 9

A Budget Victory: Defeating Higher Health Care Costs for Retirees

It appears our collective advocacy effort, with the support of the Legislature, we have derailed Governor Cuomo’s recommendations to increase health care costs on state retirees. OMCE appreciates the Legislature’s rejection of the Executive’s proposals.

A Sustained Fight:

 

Ensuring OMCE Members Receive Justice Too!

 

Abuse and neglect of citizens with special needs cannot and should not be tolerated.  And, we believe it is equally important that our member’s rights must also be preserved.  OMCE has joined a coalition of six labor organizations who have written to Paul Francis, Governor Cuomo’s Deputy Secretary for Health and Human Services asking for a review of Justice Center practices which OMCE and its partners believe are too broad, duplicative, compromise investigative integrity, lack timely resolution and are in conflict with existing regulations.   

 

 

 

Appellate Division Upholds Unit Determination Cases

The state Appellate Division upheld a lower court decision that commanded the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations to honor a unit determination petition agreement they made with PEF.   Roughly 250 management-confidential employees’ items in various state agencies are subject to this decision.  

The suit resulted from GOER’s attempt to back out of a 2013 agreement in which PEF agreed to withdraw its attempts to absorb some 2,000 positions that the union said were more properly categorized as non-management jobs.  Any further State appeal is unknown at this time.  

It is important to note that while not directly tied to this case, PEF members continue to work without a current contract and its negotiations on a successor agreement continue.  

*    *    *

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate you on going interest and support.

 

Members:

At this writing of OMCE in Action, the state budget countdown clock reads: eight days.

March 24, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 8

Legislative Conference Committees Convene; Staff Negotiations Ongoing

Our top priority remains Assembly Bill 7448 (Senate 6725​).  

OMCE's proposed acceleration of the payments of previously earned and authorized wages were not included in the respective one-house budget bills, however, despite this fact, they have not been forgotten or abandoned and are being discussed during the ongoing budget negotiations.   

Additionally this negotiation process resulted in our bills receiving technical amendments.  These proposals remain as "stand alone bills" and if not included in the final budget document, they remain positioned for action by the legislature

Budget Bulletin Anticipated to Outline Two-Percent Increase for April 2016

Current statute (Section 130 of Civil Service Law) calls for the next 2 percent payment of the previously authorized but withheld monies to be paid effective April 2016.  This payment requires a Budget Bulletin that will also include instructions on the payment of the 2 percent performance advances, longevity payments (G17 and below) and payment procedures for those paid as NS without equation to a salary grade.   

It is customary that the bulletin be issued following the adoption of the state budget.  

OMCE monitors this closely and is in constant contact with the Division of the Budget and Governor’s Office of Employee Relations regarding a timely release of the bulletin.  The increases are effective March 31, 2016 for the Institution Payroll and April 7 for the Administration Payroll.

Tuition Reimbursement for MC Employees

Positive discussions with GOER continue regarding the reestablishment of the Tuition Reimbursement and Professional Development Program.  Details are being finalized and we will share them upon completion.

Veterans' Equity Act

OMCE is a signatory to a letter to the Governor and legislative leaders sent by a coalition of unions, veterans groups and others regarding the potential application of state retirement service credits for military duty.   

The one-house budget bills of the Assembly and Senate seek to extend military service buyback credit to ALL veterans who have served in the military

MC Compensation - Public Employees

OMCE monitors national trends in the compensation of MC public employees as well as litigation involving various parties of interest.  Here are a few notable actions (and inactions):

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate you on going interest and support.

 

 

March 2016 Nominations for OMCE Board of Directors:

Each year at this time, we begin looking for OMCE members in good standing interested in serving on the OMCE Board of Directors. There are five seats to be filled this year, each for a three year term. The nominations process is simple, since a member can nominate him/herself. Submit your resume, a letter stating your interest to run for a Board seat and a statement that can be used with the ballot, describing your background, the issues and priorities you would want to focus on as a Board Member, your participation in OMCE and why you would be a good Board Member. The material is reviewed by the Nominations Committee members who will present a slate of nominees to the OMCE Board and, if needed, arrange for the mail ballot election. Nominations, via e-mail or regular mail, must be received in the OMCE office no later than June 10, 2016.  

Board Members are expected to participate either in person or via teleconference in four Board Meetings per year (March, June, September/October and December) and to serve on at least one committee. Board Members are not paid to serve on the Board, but travel expenses if required are reimbursed at State rates.  

OMCE is an organization of, by and for M/C employees who voluntarily choose to join, since designation as an M/C does not mean automatic enrollment as an OMCE member. OMCE officers and committee members are all volunteers for these positions.  

We need active working State M/C employees who are interested in being leaders in the fight to improve the working conditions of M/C employees and to ensure that their rights and benefits are protected. For additional information, contact OMCE atnysomce@gmail.com518-456-5241 or at 1-800-828-6623.

 

Waiver of Holiday Compensation Deadline for Enrollment - May 15, 2016

March 18, 2016

Each year, between April 1, 2016 and May 15, 2016, employees who are eligible to receive holiday compensation may elect to change the way they receive this compensation. Employees who are now receiving holiday pay for time worked on a holiday may elect to receive leave credits, and employees who now receive leave credits for time worked on a holiday may elect to receive holiday pay. If an employee wishes to keep their existing holiday compensation option, no further action is required.  

Eligibility  

This benefit is available to employees in the CSEA, PEF, Council 82, DC-37, NYSCOPBA, and PBANYS bargaining units. Management-confidential (M/C) employees in salary grades 22 and below are also eligible.  

Completing a Waiver Form  

Employees who want to change their existing holiday compensation option should complete the Waiver of Additional Money for Holiday Work 2016 and return it to the BSC Time and Attendance Unit no later than May 15, 2016.  Forms received after this date will not be processed.  

Completed forms may be emailed to BSCTimeAdmin@ogs.ny.gov or mailed to:

OGS Business Services Center Time & Attendance Unit

Building 5, W. Averell Harriman State Office Campus, 4th Floor 1220 Washington Avenue

Albany, NY 12226-1900

 If you need assistance or have questions, please contact the BSC Time & Attendance Unit at (518) 457-4272 orBSCTimeAdmin@ogs.ny.gov.

 

 

OMCE in Action

SUBJ:  One-House Budget Bills – An Update For Members:

Assembly Bill No. 7448 and Senate Bill No. 6725

Acceleration of Previously Authorized but Withheld M/C Salaries

While not in the one-house bills prepared independently by the Assembly and Senate, OMCE’s "acceleration bill" has been advanced by the Senate Finance and pending for action in the Assembly Government Employees Committee. We anticipate that both the Assembly Ways and Means and the Senate Finance Committees will be considering this legislation following budget resolution.

PLEASE KEEP SENDING YOUR E-LETTERS, AND CALLING YOUR LEGISLATORS.

Your efforts thus far are helping ensure that this legislation is moving in parallel to budget negotiations; and being evaluated on its merits as a "Stand Alone Bill."

 

Governor’s cost shifting attacks on State Retiree Health Insurance Rejected!

 

Both one house budget bills have denied the Governor’s proposed cost shifting retiree health insurance schemes.

 

 

 

Veterans Equity Act

 

Members:

This week’s edition of OMCE in Action (OIA) is once again, focused on tracking legislation of interest and concern to our membership relative to the coming state budget deadline and anticipated passage on or about April 1, 2016.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate your ongoing interest and support.

March 11, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 7 is singularly focused:

State Budget Negotiations Intensify

The Assembly and Senate each announced their budget priorities this week. Both houses are expected to approve their respective one-house budgets – as early as Monday, and then enter into a conference committee process.  Their deliberations are often unpredictable and it is our goal to maintain a top-of-mind position in both the Senate and Assembly.  As reported previously OMCE’s priority is your priority – expediting the payment of wages MCs earned in 2009 and 2010 – which have yet to be paid. 

OMCE’s advocacy efforts this week were heavily skewed toward the Assembly majority conference, which included:

In parallel to our legislative advocacy, OMCE is encouraging senior state officials at GOER to share with Executive Chamber staff the positive programmatic and fiscal impact of the proposed legislation

 

 

Members:

This week’s edition of OMCE in Action (OIA) is focused on tracking legislation of interest and concern to our membership.  We remind you that March calendar brings additional intensity associated with the State budget and related matters impacting our legislative priorities and objectives.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. Our direct subscriber list continues to grow.  We appreciate you interest and support.

March 4, 2016

 

OIA – Edition No. 6 has three significant topics:

 

Senate Committee Expected to Begin Acting on Salary Restoration Bill

Next week, the Senate Civil Service Committee is expected to consider Senate Bill  No. 6725 – legislation specifically prepared to expedite the payment of wages MCs earned in 2009 and 2010 – which have yet to be paid.  The Chairman of the Committee, Senator Martin Golden is a co-sponsor of this legislation. 

We encourage you to contact Senator Golden’s office via telephone:  518.455.2760; email golden@nysenate.gov; or advance a letter via the OMCE Action Line.

 

 

 

 

Budget Negotiations to Include Opportunity to Be Credited for Military Service

We have been advised that legislation authorizing recognition by the New York State Retirement System of specific military service will be supported by the Assembly and Senate as they prepare one-house budgets and advance topics to be considered during the 2016-17 budget negotiations.  Senator Bill Larkin and Assembly member Amy Paulin have championed this legislation which was vetoed last year by Governor Cuomo.

 

 

 

 

 

Action Line Letters Target Unacceptable Changes to Retiree Health Insurance

Last week we encouraged your direct grassroots involvement via our Action Line postings.  If you have not yet had the opportunity to take a moment to become involved with this important initiative – it is not too late.  

In particular, OMCE urges you to visit OMCE Action Line and submit an electronic letter outlining our opposition to changes that if enacted would:

 

 

Members:

We advance to you for review the latest edition of OMCE in Action (Volume No. 5) – an ongoing update and direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

February 26, 2016

Highlights from the Telephone Town Hall 

 

Thank you to those of you who participated in Wednesday evening’s conversation. 

The session focused on our top priorities for 2016:       

 

 

Action Line Letters are Live and Available 

 

 

In a related matter, members are encouraged to review our latest Action Line postings available at www.nysomce.org.  

The material allows for direct targeting of legislative members and ensures that you are recognized as an active and involved member of OMCE.  It is important that we sustain our advocacy as the budget season accelerates and escalates in intensity.

 

 

A Respected Senator Signs on OMCE Priority Legislation  

 

 OMCE learned this week that Senator Martin Golden of Brooklyn will co-sponsor the bill requiring accelerated payment of wages earned by MCs and withheld in 2009 and 2010.  The Senator is chairman of the Civil Service and Pension Committee.

 

 

 

 

Salary Commission Comments Draw a Connection to State Deputies and Managers.

During this week’s meeting of the Legislative, Judicial and Executive Pay Commission, several members made interesting connections between their charge and the impact on MC employees.  The Albany Times Union reports:

For one, commission member Roman Hedges, an appointee of the Democratic Assembly majority, said salary data for more senior civil servants — who are not under the commission's purview — should be considered as the panel forms its opinions on what those workers' bosses should be paid.

While there are mounds of data to absorb and public comments to solicit, commission member James Lack, an appointee of the Senate Republican conference, gave an indication that pay — at least within the executive branch — needed to rise by a significant amount.

"In the weight of all things, once these poor people who haven't had raises for 18 years finally get a raise — and obviously it's not going to be a 3 percent raise — their deputies for all these years ... are certainly going to be looking to fill the gap between whatever their salaries are and the new department head salary," Lack said. "We don't set those, but we in effect are doing that."

 

February 23, 2016

CIVIL SERVICE  PREPS TO EXPAND PCO (Professional  Career Opportunities) EXAM - Click for Story

 

Members:

We are pleased to present to you OMCE in Action (Volume No. 4) - a direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

February 18, 2016

 

 State of Politics Blog Reports on OMCE Legislation

Last week’s edition of OMCE in Action shared news of commitments by Senator Catharine Young and Assemblyman Denny Farrell to sponsor bills that would require payment of wages you earned in 2009 and 2010 which were unfairly and unjustly withheld.  The well-read and regarded State of Politics political blog published a piece on the development.   

The complete posting is available here: 
 http://www.nystateofpolitics.com/2016/02/bill-would-bump-up-pay-raise-schedule-for-mc-employees/

 

 

OMCE’s Top Legislative Priority to be sponsored by Senator Catherine Young and Assemblyman Farrell (Update).  

In a related matter, OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joseph Sano met with the Assembly Program and Counsel staff to discuss details of Assembly Bill No. 7448.

 

 

OMCE Participates in New York State AFL-CIO Pension and Taylor Law Task Force Meetings.

 

OMCE’s Joseph Sano represented OMCE at the recent session. 

Discussions focused on Veterans pension equity and proposed changes to retiree health insurance outlined in the executive budget. OMCE opposes these changes to retiree health insurance, and included its position during testimony offered at the joint legislative budget hearings conducted on February 3.

 

 

 

Legislative, Judicial and Executive Pay Commission Announces Upcoming Meeting

Earlier this week, it was announced that the Commission charged with maintaining appropriate salary levels for the state judges, legislators and high-ranking administration appointees such as Commissioners. It will convene on February 22 in New York City.

For additional information on the Commission, please visit:
http://www.nyscommissiononcompensation.org

 

 

 

Scalia Passing to Impact Key Supreme Court Cases

The unexpected death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia will have a significant impact on a number of important matters under consideration by the U.S. Supreme Court, and which have the potential to impact those who work in the public sector.  Many are beginning to contemplate the broad based impact on a potential shift in the court’s ideology.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/scalia-public-sector unions_us_56bfdb1ce4b0b40245c6f855

 

 

 

 

 

REMINDER: OMCE Telephone Town Hall February 24 at 5:30 pm.

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

 

 

OMCE at Caucus Weekend

Our thanks and appreciation to our colleague and representative George Delamar who staffed OMCE’s table along with President Barbara Zaron at the Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Conference on Saturday, February 13.

 

 

 

 

 

 Members:

Welcome to Week No. 3 of OMCE in Action a direct communication intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

We continue to hear from you that you find these brief summaries informative and the list of direct email subscribers is growing each week.  While you are free to review the content on our website, others have expressed appreciation that it is being shared directly via personal email accounts.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

 

February 11, 2016

OMCE’s Top Legislative Priority to be sponsored by Senator Catherine Young and Assemblyman Farrell.

OMCE is pleased to announce that the respective chairs of the Senate Finance Committee, and Assembly Ways and Means Committee have endorsed and agreed to sponsor legislation expediting payment to MC employees earned, and withheld during the state’s deficit reduction efforts in 2009 and 2010.

The bill numbers associated with the legislation are Senate 6725 and Assembly 7448.

Please Note:  Beginning Wednesday, February 10, State Legislators will be in their home districts.  The Senate and Assembly will reconvene in Albany on February 24, 2016

 

Zaron and Sano meet with Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan.

On Monday, February 8, OMCE President Barbara Zaron, and Executive Director Joseph Sano met with Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan at the Capitol. 

The Majority Leader has been a long-term advocate for OMCE and MCs.  In fact, in 2014, Senator Flanagan, led an effort calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to restore wages of MC’s earned and withheld across the state, including 500 on Long Island

 

 

 

Comptroller DiNapoli’s Advisory Council Provides Input on the Management of the Common Retirement Fund.  

The Comptroller’s advisory council meets periodically to provide independent, expert assistance associated with guiding the state’s $184 billion retirement fund.  OMCE President Barbara Zaron, a member of the Council, attended the session which included a summary of enhanced services being planned to better serve retirement system members and beneficiaries.

 

 

 

 

OMCE to be active at 2016 Caucus Weekend.

Look for OMCE representatives this weekend at the 45th Annual Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators annual conference in Albany.  

 

REMINDER: OMCE Telephone Town Hall February 24 at 5:30 pm.

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

Members:

This is the second edition of OMCE in Action a direct communication intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

Many of you provided positive feedback to last week’s update.  In addition to posting on the OMCE website, we are advancing it to our members (for whom we have email addresses)

Please email us with your personal e-mail if you wish to have it sent directly to you.

February 4, 2016

OMCE Delivers Testimony to Legislative Commission Calling for Expedited Payment of Salary Withheld and Owed to MCs    

On Wednesday, February 3, OMCE President Barbara Zaron, and Executive Director Joseph Sano offered testimony to the Joint Legislative Budget Hearing on the Workforce .   OMCE outlined its priorities that included:

To view the archived video testimony visit:  http://assembly.state.ny.us/av/hearings/ Then select: 2-3-16 Joint Budget Hearing – Workforce Development.  OMCE testimony begins at the (3:13:30).  You can advance directly to OMCE content by using the arrow keys -->

To review the complete written testimony submitted to the joint committee visit: OMCE Testimony_20160205.pdf 

Direct lobbying and advocacy of key members and Senior legislative staff.

Since our most recent report, OMCE leadership has met with the staff of:

These sessions are important to advancing OMCE’s priorities.  They provide opportunities to discuss active sponsorship of our key bills, and allow us to reinforce OMCE’s position.  

OMCE Announces Town Meeting via Toll-Free Conference Call on Wednesday, February 24 at 5:30 pm

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

 

Fiscal Policy Institute Offers Briefing on New York Economic Outlook

Prior to offering its testimony on February 3, OMCE representative attended a detailed briefing conducted by the Fiscal Policy Institute.

The most significant issue discussed was the 2016-17 Executive Budget and its impact.   

For more information visit:  http://fiscalpolicy.org.  

 

  

 

Members:

This is the first of a new series of direct communications intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

We are calling it – OMCE in Action. It will be a regular email that we send to you, our members (for whom we have email addresses), to keep you informed of our activities on your behalf.  It will also be posted on our website.  Please email us with your personal e-mail if you wish to have it sent directly to you.

January 26, 2016

OMCE is a trusted source for Capitol-based reporters and broadcasters

On Friday, January 15, Times Union reporter Rick Karlin interviewed OMCE President Barbara Zaron for an article about the proposed changes shifting additional costs to retirees for their health care. http://www.timesunion.com/local/article/State-proposes-to-change-retiree-health-care-costs-6763043.php      

 

OMCE is amplifying the voice and concerns of MC employees

On Wednesday, February 3rd OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joe Sano will provide testimony during the Joint Legislative Budget Committee’s Workforce Development hearing. They will be aggressively pushing OMCE’s legislative agenda including accelerating payments of all previously authorized and withheld salaries as well as seeking support for fixing the diminished pension benefits for those already retired since 2009 and those nearing retirement.  

Testimony presented to the joint-fiscal committees of the Senate and the Assembly will be archived.  OMCE will provide a recap of its testimony and provide links for easy viewing following delivery.

OMCE is keeping an eye on developing trends and issues of importance to its membership

In recent weeks the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in an important case that has its roots in California but will effect labor organizations across the country, and here in New York.  The case, Friedrichs vs. California Teachers Association is focused on the collection of mandatory dues by unions used to support various collective bargaining activities. If successful such an attack will weaken us all.  

OMCE membership provides protection if your position is threatened or challenged due to professional action or judgement

Your membership in OMCE provides you with access to legal defense and protections in investigations, disciplinary proceedings and grievances.  Your membership in OMCE provides access to qualified legal representation during a dispute with the state.   

 

January 14, 2016  

2016-2017 Proposed Executive Budget

At the January 13, 2016 budget briefing for all labor organizations, The Division of the Budget announced: (Complete Budget Synopsis by OMCE Counsel is in Members’ Only Section)

 

January 06, 2016  

Scholarships

Click Here and login to the member area to view the Links for the Union Plus, Lavina Michl Wright, and the Howard Coughlin scholarship links. The John Kelly Scholarship, and the Corbeil/Beauregard Summer Camp Scholarship are now available.

 

December 29, 2015  

Whistleblower Protections Strengthened

A 7951 was signed into law by Governor Cuomo. This law as now enacted will remove the requirement that public employee whistleblowers first notify their supervisors of the improper activity, in order to protect employees where it is the supervisors themselves who are engaged in the improper activity which the whistleblower seeks to report. OMCE has defended its members in past instances where wrongdoing was reported, high level (exempt class) supervisors did nothing with the information and then our members were subsequently brought up on dismissal charges. According to the Commission on Public Integrity, over the years there have been cases where state employees requested anonymity when reporting unethical conduct to avoid retaliation, have refused to cooperate with investigations out of fear of reprisal or, at least in one reported case, been summarily fired, This act modifies the civil service law to remove the early disclosure requirement and thereby protects whistleblowers and enables them to expose improper actions by their superiors.

December 19, 2015

OMCE SETS LEGISLATIVE AGENDA FOR 2016 SESSION

At the December 11, 2015 meeting the OMCE Board of Directors adopted the 2016 Legislative Agenda. It is focused on speeding up payment of the withheld 2009-2010 across the board pay increases currently being piecemealed through 2019. The Board additionally recognized the need to continue the fight to remedy the retirement benefit losses suffered by MCs retiring since 2009.

To fix the ongoing across the board pay increase issue OMCE has had A7448 (Farrell) introduced in the State Assembly and is awaiting the appointment of a new Senate Finance Chair for the introduction of the same legislation. Our bills call for the remaining 5% of withheld across the board pay increases from 2009-10 to be paid in April 2016. Our quest will be to have these bills included in the adopted budget for 2016-2017.

Current law (Civil Service Law Section 130) calls for 2% to be paid in April 2016, 2% in April 2017 and 1% effective April 0f 2018. This creates an unacceptable 10 year pay scenario from the time the increases were withheld through the date of complete pay restoration. Pending union negotiations could result in the MC wage gap with other units becoming even worse. Also scheduled this year will be the recommended pay increase proposals for the Judiciary, Legislature and Statewide elected officials as recommended by the Pay Commission. During this time of “fixing salaries”, it is the perfect opportunity to fix the MC pay debacle without any further delay!

Equally important is the need for pension correction for those MCs who have or will be retiring before the full restoration and impact of that restoration is considered for their final average salary (FAS) computation. OMCE’s agenda has called for the adoption of two distinct bills aimed at addressing these pension losses. They are referred to as the WPPAA bills-Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Acts.

WPPAA Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Act- MCs Retired between 4/1/2009 through 3/31/2014

This proposal will provide an additional month of retirement service credit, but not in excess of 24 months, for each month of employment from April 1, 2009 through 3/31/2014 for members either in the classified service of the state of New York in a position designated managerial or confidential pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service law or in the service of a public authority under the jurisdiction of the state civil service department, Such members must have been in active service during the previously stated time period and had previously authorized general salary increases withheld in fiscal years 2009 and 2010. These changes shall become effective notwithstanding any other law, rule or regulation.

WPPAA Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Act -MCs Retired between 4/1/2014 through 3/31/2019

This proposal will provide that those retirement system members designated managerial or confidential pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service law or in the service of a public authority under the jurisdiction of the state civil service department and had previously authorized general salary increases withheld in fiscal years 2009 and 2010 shall have their annual pension benefit adjusted as follows:

When computing the FAS (Final Average Salary) using the highest average of wages earned during any three consecutive years, each year of wages earned that is utilized in the FAS computation shall be increased by the annual cost of living index percentage for that year ( All Urban Consumers –CPI Index). The resulting FAS will reflect the original highest average of wages earned as stated above, increased by the applicable cost of living index for that respective time period. These changes shall become effective notwithstanding any other law, rule or regulation.

The WPPAA bills are currently being reviewed by the retirement system actuary for cost analysis. Such analysis is required and must be attached to the bills upon introduction. We expect introduction in January upon the legislature’s return. The OMCE board recognizes the challenge of obtaining successful retirement legislation but it is a goal that cannot be abandoned.

Veteran’s Pension Equity although vetoed twice by the Governor has now been targeted by the Executive for a cooperative effort to achieve passage. OMCE supported and continues to support Veterans’ Pension Equity and will continue our work with all other AFL-CIO affiliated unions to achieve a fair resolution of this issue.

The Governor has announced that his State of the State message will be combined with his 2016-2017 Fiscal Year Budget message on January 13, 2016.

DEFFERED COMPENSATION MAXIMUM CONTRIBUTION LIMITS-- CALENDAR YEAR 2016

Maximum contribution limits for employees enrolled in the New York State Deferred Compensation Plan for calendar year 2016.

An additional deferment is available to employees age 50 and over.  These employees can defer up to $6,000 in addition to their regular contribution amount, for a combined total contribution limit of $24,000 in 2016.  Employees are not eligible to choose both the “Retirement Catch-Up” and the “50 and Over Catch-Up” in the same calendar year.

November 24, 2015

2ND Phase – Job Analysis Project

Civil Service Department’s Testing Services Division has contracted for a second phase of a job analysis project which will involve a review of entry level professional titles G-14-18 and traineeships. Incumbents in these titles may be asked to participate in project study/focus groups during December2015 and/or to  take an on-line questionnaire in February 2016 . OMCE supports projects which foster and strengthen the merit system. If you are asked to participate and have any questions or concerns, please contact OMCE.

November 12, 2015  

GOVERNOR CUOMO, SENATOR LARKIN AND ASSEMBLYMEMBER PAULIN AGREE TO ADVANCE LEGISLATION TO EXPAND MILITARY PENSION CREDIT PROGRAM

Governor Also Signs Two Additional Bills on Behalf of New York State Veterans

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, and two legislative bill sponsors, Senator William Larkin and Assemblymember Amy Paulin, today agreed to advance legislation during the next State budget to provide up to three years of additional public pension credit for an expanded pool of eligible state and local employees who served in the military. Governor Cuomo also signed legislation today to provide additional benefits to veterans throughout the State.

“Our Veterans exemplify dedication, patriotism, and sacrifice – and we owe them a debt that can never be repaid. As we celebrate Veterans Day, we honor not only the extraordinary sacrifices they’ve made on our behalf, and their service here and abroad, but also the contributions they make to our communities once they return to private life,” said Governor Cuomo. “New York is one community and one family. Together we hope and pray for the safe return of our military men and women serving around the world. Above all, we remember those who have paid the ultimate price to protect our freedom and security. To our Veterans and military families, on behalf of all New Yorkers, thank you.”

Veteran Pension Credit Legislation

The agreement between the Governor and the legislative bill sponsors will amend existing law to expand the scope of veterans who can receive pension credits for military service.

Current law allows active members of the New York State public retirement systems to purchase service credit for up to three years of military service if the member was honorably discharged, has five years of existing public pension credit, and served during World War II, the Korean War, or the Vietnam Era; or received an Armed Forces, Navy or Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal in connection with service in Lebanon, Grenada, or Panama; or served during theatre of operations in Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman, the Gulf of Aden, the Gulf of Oman, the Persian Gulf, the Red Sea and the airspace above these locations.

New legislation to be introduced will balance the needs of New York State’s deserving veterans with the State’s larger fiscal goals. The proposal will expand the pool of eligible veterans that were not previously covered by law and will also remove restrictions that prevented women from being eligible for the additional pension credit because of prior military policy that barred women from being deployed to a military conflict. The military ended its policy against women being deployed to combat in 2013.

The Governor and legislative sponsors plan to work over the next two months to refine the proposal for introduction in the next budget.

 

November 06, 2015

Management Confidential Employees

Flex Spending Account - UPDATED The 2016 Open Enrollment period is now through November 24, 2015. The enrollment process is on line and is quick and easy. You will need your most recent pay check stub. If you should need assistance with your enrollment call 1-800-358-7202 or visit the website hppt://www.flexspend.ny.gov/. Representatives are available 7 am to 10 pm daily, and will be available until midnight on November 24, 2015.

Health Insurance Choices for 2016 plan year - The annual NYSHIP Option Transfer period will be open after the 2016 health insurance premiums are approved. We will post the dates as soon as they are approved.

Productivity Enhancement Program - Under the Productivity Enhancement Program (PEP) eligible full and part-time employees SG 23 and below may exchange previously accrued annual and or personal leave in return for a credit to be applied toward the employee share of their NYSHIP premium. The credit will be included in biweekly paychecks and divided evenly during the plan year. Credits vary by grade. Please see link: https://bsc.ogs.ny.gov/sites/default/files/2016_PEP.pdf

Full-time employees in positions at or equated to Salary Grade 17 and below:

Employee Group:
Management Confidential:

Forfeited Days NYSHIP Credit
3 $500.00
6 $1000.00  

Full-time employees in positions at or equated to Salary Grade 18-23:


Employee Group:

Management Confidential:
Forfeited Days NYSHIP Credit
2 $500.00
4 $1000.00

To elect PEP for 2016, you must apply between October 26 and November 27, 2015. Ask your HBA for details and an application.

If you are currently enrolled in PEP and are still eligible to participate, you must re-enroll to continue your benefits in 2016.

 

October 26, 2015

Governor Cuomo Vetoes Veterans' Equality Act - Again

In his second consecutive veto of essentially identical bills, Governor Cuomo again strikes a blow against veterans' equality.

The bill again went through the NY state legislature in bipartisan fashion and, in fact, a total of just one legislator voted against it.  

As the law now stands, certain combat veterans are included by the dates and place of their service and certain combat veterans are excluded; certain wartime era veterans are included and certain wartime era veterans are excluded; and all peacetime veterans remain excluded.

The Governor’s veto (#221) contained the Vet’s Equality Act and 4 additional retirement bills. Lumping these together allowed the Governor to postulate that these (5) bills would impose costs that …”were not accounted for in the State’s financial plan and the unfunded costs and expenses would impose a substantial burden on New York State taxpayers….” . This bill (S 5937-A) did provide for a $31 Million appropriation to cover anticipated employer costs but obviously this was dismissed by the Governor as inadequate.

The Governor continues to claim that the near term costs of this bill approaches $60 Million. That figure is dismissed by bill supporters as excessive and based on all possible eligible veterans (again an extremely high estimated number) immediately taking the benefit and then retiring.

http://www.MoveOn.org has also created a petition campaign urging legislators to override the Governor’s veto.

There remains the possibility that a compromise can be worked out with the Executive Branch and this issue can be finally resolved as part of the 2016-2017 budget negotiations which just happens to also be an election year for the legislature.

October 14, 2015

Veterans’ Buy Back Bill (S5937-A Larkin) (A8174-A Paulin) sent to Governor Cuomo  

The Veterans’ Buy Back Bill has been sent to the Governor.  He has 10 days excluding Sundays to act on this bill.  

Supporters may send electronic messages to the Governor urging his approval by using the automated link on www.nysaflcio.org website.  

This bill in enacted into law will provide up to three years of service credit to members of public retirement systems of the state for military service rendered during times of peace; removes requirement that such military service occur during specified periods of hostilities; requires such members have at least five years of credited service, not including military service; This bill appropriates $24,800,000 to cover the expense of providing this benefit.

 

 

 

 

October 6, 2015

NYSHIP ALERTS!  

Excellus Health partners (a NYSHIP plan partner) has suffered a cyber attack where personal information of plan enrollees  may have been obtained. Those at possible risk will receive written notification and instructions on how to register for free identitiy theft protection. OMCE MEMBERS ALREADY ENJOY FREE IDENTITY THEFT PROTECTION THROUGH OUR OPEIU AFFILIATION WITH InfoArmor.

Please see the original notification regarding this newest data breach as posted by NYSHIP/Civil Service which can be found at: https://www.cs.ny.gov/employee-benefits/nyship/shared/apps/whats-new/index.cfm

 

 

September 22, 2015

OMCE Board Elections:

Our recent Board of Directors election produced the following results:
Mark MacConnell, Chad Shelmidine, Robert Perez, Caroline Westbrook, and Rosa Castillo-Kesper were re-elected.

Subsequent to the completion of the election process, Lew Pulver resigned from the Board. Raemel Pascual was approved by the Board of Directors to serve on the Board for one year, the remainder of Pulver’s term.

Officers Elected:
At the September 11th Board meeting the following officers were elected:
President – Barbara Zaron
1st VP - Mark MacConnell
2nd VP - William McCartney
Secretary - Rosa Castillo-Kesper
Treasurer - Robert Perez

August 24, 2015

OMCE President Zaron Comments on Thruway M/C Employees Lawsuit

President Barbara Zaron was the featured guest on Monday's Edition (August 24, 2015) of Capital Tonight, the Time Warner Cable statewide political news and public affairs program.

Similar to the Federal lawsuit filed by OMCE in 2009 when executive branch M/Cs had their previously authorized salary withheld, a group of Thruway M/C employees have now filed a Federal suit and Court of Claims action seeking the restoration of their salaries.

The interview on the treatment of M/C employees can beviewed by Clicking Here, or select tv images on left.

 

 

 

 

August 20, 2015

M/C Lawsuit Versus New York State Thruway Authority

 8/19/2015 Earlier today OMCE learned through media reports that legal actions have been initiated against the New York State Thruway Authority and by extension the State of New York by a group of current and former M/C employees involving wages that have been withheld. More specifically, the plaintiffs have filed a Notice of Intent to File Claim was filed in the New York State Court of Claims, and a separate a Class Action Complaint was filed in U.S. District Court. OMCE litigated similar issues (Levine v. Paterson) in Federal Court (New York Northern District) unsuccessfully in 2011. Our legal team is reviewing the content of what was filed today.

In June, OMCE shared with its members an analysis of relevant Federal and New York State precedent on the viability of litigation to recover salary withholdings occurring in fiscal years 2009-10 and 2010-11 as it relates to current and retired management and confidential employees.

The memo may be accessed by members (Click Here).

August 3, 2015

Senator DeFrancisco Named New Deputy Majority Leader

NY State Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan recently announced that Senator John DeFrancisco (R/C/I-District 50) would serve as the Deputy Majority Leader of the New York State Senate . As a longtime fervent supporter of MC pay parity issues, he introduced and fought for OMCE sponsored legislation seeking an MC Salary Commission. While serving as the Senate Finance Committee Chair he was an outspoken advocate for MC pay parity and an end to the compensation injustice heaped upon those designated MC. OMCE applauds this announcement and looks forward to our continuing cooperation as we seek complete pay parity for MC employees.

 

 

 

 

July 8, 2015

Budget Bulletin Released For July 2015 General Salary Increase

DOB has officially released Budget Bulletin D1132 (https://www.budget.ny.gov/guide/bprm/bulletins/d-1132.pdf) authorizing the July 2015 general salary increase. As OMCE published earlier, the pay dates will be:     

       July 23, 2015 for Institution Payroll employees (June 25th pay period)     

       July 29, 2015 for Administration Payroll employees (July 2nd pay period)

Please note the following excerpted from the bulletin:

Additionally, Part H of Chapter 55 of the Laws of 2015 (i.e., the M/C Parity Bill) provides a situation where certain M/C employees are NOT eligible to receive the increase and a situation where others may only receive a partial increase.

The intent is to prevent State employees who received the collectively negotiated General Salary Increases in their union-represented positions from receiving │ them again as parity increases in their Management/Confidential positions when the resultant M/C salary would exceed the job rate of the employee’s position on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule.

 The two situations include:

 1. Not Eligible for 2% Parity Increase. M/C officers or employees who were promoted or appointed to M/C positions from positions represented by one of the State’s public employee unions and whose salary, immediately prior to July 1, 2015, is at or above the job rate of their M/C salary grade or equated salary grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule are not eligible to receive the 2% Parity Increase;

2. Eligible for Partial Parity Increase. M/C officers or employees who were promoted or appointed to M/C positions from positions represented by one of the State’s public employee unions are prohibited from receiving any portion of the increase which causes such officer’s or employee’s salary to exceed the job rate of their M/C salary grade or equated grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule. Such employees may only receive a partial increase capped at the job rate of their salary grade or equated grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule. Nevertheless, even in these two situations, it may be appropriate to provide the 2% Parity Increase if the employee’s salary does not properly reflect the effect of the three percent general salary increase effective April 1, 2009 or the four percent general salary increase effective April 1, 2010. For these cases, or other situations that may transpire, agencies will be contacted to review the salary histories of certain employees and will work with the Division of the Budget to provide these increases, if appropriate, retroactive to July 1, 2015.

June 26, 2015

Vets' Buyback Bill Passes Both Houses:

The Veterans' Buyback bill (S.5937/A.8174A) passed in the Assembly on Wednesday and, therefore, has now passed both houses of the legislature. This bill was vetoed last year by the Governor. Aside from updated fiscal notes the bill is the same as last year's bill.  

The bill will allow members of public retirement systems who are veterans of the military to purchase up to three years of retirement credit for their service to our nation. Currently, pension buyback for veterans only applies to those who served during times of foreign conflict and who served in the theatre of action. OMCE has worked as part of the coalition of AFL-CIO unions, veterans groups and all those who support equitable pension treatment and parity.

The passage of this bill indicates that pension parity can be considered, passed and hopefully be made law. No date has been set for submission of this bill to the Governor for consideration.

June 26, 2015

APRIL PAYMENTS MADE...JULY 2% RAISE AWAITS BUDGET BULLETIN...STILL!

April 2015 general salary increases, performance advances and applicable (to M/C-17 and below) longevity awards have now all been paid to both Administration and Institution Payroll M/C employees. MCs with an N/S salary designation should inquire with their agency about the status of their respective agency submissions of the N/S salary plan covering advances for those so designated as N/S. July Budget Bulletin has not yet been issued. Regardless, the pay period schedule (the majority of which occurs on and after the effective date of an increase) indicates that given the effective date of July 1, 2015, the Institution Payroll period of 6/25-7/8/2015 will be used to effect the next pending increase for Institution Payroll M/Cs and the Administration Payroll will utilize the 7/2-7/15 pay period. This is not yet official, but reflects the application of pertinent law, rule and practice.

Since no official Budget Bulletin has yet been issued, no official dates have yet been established for the paychecks that will contain the 2% general salary increase. 

May 20, 2015

Last Call for OMCE Board Nominations:

A reminder that the deadline for submitting nominations to the OMCE Board of Directors is fast approaching: Friday, June 12th. For information (in case you missed it), scroll down to the 4/30/15 announcement below.

 

May 19, 2015

Update: Payroll Bulletin #1408, April 2015 M/C Performance Advances, issued May 19 and included below.

 

May 17, 2015

Payroll Bulletins Issued for April 2015 M/C Salary Increase, Performance Advances and Longevity Payments: 

The Office of State Comptroller has issued bulletins with payroll instructions (#1407 April 2015 M/C Salary Increase, #1408 April 2015 M/C Performance Advances, and #1405 April 2015 M/C Longevity Lump Sum Payment) providing for payment of the 2% April 2015 M/C Salary Increase and the fiscal year 2015-16 M/C Performance Advances and Longevities, as authorized by the Division of the Budget (Budget Bulletin 1131). The Salary Increase and Performance Advances will be paid, using the following payment effective dates and check dates:

               Administration Payroll Employees, effective 3/26/15, check dated 6/17/15
              Institution Payroll Employees, effective 4/2/15, check dated 6/25/15

For Longevities, payment will be made as a one-time, lump sum payment (in the amount of $1,250 or $2,500, depending on eligibility - minimum of 5 or 10 years at the job rate), effective 4/1/15, and processed in a separate check dated 6/17/15 (Administration) or 6/25/15 (Institution). There is no direct deposit for the longevity payment.

Questions concerning payments and eligibility should be addressed to your agency/facility payroll office.

Related M/C payroll bulletin affecting employees of the State University Construction Fund: #Other-26 April 2015 State University Construction Fund M/C Salary Increase

In May 2014 Senator Flanagan seized the initiative in soliciting support from his fellow Long Island Republican Senators for a letter (Click Here) urging the Cuomo Administration to find a way to achieve pay fairness and parity for M/C employees. He was a strong supporter of the 2015 Senate budget draft that called for a 2-year pay restoration (3% July 2015 and 4% April 2016), rather than the Governor's 4-year restoration of the previously authorized, but withheld pay increases of 2009 and 2010. Without the Assembly's support in their budget draft, the Governor's 4-year pay restoration plan was adopted as part of the enacted budget.

Congratulations to Majority Leader Flanagan! We look forward to continuing our joint efforts on behalf of fairness and pay parity for MCs. 

 

May 8, 2015

Division of the Budget Releases April 2015 MC Pay Budget Bulletin:

Division of the Budget released the April 2015 Budget Bulletin authorizing payment of the 2% M/C general salary increase, performance advances for employees eligible to receive them, and longevity awards for eligible job-rate employees in Grades 17 and below. The bulletin also contains instructions for agencies to submit salary plans for employees in NS (non-statutory) positions that are not equated to grades. OMCE will closely monitor agencies whose N/S plan submissions have historically been exceptionally tardy.

Employees who were on the payroll as of March 26, 2015 (Administration Payroll) and April 2, 2015 (Institution Payroll) will automatically receive payment (retroactive to the start of the fiscal year), as follows:

          June 17, 2015 (Administration Payroll employees)
          June 25, 2015 (Institution Payroll employees)

OMCE has and will continue to urge DOB to develop a timely Bulletin for the scheduled July M/C general salary increase.

Budget Bulletin D-1131

Management/Confidential Salary Actions - 2% General Salary Increase, Effective April 1, 2015; Performance Advances; Longevity Payments

          Effective May 8, 2015

TO: ALL DEPARTMENT AND AGENCY HEADS

FROM: Mary Beth Labate

Subject: Management / Confidential Salary Actions 2% General Salary Increase, Effective April 1, 2015; Performance Advances; Longevity Payments

Pursuant to Chapter 491 of the Laws of 2011, this bulletin provides guidelines for the payment of a 2% General Salary Increase to Management/Confidential (M/C) employees and other unrepresented employees in the Executive Branch, retroactive to April 1, 2015.  This is the same increase recently paid to union-represented employees with collective bargaining agreements expiring March 31, 2016 and beyond.

Guidelines are also provided for payment of FY 2016 Performance Advances and Longevity Payments.  Agencies are expected to pay for these increases from existing resources through increased productivity.  No additional resources will be provided. . . . More ►►

April 30, 2015

Nominations to OMCE Board: 

Here's an opportunity to use your talents while broadening your professional experience. Consider running for a seat on the OMCE Board of Directors!

The Board is responsible for setting policy and providing guidance and direction to the organization. The Board is a diverse body that fights to improve the working conditions of M/C employees, while protecting their rights and benefits. Board members attend four meetings per year and serve on one or more committees. It is an unpaid position, but travel expenses are reimbursed at the state rate. The fifteen member board serves staggered three-year terms. Five seats will be up for election or re-election this year.

All that is necessary to run for a seat on the Board is to submit your resume and a cover statement outlining the qualities you would be bringing to the Board and what issues and priorities you would like to focus on. This statement will be sent with the ballot for consideration by the voting membership. Submissions may be mailed, e-mailed or faxed and must be received at the OMCE office no later than Friday, June 12. The Nominating Committee will review all submissions and present a slate of nominees to the Board. The election by mail ballot, if there are more than five candidates, will take place during July/August. Results will be announced at our Annual Meeting in September.

The Nomination Committee is seeking active state M/C employees who are willing to commit their time, energy and talent to address the issues of concern to M/C employees, such as M/C compensation and benefits, protection of pension and health insurance benefits, workforce and succession management, conditions of employment, etc. If you're thinking of taking advantage of this opportunity, but would like more information, contact OMCE at 800.828.6623.

April 23, 2015

Independence Day Holiday:

The State has determined that another day will not be designated to be observed as a holiday by State employees in lieu of July 4, 2015.

Instead, full-time M/C employees and other full-time employees who are entitled to observe holidays, and for whom Saturday, July 4, is a regular day off, should be credited with compensatory time off in lieu of the Independence Day holiday; i.e. holiday compensatory time. Part-time employees who are regularly scheduled to work at least half-time, and who do not work on Saturday, July 4, but who are regularly scheduled to work on Friday, July 3, will be credited with holiday leave equivalent to the number of hours in the employee's regular Friday schedule not to exceed 7½ or 8 hours.

We have updated our Calendar page to reflect this determination. In response to OMCE's inquiry, the Department of Civil Service advises that MC employees will be given "Pass day Holiday Leave" which, unlike holiday leave, will not expire. Further information is available here or by contacting your agency/facility personnel office.

April 15, 2015

Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) Repayment Update:

Payroll Bulletin No. 1382, dated February 23, 2015 stated: As part of the Management/Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) created pursuant to Section 7 of Part A and Subsection 3 of Section 13 of Part B of Chapter 491 of the Laws of 2011 and the Division of the Budget Bulletin B-1197 issued November 14, 2011, the balance of each employee's actual deficit reduction plan reductions will be repaid to the employee in equal biweekly installments over 39 consecutive pay periods beginning with the paycheck which includes compensation for April 1, 2015. (emphasis added)

Dates for payment are: 4/16 Institution Lag Payroll, 4/22 Administration Lag Payroll.

This has been confirmed with OSC (Office of the State Comptroller).

April 15, 2015

Budget Overview:

The following is a brief overview of certain portions of the State Fiscal Year 2015-16 Budget related to the workforce, pension, ethics and financial disclosure. These are in addition to the budget's advancement of legislation providing for the July 1, 2015 (2%), April 1, 2016 (2%), April 1, 2007 (2%) and April 1,2018 (1%) M/C general salary increases.  

Forfeiture of Pensions for All Public Officials Convicted of Felonies The Budget, in conjunction with a stand-alone proposed constitutional amendment to Section 7 of Article V of the New York State Constitution (A.6722 / S.4611), contains language that would authorize the forfeiture of public officials' pension for a felony conviction related to public office regardless of when they became a member of the New York State and Local Employees' Retirement System and the New York City Employees' Retirement System (hereinafter collectively "Retirement Systems").

In 2011, the Legislature enacted Sections 156 and 157 of the Retirement and Social Security Law (RSSL), authorizing the forfeiture of certain public officials' pensions in the event they were convicted of a crime related to public office.  At the time, the statute only applied to public officials who became a member of one of the Retirement Systems after November 13, 2011.  Such limited applicability was due to . . . more

For Immediate Release:
March 31, 2015
Contact: Barbara Zaron
518.456.5241

STATE BUDGET INCLUDES PAYMENTS TO M/C EMPLOYEES FOR WITHHELD EARNINGS

OMCE to Pursue Legislation to Accelerate Payments in 2016; and Retiree Pension Benefits Adjustments

The Organization of New York State Management Confidential Employees (OMCE) today announced that nearly 10,000 M/Cs will receive a four percent combined salary increase and adjustment along with additional increases over the next three years.   In total, the payments approach $42 million under the 2015-16 state budget.  When combined with a general salary increase in 2014, M/C employees will have realized and received $63 million in current and previously withheld earnings in the last 15 months.In addition, OMCE's advocacy efforts have ensured that active M/C employees, irrespective of promotions and transfers, are also entitled to these benefits.  Prior to OMCE's direct involvement in this issue . . .  more

March 31, 2015

 Budget Update:

Public Protection and General Government budget bill A.3005B/S.2005B was passed and is expected to be acted upon soon by the Governor. This bill provides for the M/C salary adjustments, beginning July 1, 2015, to pay the previously authorized, earned and withheld 7% salary increases.

Budget and payroll bulletins are necessary to pay the April 2% salary increase, performance advance and longevity payments and the July 2015 2% payments. Although we anticipate the April bulletins soon, the specific bulletin release dates are not yet available.

The salary schedules for the April and July 2015 salary increases are here. We are calculating the salary schedule steps and will then post these expanded schedules.

In addition, DRL withheld payments begin effective April 1, 2015 and will be paid out over 39 pay periods.

March 28, 2015

Update:

Budget bill A.3005B/S.2005B has been introduced and provides for the Governor's 4-year schedule of payment of the withheld 7% M/C salary increases from 2009 and 2010. The first 2% increase to pay the withheld monies is effective July 1, 2015. As angry and upset as some of you may be, this action does finally acknowledge that withheld monies must be paid, albeit in this instance on an unacceptably long schedule. OMCE will continue to address the need for an accelerated schedule with the administration and the legislature. Obviously, the outcome of pending union negotiations could negate any M/C parity gains, so we will continue to press that issue too.

While the budget bill removes language aimed at excluding bargaining unit promotees from these increases, it adds new language to ensure that an employee's salary does not exceed the job rate of the applicable salary schedule - and, in the event that the increase is withheld, provides for an effective date for the formal grievance process to challenge the withholding. So, if an employee believes that his/her salary calculation is not appropriate, it can be challenged through the grievance process. OMCE will assist members with this process, as needed.

As previously announced, M/Cs will receive a 2% salary increase - and performance advances and longevity payments, if eligible for them - effective April 1, 2015 (as authorized in Ch. 491, Laws of 2011) and the payment of the Deficit Reduction Leave (DRL) withheld payments, also beginning in April 2015. Once the budget is passed, we will post the new salary schedules on this site.

OMCE ACTIONS ALREADY PLANNED:

   Continuing advocacy with the Legislature and Administration;

   Introduction of legislation that will provide for payment of an additional 3% in next year's budget (on top of the 2% planned payment for April 2016), in order to complete payment of the withheld 7%

   Discussions with Budget Division and Executive Chamber staff as contract negotiations progress, so that contract agreements that include salary increases result in a new or revised MC pay bill

   Introduction of legislation to provide for a "Withheld Pay Adjustment" for pension purposes for MCs who retired since 2009 and who will retire before the withheld 7% is fully paid

   Current legal evaluation of potential litigation re the non-payment of retirees . . .

March 19, 2015

Payroll Bulletin Update:

Payroll Bulletins for various union-represented employees have been issued (or are pending issuance) that provide for the April 1, 2015 general salary increase (where applicable, e.g. to CSEA, but not PEF) and for performance advances, longevity payments, and other collectively-bargained payments.

The 2% general salary increase for M/C employees, also due April 1, is provided for pursuant to Civil Service Law, Section 130. However, before payment can be made, an authorizing Budget Bulletin (followed by a Payroll Bulletin) must be issued that provides for actual payment of the M/C general salary increase, performance advances and longevity payments, as well as for the N/S salary plan process.

Payments should be effective and paid, as follows:

   Administration Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective March 26 - Check dated April 22

   Institution Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective April 2 - Check dated April 30

While it is quite possible that a late or last minute budget would impact timely payment of the M/C increases, nevertheless, once the authorizations are made, the March 26 and April 2 effective dates will be used in calculating the amounts of any retroa

March 24, 2015

M/C Pay Parity Update:

We are now in our third week of meetings (10 in the past week, including today) with the Senate and Assembly leadership and members of both houses and want you to know that M/C pay parity continues to be a part of the budget negotiations. The issues we have raised - accelerate the Executive Budget's proposed M/C pay parity schedule to 2 years (4% July 2015, 3% April 2016) and eliminate the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions - are still very much in play. Your letters are very much in evidence, too - they are important, you are being heard - keep your letters coming!!

March 19, 2015

Payroll Bulletin Update:

Payroll Bulletins for various union-represented employees have been issued (or are pending issuance) that provide for the April 1, 2015 general salary increase (where applicable, e.g. to CSEA, but not PEF) and for performance advances, longevity payments, and other collectively-bargained payments.

The 2% general salary increase for M/C employees, also due April 1, is provided for pursuant to Civil Service Law, Section 130. However, before payment can be made, an authorizing Budget Bulletin (followed by a Payroll Bulletin) must be issued that provides for actual payment of the M/C general salary increase, performance advances and longevity payments, as well as for the N/S salary plan process.

Payments should be effective and paid, as follows:

   Administration Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective March 26 - Check dated April 22

   Institution Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective April 2 - Check dated April 30

While it is quite possible that a late or last minute budget would impact timely payment of the M/C increases, nevertheless, once the authorizations are made, the March 26 and April 2 effective dates will be used in calculating the amounts of any retroactive adjustments that are due to be included in future payments.

March 11, 2015

Update: OMCE Leaders Engaging Legislative Leaders:

OMCE President Barbara Zaron, Executive Director Joe Sano and Counsel John Black are engaged all week in meetings with the legislative leaders, key legislators, and program and fiscal staff of the legislature.

Your e-letters (below) and individualized letters and contacts are making a difference. WE are moving closer to pay parity. The Senate's one-house budget resolution (S.4205) accelerates M/C parity to 2 years (4% July 2015 and 3% April 2016) and eliminates the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions. The Assembly's resolution (A.6005) also eliminates the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions, but it adopts the Executive's 4-year schedule of payments. The Assembly is reviewing the Senate's proposal and the opportunity to accelerate the schedule, as well. Joint legislative committee discussions begin soon and MC pay parity is an issue on the agenda.

We constantly hear about your letters in our meetings with legislators. PLEASE keep sending letters and calling and urging them to resolve this pay parity issue NOW!. The M/C pay parity issue issue is alive, and moving forward.

March 10, 2015

Update:

We have been meeting with Senate and Assembly legislative leaders this week - and will be the remainder of the week, with meetings scheduled Wednesday and Thursday -  urging them to include our OMCE M/C Pay Parity Proposal in their respective house budgets, as negotiations continue between the legislature and the executive toward adoption (on or about April 1) of a final budget for fiscal year 2015-16.

"Ten years is too long to wait for Management/Confidential state employees to get full payment of withheld salary increases!"

On Monday, February 27, OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joseph Sano presented OMCE's testimony (read here) to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee on Workforce Development at its hearing on the 2015-16 Executive Budget proposal. 

February, 25, 2015

Send your letters today!

The 30-day budget amendment period ended without Governor Cuomo taking action on our request to amend his 2015-2016 Executive Budget Article VII, Part H, Phase-In Management/Confidential (M/C) Salary Parity Proposal. During the next several weeks, the Governor and Legislature will be negotiating toward a final budget to be in place on or about April 1.

We have three (3) e-letters for you to send - to the Governor and to your individual representatives in the Senate and Assembly, with copies to the Senate and Assembly leaders - urging them to negotiate amendments to the M/C Salary Parity Proposal that will (1) accelerate the schedule, so that pay parity can be fully achieved in the upcoming fiscal year, (2) include former bargaining unit employees, now M/C, who the Governor's proposal excludes, and (3) achieve pension parity for those already retired who were subject to the pay withholdings. Please send these e-letters and urge them to take action today!

Instructions: Once you take action on your letter to the Governor and click submit, the Senate letter will appear on your screen. After you do the same with the Senate letter, the Assembly letter will appear on your screen for action and submission. Please send these e-letters and urge action today! Write to them HERE - Send your Letters TODAY (ended 3/28/15) 

 

Comptroller Tom DiNapoli stops by the OMCE Table at the 44th Annual Conference of the NYS Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators, which was held the weekend of February 13-15 at the Empire State Plaza in Albany. Shown here with the Comptroller (left) are OMCE President Barbara Zaron and George Delamar, OMCE Representative.

February 23, 2015

OMCE in the News: Editorial,

Albany Times Union: "The Missing State Raises" ISSUE: Non-unionized state workers who haven't seen raises in years will get them - eventually. THE STAKES: How long will one group of employees have to balance the governor's budget? Click Here to Read >>

February 6, 2015

Data Security Breach:

We have received an advisory from the Civil Service Department's Employee Benefits Division (reproduced below ▼) concerning today's news of a data security breach experienced by the hospital administrator for The Empire Plan and the NYSHIP Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield HMO.

We will post updates here as as additional information become available to us. Meanwhile, we call your attention to our ID Theft Protection benefit, which is available to OMCE members at no cost (Login Here and scroll down to Improved Free ID Theft Protection to register, or call OMCE at 800.828.6623 for information). If you haven't done so, sign up today - incidents like this highlight the importance of this free ID Theft Protection member benefit.

Anthem, Inc., the parent organization for Empire BlueCross and BlueShield (the hospital administrator for The Empire Plan and the NYSHIP Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield HMO). today reported an extensive security breach of their member data. Names, dates of birth, member IDs/Social Security numbers, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and employment information of current and former members were impacted. In the coming weeks, Anthem will send letters to impacted members with an offer of free credit monitoring and identity protection services.

NYSHIP recognizes that enrollees are concerned about this situation and that they will have questions about their personal information. Please direct inquiries to www.anthemfacts.com or 1-877-263-7995. The web site includes a FAQ and will be updated as additional information becomes available.

 

 


 
Attention Members:2017  OPEIU Scholarship Forms -Now Available See Benefits Section


 

 

PEF/MC PAY BILL SENT TO GOVERNOR
Albany, NY   2/22/2017

The PEF/MC Pay bill (S4067/A04542) was transmitted today to the Governor for approval. Since this is his Program Bill a quick approval is expected shortly. 

DOB and OSC can then begin the issuance of their respective budget and payroll bulletins.

We will announce on this website the 2016-2017 fiscal year retroactive check payment dates once the MC Budget Bulletin is released.

The current proposed Executive Budget contains allocations required to support the payment of all 2017-2018 increases scheduled for MC and PEF unit employees as contained in the pay bill. Budget discussions will get serious beginning next week. 

Unlike the past few years,agencies will not be forced to completely fund the 2017-2018 raises from existing personnel service allocations.  Hopefully this will loosen up agency ability to fill authorized vacancies.

 

 

LEGISLATURE COMPLETES PASSAGE OF PEF/MC PAY BILL
Albany, NY   2/14/2017

The Assembly version (A04542) of the PEF/MC pay bill was passed on Monday 2/13/17. With the corollary PEF/MC Pay Bill (S4067) passing the Senate last week it should be quickly transmitted to the Governor for approval.  

DOB and OSC can then begin the issuance of their respective budget and payroll bulletins.

DOB previously announced its plan to complete the payment of all MC/PEF 2016-2017 retroactive payments spelled out in this pay bill from 2016-2017 budget allocations.

The current proposed Executive Budget contains allocations required to support the payment of all 2017-2018 increases scheduled for MC and PEF unit employees as contained in the pay bill.

 

 

 

 

 State Senate Passes Pay Bill  and  Assembly Moves It Too!  
Albany, NY   2/7/2017

 

With a 61-0 vote the PEF/MC Pay Bill S4067 was passed. That same day the Government Employees Committee passed their house’s (same) version of the Pay Bill (A04542) and sent it the Ways and Means Committee where it was reported out to the Rules Committee. The Rules committee will schedule it onto an “Active”/Voting Calendar of the Assembly where passage should occur the week of February 13, 2017.

It should be quickly transmitted to the Governor for approval and then DOB and OSC can then begin the issuance of the payment implementation bulletins.

 

 

 

 

OFFICIAL new MC Salary Schedules 2016-2019 (for more information click here)

UPDATE: Albany: Friday February 3, 2017

PEF/MC Paybill-S4067 (Amedore), is in the  Rules Committee ( the last committee before being place on the Senate's active/voting calendar.  The Assembly corollary bill; A4542,( Abbate) is  on the Government Employees Committee agenda for Tuesday  2/7.  Once approved it will go to the Assemnly's Ways and Means Committee ($$ bill) for approval and then placed on the active/voting calendar for a vote.  Each legislative branch requires three readings (placed on three daily agendas) of the bills and then the bill goes from that active calendar to the floor calendar for a vote in each chamber.  This bill remains on schedule to allow payment of retroactive payments in this fiscal year.

The Governor has introduced his Program Bill* to the legislature that will authorize the proposed increases of 2% COLA for 2016-17 Fiscal Year (retroactively to April 2016) and the 2017-18 COLA increase of 2% compounded onto the existing 2% parity payment and in 2018-2019 Fiscal Year another 2% COLA again onto the last 1% of the previously approved parity payments.  The administration’s plan is that this PEF/MC Pay Bill will be quickly approved by the legislature and signed into law, so that retroactive payments and updated schedules can be implemented prior to the close of the fiscal year (3/31/17). We will update this website on the progress of the OMCE Pay Bill as well as the issuance of the required Budget and Payroll Bulletins which will dictate pay dates once the legislation is signed into law.

*Complete Text of PEF/MC Pay Bill can be found at: (Part B)
https://www.governor.ny.gov/sites/governor.ny.gov/files/atoms/files/GPB3_PEFMC_PAYBILL_BILL.pdf

 

SAVE RETIREE  HEALTH INSURANCE SEND E-LETTERS TO YOUR STATE LEGISLATORS

The Executive budget (see summary in Budget analysis below) once again seeks to cap spending for retiree health insurance by instituting a sliding scale for the employee's percentage share of  retiree health insurance as well as capping Medicare reimbursement rates and ending reimbursement for the IRMAA Medicare payments.  Click here or on the Action Line menu button to oppose these changes.
The coverage you save may be or is your own!

 

OMCE Delivers 2017 Executive Budget Testimony

Wednesday January 25, 2017 Albany.
President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joe Sano testified before the joint legislative hearing on "Workforce Development". The complete written testimony can be found here.

 

Continuing Analysis of Proposed NYS Executive Budget (for more information click here)

 

** 2017-18 PROPOSED NYS EXECUTIVE BUDGET.....1st Glance **

OMCE comments and emphasis are shown as bold ,underlined and italicized text.  Updated information will be shared once our Wednesday January briefing by DOB is completed.

(The following has been taken from the Executive Budget Briefing Book (State Workforce Section p 111-115)

"The State has reached responsible labor agreements with several employee unions, and is in the midst of negotiations with the remaining groups. Labor agreements are in place with unions representing State Troopers, Officers and Investigators through FY 2018. In addition, three-year agreements have been reached with the Public Employees Federation and with the Graduate Student Employees Union (pending member ratification). Both agreements provide for annual 2 percent general salary increases in FY 2017, FY 2018 and FY 2019, respectively. The budget also includes extension of the provisions of these agreements to M/C employees." (Emphasis added)

(Details on the additional 2016-17 (FY 2017), 2017-18 (FY 2018),and 2018-19 (FY2019) COLA increases in addition to currently scheduled (April 2017 2% and April 2018 1%) statutory parity increases will be finalized shortly . Proposed FY salary charts showing ALL M/C compensation increases in this Executive budget will be available shortly.

WHAT'S OLD IS NEW AGAIN...or...Retiree Health Insurance Roll Backs Proposed ..Again!

(The following has been taken from the Executive Budget Briefing Book (State Workforce Section p 111-115)

"The Executive Budget includes three proposals to help restrain the growth in State retiree health care costs. Over the past three fiscal years, New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP) costs for retirees have increased about 16%, from $1.11 billion in FY 2014 to $1.28 billion in FY 2016. This is well beyond the benchmark growth rate of 2% per year, and challenges the State’s ability to remain economically competitive.

"Implement Differential Health Care Premium Contributions for Certain New Retirees Based on Years of Service. Currently, the taxpayer cost for a retiree with 10 years or more service is the same as that for a retiree with 30 years of service. Under this proposal, similar to the calculation for pension benefits, taxpayer support for new civilian retirees would vary based on years of service. Those retiring with less than 30 years of service would receive a taxpayer subsidy which is less than that for retirees with 30 or more years of service. Subsidies begin at ten years of service, and gradually increase until they are no different than current levels once an individual reaches 30 years of service. This change would take effect with new civilian retirees as of October 1, 2017."

( A retread of last year's proposal to create a sliding scale for retiree share of NYSHIP retiree health insurance costs based on years of service.  OMCE once again will join with all public sector AFLCIO Affiates to fight this issue...more details will be posted shortly 

Maintain Reimbursement of the Medicare Part B Standard Premium for New York State Retirees at Current Levels.Currently, New York taxpayers reimburse the standard premium for new and existing retirees at $104.90 per month for those who enrolled in Medicare on or before December 31, 2015 and $121.80 per month for those who enrolled in Medicare on or after January 1, 2016. This proposal would freeze reimbursement at the current levels rather than providing automatic inflationary increases, and make escalators subject to the annual budget process. This change would take effect May 1, 2017, based on rates in effect December 31, 2016. Only five other states reimburse the Standard Part B premium (California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Nevada and New Jersey), and Ohio recently phased out reimbursement.

(This proposal promotes a rate of reimbursement "freeze" starting in May 2017 on Medicare reimbursements for retirees. This proposal continues to disavow the cumulative billions saved by the state through its historic use of Medicare as the state retirees' primary health insurance. OMCE will once again oppose and fight this proposal)

 "Eliminate Taxpayer Subsidy for the Medicare Part B Income Related Monthly Adjustment Amounts (IRMAA) for High Income State Retirees. The Federal government imposed this supplemental IRMAA premium in 2007 to require high income retirees to pay a greater share of Medicare costs. New York taxpayers currently subsidize the entire IRMAA premium of New York State’s high income retirees. This subsidy is worth $642 annually for retirees with an Adjusted Gross Income (AGI) between $85,000 and $107,000, growing to a subsidy of $3,535 annually for retirees with AGI above $214,000. The Budget eliminates this reimbursement effective January 1, 2017. Connecticut and Hawaii (partial reimbursement) are the only other states that provide reimbursement for IRMAA." 

(Again...  The court victory forcing IRMAA surcharge reimbursement payments gets challenged again.  OMCE will again oppose and fight this proposal in unison with all affected.)


Scholarship Time!
01/09/2017



Members are urged to check the “benefits” section of our website for information on the scholarships offered through OMCE.  Both the 2017 AFL-CIO “Union Plus Scholarship” and the Lavina Wright Scholarships are now open and accepting applications. (3/31/2017 deadlines) The 2017 OPEIU Howard Coughlin and John Kelly Scholarship applications HAVE NOT yet been released.  We anticipate that the 2017 forms will be made available by the end of the month and we will update our website with both the forms and new due dates when they are prepared.

Whistleblower Protections Streng

2017-2018 Proposed Executive Budget !-- span class="dsx-bold-large">Click Here for the latest News

 

OMCE and other statewide labor organizations will receive a complete budget briefing Wednesday evening, January 18th. We will be posting our analysis and agency workforce impacts as soon as possible after that briefing.

 

 

 

 In wake of PEF contract approval, OMCE renews call for parity

The state Organization of Management Confidential Employees took the opportunity of the overwhelming ratification of a three-year contract for the Public Employees Federation to once again call for the state’s roughly 9,000 M/Cs, who due to their job classifications are not represented by a union, to receive raises that keep pace with their unionized co-workers in the years to come. More...

 


Maximum Annual Leave Accruals for Management Confidential Employees (M/C)

Check out the latest announcement:

https://www.bsc.ogs.ny.gov/sites/default/files/MC_Vacation_Leave_Jan_1(002).pdf

 

2017 NYSHIP Program Rates and Annual Option Transfer Period

Please see the following publication link for the 2017 health insurance choices and rates.
https://www.cs.ny.gov/employee-benefits/nyship/shared/publications/rates/2017/ny-active-rates-2017.pdf

 

PEP Program for 2017

Civil Service has published Policy Bulletin 2016-02, Implementation of the Productivity Enhancement Program for 2017. (Surrender of annual or personal leave of reduction of health insurance premium)

Text of the Policy Bulletin as well as information will be found at: http://www.cs.ny.gov/attendance_leave/PolBull16-02.cfm

 

NYS Flex Spending Account 2016 Open Enrollment - Deadline Extended

We have been notified by the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations that the 2016 open enrollment application deadline for the Flex Spending Account has been extended. The online enrollment application will re-open beginning Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 12:01 a.m., ET, and continue through November 24, 2015 at 10:00 p.m. ET.

Click here to view the details

 

PEF REACHES TENTATIVE AGREEMENT..MC PARITY ISSUES MUST BE RESOLVED

The state and PEF have reached a tentative agreement on a 3 year contract starting April 2016 and ending March 31st of 2019. Releases indicate agreement on a 6% COLA agreement spread over three years (2%) FY2016, (2%) FY2017, (2%) FY2018. Apparently they have agreed to continue to explore cost savings measures on health insurance. To date there is no agreement for the CSEA or NYSCOPBA (prison guards) represented state employees. The PEF agreement will require approval by its Executive Board and then its membership. If approved, the next legislature (post January 1, 2017) will address the PEF and any other "pay bill" legislation required to implement the new contractual expenditures. The M/C "pay bill" has traditionally been the "B" version of the first statewide major union's pay bill to be addressed. (This is the 1st time PEF has been the 1st to reach an accord on a large unit statewide agreement.

OMCE, on behalf of the M/C employees, has met with and will continue to engage the administration on the multi-faceted M/C compensation and workplace issues.

We have and will continue to press the administration:

 

OMCE Leadership Team Stays the Course

 

Management/ Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) Repayments Ending September 19, 2016

As part of the  Management/Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP), the balance of each M/C employee’s actual deficit reduction plan deductions was to have been repaid to employees in equal biweekly installments over 39 consecutive pay periods beginning with the paycheck of April 16th, 2015 (Institution) and April 22nd, 2015 (Administration). This repayment plan is now nearing its completion. Repayment of the DRP deductions for M/C employees will end in the paycheck dated September 29th , 2016 (Institution) and October 5th, 2016 (Administration). 

Employees should be aware that they may notice a decrease in their paycheck due to the completion of the DRP repayments.  (Information edited from BSC notice of 9/19/2016)

 

REMINDER !! M/C  Maximum Annual Leave Accruals

The maximum annual leave accrual date for Management Confidential (M/C) employees is January 1, 2017. Annual leave accruals for Management Confidential (M/C) cannot exceed the maximum level of 40 days (300 hours for a 37.50 hour workweek; 320 hours for a 40 hour workweek; and pro-rated for part-time) at the beginning of business, on the January 1, 2017 adjustment date. Any accruals above the maximum accrual level will be forfeited at the beginning of business January 1, 2017. Annual leave may exceed this level at any other point during the year.

 

The annual open enrollment for  FLEX SPENDING ACCOUNTS has been announced please follow this link

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 19)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

August 09, 2016

Thruway M/C Employees Lawsuit Dismissed!

(McRae v. NYS Thruway Authority)

The U.S. District Court, Northern District of New York issued its decision in the lawsuit brought by NYS Thruway Authority M/C employees and retirees challenging the Thruway Authority deferral (withholding) of M/C salary increases in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Many of the same or similar arguments as OMCE used in our Levine v. Paterson salary withholding lawsuit were used here and the Court similarly dismissed the claims and granted the Thruway Authority's motion to dismiss.

No information is yet available on any possible additional action e.g. appeal or state court suit. We will continue to monitor. 

 

 

2016 Legislative Session Summary and OMCE’s Next Steps

Let’s review what happened in the 2016 legislative session.

2% Pay Parity-"Somewhat On Time"

With the passage of the 2016-17 NYS budget the stage was set for the next installment of the Parity Payment for MCs.  This repayment schedule, of the previously authorized but withheld pay increases from 2009 and 2010, was a direct result of OMCE’s continuing pressure on the administration to make MCs whole.  While the 4 year schedule was less than ideal DOB acted fairly quickly in releasing its latest Bulletin (D 1133) on April 25, 2016 to effectuate these payments.  It’s important to note that DOB reversed its previous position held since 2009 that one must be in service at the time increases were paid in order to receive them.  Ultimately it pays to persevere, argue and lobby for change.

A "Zombie Bill" …Attacks on Retiree Health Insurance Expected in 2017 Budget

The Medicare/NYSHIP linkage is based on a time tested statutory arrangement that recognizes the State’s savings, the cost sharing by participants, the cash and productivity value of accumulated sick leave and workplace fairness. It is anticipated that the administration facing an annually renewed hole in  the State’s Medicaid budget caused by Federal budget enacted rate changes for dual eligible individuals (eligible for Medicaid and Medicare e.g. the elderly poor) will once again seek to offset its Medicaid increases by curtailing its expenditure for State retiree health insurance programs.  We beat these changes back in 2016 but expect them to reappear in a same or similar proposal. We remain vigilant in this area and joined with all of labor to fight the administration successfully as it sought to:

VETERANS’ EQUALITY ACT APPROVED!!! 

Veterans’ Equality Act ( S7160/A9531) Chapter 41 of the Laws of 2016  was signed into law 5/31/2016 by Governor Cuomo.  This law will now give all veterans the opportunity to buy back up to 36 months of their military service time for NYS pension service credit.  A tremendous team effort/ a show of support from every veteran’s group and every public employee organization made this happen.  Facing an "in-session" legislature and the possibility of a veto override attempt, the Governor signed the identical bill into law that he vetoed twice previously.  The State Comptroller's Office immediately issued guidelines, procedures and forms needed to apply for the military service credit benefit. This information can be accessed at these links

 

Pay Parity Acceleration Act

The Senate passed S6725B, the Pay Parity Acceleration Bill.  Despite Assembly assurances that the bill was going to be acted on before the end of session, on June 14 as we were meeting with Capitol District Assembly Members for a final push on the bill they were told by Assembly Leadership that the Assembly would not pass the bill---due to concerns about intruding on the Governor's prerogative related to how he deals with Management Confidential employees.

As frustrating and disheartening as this is, we do not give up. Discussions with key legislators and the Cuomo Administration will continue as we develop an action plan for our next steps.  ( See “New” Talks Begin with Cuomo Administration in this report)  

Again a special thanks to Assembly members Phil Steck, Angelo Santabarbara, John McDonald and Patricia Fahy, who collectively represent more than one-third of the MC workforce.  They have actively supported our efforts to obtain fair and equitable treatment for MCs, co-sponsored our bills, immediately responded to our requests for their assistance and pushed leadership for action.

MC retirees who had the 2009 and 2010 salary increases withheld, we have not forgotten about you. Our various withheld pay pension adjustments legislative proposals were all rejected due to the fiscal estimates. We have discussed a Tax Credit concept with fiscal committee staff and counsel and are further refining it to develop legislation to be introduced for next session’s budget discussions.

Restoration of M/C Tuition Reimbursement

The M/C Tuition Reimbursement and License Exam Reimbursement Program restoration is a perfect example of never giving up on an issue.  Acting GOER Director Michael Volforte was a principal proponent of this restoration and we thank him for joining our chorus of need to restore this program.  Application forms and Program Guidelines can be accessed at http://www.goer.ny.gov/Training_Development/Management_Confidential/index.cfm       

Please contact OMCE with any questions and/or if you are unable to download these forms.   Agencies have access to this information and forms too.

Justice Center Reforms   Ensuring OMCE Members Receive Justice Too!

Abuse and neglect of citizens with special needs cannot and should not be tolerated.  Nor can the abuse of M/C employees’ rights be tolerated.  OMCE has joined a coalition of labor organizations and providers who are focused on needed reform of Justice Center practices which OMCE and its partners believe are too broad, duplicative, compromise investigative integrity, lack timely resolution and are in conflict with existing regulations of the 5 covered agencies. Paul Francis, the Administration’s Secretary for Health and Human Services, has received the coalition’s issues and we await further discussion and a plan to resolve these problems.    

OMCE’S NEXT STEPS !

Restoring Fairness for Retired MCs     2009-2019 M/C Retirees Tax Credit Parity Act  

OMCE proposals to provide restored pension benefits to MC retirees whose salary increases were withheld in 2009 and 2010 has run into a wall of resistance. These proposals have gained no traction, in part because of the fiscal estimates. Our new approach proposes an annual Tax Credit of 5 percent of one's pension benefit to a maximum of $3,000 per year for 5 tax years with the ability to do this over a 7 tax year period which allows the opportunity to amend returns back to 2009.

The “draft” of this act is:

"AN ACT to amend the tax law, in relation to establishing a personal income tax credit for certain employees who served in a position or positions in the classified service of the state of New York designated managerial or confidential pursuant to article fourteen of the civil service law

The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assembly, do enact as follows:

Section 1. Section 606 of the tax law is amended by adding a new subsection (ccc) to read as follows:    

(ccc) Management/ confidential personal income tax credit.

(1)     Allowance of credit. A taxpayer who served in a position or positions in the classified service of the state of New York designated managerial or confidential pursuant to article fourteen of the civil service law and retired between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2019 and  had a salary increase authorized under Chapter 100 of the Laws of 2008 which was withheld for the fiscal years 2009 and 2010  shall be allowed a credit against the tax imposed by this article equal to 5 per cent (5%) of their NYSLRS single option pension benefit not to exceed $ 3000 annually for 5 years.

(2)     Application of credit. Any tax credit not used in the taxable year of 2016 may be carried forward or backwards for seven (7) calendar years until the full credit has been allowed.       

                    § 2. This act shall take effect immediately. "

Special Commission on Legislative, Judicial and Executive Compensation

While twice rejecting an M/C pay commission the administration did accept an expanded pay commission for judges, state commissioners and elected officials of the State.  This body completed its work on judges’ salary increases in early 2016 but the "elected" commission is stalled.  A debate, similar to that held in NYC when they created a similar pay commission, has begun.  The basic query is whether or not the legislature is full/part-time and possible limits on outside earnings income.  If this is resolved and the commission adopts a pay plan for 2017 it will become law unless changed by the legislature and approved by the Governor.  There are court challenges to this Commission’s creation but they are slowly moving through the courts. 18 years ago was the last time the legislators received a raise.  So far it is hard to tell if the commission will recommend salary increases for any in this group.   If the Commission fulfills its mission the resultant "elected" pay plan will be monitored closely for both its impact and relationship to the M/C salary schedule in effect and any possible pay gaps created between the M/C workforce and the agency commissioners.    

"New" Talks Begin with Cuomo Administration

President Zaron, Executive Director Sano and Counsel John Black and Matt O’Connor met with Ms. Elizabeth DeLeon-Bhargava Deputy Secretary for Labor, Michael Volforte Acting Director of GOER and Jeremy Hoffman, Special Assistant for Workforce Development soon after the legislative session ended and had a very productive discussion.  Follow–up discussions are pending.

We urged the administration:

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 18)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 15, 2016

MC Fairness - Pay Parity Acceleration Bill

 

Last week we reported that the Senate passed Bill No. S6725B, the Pay Parity Acceleration Bill, and that our discussions with the Assembly were ongoing to ensure passage of the companion bill A7448B. Despite assurances that the bill was going to be acted on before the end of session, on June 14, as we were meeting with Capitol District Assembly Members for a final push on the bill we were told that the Assembly would not pass the bill---due to concerns about intruding on the Governor's prerogative related to how he deals with Management Confidential employees.

As frustrating and disheartening as this is, we do not give up. Discussions with key legislators will continue and we are developing an action plan for the rest of the year.

Special thanks to Assemblymembers Phil Steck, Angelo Santabarbara, John McDonald and Patricia Fahy, who collectively represent more than one-third of the MC workforce.  They have actively supported our efforts to obtain fair and equitable treatment for MCs and immediately respond to our requests for their assistance.

 

 

 

 

 

Retirees

MC retirees who had the 2009 and 2010 salary increases withheld, we have not forgotten about you. Our various withheld pay pension adjustments legislative proposals were all rejected due to the fiscal estimates. We have discussed a Tax Credit concept with fiscal committee staff and counsel and are further refining it to develop legislation to be introduced for next session and the budget discussions.

 

 

Town Hall Teleconference 

 Our next call is on Tuesday, June 21, 2016 at 5:30 pm. Call to reserve your spot.

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 17)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 10, 2016

Veterans Equality Act

Governor Cuomo signed the Veterans Equality Act on May 31, 2016 and the State Comptroller's Office issued guidelines, procedures and forms needed to apply for the military service credit benefit. This information can be accessed at these links

 www.osc.state.ny.us/retire

http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/members/military-service-credit.php#

Important Note: The eligibility criteria include the following condition --- must apply for and purchase military service credit PRIOR TO RETIREMENT. The enacted bill DOES NOT allow retirees one year from May 31, the effective date, to apply for the service credit. We suggest that if you apply for the benefit you ensure that your application is:

 

 

Investigator Title Structure Changes

The Department of Civil Service has recently announced structural changes with the Investigator title.  The action is associated with recommendations made by the Sage Commission, to reduce and consolidate the number of pay grades and job classifications.

We know that some agencies are meeting with affected Investigator staff to explain the impact and implications of this change. If your agency has not scheduled a meeting or otherwise provided you with detailed information ask for it.

Permanent incumbents of titles reallocated to a lower salary grade will be held harmless and are salary protected for performance advancements, awards, and salary calculations as long as they remain in their current positions. However, opportunities for promotion may be limited.

Members who have questions, after talking to your agency supervisory and human resources staff, should contact OMCE.

 

 

Town Hall Teleconference

 

Our next Town Hall teleconference is scheduled for June 21, 2016 at 5:30 pm. Please contact OMCE to reserve your spot.        

 

 

 

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 16)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 3, 2016

Veteran’s Equality Act:  How to File for your Credit.

 





The New York State and Local Retirement System (NYSLRS-OSC) website has listed the procedure and forms needed to apply for the recently enacted Veterans’ Equality Act service credit benefit. This information can be accessed by clicking on this hyperlink     www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/

Application information is available:  http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/members/military-service-credit.php#article-20-eligibility



MC Pay Parity Acceleration Bill (A7448B, S6725B)

Our pay parity acceleration bill which seeks to expedite the April 2017 (2 percent) and the April 2018 (1 percent) payment of wages previously earned is moving in both houses of the legislature.

On Thursday morning it was approved by the Senate Finance Committee and advanced to the Rules Committee.  Under the complex steps associated with Senate procedure, it has appeared on the Senate Calendar and has had its “first reading.”  After three readings it is eligible for action by the entire Senate.

TThe Assembly is scheduled to move the bill to the Ways and Means Committee where the sponsor, Assemblyman Denny Farrell, serves as Committee Chairperson.  OMCE anticipates that the bill will then move quickly to the Assembly Rules Committee for calendar scheduling and action before legislators are released for the summer recess – currently scheduled for June 16.



VETERANS’ EQUALITY ACT APPROVED  !!!

Veterans’ Equality  Act ( S7160/A9531)  has been signed into law. Governor Cuomo signed the bill into law-Chapter 41 of the Laws of 2016. This law will now give all  veterans the opportunity to buy back up to 36 months of their time military service for NYS pension service credit.  A tremendous team effort/ a show of support  from every  veterans’ group and every public employee  organization made this happen.  Facing an “in-session” legislature and the possibility of a veto override attempt, the Governor  signed the identical bill into law that he vetoed twice previously.  OMCE thanks all its members, veterans and their families, Senator Larkin and Assemblywoman Paulin for their long time support of this issue.  A detailed question and answer post about the bill details will appear on our website in the next few days.  CONGRATULATIONS!

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 15)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 31, 2016

 

 

We honor the memory and actions of those who gave their lives while serving the United States. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nine days remain in the Legislative Session. The Senate and Assembly return to the Capitol Wednesday, June 1 to consider key pieces of legislation prior to its recess – currently scheduled for June 16.

 

 

 

 

M/C SALARY FAIRNESS

The Accelerated Payment bill (Senate No. 6725B) is on the Senate Finance Committee agenda for this week and is expected to be on the agenda of the Assembly Government Employees Committee’s next meeting (Assembly No. 7448B). Next step will be the Rules Committees of both houses and inclusion onto the respective Floor Calendars for a final vote.

 VETERANS’EQUALITY ACT  

OMCE and the coalition of labor affiliates continue to advocate for enactment of the legislation authorizing military service time to be applied in the aggregate toward state retirement calculations. In short, if you served, this benefit is deserved.  

The bill was sent to the Governor on May 19, 2016.  Action by the Governor is required before June 1.      

NYSHIP BUY OUT EXPANSION  

Legislation is presently being considered by both the full Senate (Bill No. 7120); and the Assembly Ways and Means Committee (Bill No. 9715) authorizing an expansion of the right to collectively bargain for health insurance buyout programs.  

If enacted into law, this legislation would allow those receiving health insurance through the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP), or via a spouse’s enrollment, the opportunity to have this benefit negotiated.  OMCE interest is to preserve the opportunity for extension and application to Management Confidential employees.

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 14)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 19, 2016

 

 

With 12 days remaining in the 2016 Legislative session we are making progress on two fronts….

 

 

 

MC Fairness

Our MC Pay Parity Accelerated Payment bill, A7448B/S6725B has been amended to fix the technical issue that was raised. The bills were recommitted to the Senate Finance and Assembly Government Employees Committees.  The Assembly Government Employees Committee has scheduled the bill for action of Tuesday May 24, 2016. It will then be poised for final action by both houses of the legislature.

Veterans Equality Bill

The Veterans' Equality Act (Pension Credit bills, A9531/S7160), passed the legislature this week and on Thursday May 19 was sent (*) to the Governor.  The bill provides up to three years of service credit for all state and local employees who served in the military and were honorably discharged. The employee must have at least five years of credited service to be eligible and pay the product of the number of years of service times 3 percent of compensation during the year prior to application for each year of new credit they wish to purchase.  The bill also includes those who retired up to one year prior to it becoming law.

   (*) While the Legislature is in session, the Governor has 10 days (not counting Sundays) to sign or veto bills passed by both houses. Signed bills become law; vetoed bills do not. However, the Governor's failure to sign or veto a bill within the 10-day period means that it becomes law automatically. Vetoed bills are returned to the house that first passed them, together with a statement of the reason for their disapproval. A vetoed bill can become law if two-thirds of the members of each house vote to override the Governor's veto. This marks the first time this bill was passed and sent to the Governor while the legislature was still in session.

 

 

Important Notice

Post-NYS Employment and Consulting- What You Need to Know

The following link will bring you to the restrictions on post-NYS employment and consulting. In light of current events it is important that all MC employees be cognizant of these restrictions. Click here to download the PDF

 

2% PARITY INCREASE- BUDGET BULLETIN RELEASED  

4/25/2016 The Division of the Budget has released the Budget Bulletin (D-1133) authorizing the next pay parity installment (2%) of the previously authorized but withheld MC salaries from 2009 and 2010.

The DOB Full Bulletin can be found Here (Opens in New Window)

 

FIGHT TO ACCELERATE PARITY CONTINUES


With the 2nd parity increase of 2 % now scheduled for payment  it is now time to accelerate the schedule and complete the payment of the remaining 3% in this fiscal year. Ten years to complete this repayment is too long! Use our electronic letter system and contact your legislator to support A7448 (Farrell) and S6725 (Young)-MC Pay Parity Acceleration Bill.

 

Click here for information on Tuition Reimbursement for MCs

OMCE supports Civil Service Department Job Analysis Study of Office Assistant 1  Titles

The Department of Civil Service (DCS) is conducting a job analysis study of the recently consolidated titles of Office Assistant 1, Office Assistant 1 (Keyboarding), Office Assistant 1 (Stores/Mail) and related language parenthetics. These titles serve as a critical entry point for careers in administrative services in NYS government. The information obtained from this job analysis study will provide the foundation for future civil service exams and support selection of the most highly qualified individuals for these positions.

DCS staff have reviewed documentation on the jobs included in the study, conducted group interviews with employees and supervisors, and created an online job questionnaire covering the job tasks and general competencies (related areas of knowledge, skills and abilities) for the Office Assistant 1 titles. DCS plans to send an email this week to Office Assistant 1 employees to tell them   about the online questionnaire survey, and ask HR Directors to select a sample of supervisors to complete the online survey. The actual link to the questionnaire will be sent to participants on or about April 11, 2016. Participants will have 2 weeks to complete the online survey.

Completing the questionnaire gives each employee and supervisor a voice in decisions about the exam program and how the Office Assistant 1 employees will be selected.

We appreciate the DCS using a merit system based competitive exam process for development and implementation of this exam. We urge you to complete the survey. Please contact OMCE if you any questions or concerns about this issue.

 

Your Letters on These Issues are Needed Now !!

You are urged to send personal and electronic letters to your legislators.

   OPPOSE Retiree Health Insurance Cost Shifting Schemes Proposed by the Governor (Legislature Rejects)

    SUPPORT Accelerated Payment of Previously Authorized but Withheld MC Salaries

Clicking these links will allow you to automatically send electronic letters to your representatives.  Your letter can be edited to add personal comments if you wish

Members:

This just in OMCE in Action (Volume No. 13)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 13, 2016

#Fairness...

Town Hall Teleconference – May 24

Can't get to an OMCE Lunch and Learn? Just want to know what's happening?

Join us for our teleconference call on Tuesday, May 24 at 5:30 p.m. to get the latest news.  Contact OMCE at 456-5241 for the dial-in number and to reserve your spot

 

 

 

JCOPE Comprehensive Ethics Training Course (CETC):

The CETC is an ethics training course mandated for New York State officers and employees who file an annual Financial Disclosure Statement  (FDS).

The current salary rate for mandated participants is $91,821 and above. If you have any questions about your status as a designated filer, you should contact your state agency or appointing authority.  It is expected that agency Ethics Officers will continue to deliver the CETC to their FDS filers at regular intervals or as needed to comply with the statutory ethics training deadlines. Please contact your Ethics Officer for additional training dates at your agency.

 

JCOPE will also present live sessions at its Albany office located at 540 Broadway and via video conference at Buffalo and New York City offices. Unless otherwise indicated, two Continuing Legal Education Credits (CLE) are available to State-employed attorneys the first time they attend a CETC session presented by JCOPE.

Upconing Dates:

Tuesday, June 7, 2016, 1-3 p.m. – NOT FOR CLE CREDIT

Tuesday, June 14, 2016, 1-3 p.m. – NOT FOR CLE CREDIT 

Ethics Refresher Training Requirement  - Are You Due?

Everyone who has taken the CETC is required BY LAW to take an ethics refresher every three years thereafter. This means those FDS filers who first took the CETC in 2013, must take an ethics refresher this year in 2016. The CETC previously mentioned satisfies the ethics seminar/refresher training requirement.  

For more information about JCOPE Mandated Training visit: 

 http://www.jcope.ny.gov/training/courseofferings.html.

 

 

Members:

 Back following a short-term pause is OMCE in Action (Volume No. 12)

The start of May brought the return of the legislature to Albany this week, while the legislative accomplishment of the week were few, outside topics and events stemming from scrutiny of past and present officials dominated the headlines.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 6, 2016

Restoring Fairness to MCs in the Post Budget Legislative Session

 

On May 5, OMCE officials and Counsel met with the senior staff representing the Senate Finance and Assembly Ways and Means committees to advance our Pay Parity Acceleration bill (A7448A, S6725A). We are working to resolve a technical issue that was raised. We remain steadfast in our commitment to having this bill considered and passed prior to the June session recess.

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act

 

OMCE Counsel attended a meeting on May 5 with Assemblymember Amy Paulin, Assembly sponsor of the original bill, A9531/S7160 (vetoed by the Governor) to adopt strategy for passage of this bill, since negotiations with the Governor's office have not produced a new agreement.  

The Senate passed Bill No. S1760 and the Assembly is considering the bill prior to advancing Bill No. A9531 for a vote.  On May 9, OMCE and union representatives are planning on attending a meeting of the AFL-CIO and will be taking up the issue.  Assemblymember Paulin will meet with OMCE Counsel to report on status and next steps on May 16.  

 

 

 

 

 

May 2, 2016

News: Comptroller's Office has issued the Payroll Bulletin (1482, 1483, 1484) covering G 17 and below longevity, the 2% parity increase and the performance advance (steps) respectively.

 

Members:

 

OMCE in Action – Volume No. 11  

Late last week, the legislature departed Albany in keeping with a scheduled recess that continues until Tuesday, May 3.  

An interim update follows.

 

 

April 22, 2016

Restoring Fairness for MCs  

OMCE is scheduled to meet in early May with Cuomo Administration representatives, and with Legislative staff to underscore our continued commitment to issues of fairness to MC employees.  Included in our roster of priorities are: acceleration of payment of the withheld salary increases, and a proposal to grant a tax credit/tax rebate for affected MC retirees impacted by the 2009 and 2010 withholdings.    

Budget Bulletin  

Division of Budget (DOB) staff advised us that the Budget Bulletin is drafted and awaiting final approval and sign-off.  The increases are effective April 1, 2016 and the effective pay dates are March 31, 2016 for the Institution payroll and April 7, 2016 for the Administration payroll.  

Please note:  Last year's Budget Bulletin was issued on May 8, 2015

 

Tuition Reimbursement for MCs  

Program Guidelines for MC Tuition Reimbursement are posted on the GOER website and in our OMCE website Member's Only section.  If you are interested and apply, please consider and carefully follow the procedural instructions.     

Rockefeller College asked us to share details on its Information Fair on April 28, 2016. Click here for their announcement. ( Opens in new window ) 

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act  

There is nothing new to report this week.

 

 

April 19, 2016

Nominations for OMCE Board of Directors

Our OMCE nominations process began with last month’s notice and a survey of current incumbents whose terms are expiring re: their interest in running again. Now, it’s up to you, our members, to either express your interest or recommend someone you think would be a good Board Member.

The OMCE Board of Directors is charged with providing guidance and direction and setting policy for the organization. Board Members are advocates of many and diverse interests and come with different experiences. As our governing board, they address issues of importance and concern to M/C employees and retirees, reach agreement through consensus, and commission the OMCE staff, law firm and consultants (computer, public relations, and accounting services) to take necessary action.

The Nominating Committee is seeking active state employees who are willing to commit the time, energy and talent needed to address the issues of concern to the approximately 10,000 non-union public employees/officials in the Executive Branch who are eligible for OMCE membership, and to the M/C employees in the other branches of NYS government.

If you are ready, willing and able to invest in OMCE by giving some of your time and energy to address issues such as protection of pension and health insurance, M/C compensation and benefits, conditions of employment, workforce and succession management, job security and discipline, and many others that we are faced with:

Send OMCE your resume and a statement suitable for use on the ballot by June 10, 2016. E-mail (nysomce@gmail.com) or regular mail  5 Pine West Plaza, Suite 513, Albany, NY 122015, or phone us at (518) 456-5241 or (800) 828-6623 if you have any questions.

Members:

We are pleased to present to you OMCE in Action (Volume No. 10) - a direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

April 8, 2016

 

GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES ONE-YEAR RETROACTIVE CONTRACT AGREEMENT WITH PEF 

 

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that his administration has reached a retroactive one-year labor agreement (2015-2016) with the New York State Public Employees Federation.

The one-year contract agreement includes a two percent salary increase retroactive to April 1, 2015. The cost of the agreement is $73 million. The agreement must be ratified by the PEF Executive Board which is scheduled to meet in May and a pay bill introduced into the legislature to enact its monetary provisions.

MCs received their 2% COLA effective April 2015 plus the first 2% installment (July 2015) of the increases withheld in 2009/2010. OMCE will continue to press for passage of its legislation (A 7448 and S6725) which calls for the remaining 3% of the previously authorized but withheld salaries to be paid this fiscal year.

OMCE President Barbara Zaron stated …“With this pending PEF agreement in place it is imperative that the MC workforce now be made whole for all previously authorized but withheld salaries plus similar cost of living adjustments going forward.”  Without these adjustments, the salary gaps between people in different bargaining units but the same grade level and those supervised to their supervisors will be further exacerbated….”  Zaron concluded, “MCs have been waiting too long for this issue to be fixed--the time is now!”

 

April 7, 2016

 

Restoring Fairness for Retired MCs

OMCE proposals to provide restored pension benefits to MC retirees whose salary increases were withheld in 2009 and 2010 has run into a wall of resistance. These proposals have gained no traction, in part because of the fiscal estimate. Your OMCE representatives are drafting legislation that will yield a benefit to all affected MC retirees but will not be tied to the pension benefit. Our new approach proposes an annual Tax Credit/ Tax Rebate (where taxes do not reach the amount of the credit or for out of state resident retirees) of 5 percent of one's pension benefit to a maximum of $3,000 per year.

 

 

 

Restoring Fairness for MC Employees 

Despite extensive efforts, OMCE's salary increase acceleration bill did not make it into the 2016-17 state budget. The stand-alone bill A.7448 is scheduled to be on the Government Employees Committee agenda at its next scheduled meeting. S.6725 is in the Senate Finance Committee. We are continuing to fight on your behalf to keep this issue moving and to obtain passage this session.

 

 

 

Budget Bulletin? Where is the Budget Bulletin?

The Division of the Budget has not yet released the budget bulletin authorizing payment of the MC performance advances, N/S advances, longevity payments and 2% across the board salary increases for 2016-2017. These increases are effective April 1, 2016 and effective pay dates are March 31, 2016 for Institution payroll and April 7, 2016 for Administration payroll.  Last year's bulletin was issued on May 8, 2015 as a reference point. We will continue to press the Division of Budget to issue the bulletin as soon as possible.

 

 

 

Tuition Reimbursement for MCs

OMCE is pleased to announce the restoration of the M/C Tuition Reimbursement and License Exam Reimbursement Program. Application forms and Program Guidelines can be accessed by clicking here.   Please contact OMCE with any questions and/or if you are unable to download these forms.   Agencies will shortly have access to this information and forms too.

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act

The Veterans Equality Act failed to make it into the final budget agreement. Assembly bill sponsor Amy Paulin said she was "deeply disappointed that the credit was left out of the budget, and that the majority conference was committed to making it a reality by the end of the legislative session in June."  

Senate bill sponsor Bill Larkin said, "We kept fighting for the Veterans Equality Act (VEA) down to the last minute of the budget process. I regret to inform our veterans that Gov. Cuomo has not included the VEA in this year's State Budget. Despite its popularity and bipartisan support in both houses of the State Legislature, Gov. Cuomo has once again refused to recognize the sacrifices made by ALL veterans. The Governor's failure to take action on this issue, in the face of the fact that he committed to doing so, is very disappointing. Be assured, I will not be deterred. The fight for the Veterans Equality Act is not over."

OMCE will continue to work as part of the coalition of unions and veteran’s advocacy groups urging passage in the 2016 legislative session

 

 

Members:

 

The 2016-17 state fiscal year is only hours away.  While our objectives have been crystal clear, the process remains far from transparent.  Here is what appears to be on the horizon.

 

 

March 31, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 9

A Budget Victory: Defeating Higher Health Care Costs for Retirees

It appears our collective advocacy effort, with the support of the Legislature, we have derailed Governor Cuomo’s recommendations to increase health care costs on state retirees. OMCE appreciates the Legislature’s rejection of the Executive’s proposals.

A Sustained Fight:

 

Ensuring OMCE Members Receive Justice Too!

 

Abuse and neglect of citizens with special needs cannot and should not be tolerated.  And, we believe it is equally important that our member’s rights must also be preserved.  OMCE has joined a coalition of six labor organizations who have written to Paul Francis, Governor Cuomo’s Deputy Secretary for Health and Human Services asking for a review of Justice Center practices which OMCE and its partners believe are too broad, duplicative, compromise investigative integrity, lack timely resolution and are in conflict with existing regulations.   

 

 

 

Appellate Division Upholds Unit Determination Cases

The state Appellate Division upheld a lower court decision that commanded the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations to honor a unit determination petition agreement they made with PEF.   Roughly 250 management-confidential employees’ items in various state agencies are subject to this decision.  

The suit resulted from GOER’s attempt to back out of a 2013 agreement in which PEF agreed to withdraw its attempts to absorb some 2,000 positions that the union said were more properly categorized as non-management jobs.  Any further State appeal is unknown at this time.  

It is important to note that while not directly tied to this case, PEF members continue to work without a current contract and its negotiations on a successor agreement continue.  

*    *    *

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate you on going interest and support.

 

Members:

At this writing of OMCE in Action, the state budget countdown clock reads: eight days.

March 24, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 8

Legislative Conference Committees Convene; Staff Negotiations Ongoing

Our top priority remains Assembly Bill 7448 (Senate 6725​).  

OMCE's proposed acceleration of the payments of previously earned and authorized wages were not included in the respective one-house budget bills, however, despite this fact, they have not been forgotten or abandoned and are being discussed during the ongoing budget negotiations.   

Additionally this negotiation process resulted in our bills receiving technical amendments.  These proposals remain as "stand alone bills" and if not included in the final budget document, they remain positioned for action by the legislature

Budget Bulletin Anticipated to Outline Two-Percent Increase for April 2016

Current statute (Section 130 of Civil Service Law) calls for the next 2 percent payment of the previously authorized but withheld monies to be paid effective April 2016.  This payment requires a Budget Bulletin that will also include instructions on the payment of the 2 percent performance advances, longevity payments (G17 and below) and payment procedures for those paid as NS without equation to a salary grade.   

It is customary that the bulletin be issued following the adoption of the state budget.  

OMCE monitors this closely and is in constant contact with the Division of the Budget and Governor’s Office of Employee Relations regarding a timely release of the bulletin.  The increases are effective March 31, 2016 for the Institution Payroll and April 7 for the Administration Payroll.

Tuition Reimbursement for MC Employees

Positive discussions with GOER continue regarding the reestablishment of the Tuition Reimbursement and Professional Development Program.  Details are being finalized and we will share them upon completion.

Veterans' Equity Act

OMCE is a signatory to a letter to the Governor and legislative leaders sent by a coalition of unions, veterans groups and others regarding the potential application of state retirement service credits for military duty.   

The one-house budget bills of the Assembly and Senate seek to extend military service buyback credit to ALL veterans who have served in the military

MC Compensation - Public Employees

OMCE monitors national trends in the compensation of MC public employees as well as litigation involving various parties of interest.  Here are a few notable actions (and inactions):

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate you on going interest and support.

 

 

March 2016 Nominations for OMCE Board of Directors:

Each year at this time, we begin looking for OMCE members in good standing interested in serving on the OMCE Board of Directors. There are five seats to be filled this year, each for a three year term. The nominations process is simple, since a member can nominate him/herself. Submit your resume, a letter stating your interest to run for a Board seat and a statement that can be used with the ballot, describing your background, the issues and priorities you would want to focus on as a Board Member, your participation in OMCE and why you would be a good Board Member. The material is reviewed by the Nominations Committee members who will present a slate of nominees to the OMCE Board and, if needed, arrange for the mail ballot election. Nominations, via e-mail or regular mail, must be received in the OMCE office no later than June 10, 2016.  

Board Members are expected to participate either in person or via teleconference in four Board Meetings per year (March, June, September/October and December) and to serve on at least one committee. Board Members are not paid to serve on the Board, but travel expenses if required are reimbursed at State rates.  

OMCE is an organization of, by and for M/C employees who voluntarily choose to join, since designation as an M/C does not mean automatic enrollment as an OMCE member. OMCE officers and committee members are all volunteers for these positions.  

We need active working State M/C employees who are interested in being leaders in the fight to improve the working conditions of M/C employees and to ensure that their rights and benefits are protected. For additional information, contact OMCE atnysomce@gmail.com518-456-5241 or at 1-800-828-6623.

 

Waiver of Holiday Compensation Deadline for Enrollment - May 15, 2016

March 18, 2016

Each year, between April 1, 2016 and May 15, 2016, employees who are eligible to receive holiday compensation may elect to change the way they receive this compensation. Employees who are now receiving holiday pay for time worked on a holiday may elect to receive leave credits, and employees who now receive leave credits for time worked on a holiday may elect to receive holiday pay. If an employee wishes to keep their existing holiday compensation option, no further action is required.  

Eligibility  

This benefit is available to employees in the CSEA, PEF, Council 82, DC-37, NYSCOPBA, and PBANYS bargaining units. Management-confidential (M/C) employees in salary grades 22 and below are also eligible.  

Completing a Waiver Form  

Employees who want to change their existing holiday compensation option should complete the Waiver of Additional Money for Holiday Work 2016 and return it to the BSC Time and Attendance Unit no later than May 15, 2016.  Forms received after this date will not be processed.  

Completed forms may be emailed to BSCTimeAdmin@ogs.ny.gov or mailed to:

OGS Business Services Center Time & Attendance Unit

Building 5, W. Averell Harriman State Office Campus, 4th Floor 1220 Washington Avenue

Albany, NY 12226-1900

 If you need assistance or have questions, please contact the BSC Time & Attendance Unit at (518) 457-4272 orBSCTimeAdmin@ogs.ny.gov.

 

 

OMCE in Action

SUBJ:  One-House Budget Bills – An Update For Members:

Assembly Bill No. 7448 and Senate Bill No. 6725

Acceleration of Previously Authorized but Withheld M/C Salaries

While not in the one-house bills prepared independently by the Assembly and Senate, OMCE’s "acceleration bill" has been advanced by the Senate Finance and pending for action in the Assembly Government Employees Committee. We anticipate that both the Assembly Ways and Means and the Senate Finance Committees will be considering this legislation following budget resolution.

PLEASE KEEP SENDING YOUR E-LETTERS, AND CALLING YOUR LEGISLATORS.

Your efforts thus far are helping ensure that this legislation is moving in parallel to budget negotiations; and being evaluated on its merits as a "Stand Alone Bill."

 

Governor’s cost shifting attacks on State Retiree Health Insurance Rejected!

 

Both one house budget bills have denied the Governor’s proposed cost shifting retiree health insurance schemes.

 

 

 

Veterans Equity Act

 

Members:

This week’s edition of OMCE in Action (OIA) is once again, focused on tracking legislation of interest and concern to our membership relative to the coming state budget deadline and anticipated passage on or about April 1, 2016.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate your ongoing interest and support.

March 11, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 7 is singularly focused:

State Budget Negotiations Intensify

The Assembly and Senate each announced their budget priorities this week. Both houses are expected to approve their respective one-house budgets – as early as Monday, and then enter into a conference committee process.  Their deliberations are often unpredictable and it is our goal to maintain a top-of-mind position in both the Senate and Assembly.  As reported previously OMCE’s priority is your priority – expediting the payment of wages MCs earned in 2009 and 2010 – which have yet to be paid. 

OMCE’s advocacy efforts this week were heavily skewed toward the Assembly majority conference, which included:

In parallel to our legislative advocacy, OMCE is encouraging senior state officials at GOER to share with Executive Chamber staff the positive programmatic and fiscal impact of the proposed legislation

 

 

Members:

This week’s edition of OMCE in Action (OIA) is focused on tracking legislation of interest and concern to our membership.  We remind you that March calendar brings additional intensity associated with the State budget and related matters impacting our legislative priorities and objectives.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. Our direct subscriber list continues to grow.  We appreciate you interest and support.

March 4, 2016

 

OIA – Edition No. 6 has three significant topics:

 

Senate Committee Expected to Begin Acting on Salary Restoration Bill

Next week, the Senate Civil Service Committee is expected to consider Senate Bill  No. 6725 – legislation specifically prepared to expedite the payment of wages MCs earned in 2009 and 2010 – which have yet to be paid.  The Chairman of the Committee, Senator Martin Golden is a co-sponsor of this legislation. 

We encourage you to contact Senator Golden’s office via telephone:  518.455.2760; email golden@nysenate.gov; or advance a letter via the OMCE Action Line.

 

 

 

 

Budget Negotiations to Include Opportunity to Be Credited for Military Service

We have been advised that legislation authorizing recognition by the New York State Retirement System of specific military service will be supported by the Assembly and Senate as they prepare one-house budgets and advance topics to be considered during the 2016-17 budget negotiations.  Senator Bill Larkin and Assembly member Amy Paulin have championed this legislation which was vetoed last year by Governor Cuomo.

 

 

 

 

 

Action Line Letters Target Unacceptable Changes to Retiree Health Insurance

Last week we encouraged your direct grassroots involvement via our Action Line postings.  If you have not yet had the opportunity to take a moment to become involved with this important initiative – it is not too late.  

In particular, OMCE urges you to visit OMCE Action Line and submit an electronic letter outlining our opposition to changes that if enacted would:

 

 

Members:

We advance to you for review the latest edition of OMCE in Action (Volume No. 5) – an ongoing update and direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

February 26, 2016

Highlights from the Telephone Town Hall 

 

Thank you to those of you who participated in Wednesday evening’s conversation. 

The session focused on our top priorities for 2016:       

 

 

Action Line Letters are Live and Available 

 

 

In a related matter, members are encouraged to review our latest Action Line postings available at www.nysomce.org.  

The material allows for direct targeting of legislative members and ensures that you are recognized as an active and involved member of OMCE.  It is important that we sustain our advocacy as the budget season accelerates and escalates in intensity.

 

 

A Respected Senator Signs on OMCE Priority Legislation  

 

 OMCE learned this week that Senator Martin Golden of Brooklyn will co-sponsor the bill requiring accelerated payment of wages earned by MCs and withheld in 2009 and 2010.  The Senator is chairman of the Civil Service and Pension Committee.

 

 

 

 

Salary Commission Comments Draw a Connection to State Deputies and Managers.

During this week’s meeting of the Legislative, Judicial and Executive Pay Commission, several members made interesting connections between their charge and the impact on MC employees.  The Albany Times Union reports:

For one, commission member Roman Hedges, an appointee of the Democratic Assembly majority, said salary data for more senior civil servants — who are not under the commission's purview — should be considered as the panel forms its opinions on what those workers' bosses should be paid.

While there are mounds of data to absorb and public comments to solicit, commission member James Lack, an appointee of the Senate Republican conference, gave an indication that pay — at least within the executive branch — needed to rise by a significant amount.

"In the weight of all things, once these poor people who haven't had raises for 18 years finally get a raise — and obviously it's not going to be a 3 percent raise — their deputies for all these years ... are certainly going to be looking to fill the gap between whatever their salaries are and the new department head salary," Lack said. "We don't set those, but we in effect are doing that."

 

February 23, 2016

CIVIL SERVICE  PREPS TO EXPAND PCO (Professional  Career Opportunities) EXAM - Click for Story

 

Members:

We are pleased to present to you OMCE in Action (Volume No. 4) - a direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

February 18, 2016

 

 State of Politics Blog Reports on OMCE Legislation

Last week’s edition of OMCE in Action shared news of commitments by Senator Catharine Young and Assemblyman Denny Farrell to sponsor bills that would require payment of wages you earned in 2009 and 2010 which were unfairly and unjustly withheld.  The well-read and regarded State of Politics political blog published a piece on the development.   

The complete posting is available here: 
 http://www.nystateofpolitics.com/2016/02/bill-would-bump-up-pay-raise-schedule-for-mc-employees/

 

 

OMCE’s Top Legislative Priority to be sponsored by Senator Catherine Young and Assemblyman Farrell (Update).  

In a related matter, OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joseph Sano met with the Assembly Program and Counsel staff to discuss details of Assembly Bill No. 7448.

 

 

OMCE Participates in New York State AFL-CIO Pension and Taylor Law Task Force Meetings.

 

OMCE’s Joseph Sano represented OMCE at the recent session. 

Discussions focused on Veterans pension equity and proposed changes to retiree health insurance outlined in the executive budget. OMCE opposes these changes to retiree health insurance, and included its position during testimony offered at the joint legislative budget hearings conducted on February 3.

 

 

 

Legislative, Judicial and Executive Pay Commission Announces Upcoming Meeting

Earlier this week, it was announced that the Commission charged with maintaining appropriate salary levels for the state judges, legislators and high-ranking administration appointees such as Commissioners. It will convene on February 22 in New York City.

For additional information on the Commission, please visit:
http://www.nyscommissiononcompensation.org

 

 

 

Scalia Passing to Impact Key Supreme Court Cases

The unexpected death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia will have a significant impact on a number of important matters under consideration by the U.S. Supreme Court, and which have the potential to impact those who work in the public sector.  Many are beginning to contemplate the broad based impact on a potential shift in the court’s ideology.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/scalia-public-sector unions_us_56bfdb1ce4b0b40245c6f855

 

 

 

 

 

REMINDER: OMCE Telephone Town Hall February 24 at 5:30 pm.

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

 

 

OMCE at Caucus Weekend

Our thanks and appreciation to our colleague and representative George Delamar who staffed OMCE’s table along with President Barbara Zaron at the Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Conference on Saturday, February 13.

 

 

 

 

 

 Members:

Welcome to Week No. 3 of OMCE in Action a direct communication intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

We continue to hear from you that you find these brief summaries informative and the list of direct email subscribers is growing each week.  While you are free to review the content on our website, others have expressed appreciation that it is being shared directly via personal email accounts.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

 

February 11, 2016

OMCE’s Top Legislative Priority to be sponsored by Senator Catherine Young and Assemblyman Farrell.

OMCE is pleased to announce that the respective chairs of the Senate Finance Committee, and Assembly Ways and Means Committee have endorsed and agreed to sponsor legislation expediting payment to MC employees earned, and withheld during the state’s deficit reduction efforts in 2009 and 2010.

The bill numbers associated with the legislation are Senate 6725 and Assembly 7448.

Please Note:  Beginning Wednesday, February 10, State Legislators will be in their home districts.  The Senate and Assembly will reconvene in Albany on February 24, 2016

 

Zaron and Sano meet with Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan.

On Monday, February 8, OMCE President Barbara Zaron, and Executive Director Joseph Sano met with Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan at the Capitol. 

The Majority Leader has been a long-term advocate for OMCE and MCs.  In fact, in 2014, Senator Flanagan, led an effort calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to restore wages of MC’s earned and withheld across the state, including 500 on Long Island

 

 

 

Comptroller DiNapoli’s Advisory Council Provides Input on the Management of the Common Retirement Fund.  

The Comptroller’s advisory council meets periodically to provide independent, expert assistance associated with guiding the state’s $184 billion retirement fund.  OMCE President Barbara Zaron, a member of the Council, attended the session which included a summary of enhanced services being planned to better serve retirement system members and beneficiaries.

 

 

 

 

OMCE to be active at 2016 Caucus Weekend.

Look for OMCE representatives this weekend at the 45th Annual Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators annual conference in Albany.  

 

REMINDER: OMCE Telephone Town Hall February 24 at 5:30 pm.

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

Members:

This is the second edition of OMCE in Action a direct communication intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

Many of you provided positive feedback to last week’s update.  In addition to posting on the OMCE website, we are advancing it to our members (for whom we have email addresses)

Please email us with your personal e-mail if you wish to have it sent directly to you.

February 4, 2016

OMCE Delivers Testimony to Legislative Commission Calling for Expedited Payment of Salary Withheld and Owed to MCs    

On Wednesday, February 3, OMCE President Barbara Zaron, and Executive Director Joseph Sano offered testimony to the Joint Legislative Budget Hearing on the Workforce .   OMCE outlined its priorities that included:

To view the archived video testimony visit:  http://assembly.state.ny.us/av/hearings/ Then select: 2-3-16 Joint Budget Hearing – Workforce Development.  OMCE testimony begins at the (3:13:30).  You can advance directly to OMCE content by using the arrow keys -->

To review the complete written testimony submitted to the joint committee visit: OMCE Testimony_20160205.pdf 

Direct lobbying and advocacy of key members and Senior legislative staff.

Since our most recent report, OMCE leadership has met with the staff of:

These sessions are important to advancing OMCE’s priorities.  They provide opportunities to discuss active sponsorship of our key bills, and allow us to reinforce OMCE’s position.  

OMCE Announces Town Meeting via Toll-Free Conference Call on Wednesday, February 24 at 5:30 pm

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

 

Fiscal Policy Institute Offers Briefing on New York Economic Outlook

Prior to offering its testimony on February 3, OMCE representative attended a detailed briefing conducted by the Fiscal Policy Institute.

The most significant issue discussed was the 2016-17 Executive Budget and its impact.   

For more information visit:  http://fiscalpolicy.org.  

 

  

 

Members:

This is the first of a new series of direct communications intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

We are calling it – OMCE in Action. It will be a regular email that we send to you, our members (for whom we have email addresses), to keep you informed of our activities on your behalf.  It will also be posted on our website.  Please email us with your personal e-mail if you wish to have it sent directly to you.

January 26, 2016

OMCE is a trusted source for Capitol-based reporters and broadcasters

On Friday, January 15, Times Union reporter Rick Karlin interviewed OMCE President Barbara Zaron for an article about the proposed changes shifting additional costs to retirees for their health care. http://www.timesunion.com/local/article/State-proposes-to-change-retiree-health-care-costs-6763043.php      

 

OMCE is amplifying the voice and concerns of MC employees

On Wednesday, February 3rd OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joe Sano will provide testimony during the Joint Legislative Budget Committee’s Workforce Development hearing. They will be aggressively pushing OMCE’s legislative agenda including accelerating payments of all previously authorized and withheld salaries as well as seeking support for fixing the diminished pension benefits for those already retired since 2009 and those nearing retirement.  

Testimony presented to the joint-fiscal committees of the Senate and the Assembly will be archived.  OMCE will provide a recap of its testimony and provide links for easy viewing following delivery.

OMCE is keeping an eye on developing trends and issues of importance to its membership

In recent weeks the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in an important case that has its roots in California but will effect labor organizations across the country, and here in New York.  The case, Friedrichs vs. California Teachers Association is focused on the collection of mandatory dues by unions used to support various collective bargaining activities. If successful such an attack will weaken us all.  

OMCE membership provides protection if your position is threatened or challenged due to professional action or judgement

Your membership in OMCE provides you with access to legal defense and protections in investigations, disciplinary proceedings and grievances.  Your membership in OMCE provides access to qualified legal representation during a dispute with the state.   

 

January 14, 2016  

2016-2017 Proposed Executive Budget

At the January 13, 2016 budget briefing for all labor organizations, The Division of the Budget announced: (Complete Budget Synopsis by OMCE Counsel is in Members’ Only Section)

 

January 06, 2016  

Scholarships

Click Here and login to the member area to view the Links for the Union Plus, Lavina Michl Wright, and the Howard Coughlin scholarship links. The John Kelly Scholarship, and the Corbeil/Beauregard Summer Camp Scholarship are now available.

 

December 29, 2015  

Whistleblower Protections Strengthened

A 7951 was signed into law by Governor Cuomo. This law as now enacted will remove the requirement that public employee whistleblowers first notify their supervisors of the improper activity, in order to protect employees where it is the supervisors themselves who are engaged in the improper activity which the whistleblower seeks to report. OMCE has defended its members in past instances where wrongdoing was reported, high level (exempt class) supervisors did nothing with the information and then our members were subsequently brought up on dismissal charges. According to the Commission on Public Integrity, over the years there have been cases where state employees requested anonymity when reporting unethical conduct to avoid retaliation, have refused to cooperate with investigations out of fear of reprisal or, at least in one reported case, been summarily fired, This act modifies the civil service law to remove the early disclosure requirement and thereby protects whistleblowers and enables them to expose improper actions by their superiors.

December 19, 2015

OMCE SETS LEGISLATIVE AGENDA FOR 2016 SESSION

At the December 11, 2015 meeting the OMCE Board of Directors adopted the 2016 Legislative Agenda. It is focused on speeding up payment of the withheld 2009-2010 across the board pay increases currently being piecemealed through 2019. The Board additionally recognized the need to continue the fight to remedy the retirement benefit losses suffered by MCs retiring since 2009.

To fix the ongoing across the board pay increase issue OMCE has had A7448 (Farrell) introduced in the State Assembly and is awaiting the appointment of a new Senate Finance Chair for the introduction of the same legislation. Our bills call for the remaining 5% of withheld across the board pay increases from 2009-10 to be paid in April 2016. Our quest will be to have these bills included in the adopted budget for 2016-2017.

Current law (Civil Service Law Section 130) calls for 2% to be paid in April 2016, 2% in April 2017 and 1% effective April 0f 2018. This creates an unacceptable 10 year pay scenario from the time the increases were withheld through the date of complete pay restoration. Pending union negotiations could result in the MC wage gap with other units becoming even worse. Also scheduled this year will be the recommended pay increase proposals for the Judiciary, Legislature and Statewide elected officials as recommended by the Pay Commission. During this time of “fixing salaries”, it is the perfect opportunity to fix the MC pay debacle without any further delay!

Equally important is the need for pension correction for those MCs who have or will be retiring before the full restoration and impact of that restoration is considered for their final average salary (FAS) computation. OMCE’s agenda has called for the adoption of two distinct bills aimed at addressing these pension losses. They are referred to as the WPPAA bills-Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Acts.

WPPAA Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Act- MCs Retired between 4/1/2009 through 3/31/2014

This proposal will provide an additional month of retirement service credit, but not in excess of 24 months, for each month of employment from April 1, 2009 through 3/31/2014 for members either in the classified service of the state of New York in a position designated managerial or confidential pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service law or in the service of a public authority under the jurisdiction of the state civil service department, Such members must have been in active service during the previously stated time period and had previously authorized general salary increases withheld in fiscal years 2009 and 2010. These changes shall become effective notwithstanding any other law, rule or regulation.

WPPAA Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Act -MCs Retired between 4/1/2014 through 3/31/2019

This proposal will provide that those retirement system members designated managerial or confidential pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service law or in the service of a public authority under the jurisdiction of the state civil service department and had previously authorized general salary increases withheld in fiscal years 2009 and 2010 shall have their annual pension benefit adjusted as follows:

When computing the FAS (Final Average Salary) using the highest average of wages earned during any three consecutive years, each year of wages earned that is utilized in the FAS computation shall be increased by the annual cost of living index percentage for that year ( All Urban Consumers –CPI Index). The resulting FAS will reflect the original highest average of wages earned as stated above, increased by the applicable cost of living index for that respective time period. These changes shall become effective notwithstanding any other law, rule or regulation.

The WPPAA bills are currently being reviewed by the retirement system actuary for cost analysis. Such analysis is required and must be attached to the bills upon introduction. We expect introduction in January upon the legislature’s return. The OMCE board recognizes the challenge of obtaining successful retirement legislation but it is a goal that cannot be abandoned.

Veteran’s Pension Equity although vetoed twice by the Governor has now been targeted by the Executive for a cooperative effort to achieve passage. OMCE supported and continues to support Veterans’ Pension Equity and will continue our work with all other AFL-CIO affiliated unions to achieve a fair resolution of this issue.

The Governor has announced that his State of the State message will be combined with his 2016-2017 Fiscal Year Budget message on January 13, 2016.

DEFFERED COMPENSATION MAXIMUM CONTRIBUTION LIMITS-- CALENDAR YEAR 2016

Maximum contribution limits for employees enrolled in the New York State Deferred Compensation Plan for calendar year 2016.

An additional deferment is available to employees age 50 and over.  These employees can defer up to $6,000 in addition to their regular contribution amount, for a combined total contribution limit of $24,000 in 2016.  Employees are not eligible to choose both the “Retirement Catch-Up” and the “50 and Over Catch-Up” in the same calendar year.

November 24, 2015

2ND Phase – Job Analysis Project

Civil Service Department’s Testing Services Division has contracted for a second phase of a job analysis project which will involve a review of entry level professional titles G-14-18 and traineeships. Incumbents in these titles may be asked to participate in project study/focus groups during December2015 and/or to  take an on-line questionnaire in February 2016 . OMCE supports projects which foster and strengthen the merit system. If you are asked to participate and have any questions or concerns, please contact OMCE.

November 12, 2015  

GOVERNOR CUOMO, SENATOR LARKIN AND ASSEMBLYMEMBER PAULIN AGREE TO ADVANCE LEGISLATION TO EXPAND MILITARY PENSION CREDIT PROGRAM

Governor Also Signs Two Additional Bills on Behalf of New York State Veterans

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, and two legislative bill sponsors, Senator William Larkin and Assemblymember Amy Paulin, today agreed to advance legislation during the next State budget to provide up to three years of additional public pension credit for an expanded pool of eligible state and local employees who served in the military. Governor Cuomo also signed legislation today to provide additional benefits to veterans throughout the State.

“Our Veterans exemplify dedication, patriotism, and sacrifice – and we owe them a debt that can never be repaid. As we celebrate Veterans Day, we honor not only the extraordinary sacrifices they’ve made on our behalf, and their service here and abroad, but also the contributions they make to our communities once they return to private life,” said Governor Cuomo. “New York is one community and one family. Together we hope and pray for the safe return of our military men and women serving around the world. Above all, we remember those who have paid the ultimate price to protect our freedom and security. To our Veterans and military families, on behalf of all New Yorkers, thank you.”

Veteran Pension Credit Legislation

The agreement between the Governor and the legislative bill sponsors will amend existing law to expand the scope of veterans who can receive pension credits for military service.

Current law allows active members of the New York State public retirement systems to purchase service credit for up to three years of military service if the member was honorably discharged, has five years of existing public pension credit, and served during World War II, the Korean War, or the Vietnam Era; or received an Armed Forces, Navy or Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal in connection with service in Lebanon, Grenada, or Panama; or served during theatre of operations in Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman, the Gulf of Aden, the Gulf of Oman, the Persian Gulf, the Red Sea and the airspace above these locations.

New legislation to be introduced will balance the needs of New York State’s deserving veterans with the State’s larger fiscal goals. The proposal will expand the pool of eligible veterans that were not previously covered by law and will also remove restrictions that prevented women from being eligible for the additional pension credit because of prior military policy that barred women from being deployed to a military conflict. The military ended its policy against women being deployed to combat in 2013.

The Governor and legislative sponsors plan to work over the next two months to refine the proposal for introduction in the next budget.

 

November 06, 2015

Management Confidential Employees

Flex Spending Account - UPDATED The 2016 Open Enrollment period is now through November 24, 2015. The enrollment process is on line and is quick and easy. You will need your most recent pay check stub. If you should need assistance with your enrollment call 1-800-358-7202 or visit the website hppt://www.flexspend.ny.gov/. Representatives are available 7 am to 10 pm daily, and will be available until midnight on November 24, 2015.

Health Insurance Choices for 2016 plan year - The annual NYSHIP Option Transfer period will be open after the 2016 health insurance premiums are approved. We will post the dates as soon as they are approved.

Productivity Enhancement Program - Under the Productivity Enhancement Program (PEP) eligible full and part-time employees SG 23 and below may exchange previously accrued annual and or personal leave in return for a credit to be applied toward the employee share of their NYSHIP premium. The credit will be included in biweekly paychecks and divided evenly during the plan year. Credits vary by grade. Please see link: https://bsc.ogs.ny.gov/sites/default/files/2016_PEP.pdf

Full-time employees in positions at or equated to Salary Grade 17 and below:

Employee Group:
Management Confidential:

Forfeited Days NYSHIP Credit
3 $500.00
6 $1000.00  

Full-time employees in positions at or equated to Salary Grade 18-23:


Employee Group:

Management Confidential:
Forfeited Days NYSHIP Credit
2 $500.00
4 $1000.00

To elect PEP for 2016, you must apply between October 26 and November 27, 2015. Ask your HBA for details and an application.

If you are currently enrolled in PEP and are still eligible to participate, you must re-enroll to continue your benefits in 2016.

 

October 26, 2015

Governor Cuomo Vetoes Veterans' Equality Act - Again

In his second consecutive veto of essentially identical bills, Governor Cuomo again strikes a blow against veterans' equality.

The bill again went through the NY state legislature in bipartisan fashion and, in fact, a total of just one legislator voted against it.  

As the law now stands, certain combat veterans are included by the dates and place of their service and certain combat veterans are excluded; certain wartime era veterans are included and certain wartime era veterans are excluded; and all peacetime veterans remain excluded.

The Governor’s veto (#221) contained the Vet’s Equality Act and 4 additional retirement bills. Lumping these together allowed the Governor to postulate that these (5) bills would impose costs that …”were not accounted for in the State’s financial plan and the unfunded costs and expenses would impose a substantial burden on New York State taxpayers….” . This bill (S 5937-A) did provide for a $31 Million appropriation to cover anticipated employer costs but obviously this was dismissed by the Governor as inadequate.

The Governor continues to claim that the near term costs of this bill approaches $60 Million. That figure is dismissed by bill supporters as excessive and based on all possible eligible veterans (again an extremely high estimated number) immediately taking the benefit and then retiring.

http://www.MoveOn.org has also created a petition campaign urging legislators to override the Governor’s veto.

There remains the possibility that a compromise can be worked out with the Executive Branch and this issue can be finally resolved as part of the 2016-2017 budget negotiations which just happens to also be an election year for the legislature.

October 14, 2015

Veterans’ Buy Back Bill (S5937-A Larkin) (A8174-A Paulin) sent to Governor Cuomo  

The Veterans’ Buy Back Bill has been sent to the Governor.  He has 10 days excluding Sundays to act on this bill.  

Supporters may send electronic messages to the Governor urging his approval by using the automated link on www.nysaflcio.org website.  

This bill in enacted into law will provide up to three years of service credit to members of public retirement systems of the state for military service rendered during times of peace; removes requirement that such military service occur during specified periods of hostilities; requires such members have at least five years of credited service, not including military service; This bill appropriates $24,800,000 to cover the expense of providing this benefit.

 

 

 

 

October 6, 2015

NYSHIP ALERTS!  

Excellus Health partners (a NYSHIP plan partner) has suffered a cyber attack where personal information of plan enrollees  may have been obtained. Those at possible risk will receive written notification and instructions on how to register for free identitiy theft protection. OMCE MEMBERS ALREADY ENJOY FREE IDENTITY THEFT PROTECTION THROUGH OUR OPEIU AFFILIATION WITH InfoArmor.

Please see the original notification regarding this newest data breach as posted by NYSHIP/Civil Service which can be found at: https://www.cs.ny.gov/employee-benefits/nyship/shared/apps/whats-new/index.cfm

 

 

September 22, 2015

OMCE Board Elections:

Our recent Board of Directors election produced the following results:
Mark MacConnell, Chad Shelmidine, Robert Perez, Caroline Westbrook, and Rosa Castillo-Kesper were re-elected.

Subsequent to the completion of the election process, Lew Pulver resigned from the Board. Raemel Pascual was approved by the Board of Directors to serve on the Board for one year, the remainder of Pulver’s term.

Officers Elected:
At the September 11th Board meeting the following officers were elected:
President – Barbara Zaron
1st VP - Mark MacConnell
2nd VP - William McCartney
Secretary - Rosa Castillo-Kesper
Treasurer - Robert Perez

August 24, 2015

OMCE President Zaron Comments on Thruway M/C Employees Lawsuit

President Barbara Zaron was the featured guest on Monday's Edition (August 24, 2015) of Capital Tonight, the Time Warner Cable statewide political news and public affairs program.

Similar to the Federal lawsuit filed by OMCE in 2009 when executive branch M/Cs had their previously authorized salary withheld, a group of Thruway M/C employees have now filed a Federal suit and Court of Claims action seeking the restoration of their salaries.

The interview on the treatment of M/C employees can beviewed by Clicking Here, or select tv images on left.

 

 

 

 

August 20, 2015

M/C Lawsuit Versus New York State Thruway Authority

 8/19/2015 Earlier today OMCE learned through media reports that legal actions have been initiated against the New York State Thruway Authority and by extension the State of New York by a group of current and former M/C employees involving wages that have been withheld. More specifically, the plaintiffs have filed a Notice of Intent to File Claim was filed in the New York State Court of Claims, and a separate a Class Action Complaint was filed in U.S. District Court. OMCE litigated similar issues (Levine v. Paterson) in Federal Court (New York Northern District) unsuccessfully in 2011. Our legal team is reviewing the content of what was filed today.

In June, OMCE shared with its members an analysis of relevant Federal and New York State precedent on the viability of litigation to recover salary withholdings occurring in fiscal years 2009-10 and 2010-11 as it relates to current and retired management and confidential employees.

The memo may be accessed by members (Click Here).

August 3, 2015

Senator DeFrancisco Named New Deputy Majority Leader

NY State Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan recently announced that Senator John DeFrancisco (R/C/I-District 50) would serve as the Deputy Majority Leader of the New York State Senate . As a longtime fervent supporter of MC pay parity issues, he introduced and fought for OMCE sponsored legislation seeking an MC Salary Commission. While serving as the Senate Finance Committee Chair he was an outspoken advocate for MC pay parity and an end to the compensation injustice heaped upon those designated MC. OMCE applauds this announcement and looks forward to our continuing cooperation as we seek complete pay parity for MC employees.

 

 

 

 

July 8, 2015

Budget Bulletin Released For July 2015 General Salary Increase

DOB has officially released Budget Bulletin D1132 (https://www.budget.ny.gov/guide/bprm/bulletins/d-1132.pdf) authorizing the July 2015 general salary increase. As OMCE published earlier, the pay dates will be:     

       July 23, 2015 for Institution Payroll employees (June 25th pay period)     

       July 29, 2015 for Administration Payroll employees (July 2nd pay period)

Please note the following excerpted from the bulletin:

Additionally, Part H of Chapter 55 of the Laws of 2015 (i.e., the M/C Parity Bill) provides a situation where certain M/C employees are NOT eligible to receive the increase and a situation where others may only receive a partial increase.

The intent is to prevent State employees who received the collectively negotiated General Salary Increases in their union-represented positions from receiving │ them again as parity increases in their Management/Confidential positions when the resultant M/C salary would exceed the job rate of the employee’s position on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule.

 The two situations include:

 1. Not Eligible for 2% Parity Increase. M/C officers or employees who were promoted or appointed to M/C positions from positions represented by one of the State’s public employee unions and whose salary, immediately prior to July 1, 2015, is at or above the job rate of their M/C salary grade or equated salary grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule are not eligible to receive the 2% Parity Increase;

2. Eligible for Partial Parity Increase. M/C officers or employees who were promoted or appointed to M/C positions from positions represented by one of the State’s public employee unions are prohibited from receiving any portion of the increase which causes such officer’s or employee’s salary to exceed the job rate of their M/C salary grade or equated grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule. Such employees may only receive a partial increase capped at the job rate of their salary grade or equated grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule. Nevertheless, even in these two situations, it may be appropriate to provide the 2% Parity Increase if the employee’s salary does not properly reflect the effect of the three percent general salary increase effective April 1, 2009 or the four percent general salary increase effective April 1, 2010. For these cases, or other situations that may transpire, agencies will be contacted to review the salary histories of certain employees and will work with the Division of the Budget to provide these increases, if appropriate, retroactive to July 1, 2015.

June 26, 2015

Vets' Buyback Bill Passes Both Houses:

The Veterans' Buyback bill (S.5937/A.8174A) passed in the Assembly on Wednesday and, therefore, has now passed both houses of the legislature. This bill was vetoed last year by the Governor. Aside from updated fiscal notes the bill is the same as last year's bill.  

The bill will allow members of public retirement systems who are veterans of the military to purchase up to three years of retirement credit for their service to our nation. Currently, pension buyback for veterans only applies to those who served during times of foreign conflict and who served in the theatre of action. OMCE has worked as part of the coalition of AFL-CIO unions, veterans groups and all those who support equitable pension treatment and parity.

The passage of this bill indicates that pension parity can be considered, passed and hopefully be made law. No date has been set for submission of this bill to the Governor for consideration.

June 26, 2015

APRIL PAYMENTS MADE...JULY 2% RAISE AWAITS BUDGET BULLETIN...STILL!

April 2015 general salary increases, performance advances and applicable (to M/C-17 and below) longevity awards have now all been paid to both Administration and Institution Payroll M/C employees. MCs with an N/S salary designation should inquire with their agency about the status of their respective agency submissions of the N/S salary plan covering advances for those so designated as N/S. July Budget Bulletin has not yet been issued. Regardless, the pay period schedule (the majority of which occurs on and after the effective date of an increase) indicates that given the effective date of July 1, 2015, the Institution Payroll period of 6/25-7/8/2015 will be used to effect the next pending increase for Institution Payroll M/Cs and the Administration Payroll will utilize the 7/2-7/15 pay period. This is not yet official, but reflects the application of pertinent law, rule and practice.

Since no official Budget Bulletin has yet been issued, no official dates have yet been established for the paychecks that will contain the 2% general salary increase. 

May 20, 2015

Last Call for OMCE Board Nominations:

A reminder that the deadline for submitting nominations to the OMCE Board of Directors is fast approaching: Friday, June 12th. For information (in case you missed it), scroll down to the 4/30/15 announcement below.

 

May 19, 2015

Update: Payroll Bulletin #1408, April 2015 M/C Performance Advances, issued May 19 and included below.

 

May 17, 2015

Payroll Bulletins Issued for April 2015 M/C Salary Increase, Performance Advances and Longevity Payments: 

The Office of State Comptroller has issued bulletins with payroll instructions (#1407 April 2015 M/C Salary Increase, #1408 April 2015 M/C Performance Advances, and #1405 April 2015 M/C Longevity Lump Sum Payment) providing for payment of the 2% April 2015 M/C Salary Increase and the fiscal year 2015-16 M/C Performance Advances and Longevities, as authorized by the Division of the Budget (Budget Bulletin 1131). The Salary Increase and Performance Advances will be paid, using the following payment effective dates and check dates:

               Administration Payroll Employees, effective 3/26/15, check dated 6/17/15
              Institution Payroll Employees, effective 4/2/15, check dated 6/25/15

For Longevities, payment will be made as a one-time, lump sum payment (in the amount of $1,250 or $2,500, depending on eligibility - minimum of 5 or 10 years at the job rate), effective 4/1/15, and processed in a separate check dated 6/17/15 (Administration) or 6/25/15 (Institution). There is no direct deposit for the longevity payment.

Questions concerning payments and eligibility should be addressed to your agency/facility payroll office.

Related M/C payroll bulletin affecting employees of the State University Construction Fund: #Other-26 April 2015 State University Construction Fund M/C Salary Increase

In May 2014 Senator Flanagan seized the initiative in soliciting support from his fellow Long Island Republican Senators for a letter (Click Here) urging the Cuomo Administration to find a way to achieve pay fairness and parity for M/C employees. He was a strong supporter of the 2015 Senate budget draft that called for a 2-year pay restoration (3% July 2015 and 4% April 2016), rather than the Governor's 4-year restoration of the previously authorized, but withheld pay increases of 2009 and 2010. Without the Assembly's support in their budget draft, the Governor's 4-year pay restoration plan was adopted as part of the enacted budget.

Congratulations to Majority Leader Flanagan! We look forward to continuing our joint efforts on behalf of fairness and pay parity for MCs. 

 

May 8, 2015

Division of the Budget Releases April 2015 MC Pay Budget Bulletin:

Division of the Budget released the April 2015 Budget Bulletin authorizing payment of the 2% M/C general salary increase, performance advances for employees eligible to receive them, and longevity awards for eligible job-rate employees in Grades 17 and below. The bulletin also contains instructions for agencies to submit salary plans for employees in NS (non-statutory) positions that are not equated to grades. OMCE will closely monitor agencies whose N/S plan submissions have historically been exceptionally tardy.

Employees who were on the payroll as of March 26, 2015 (Administration Payroll) and April 2, 2015 (Institution Payroll) will automatically receive payment (retroactive to the start of the fiscal year), as follows:

          June 17, 2015 (Administration Payroll employees)
          June 25, 2015 (Institution Payroll employees)

OMCE has and will continue to urge DOB to develop a timely Bulletin for the scheduled July M/C general salary increase.

Budget Bulletin D-1131

Management/Confidential Salary Actions - 2% General Salary Increase, Effective April 1, 2015; Performance Advances; Longevity Payments

          Effective May 8, 2015

TO: ALL DEPARTMENT AND AGENCY HEADS

FROM: Mary Beth Labate

Subject: Management / Confidential Salary Actions 2% General Salary Increase, Effective April 1, 2015; Performance Advances; Longevity Payments

Pursuant to Chapter 491 of the Laws of 2011, this bulletin provides guidelines for the payment of a 2% General Salary Increase to Management/Confidential (M/C) employees and other unrepresented employees in the Executive Branch, retroactive to April 1, 2015.  This is the same increase recently paid to union-represented employees with collective bargaining agreements expiring March 31, 2016 and beyond.

Guidelines are also provided for payment of FY 2016 Performance Advances and Longevity Payments.  Agencies are expected to pay for these increases from existing resources through increased productivity.  No additional resources will be provided. . . . More ►►

April 30, 2015

Nominations to OMCE Board: 

Here's an opportunity to use your talents while broadening your professional experience. Consider running for a seat on the OMCE Board of Directors!

The Board is responsible for setting policy and providing guidance and direction to the organization. The Board is a diverse body that fights to improve the working conditions of M/C employees, while protecting their rights and benefits. Board members attend four meetings per year and serve on one or more committees. It is an unpaid position, but travel expenses are reimbursed at the state rate. The fifteen member board serves staggered three-year terms. Five seats will be up for election or re-election this year.

All that is necessary to run for a seat on the Board is to submit your resume and a cover statement outlining the qualities you would be bringing to the Board and what issues and priorities you would like to focus on. This statement will be sent with the ballot for consideration by the voting membership. Submissions may be mailed, e-mailed or faxed and must be received at the OMCE office no later than Friday, June 12. The Nominating Committee will review all submissions and present a slate of nominees to the Board. The election by mail ballot, if there are more than five candidates, will take place during July/August. Results will be announced at our Annual Meeting in September.

The Nomination Committee is seeking active state M/C employees who are willing to commit their time, energy and talent to address the issues of concern to M/C employees, such as M/C compensation and benefits, protection of pension and health insurance benefits, workforce and succession management, conditions of employment, etc. If you're thinking of taking advantage of this opportunity, but would like more information, contact OMCE at 800.828.6623.

April 23, 2015

Independence Day Holiday:

The State has determined that another day will not be designated to be observed as a holiday by State employees in lieu of July 4, 2015.

Instead, full-time M/C employees and other full-time employees who are entitled to observe holidays, and for whom Saturday, July 4, is a regular day off, should be credited with compensatory time off in lieu of the Independence Day holiday; i.e. holiday compensatory time. Part-time employees who are regularly scheduled to work at least half-time, and who do not work on Saturday, July 4, but who are regularly scheduled to work on Friday, July 3, will be credited with holiday leave equivalent to the number of hours in the employee's regular Friday schedule not to exceed 7½ or 8 hours.

We have updated our Calendar page to reflect this determination. In response to OMCE's inquiry, the Department of Civil Service advises that MC employees will be given "Pass day Holiday Leave" which, unlike holiday leave, will not expire. Further information is available here or by contacting your agency/facility personnel office.

April 15, 2015

Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) Repayment Update:

Payroll Bulletin No. 1382, dated February 23, 2015 stated: As part of the Management/Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) created pursuant to Section 7 of Part A and Subsection 3 of Section 13 of Part B of Chapter 491 of the Laws of 2011 and the Division of the Budget Bulletin B-1197 issued November 14, 2011, the balance of each employee's actual deficit reduction plan reductions will be repaid to the employee in equal biweekly installments over 39 consecutive pay periods beginning with the paycheck which includes compensation for April 1, 2015. (emphasis added)

Dates for payment are: 4/16 Institution Lag Payroll, 4/22 Administration Lag Payroll.

This has been confirmed with OSC (Office of the State Comptroller).

April 15, 2015

Budget Overview:

The following is a brief overview of certain portions of the State Fiscal Year 2015-16 Budget related to the workforce, pension, ethics and financial disclosure. These are in addition to the budget's advancement of legislation providing for the July 1, 2015 (2%), April 1, 2016 (2%), April 1, 2007 (2%) and April 1,2018 (1%) M/C general salary increases.  

Forfeiture of Pensions for All Public Officials Convicted of Felonies The Budget, in conjunction with a stand-alone proposed constitutional amendment to Section 7 of Article V of the New York State Constitution (A.6722 / S.4611), contains language that would authorize the forfeiture of public officials' pension for a felony conviction related to public office regardless of when they became a member of the New York State and Local Employees' Retirement System and the New York City Employees' Retirement System (hereinafter collectively "Retirement Systems").

In 2011, the Legislature enacted Sections 156 and 157 of the Retirement and Social Security Law (RSSL), authorizing the forfeiture of certain public officials' pensions in the event they were convicted of a crime related to public office.  At the time, the statute only applied to public officials who became a member of one of the Retirement Systems after November 13, 2011.  Such limited applicability was due to . . . more

For Immediate Release:
March 31, 2015
Contact: Barbara Zaron
518.456.5241

STATE BUDGET INCLUDES PAYMENTS TO M/C EMPLOYEES FOR WITHHELD EARNINGS

OMCE to Pursue Legislation to Accelerate Payments in 2016; and Retiree Pension Benefits Adjustments

The Organization of New York State Management Confidential Employees (OMCE) today announced that nearly 10,000 M/Cs will receive a four percent combined salary increase and adjustment along with additional increases over the next three years.   In total, the payments approach $42 million under the 2015-16 state budget.  When combined with a general salary increase in 2014, M/C employees will have realized and received $63 million in current and previously withheld earnings in the last 15 months.In addition, OMCE's advocacy efforts have ensured that active M/C employees, irrespective of promotions and transfers, are also entitled to these benefits.  Prior to OMCE's direct involvement in this issue . . .  more

March 31, 2015

 Budget Update:

Public Protection and General Government budget bill A.3005B/S.2005B was passed and is expected to be acted upon soon by the Governor. This bill provides for the M/C salary adjustments, beginning July 1, 2015, to pay the previously authorized, earned and withheld 7% salary increases.

Budget and payroll bulletins are necessary to pay the April 2% salary increase, performance advance and longevity payments and the July 2015 2% payments. Although we anticipate the April bulletins soon, the specific bulletin release dates are not yet available.

The salary schedules for the April and July 2015 salary increases are here. We are calculating the salary schedule steps and will then post these expanded schedules.

In addition, DRL withheld payments begin effective April 1, 2015 and will be paid out over 39 pay periods.

March 28, 2015

Update:

Budget bill A.3005B/S.2005B has been introduced and provides for the Governor's 4-year schedule of payment of the withheld 7% M/C salary increases from 2009 and 2010. The first 2% increase to pay the withheld monies is effective July 1, 2015. As angry and upset as some of you may be, this action does finally acknowledge that withheld monies must be paid, albeit in this instance on an unacceptably long schedule. OMCE will continue to address the need for an accelerated schedule with the administration and the legislature. Obviously, the outcome of pending union negotiations could negate any M/C parity gains, so we will continue to press that issue too.

While the budget bill removes language aimed at excluding bargaining unit promotees from these increases, it adds new language to ensure that an employee's salary does not exceed the job rate of the applicable salary schedule - and, in the event that the increase is withheld, provides for an effective date for the formal grievance process to challenge the withholding. So, if an employee believes that his/her salary calculation is not appropriate, it can be challenged through the grievance process. OMCE will assist members with this process, as needed.

As previously announced, M/Cs will receive a 2% salary increase - and performance advances and longevity payments, if eligible for them - effective April 1, 2015 (as authorized in Ch. 491, Laws of 2011) and the payment of the Deficit Reduction Leave (DRL) withheld payments, also beginning in April 2015. Once the budget is passed, we will post the new salary schedules on this site.

OMCE ACTIONS ALREADY PLANNED:

   Continuing advocacy with the Legislature and Administration;

   Introduction of legislation that will provide for payment of an additional 3% in next year's budget (on top of the 2% planned payment for April 2016), in order to complete payment of the withheld 7%

   Discussions with Budget Division and Executive Chamber staff as contract negotiations progress, so that contract agreements that include salary increases result in a new or revised MC pay bill

   Introduction of legislation to provide for a "Withheld Pay Adjustment" for pension purposes for MCs who retired since 2009 and who will retire before the withheld 7% is fully paid

   Current legal evaluation of potential litigation re the non-payment of retirees . . .

March 19, 2015

Payroll Bulletin Update:

Payroll Bulletins for various union-represented employees have been issued (or are pending issuance) that provide for the April 1, 2015 general salary increase (where applicable, e.g. to CSEA, but not PEF) and for performance advances, longevity payments, and other collectively-bargained payments.

The 2% general salary increase for M/C employees, also due April 1, is provided for pursuant to Civil Service Law, Section 130. However, before payment can be made, an authorizing Budget Bulletin (followed by a Payroll Bulletin) must be issued that provides for actual payment of the M/C general salary increase, performance advances and longevity payments, as well as for the N/S salary plan process.

Payments should be effective and paid, as follows:

   Administration Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective March 26 - Check dated April 22

   Institution Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective April 2 - Check dated April 30

While it is quite possible that a late or last minute budget would impact timely payment of the M/C increases, nevertheless, once the authorizations are made, the March 26 and April 2 effective dates will be used in calculating the amounts of any retroa

March 24, 2015

M/C Pay Parity Update:

We are now in our third week of meetings (10 in the past week, including today) with the Senate and Assembly leadership and members of both houses and want you to know that M/C pay parity continues to be a part of the budget negotiations. The issues we have raised - accelerate the Executive Budget's proposed M/C pay parity schedule to 2 years (4% July 2015, 3% April 2016) and eliminate the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions - are still very much in play. Your letters are very much in evidence, too - they are important, you are being heard - keep your letters coming!!

March 19, 2015

Payroll Bulletin Update:

Payroll Bulletins for various union-represented employees have been issued (or are pending issuance) that provide for the April 1, 2015 general salary increase (where applicable, e.g. to CSEA, but not PEF) and for performance advances, longevity payments, and other collectively-bargained payments.

The 2% general salary increase for M/C employees, also due April 1, is provided for pursuant to Civil Service Law, Section 130. However, before payment can be made, an authorizing Budget Bulletin (followed by a Payroll Bulletin) must be issued that provides for actual payment of the M/C general salary increase, performance advances and longevity payments, as well as for the N/S salary plan process.

Payments should be effective and paid, as follows:

   Administration Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective March 26 - Check dated April 22

   Institution Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective April 2 - Check dated April 30

While it is quite possible that a late or last minute budget would impact timely payment of the M/C increases, nevertheless, once the authorizations are made, the March 26 and April 2 effective dates will be used in calculating the amounts of any retroactive adjustments that are due to be included in future payments.

March 11, 2015

Update: OMCE Leaders Engaging Legislative Leaders:

OMCE President Barbara Zaron, Executive Director Joe Sano and Counsel John Black are engaged all week in meetings with the legislative leaders, key legislators, and program and fiscal staff of the legislature.

Your e-letters (below) and individualized letters and contacts are making a difference. WE are moving closer to pay parity. The Senate's one-house budget resolution (S.4205) accelerates M/C parity to 2 years (4% July 2015 and 3% April 2016) and eliminates the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions. The Assembly's resolution (A.6005) also eliminates the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions, but it adopts the Executive's 4-year schedule of payments. The Assembly is reviewing the Senate's proposal and the opportunity to accelerate the schedule, as well. Joint legislative committee discussions begin soon and MC pay parity is an issue on the agenda.

We constantly hear about your letters in our meetings with legislators. PLEASE keep sending letters and calling and urging them to resolve this pay parity issue NOW!. The M/C pay parity issue issue is alive, and moving forward.

March 10, 2015

Update:

We have been meeting with Senate and Assembly legislative leaders this week - and will be the remainder of the week, with meetings scheduled Wednesday and Thursday -  urging them to include our OMCE M/C Pay Parity Proposal in their respective house budgets, as negotiations continue between the legislature and the executive toward adoption (on or about April 1) of a final budget for fiscal year 2015-16.

"Ten years is too long to wait for Management/Confidential state employees to get full payment of withheld salary increases!"

On Monday, February 27, OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joseph Sano presented OMCE's testimony (read here) to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee on Workforce Development at its hearing on the 2015-16 Executive Budget proposal. 

February, 25, 2015

Send your letters today!

The 30-day budget amendment period ended without Governor Cuomo taking action on our request to amend his 2015-2016 Executive Budget Article VII, Part H, Phase-In Management/Confidential (M/C) Salary Parity Proposal. During the next several weeks, the Governor and Legislature will be negotiating toward a final budget to be in place on or about April 1.

We have three (3) e-letters for you to send - to the Governor and to your individual representatives in the Senate and Assembly, with copies to the Senate and Assembly leaders - urging them to negotiate amendments to the M/C Salary Parity Proposal that will (1) accelerate the schedule, so that pay parity can be fully achieved in the upcoming fiscal year, (2) include former bargaining unit employees, now M/C, who the Governor's proposal excludes, and (3) achieve pension parity for those already retired who were subject to the pay withholdings. Please send these e-letters and urge them to take action today!

Instructions: Once you take action on your letter to the Governor and click submit, the Senate letter will appear on your screen. After you do the same with the Senate letter, the Assembly letter will appear on your screen for action and submission. Please send these e-letters and urge action today! Write to them HERE - Send your Letters TODAY (ended 3/28/15) 

 

Comptroller Tom DiNapoli stops by the OMCE Table at the 44th Annual Conference of the NYS Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators, which was held the weekend of February 13-15 at the Empire State Plaza in Albany. Shown here with the Comptroller (left) are OMCE President Barbara Zaron and George Delamar, OMCE Representative.

February 23, 2015

OMCE in the News: Editorial,

Albany Times Union: "The Missing State Raises" ISSUE: Non-unionized state workers who haven't seen raises in years will get them - eventually. THE STAKES: How long will one group of employees have to balance the governor's budget? Click Here to Read >>

February 6, 2015

Data Security Breach:

We have received an advisory from the Civil Service Department's Employee Benefits Division (reproduced below ▼) concerning today's news of a data security breach experienced by the hospital administrator for The Empire Plan and the NYSHIP Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield HMO.

We will post updates here as as additional information become available to us. Meanwhile, we call your attention to our ID Theft Protection benefit, which is available to OMCE members at no cost (Login Here and scroll down to Improved Free ID Theft Protection to register, or call OMCE at 800.828.6623 for information). If you haven't done so, sign up today - incidents like this highlight the importance of this free ID Theft Protection member benefit.

Anthem, Inc., the parent organization for Empire BlueCross and BlueShield (the hospital administrator for The Empire Plan and the NYSHIP Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield HMO). today reported an extensive security breach of their member data. Names, dates of birth, member IDs/Social Security numbers, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and employment information of current and former members were impacted. In the coming weeks, Anthem will send letters to impacted members with an offer of free credit monitoring and identity protection services.

NYSHIP recognizes that enrollees are concerned about this situation and that they will have questions about their personal information. Please direct inquiries to www.anthemfacts.com or 1-877-263-7995. The web site includes a FAQ and will be updated as additional information becomes available.

 

 

Click Here for the latest News

2016 – 2017  We Are Not Done! M/C Pay and Benefit Parity Now! Protect M/C Employees!



Lunch and Learn – The Albany Room, Empire State Plaza, Albany, NY, on Thursday, October 13, 2016 from 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm  

Dinner Meeting – Islandia Buffet, 1704 Veterans Memorial Highway, Islandia, NY, (Islandia Shopping Center, Off Exit 57 of the LI Expressway) on Tuesday, November 1, 2016 for Dinner at 5:30 pm

Lunch and Learn – White Horse Tavern, 25 Bridge St., New York, NY, (between Whitehall and Broad Streets) on Wednesday, November 2, 2016 from 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm  

Lunch and Learn – South Beach P.C., Ocean Breeze Room, 777 Seaview Ave., Staten Island, NY, on Thursday, November 3, 2016 from 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm   Lunch and Learn – Buca di Beppo, 44 Wolf Rd., Albany, NY, on Tuesday, November 15, 2016 from 12:00 noon – 1:00 pm

 TOWN MEETING/PHONE CONFERENCE CALLS  WILL ALSO BE SCHEDULED….Check back for Dates      


Topics: M/C Compensation and Proposed Improvements; 2017 OMCE Legislation; Your questions.    


New Challenges on the Horizon!  

MEMBERS AND NON-MEMBERS INVITED!!  

RESERVATIONS REQUIRED!! PLEASE CALL:  1-800-828-6623 OR 518-456-5241 TO RESERVE YOUR SEAT!

 

PEP Program for 2017

Civil Service has published Policy Bulletin 2016-02, Implementation of the Productivity Enhancement Program for 2017. (Surrender of annual or personal leave of reduction of health insurance premium)

Text of the Policy Bulletin as well as information will be found at: http://www.cs.ny.gov/attendance_leave/PolBull16-02.cfm

 

NYS Flex Spending Account 2016 Open Enrollment - Deadline Extended

We have been notified by the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations that the 2016 open enrollment application deadline for the Flex Spending Account has been extended. The online enrollment application will re-open beginning Thursday, November 19, 2015 at 12:01 a.m., ET, and continue through November 24, 2015 at 10:00 p.m. ET.

Click here to view the details

 

PEF REACHES TENTATIVE AGREEMENT..MC PARITY ISSUES MUST BE RESOLVED

The state and PEF have reached a tentative agreement on a 3 year contract starting April 2016 and ending March 31st of 2019. Releases indicate agreement on a 6% COLA agreement spread over three years (2%) FY2016, (2%) FY2017, (2%) FY2018. Apparently they have agreed to continue to explore cost savings measures on health insurance. To date there is no agreement for the CSEA or NYSCOPBA (prison guards) represented state employees. The PEF agreement will require approval by its Executive Board and then its membership. If approved, the next legislature (post January 1, 2017) will address the PEF and any other "pay bill" legislation required to implement the new contractual expenditures. The M/C "pay bill" has traditionally been the "B" version of the first statewide major union's pay bill to be addressed. (This is the 1st time PEF has been the 1st to reach an accord on a large unit statewide agreement.)

OMCE, on behalf of the M/C employees, has met with and will continue to engage the administration on the multi-faceted M/C compensation and workplace issues.

We have and will continue to press the administration:

 

OMCE Leadership Team Stays the Course

 

Management/ Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) Repayments Ending September 19, 2016

As part of the  Management/Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP), the balance of each M/C employee’s actual deficit reduction plan deductions was to have been repaid to employees in equal biweekly installments over 39 consecutive pay periods beginning with the paycheck of April 16th, 2015 (Institution) and April 22nd, 2015 (Administration). This repayment plan is now nearing its completion. Repayment of the DRP deductions for M/C employees will end in the paycheck dated September 29th , 2016 (Institution) and October 5th, 2016 (Administration). 

Employees should be aware that they may notice a decrease in their paycheck due to the completion of the DRP repayments.  (Information edited from BSC notice of 9/19/2016)

 

REMINDER !! M/C  Maximum Annual Leave Accruals

The maximum annual leave accrual date for Management Confidential (M/C) employees is January 1, 2017. Annual leave accruals for Management Confidential (M/C) cannot exceed the maximum level of 40 days (300 hours for a 37.50 hour workweek; 320 hours for a 40 hour workweek; and pro-rated for part-time) at the beginning of business, on the January 1, 2017 adjustment date. Any accruals above the maximum accrual level will be forfeited at the beginning of business January 1, 2017. Annual leave may exceed this level at any other point during the year.

 

The annual open enrollment for  FLEX SPENDING ACCOUNTS has been announced please follow this link

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 19)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

August 09, 2016

Thruway M/C Employees Lawsuit Dismissed!

(McRae v. NYS Thruway Authority)

The U.S. District Court, Northern District of New York issued its decision in the lawsuit brought by NYS Thruway Authority M/C employees and retirees challenging the Thruway Authority deferral (withholding) of M/C salary increases in 2009, 2010 and 2011. Many of the same or similar arguments as OMCE used in our Levine v. Paterson salary withholding lawsuit were used here and the Court similarly dismissed the claims and granted the Thruway Authority's motion to dismiss.

No information is yet available on any possible additional action e.g. appeal or state court suit. We will continue to monitor. 

 

 

2016 Legislative Session Summary and OMCE’s Next Steps

Let’s review what happened in the 2016 legislative session.

2% Pay Parity-"Somewhat On Time"

With the passage of the 2016-17 NYS budget the stage was set for the next installment of the Parity Payment for MCs.  This repayment schedule, of the previously authorized but withheld pay increases from 2009 and 2010, was a direct result of OMCE’s continuing pressure on the administration to make MCs whole.  While the 4 year schedule was less than ideal DOB acted fairly quickly in releasing its latest Bulletin (D 1133) on April 25, 2016 to effectuate these payments.  It’s important to note that DOB reversed its previous position held since 2009 that one must be in service at the time increases were paid in order to receive them.  Ultimately it pays to persevere, argue and lobby for change.

A "Zombie Bill" …Attacks on Retiree Health Insurance Expected in 2017 Budget

The Medicare/NYSHIP linkage is based on a time tested statutory arrangement that recognizes the State’s savings, the cost sharing by participants, the cash and productivity value of accumulated sick leave and workplace fairness. It is anticipated that the administration facing an annually renewed hole in  the State’s Medicaid budget caused by Federal budget enacted rate changes for dual eligible individuals (eligible for Medicaid and Medicare e.g. the elderly poor) will once again seek to offset its Medicaid increases by curtailing its expenditure for State retiree health insurance programs.  We beat these changes back in 2016 but expect them to reappear in a same or similar proposal. We remain vigilant in this area and joined with all of labor to fight the administration successfully as it sought to:

VETERANS’ EQUALITY ACT APPROVED!!! 

Veterans’ Equality Act ( S7160/A9531) Chapter 41 of the Laws of 2016  was signed into law 5/31/2016 by Governor Cuomo.  This law will now give all veterans the opportunity to buy back up to 36 months of their military service time for NYS pension service credit.  A tremendous team effort/ a show of support from every veteran’s group and every public employee organization made this happen.  Facing an "in-session" legislature and the possibility of a veto override attempt, the Governor signed the identical bill into law that he vetoed twice previously.  The State Comptroller's Office immediately issued guidelines, procedures and forms needed to apply for the military service credit benefit. This information can be accessed at these links

 

Pay Parity Acceleration Act

The Senate passed S6725B, the Pay Parity Acceleration Bill.  Despite Assembly assurances that the bill was going to be acted on before the end of session, on June 14 as we were meeting with Capitol District Assembly Members for a final push on the bill they were told by Assembly Leadership that the Assembly would not pass the bill---due to concerns about intruding on the Governor's prerogative related to how he deals with Management Confidential employees.

As frustrating and disheartening as this is, we do not give up. Discussions with key legislators and the Cuomo Administration will continue as we develop an action plan for our next steps.  ( See “New” Talks Begin with Cuomo Administration in this report)  

Again a special thanks to Assembly members Phil Steck, Angelo Santabarbara, John McDonald and Patricia Fahy, who collectively represent more than one-third of the MC workforce.  They have actively supported our efforts to obtain fair and equitable treatment for MCs, co-sponsored our bills, immediately responded to our requests for their assistance and pushed leadership for action.

MC retirees who had the 2009 and 2010 salary increases withheld, we have not forgotten about you. Our various withheld pay pension adjustments legislative proposals were all rejected due to the fiscal estimates. We have discussed a Tax Credit concept with fiscal committee staff and counsel and are further refining it to develop legislation to be introduced for next session’s budget discussions.

Restoration of M/C Tuition Reimbursement

The M/C Tuition Reimbursement and License Exam Reimbursement Program restoration is a perfect example of never giving up on an issue.  Acting GOER Director Michael Volforte was a principal proponent of this restoration and we thank him for joining our chorus of need to restore this program.  Application forms and Program Guidelines can be accessed at http://www.goer.ny.gov/Training_Development/Management_Confidential/index.cfm       

Please contact OMCE with any questions and/or if you are unable to download these forms.   Agencies have access to this information and forms too.

Justice Center Reforms   Ensuring OMCE Members Receive Justice Too!

Abuse and neglect of citizens with special needs cannot and should not be tolerated.  Nor can the abuse of M/C employees’ rights be tolerated.  OMCE has joined a coalition of labor organizations and providers who are focused on needed reform of Justice Center practices which OMCE and its partners believe are too broad, duplicative, compromise investigative integrity, lack timely resolution and are in conflict with existing regulations of the 5 covered agencies. Paul Francis, the Administration’s Secretary for Health and Human Services, has received the coalition’s issues and we await further discussion and a plan to resolve these problems.    

OMCE’S NEXT STEPS !

Restoring Fairness for Retired MCs     2009-2019 M/C Retirees Tax Credit Parity Act  

OMCE proposals to provide restored pension benefits to MC retirees whose salary increases were withheld in 2009 and 2010 has run into a wall of resistance. These proposals have gained no traction, in part because of the fiscal estimates. Our new approach proposes an annual Tax Credit of 5 percent of one's pension benefit to a maximum of $3,000 per year for 5 tax years with the ability to do this over a 7 tax year period which allows the opportunity to amend returns back to 2009.

The “draft” of this act is:

"AN ACT to amend the tax law, in relation to establishing a personal income tax credit for certain employees who served in a position or positions in the classified service of the state of New York designated managerial or confidential pursuant to article fourteen of the civil service law

The People of the State of New York, represented in Senate and Assembly, do enact as follows:

Section 1. Section 606 of the tax law is amended by adding a new subsection (ccc) to read as follows:    

(ccc) Management/ confidential personal income tax credit.

(1)     Allowance of credit. A taxpayer who served in a position or positions in the classified service of the state of New York designated managerial or confidential pursuant to article fourteen of the civil service law and retired between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2019 and  had a salary increase authorized under Chapter 100 of the Laws of 2008 which was withheld for the fiscal years 2009 and 2010  shall be allowed a credit against the tax imposed by this article equal to 5 per cent (5%) of their NYSLRS single option pension benefit not to exceed $ 3000 annually for 5 years.

(2)     Application of credit. Any tax credit not used in the taxable year of 2016 may be carried forward or backwards for seven (7) calendar years until the full credit has been allowed.       

                    § 2. This act shall take effect immediately. "

Special Commission on Legislative, Judicial and Executive Compensation

While twice rejecting an M/C pay commission the administration did accept an expanded pay commission for judges, state commissioners and elected officials of the State.  This body completed its work on judges’ salary increases in early 2016 but the "elected" commission is stalled.  A debate, similar to that held in NYC when they created a similar pay commission, has begun.  The basic query is whether or not the legislature is full/part-time and possible limits on outside earnings income.  If this is resolved and the commission adopts a pay plan for 2017 it will become law unless changed by the legislature and approved by the Governor.  There are court challenges to this Commission’s creation but they are slowly moving through the courts. 18 years ago was the last time the legislators received a raise.  So far it is hard to tell if the commission will recommend salary increases for any in this group.   If the Commission fulfills its mission the resultant "elected" pay plan will be monitored closely for both its impact and relationship to the M/C salary schedule in effect and any possible pay gaps created between the M/C workforce and the agency commissioners.    

"New" Talks Begin with Cuomo Administration

President Zaron, Executive Director Sano and Counsel John Black and Matt O’Connor met with Ms. Elizabeth DeLeon-Bhargava Deputy Secretary for Labor, Michael Volforte Acting Director of GOER and Jeremy Hoffman, Special Assistant for Workforce Development soon after the legislative session ended and had a very productive discussion.  Follow–up discussions are pending.

We urged the administration:

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 18)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 15, 2016

MC Fairness - Pay Parity Acceleration Bill

 

Last week we reported that the Senate passed Bill No. S6725B, the Pay Parity Acceleration Bill, and that our discussions with the Assembly were ongoing to ensure passage of the companion bill A7448B. Despite assurances that the bill was going to be acted on before the end of session, on June 14, as we were meeting with Capitol District Assembly Members for a final push on the bill we were told that the Assembly would not pass the bill---due to concerns about intruding on the Governor's prerogative related to how he deals with Management Confidential employees.

As frustrating and disheartening as this is, we do not give up. Discussions with key legislators will continue and we are developing an action plan for the rest of the year.

Special thanks to Assemblymembers Phil Steck, Angelo Santabarbara, John McDonald and Patricia Fahy, who collectively represent more than one-third of the MC workforce.  They have actively supported our efforts to obtain fair and equitable treatment for MCs and immediately respond to our requests for their assistance.

 

 

 

 

 

Retirees

MC retirees who had the 2009 and 2010 salary increases withheld, we have not forgotten about you. Our various withheld pay pension adjustments legislative proposals were all rejected due to the fiscal estimates. We have discussed a Tax Credit concept with fiscal committee staff and counsel and are further refining it to develop legislation to be introduced for next session and the budget discussions.

 

 

Town Hall Teleconference 

 Our next call is on Tuesday, June 21, 2016 at 5:30 pm. Call to reserve your spot.

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 17)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 10, 2016

Veterans Equality Act

Governor Cuomo signed the Veterans Equality Act on May 31, 2016 and the State Comptroller's Office issued guidelines, procedures and forms needed to apply for the military service credit benefit. This information can be accessed at these links

 www.osc.state.ny.us/retire

http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/members/military-service-credit.php#

Important Note: The eligibility criteria include the following condition --- must apply for and purchase military service credit PRIOR TO RETIREMENT. The enacted bill DOES NOT allow retirees one year from May 31, the effective date, to apply for the service credit. We suggest that if you apply for the benefit you ensure that your application is:

 

 

Investigator Title Structure Changes

The Department of Civil Service has recently announced structural changes with the Investigator title.  The action is associated with recommendations made by the Sage Commission, to reduce and consolidate the number of pay grades and job classifications.

We know that some agencies are meeting with affected Investigator staff to explain the impact and implications of this change. If your agency has not scheduled a meeting or otherwise provided you with detailed information ask for it.

Permanent incumbents of titles reallocated to a lower salary grade will be held harmless and are salary protected for performance advancements, awards, and salary calculations as long as they remain in their current positions. However, opportunities for promotion may be limited.

Members who have questions, after talking to your agency supervisory and human resources staff, should contact OMCE.

 

 

Town Hall Teleconference

 

Our next Town Hall teleconference is scheduled for June 21, 2016 at 5:30 pm. Please contact OMCE to reserve your spot.        

 

 

 

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 16)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

June 3, 2016

Veteran’s Equality Act:  How to File for your Credit.

 





The New York State and Local Retirement System (NYSLRS-OSC) website has listed the procedure and forms needed to apply for the recently enacted Veterans’ Equality Act service credit benefit. This information can be accessed by clicking on this hyperlink     www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/

Application information is available:  http://www.osc.state.ny.us/retire/members/military-service-credit.php#article-20-eligibility



MC Pay Parity Acceleration Bill (A7448B, S6725B)

Our pay parity acceleration bill which seeks to expedite the April 2017 (2 percent) and the April 2018 (1 percent) payment of wages previously earned is moving in both houses of the legislature.

On Thursday morning it was approved by the Senate Finance Committee and advanced to the Rules Committee.  Under the complex steps associated with Senate procedure, it has appeared on the Senate Calendar and has had its “first reading.”  After three readings it is eligible for action by the entire Senate.

TThe Assembly is scheduled to move the bill to the Ways and Means Committee where the sponsor, Assemblyman Denny Farrell, serves as Committee Chairperson.  OMCE anticipates that the bill will then move quickly to the Assembly Rules Committee for calendar scheduling and action before legislators are released for the summer recess – currently scheduled for June 16.



VETERANS’ EQUALITY ACT APPROVED  !!!

Veterans’ Equality  Act ( S7160/A9531)  has been signed into law. Governor Cuomo signed the bill into law-Chapter 41 of the Laws of 2016. This law will now give all  veterans the opportunity to buy back up to 36 months of their time military service for NYS pension service credit.  A tremendous team effort/ a show of support  from every  veterans’ group and every public employee  organization made this happen.  Facing an “in-session” legislature and the possibility of a veto override attempt, the Governor  signed the identical bill into law that he vetoed twice previously.  OMCE thanks all its members, veterans and their families, Senator Larkin and Assemblywoman Paulin for their long time support of this issue.  A detailed question and answer post about the bill details will appear on our website in the next few days.  CONGRATULATIONS!

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 15)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 31, 2016

 

 

We honor the memory and actions of those who gave their lives while serving the United States. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nine days remain in the Legislative Session. The Senate and Assembly return to the Capitol Wednesday, June 1 to consider key pieces of legislation prior to its recess – currently scheduled for June 16.

 

 

 

 

M/C SALARY FAIRNESS

The Accelerated Payment bill (Senate No. 6725B) is on the Senate Finance Committee agenda for this week and is expected to be on the agenda of the Assembly Government Employees Committee’s next meeting (Assembly No. 7448B). Next step will be the Rules Committees of both houses and inclusion onto the respective Floor Calendars for a final vote.

 VETERANS’EQUALITY ACT  

OMCE and the coalition of labor affiliates continue to advocate for enactment of the legislation authorizing military service time to be applied in the aggregate toward state retirement calculations. In short, if you served, this benefit is deserved.  

The bill was sent to the Governor on May 19, 2016.  Action by the Governor is required before June 1.      

NYSHIP BUY OUT EXPANSION  

Legislation is presently being considered by both the full Senate (Bill No. 7120); and the Assembly Ways and Means Committee (Bill No. 9715) authorizing an expansion of the right to collectively bargain for health insurance buyout programs.  

If enacted into law, this legislation would allow those receiving health insurance through the New York State Health Insurance Program (NYSHIP), or via a spouse’s enrollment, the opportunity to have this benefit negotiated.  OMCE interest is to preserve the opportunity for extension and application to Management Confidential employees.

 

 

Members:

OMCE in Action (Volume No. 14)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 19, 2016

 

 

With 12 days remaining in the 2016 Legislative session we are making progress on two fronts….

 

 

 

MC Fairness

Our MC Pay Parity Accelerated Payment bill, A7448B/S6725B has been amended to fix the technical issue that was raised. The bills were recommitted to the Senate Finance and Assembly Government Employees Committees.  The Assembly Government Employees Committee has scheduled the bill for action of Tuesday May 24, 2016. It will then be poised for final action by both houses of the legislature.

Veterans Equality Bill

The Veterans' Equality Act (Pension Credit bills, A9531/S7160), passed the legislature this week and on Thursday May 19 was sent (*) to the Governor.  The bill provides up to three years of service credit for all state and local employees who served in the military and were honorably discharged. The employee must have at least five years of credited service to be eligible and pay the product of the number of years of service times 3 percent of compensation during the year prior to application for each year of new credit they wish to purchase.  The bill also includes those who retired up to one year prior to it becoming law.

   (*) While the Legislature is in session, the Governor has 10 days (not counting Sundays) to sign or veto bills passed by both houses. Signed bills become law; vetoed bills do not. However, the Governor's failure to sign or veto a bill within the 10-day period means that it becomes law automatically. Vetoed bills are returned to the house that first passed them, together with a statement of the reason for their disapproval. A vetoed bill can become law if two-thirds of the members of each house vote to override the Governor's veto. This marks the first time this bill was passed and sent to the Governor while the legislature was still in session.

 

 

Important Notice

Post-NYS Employment and Consulting- What You Need to Know

The following link will bring you to the restrictions on post-NYS employment and consulting. In light of current events it is important that all MC employees be cognizant of these restrictions. Click here to download the PDF

 

2% PARITY INCREASE- BUDGET BULLETIN RELEASED  

4/25/2016 The Division of the Budget has released the Budget Bulletin (D-1133) authorizing the next pay parity installment (2%) of the previously authorized but withheld MC salaries from 2009 and 2010.

The DOB Full Bulletin can be found Here (Opens in New Window)

 

FIGHT TO ACCELERATE PARITY CONTINUES


With the 2nd parity increase of 2 % now scheduled for payment  it is now time to accelerate the schedule and complete the payment of the remaining 3% in this fiscal year. Ten years to complete this repayment is too long! Use our electronic letter system and contact your legislator to support A7448 (Farrell) and S6725 (Young)-MC Pay Parity Acceleration Bill.

 

Click here for information on Tuition Reimbursement for MCs

OMCE supports Civil Service Department Job Analysis Study of Office Assistant 1  Titles

The Department of Civil Service (DCS) is conducting a job analysis study of the recently consolidated titles of Office Assistant 1, Office Assistant 1 (Keyboarding), Office Assistant 1 (Stores/Mail) and related language parenthetics. These titles serve as a critical entry point for careers in administrative services in NYS government. The information obtained from this job analysis study will provide the foundation for future civil service exams and support selection of the most highly qualified individuals for these positions.

DCS staff have reviewed documentation on the jobs included in the study, conducted group interviews with employees and supervisors, and created an online job questionnaire covering the job tasks and general competencies (related areas of knowledge, skills and abilities) for the Office Assistant 1 titles. DCS plans to send an email this week to Office Assistant 1 employees to tell them   about the online questionnaire survey, and ask HR Directors to select a sample of supervisors to complete the online survey. The actual link to the questionnaire will be sent to participants on or about April 11, 2016. Participants will have 2 weeks to complete the online survey.

Completing the questionnaire gives each employee and supervisor a voice in decisions about the exam program and how the Office Assistant 1 employees will be selected.

We appreciate the DCS using a merit system based competitive exam process for development and implementation of this exam. We urge you to complete the survey. Please contact OMCE if you any questions or concerns about this issue.

 

Your Letters on These Issues are Needed Now !!

You are urged to send personal and electronic letters to your legislators.

   OPPOSE Retiree Health Insurance Cost Shifting Schemes Proposed by the Governor (Legislature Rejects)

    SUPPORT Accelerated Payment of Previously Authorized but Withheld MC Salaries

Clicking these links will allow you to automatically send electronic letters to your representatives.  Your letter can be edited to add personal comments if you wish

Members:

This just in OMCE in Action (Volume No. 13)

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 13, 2016

#Fairness...

Town Hall Teleconference – May 24

Can't get to an OMCE Lunch and Learn? Just want to know what's happening?

Join us for our teleconference call on Tuesday, May 24 at 5:30 p.m. to get the latest news.  Contact OMCE at 456-5241 for the dial-in number and to reserve your spot

 

 

 

JCOPE Comprehensive Ethics Training Course (CETC):

The CETC is an ethics training course mandated for New York State officers and employees who file an annual Financial Disclosure Statement  (FDS).

The current salary rate for mandated participants is $91,821 and above. If you have any questions about your status as a designated filer, you should contact your state agency or appointing authority.  It is expected that agency Ethics Officers will continue to deliver the CETC to their FDS filers at regular intervals or as needed to comply with the statutory ethics training deadlines. Please contact your Ethics Officer for additional training dates at your agency.

 

JCOPE will also present live sessions at its Albany office located at 540 Broadway and via video conference at Buffalo and New York City offices. Unless otherwise indicated, two Continuing Legal Education Credits (CLE) are available to State-employed attorneys the first time they attend a CETC session presented by JCOPE.

Upconing Dates:

Tuesday, June 7, 2016, 1-3 p.m. – NOT FOR CLE CREDIT

Tuesday, June 14, 2016, 1-3 p.m. – NOT FOR CLE CREDIT 

Ethics Refresher Training Requirement  - Are You Due?

Everyone who has taken the CETC is required BY LAW to take an ethics refresher every three years thereafter. This means those FDS filers who first took the CETC in 2013, must take an ethics refresher this year in 2016. The CETC previously mentioned satisfies the ethics seminar/refresher training requirement.  

For more information about JCOPE Mandated Training visit: 

 http://www.jcope.ny.gov/training/courseofferings.html.

 

 

Members:

 Back following a short-term pause is OMCE in Action (Volume No. 12)

The start of May brought the return of the legislature to Albany this week, while the legislative accomplishment of the week were few, outside topics and events stemming from scrutiny of past and present officials dominated the headlines.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

May 6, 2016

Restoring Fairness to MCs in the Post Budget Legislative Session

 

On May 5, OMCE officials and Counsel met with the senior staff representing the Senate Finance and Assembly Ways and Means committees to advance our Pay Parity Acceleration bill (A7448A, S6725A). We are working to resolve a technical issue that was raised. We remain steadfast in our commitment to having this bill considered and passed prior to the June session recess.

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act

 

OMCE Counsel attended a meeting on May 5 with Assemblymember Amy Paulin, Assembly sponsor of the original bill, A9531/S7160 (vetoed by the Governor) to adopt strategy for passage of this bill, since negotiations with the Governor's office have not produced a new agreement.  

The Senate passed Bill No. S1760 and the Assembly is considering the bill prior to advancing Bill No. A9531 for a vote.  On May 9, OMCE and union representatives are planning on attending a meeting of the AFL-CIO and will be taking up the issue.  Assemblymember Paulin will meet with OMCE Counsel to report on status and next steps on May 16.  

 

 

 

 

 

May 2, 2016

News: Comptroller's Office has issued the Payroll Bulletin (1482, 1483, 1484) covering G 17 and below longevity, the 2% parity increase and the performance advance (steps) respectively.

 

Members:

 

OMCE in Action – Volume No. 11  

Late last week, the legislature departed Albany in keeping with a scheduled recess that continues until Tuesday, May 3.  

An interim update follows.

 

 

April 22, 2016

Restoring Fairness for MCs  

OMCE is scheduled to meet in early May with Cuomo Administration representatives, and with Legislative staff to underscore our continued commitment to issues of fairness to MC employees.  Included in our roster of priorities are: acceleration of payment of the withheld salary increases, and a proposal to grant a tax credit/tax rebate for affected MC retirees impacted by the 2009 and 2010 withholdings.    

Budget Bulletin  

Division of Budget (DOB) staff advised us that the Budget Bulletin is drafted and awaiting final approval and sign-off.  The increases are effective April 1, 2016 and the effective pay dates are March 31, 2016 for the Institution payroll and April 7, 2016 for the Administration payroll.  

Please note:  Last year's Budget Bulletin was issued on May 8, 2015

 

Tuition Reimbursement for MCs  

Program Guidelines for MC Tuition Reimbursement are posted on the GOER website and in our OMCE website Member's Only section.  If you are interested and apply, please consider and carefully follow the procedural instructions.     

Rockefeller College asked us to share details on its Information Fair on April 28, 2016. Click here for their announcement. ( Opens in new window ) 

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act  

There is nothing new to report this week.

 

 

April 19, 2016

Nominations for OMCE Board of Directors

Our OMCE nominations process began with last month’s notice and a survey of current incumbents whose terms are expiring re: their interest in running again. Now, it’s up to you, our members, to either express your interest or recommend someone you think would be a good Board Member.

The OMCE Board of Directors is charged with providing guidance and direction and setting policy for the organization. Board Members are advocates of many and diverse interests and come with different experiences. As our governing board, they address issues of importance and concern to M/C employees and retirees, reach agreement through consensus, and commission the OMCE staff, law firm and consultants (computer, public relations, and accounting services) to take necessary action.

The Nominating Committee is seeking active state employees who are willing to commit the time, energy and talent needed to address the issues of concern to the approximately 10,000 non-union public employees/officials in the Executive Branch who are eligible for OMCE membership, and to the M/C employees in the other branches of NYS government.

If you are ready, willing and able to invest in OMCE by giving some of your time and energy to address issues such as protection of pension and health insurance, M/C compensation and benefits, conditions of employment, workforce and succession management, job security and discipline, and many others that we are faced with:

Send OMCE your resume and a statement suitable for use on the ballot by June 10, 2016. E-mail (nysomce@gmail.com) or regular mail  5 Pine West Plaza, Suite 513, Albany, NY 122015, or phone us at (518) 456-5241 or (800) 828-6623 if you have any questions.

Members:

We are pleased to present to you OMCE in Action (Volume No. 10) - a direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

April 8, 2016

 

GOVERNOR ANNOUNCES ONE-YEAR RETROACTIVE CONTRACT AGREEMENT WITH PEF 

 

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that his administration has reached a retroactive one-year labor agreement (2015-2016) with the New York State Public Employees Federation.

The one-year contract agreement includes a two percent salary increase retroactive to April 1, 2015. The cost of the agreement is $73 million. The agreement must be ratified by the PEF Executive Board which is scheduled to meet in May and a pay bill introduced into the legislature to enact its monetary provisions.

MCs received their 2% COLA effective April 2015 plus the first 2% installment (July 2015) of the increases withheld in 2009/2010. OMCE will continue to press for passage of its legislation (A 7448 and S6725) which calls for the remaining 3% of the previously authorized but withheld salaries to be paid this fiscal year.

OMCE President Barbara Zaron stated …“With this pending PEF agreement in place it is imperative that the MC workforce now be made whole for all previously authorized but withheld salaries plus similar cost of living adjustments going forward.”  Without these adjustments, the salary gaps between people in different bargaining units but the same grade level and those supervised to their supervisors will be further exacerbated….”  Zaron concluded, “MCs have been waiting too long for this issue to be fixed--the time is now!”

 

April 7, 2016

 

Restoring Fairness for Retired MCs

OMCE proposals to provide restored pension benefits to MC retirees whose salary increases were withheld in 2009 and 2010 has run into a wall of resistance. These proposals have gained no traction, in part because of the fiscal estimate. Your OMCE representatives are drafting legislation that will yield a benefit to all affected MC retirees but will not be tied to the pension benefit. Our new approach proposes an annual Tax Credit/ Tax Rebate (where taxes do not reach the amount of the credit or for out of state resident retirees) of 5 percent of one's pension benefit to a maximum of $3,000 per year.

 

 

 

Restoring Fairness for MC Employees 

Despite extensive efforts, OMCE's salary increase acceleration bill did not make it into the 2016-17 state budget. The stand-alone bill A.7448 is scheduled to be on the Government Employees Committee agenda at its next scheduled meeting. S.6725 is in the Senate Finance Committee. We are continuing to fight on your behalf to keep this issue moving and to obtain passage this session.

 

 

 

Budget Bulletin? Where is the Budget Bulletin?

The Division of the Budget has not yet released the budget bulletin authorizing payment of the MC performance advances, N/S advances, longevity payments and 2% across the board salary increases for 2016-2017. These increases are effective April 1, 2016 and effective pay dates are March 31, 2016 for Institution payroll and April 7, 2016 for Administration payroll.  Last year's bulletin was issued on May 8, 2015 as a reference point. We will continue to press the Division of Budget to issue the bulletin as soon as possible.

 

 

 

Tuition Reimbursement for MCs

OMCE is pleased to announce the restoration of the M/C Tuition Reimbursement and License Exam Reimbursement Program. Application forms and Program Guidelines can be accessed by clicking here.   Please contact OMCE with any questions and/or if you are unable to download these forms.   Agencies will shortly have access to this information and forms too.

 

 

 

 

Veterans Equality Act

The Veterans Equality Act failed to make it into the final budget agreement. Assembly bill sponsor Amy Paulin said she was "deeply disappointed that the credit was left out of the budget, and that the majority conference was committed to making it a reality by the end of the legislative session in June."  

Senate bill sponsor Bill Larkin said, "We kept fighting for the Veterans Equality Act (VEA) down to the last minute of the budget process. I regret to inform our veterans that Gov. Cuomo has not included the VEA in this year's State Budget. Despite its popularity and bipartisan support in both houses of the State Legislature, Gov. Cuomo has once again refused to recognize the sacrifices made by ALL veterans. The Governor's failure to take action on this issue, in the face of the fact that he committed to doing so, is very disappointing. Be assured, I will not be deterred. The fight for the Veterans Equality Act is not over."

OMCE will continue to work as part of the coalition of unions and veteran’s advocacy groups urging passage in the 2016 legislative session

 

 

Members:

 

The 2016-17 state fiscal year is only hours away.  While our objectives have been crystal clear, the process remains far from transparent.  Here is what appears to be on the horizon.

 

 

March 31, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 9

A Budget Victory: Defeating Higher Health Care Costs for Retirees

It appears our collective advocacy effort, with the support of the Legislature, we have derailed Governor Cuomo’s recommendations to increase health care costs on state retirees. OMCE appreciates the Legislature’s rejection of the Executive’s proposals.

A Sustained Fight:

 

Ensuring OMCE Members Receive Justice Too!

 

Abuse and neglect of citizens with special needs cannot and should not be tolerated.  And, we believe it is equally important that our member’s rights must also be preserved.  OMCE has joined a coalition of six labor organizations who have written to Paul Francis, Governor Cuomo’s Deputy Secretary for Health and Human Services asking for a review of Justice Center practices which OMCE and its partners believe are too broad, duplicative, compromise investigative integrity, lack timely resolution and are in conflict with existing regulations.   

 

 

 

Appellate Division Upholds Unit Determination Cases

The state Appellate Division upheld a lower court decision that commanded the Governor’s Office of Employee Relations to honor a unit determination petition agreement they made with PEF.   Roughly 250 management-confidential employees’ items in various state agencies are subject to this decision.  

The suit resulted from GOER’s attempt to back out of a 2013 agreement in which PEF agreed to withdraw its attempts to absorb some 2,000 positions that the union said were more properly categorized as non-management jobs.  Any further State appeal is unknown at this time.  

It is important to note that while not directly tied to this case, PEF members continue to work without a current contract and its negotiations on a successor agreement continue.  

*    *    *

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate you on going interest and support.

 

Members:

At this writing of OMCE in Action, the state budget countdown clock reads: eight days.

March 24, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 8

Legislative Conference Committees Convene; Staff Negotiations Ongoing

Our top priority remains Assembly Bill 7448 (Senate 6725​).  

OMCE's proposed acceleration of the payments of previously earned and authorized wages were not included in the respective one-house budget bills, however, despite this fact, they have not been forgotten or abandoned and are being discussed during the ongoing budget negotiations.   

Additionally this negotiation process resulted in our bills receiving technical amendments.  These proposals remain as "stand alone bills" and if not included in the final budget document, they remain positioned for action by the legislature

Budget Bulletin Anticipated to Outline Two-Percent Increase for April 2016

Current statute (Section 130 of Civil Service Law) calls for the next 2 percent payment of the previously authorized but withheld monies to be paid effective April 2016.  This payment requires a Budget Bulletin that will also include instructions on the payment of the 2 percent performance advances, longevity payments (G17 and below) and payment procedures for those paid as NS without equation to a salary grade.   

It is customary that the bulletin be issued following the adoption of the state budget.  

OMCE monitors this closely and is in constant contact with the Division of the Budget and Governor’s Office of Employee Relations regarding a timely release of the bulletin.  The increases are effective March 31, 2016 for the Institution Payroll and April 7 for the Administration Payroll.

Tuition Reimbursement for MC Employees

Positive discussions with GOER continue regarding the reestablishment of the Tuition Reimbursement and Professional Development Program.  Details are being finalized and we will share them upon completion.

Veterans' Equity Act

OMCE is a signatory to a letter to the Governor and legislative leaders sent by a coalition of unions, veterans groups and others regarding the potential application of state retirement service credits for military duty.   

The one-house budget bills of the Assembly and Senate seek to extend military service buyback credit to ALL veterans who have served in the military

MC Compensation - Public Employees

OMCE monitors national trends in the compensation of MC public employees as well as litigation involving various parties of interest.  Here are a few notable actions (and inactions):

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate you on going interest and support.

 

 

March 2016 Nominations for OMCE Board of Directors:

Each year at this time, we begin looking for OMCE members in good standing interested in serving on the OMCE Board of Directors. There are five seats to be filled this year, each for a three year term. The nominations process is simple, since a member can nominate him/herself. Submit your resume, a letter stating your interest to run for a Board seat and a statement that can be used with the ballot, describing your background, the issues and priorities you would want to focus on as a Board Member, your participation in OMCE and why you would be a good Board Member. The material is reviewed by the Nominations Committee members who will present a slate of nominees to the OMCE Board and, if needed, arrange for the mail ballot election. Nominations, via e-mail or regular mail, must be received in the OMCE office no later than June 10, 2016.  

Board Members are expected to participate either in person or via teleconference in four Board Meetings per year (March, June, September/October and December) and to serve on at least one committee. Board Members are not paid to serve on the Board, but travel expenses if required are reimbursed at State rates.  

OMCE is an organization of, by and for M/C employees who voluntarily choose to join, since designation as an M/C does not mean automatic enrollment as an OMCE member. OMCE officers and committee members are all volunteers for these positions.  

We need active working State M/C employees who are interested in being leaders in the fight to improve the working conditions of M/C employees and to ensure that their rights and benefits are protected. For additional information, contact OMCE atnysomce@gmail.com518-456-5241 or at 1-800-828-6623.

 

Waiver of Holiday Compensation Deadline for Enrollment - May 15, 2016

March 18, 2016

Each year, between April 1, 2016 and May 15, 2016, employees who are eligible to receive holiday compensation may elect to change the way they receive this compensation. Employees who are now receiving holiday pay for time worked on a holiday may elect to receive leave credits, and employees who now receive leave credits for time worked on a holiday may elect to receive holiday pay. If an employee wishes to keep their existing holiday compensation option, no further action is required.  

Eligibility  

This benefit is available to employees in the CSEA, PEF, Council 82, DC-37, NYSCOPBA, and PBANYS bargaining units. Management-confidential (M/C) employees in salary grades 22 and below are also eligible.  

Completing a Waiver Form  

Employees who want to change their existing holiday compensation option should complete the Waiver of Additional Money for Holiday Work 2016 and return it to the BSC Time and Attendance Unit no later than May 15, 2016.  Forms received after this date will not be processed.  

Completed forms may be emailed to BSCTimeAdmin@ogs.ny.gov or mailed to:

OGS Business Services Center Time & Attendance Unit

Building 5, W. Averell Harriman State Office Campus, 4th Floor 1220 Washington Avenue

Albany, NY 12226-1900

 If you need assistance or have questions, please contact the BSC Time & Attendance Unit at (518) 457-4272 orBSCTimeAdmin@ogs.ny.gov.

 

 

OMCE in Action

SUBJ:  One-House Budget Bills – An Update For Members:

Assembly Bill No. 7448 and Senate Bill No. 6725

Acceleration of Previously Authorized but Withheld M/C Salaries

While not in the one-house bills prepared independently by the Assembly and Senate, OMCE’s "acceleration bill" has been advanced by the Senate Finance and pending for action in the Assembly Government Employees Committee. We anticipate that both the Assembly Ways and Means and the Senate Finance Committees will be considering this legislation following budget resolution.

PLEASE KEEP SENDING YOUR E-LETTERS, AND CALLING YOUR LEGISLATORS.

Your efforts thus far are helping ensure that this legislation is moving in parallel to budget negotiations; and being evaluated on its merits as a "Stand Alone Bill."

 

Governor’s cost shifting attacks on State Retiree Health Insurance Rejected!

 

Both one house budget bills have denied the Governor’s proposed cost shifting retiree health insurance schemes.

 

 

 

Veterans Equity Act

 

Members:

This week’s edition of OMCE in Action (OIA) is once again, focused on tracking legislation of interest and concern to our membership relative to the coming state budget deadline and anticipated passage on or about April 1, 2016.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. We appreciate your ongoing interest and support.

March 11, 2016

OIA – Volume No. 7 is singularly focused:

State Budget Negotiations Intensify

The Assembly and Senate each announced their budget priorities this week. Both houses are expected to approve their respective one-house budgets – as early as Monday, and then enter into a conference committee process.  Their deliberations are often unpredictable and it is our goal to maintain a top-of-mind position in both the Senate and Assembly.  As reported previously OMCE’s priority is your priority – expediting the payment of wages MCs earned in 2009 and 2010 – which have yet to be paid. 

OMCE’s advocacy efforts this week were heavily skewed toward the Assembly majority conference, which included:

In parallel to our legislative advocacy, OMCE is encouraging senior state officials at GOER to share with Executive Chamber staff the positive programmatic and fiscal impact of the proposed legislation

 

 

Members:

This week’s edition of OMCE in Action (OIA) is focused on tracking legislation of interest and concern to our membership.  We remind you that March calendar brings additional intensity associated with the State budget and related matters impacting our legislative priorities and objectives.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you. Our direct subscriber list continues to grow.  We appreciate you interest and support.

March 4, 2016

 

OIA – Edition No. 6 has three significant topics:

 

Senate Committee Expected to Begin Acting on Salary Restoration Bill

Next week, the Senate Civil Service Committee is expected to consider Senate Bill  No. 6725 – legislation specifically prepared to expedite the payment of wages MCs earned in 2009 and 2010 – which have yet to be paid.  The Chairman of the Committee, Senator Martin Golden is a co-sponsor of this legislation. 

We encourage you to contact Senator Golden’s office via telephone:  518.455.2760; email golden@nysenate.gov; or advance a letter via the OMCE Action Line.

 

 

 

 

Budget Negotiations to Include Opportunity to Be Credited for Military Service

We have been advised that legislation authorizing recognition by the New York State Retirement System of specific military service will be supported by the Assembly and Senate as they prepare one-house budgets and advance topics to be considered during the 2016-17 budget negotiations.  Senator Bill Larkin and Assembly member Amy Paulin have championed this legislation which was vetoed last year by Governor Cuomo.

 

 

 

 

 

Action Line Letters Target Unacceptable Changes to Retiree Health Insurance

Last week we encouraged your direct grassroots involvement via our Action Line postings.  If you have not yet had the opportunity to take a moment to become involved with this important initiative – it is not too late.  

In particular, OMCE urges you to visit OMCE Action Line and submit an electronic letter outlining our opposition to changes that if enacted would:

 

 

Members:

We advance to you for review the latest edition of OMCE in Action (Volume No. 5) – an ongoing update and direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

February 26, 2016

Highlights from the Telephone Town Hall 

 

Thank you to those of you who participated in Wednesday evening’s conversation. 

The session focused on our top priorities for 2016:       

 

 

Action Line Letters are Live and Available 

 

 

In a related matter, members are encouraged to review our latest Action Line postings available at www.nysomce.org.  

The material allows for direct targeting of legislative members and ensures that you are recognized as an active and involved member of OMCE.  It is important that we sustain our advocacy as the budget season accelerates and escalates in intensity.

 

 

A Respected Senator Signs on OMCE Priority Legislation  

 

 OMCE learned this week that Senator Martin Golden of Brooklyn will co-sponsor the bill requiring accelerated payment of wages earned by MCs and withheld in 2009 and 2010.  The Senator is chairman of the Civil Service and Pension Committee.

 

 

 

 

Salary Commission Comments Draw a Connection to State Deputies and Managers.

During this week’s meeting of the Legislative, Judicial and Executive Pay Commission, several members made interesting connections between their charge and the impact on MC employees.  The Albany Times Union reports:

For one, commission member Roman Hedges, an appointee of the Democratic Assembly majority, said salary data for more senior civil servants — who are not under the commission's purview — should be considered as the panel forms its opinions on what those workers' bosses should be paid.

While there are mounds of data to absorb and public comments to solicit, commission member James Lack, an appointee of the Senate Republican conference, gave an indication that pay — at least within the executive branch — needed to rise by a significant amount.

"In the weight of all things, once these poor people who haven't had raises for 18 years finally get a raise — and obviously it's not going to be a 3 percent raise — their deputies for all these years ... are certainly going to be looking to fill the gap between whatever their salaries are and the new department head salary," Lack said. "We don't set those, but we in effect are doing that."

 

February 23, 2016

CIVIL SERVICE  PREPS TO EXPAND PCO (Professional  Career Opportunities) EXAM - Click for Story

 

Members:

We are pleased to present to you OMCE in Action (Volume No. 4) - a direct communication intended to elevate issues and activities of interest to OMCE members across the state.  

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

February 18, 2016

 

 State of Politics Blog Reports on OMCE Legislation

Last week’s edition of OMCE in Action shared news of commitments by Senator Catharine Young and Assemblyman Denny Farrell to sponsor bills that would require payment of wages you earned in 2009 and 2010 which were unfairly and unjustly withheld.  The well-read and regarded State of Politics political blog published a piece on the development.   

The complete posting is available here: 
 http://www.nystateofpolitics.com/2016/02/bill-would-bump-up-pay-raise-schedule-for-mc-employees/

 

 

OMCE’s Top Legislative Priority to be sponsored by Senator Catherine Young and Assemblyman Farrell (Update).  

In a related matter, OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joseph Sano met with the Assembly Program and Counsel staff to discuss details of Assembly Bill No. 7448.

 

 

OMCE Participates in New York State AFL-CIO Pension and Taylor Law Task Force Meetings.

 

OMCE’s Joseph Sano represented OMCE at the recent session. 

Discussions focused on Veterans pension equity and proposed changes to retiree health insurance outlined in the executive budget. OMCE opposes these changes to retiree health insurance, and included its position during testimony offered at the joint legislative budget hearings conducted on February 3.

 

 

 

Legislative, Judicial and Executive Pay Commission Announces Upcoming Meeting

Earlier this week, it was announced that the Commission charged with maintaining appropriate salary levels for the state judges, legislators and high-ranking administration appointees such as Commissioners. It will convene on February 22 in New York City.

For additional information on the Commission, please visit:
http://www.nyscommissiononcompensation.org

 

 

 

Scalia Passing to Impact Key Supreme Court Cases

The unexpected death of Supreme Court Justice Antonin Scalia will have a significant impact on a number of important matters under consideration by the U.S. Supreme Court, and which have the potential to impact those who work in the public sector.  Many are beginning to contemplate the broad based impact on a potential shift in the court’s ideology.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/entry/scalia-public-sector unions_us_56bfdb1ce4b0b40245c6f855

 

 

 

 

 

REMINDER: OMCE Telephone Town Hall February 24 at 5:30 pm.

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

 

 

OMCE at Caucus Weekend

Our thanks and appreciation to our colleague and representative George Delamar who staffed OMCE’s table along with President Barbara Zaron at the Black, Puerto Rican, Hispanic and Asian Legislative Conference on Saturday, February 13.

 

 

 

 

 

 Members:

Welcome to Week No. 3 of OMCE in Action a direct communication intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

We continue to hear from you that you find these brief summaries informative and the list of direct email subscribers is growing each week.  While you are free to review the content on our website, others have expressed appreciation that it is being shared directly via personal email accounts.

Please email us at (nysomce@gmail.com) with your personal e-mail if you would like OMCE in Action sent directly to you.

 

February 11, 2016

OMCE’s Top Legislative Priority to be sponsored by Senator Catherine Young and Assemblyman Farrell.

OMCE is pleased to announce that the respective chairs of the Senate Finance Committee, and Assembly Ways and Means Committee have endorsed and agreed to sponsor legislation expediting payment to MC employees earned, and withheld during the state’s deficit reduction efforts in 2009 and 2010.

The bill numbers associated with the legislation are Senate 6725 and Assembly 7448.

Please Note:  Beginning Wednesday, February 10, State Legislators will be in their home districts.  The Senate and Assembly will reconvene in Albany on February 24, 2016

 

Zaron and Sano meet with Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan.

On Monday, February 8, OMCE President Barbara Zaron, and Executive Director Joseph Sano met with Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan at the Capitol. 

The Majority Leader has been a long-term advocate for OMCE and MCs.  In fact, in 2014, Senator Flanagan, led an effort calling on Governor Andrew Cuomo to restore wages of MC’s earned and withheld across the state, including 500 on Long Island

 

 

 

Comptroller DiNapoli’s Advisory Council Provides Input on the Management of the Common Retirement Fund.  

The Comptroller’s advisory council meets periodically to provide independent, expert assistance associated with guiding the state’s $184 billion retirement fund.  OMCE President Barbara Zaron, a member of the Council, attended the session which included a summary of enhanced services being planned to better serve retirement system members and beneficiaries.

 

 

 

 

OMCE to be active at 2016 Caucus Weekend.

Look for OMCE representatives this weekend at the 45th Annual Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators annual conference in Albany.  

 

REMINDER: OMCE Telephone Town Hall February 24 at 5:30 pm.

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

Members:

This is the second edition of OMCE in Action a direct communication intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

Many of you provided positive feedback to last week’s update.  In addition to posting on the OMCE website, we are advancing it to our members (for whom we have email addresses)

Please email us with your personal e-mail if you wish to have it sent directly to you.

February 4, 2016

OMCE Delivers Testimony to Legislative Commission Calling for Expedited Payment of Salary Withheld and Owed to MCs    

On Wednesday, February 3, OMCE President Barbara Zaron, and Executive Director Joseph Sano offered testimony to the Joint Legislative Budget Hearing on the Workforce .   OMCE outlined its priorities that included:

To view the archived video testimony visit:  http://assembly.state.ny.us/av/hearings/ Then select: 2-3-16 Joint Budget Hearing – Workforce Development.  OMCE testimony begins at the (3:13:30).  You can advance directly to OMCE content by using the arrow keys -->

To review the complete written testimony submitted to the joint committee visit: OMCE Testimony_20160205.pdf 

Direct lobbying and advocacy of key members and Senior legislative staff.

Since our most recent report, OMCE leadership has met with the staff of:

These sessions are important to advancing OMCE’s priorities.  They provide opportunities to discuss active sponsorship of our key bills, and allow us to reinforce OMCE’s position.  

OMCE Announces Town Meeting via Toll-Free Conference Call on Wednesday, February 24 at 5:30 pm

Please plan to join us for a toll-free OMCE Town Hall Meeting.  The session will provide OMCE with the opportunity to provide feedback and information with its members; and allow your Capitol-based team to receive your input and share more details on budget and legislative issues.

You can register for the call by contacting us at:

800-828-6623: or 518-456-5241.        

 

 

 

Fiscal Policy Institute Offers Briefing on New York Economic Outlook

Prior to offering its testimony on February 3, OMCE representative attended a detailed briefing conducted by the Fiscal Policy Institute.

The most significant issue discussed was the 2016-17 Executive Budget and its impact.   

For more information visit:  http://fiscalpolicy.org.  

 

  

 

Members:

This is the first of a new series of direct communications intended to keep you up to date on developing issues around the state.  

We are calling it – OMCE in Action. It will be a regular email that we send to you, our members (for whom we have email addresses), to keep you informed of our activities on your behalf.  It will also be posted on our website.  Please email us with your personal e-mail if you wish to have it sent directly to you.

January 26, 2016

OMCE is a trusted source for Capitol-based reporters and broadcasters

On Friday, January 15, Times Union reporter Rick Karlin interviewed OMCE President Barbara Zaron for an article about the proposed changes shifting additional costs to retirees for their health care. http://www.timesunion.com/local/article/State-proposes-to-change-retiree-health-care-costs-6763043.php      

 

OMCE is amplifying the voice and concerns of MC employees

On Wednesday, February 3rd OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joe Sano will provide testimony during the Joint Legislative Budget Committee’s Workforce Development hearing. They will be aggressively pushing OMCE’s legislative agenda including accelerating payments of all previously authorized and withheld salaries as well as seeking support for fixing the diminished pension benefits for those already retired since 2009 and those nearing retirement.  

Testimony presented to the joint-fiscal committees of the Senate and the Assembly will be archived.  OMCE will provide a recap of its testimony and provide links for easy viewing following delivery.

OMCE is keeping an eye on developing trends and issues of importance to its membership

In recent weeks the U.S. Supreme Court heard arguments in an important case that has its roots in California but will effect labor organizations across the country, and here in New York.  The case, Friedrichs vs. California Teachers Association is focused on the collection of mandatory dues by unions used to support various collective bargaining activities. If successful such an attack will weaken us all.  

OMCE membership provides protection if your position is threatened or challenged due to professional action or judgement

Your membership in OMCE provides you with access to legal defense and protections in investigations, disciplinary proceedings and grievances.  Your membership in OMCE provides access to qualified legal representation during a dispute with the state.   

 

January 14, 2016  

2016-2017 Proposed Executive Budget

At the January 13, 2016 budget briefing for all labor organizations, The Division of the Budget announced: (Complete Budget Synopsis by OMCE Counsel is in Members’ Only Section)

 

January 06, 2016  

Scholarships

Click Here and login to the member area to view the Links for the Union Plus, Lavina Michl Wright, and the Howard Coughlin scholarship links. The John Kelly Scholarship, and the Corbeil/Beauregard Summer Camp Scholarship are now available.

 

December 29, 2015  

Whistleblower Protections Strengthened

A 7951 was signed into law by Governor Cuomo. This law as now enacted will remove the requirement that public employee whistleblowers first notify their supervisors of the improper activity, in order to protect employees where it is the supervisors themselves who are engaged in the improper activity which the whistleblower seeks to report. OMCE has defended its members in past instances where wrongdoing was reported, high level (exempt class) supervisors did nothing with the information and then our members were subsequently brought up on dismissal charges. According to the Commission on Public Integrity, over the years there have been cases where state employees requested anonymity when reporting unethical conduct to avoid retaliation, have refused to cooperate with investigations out of fear of reprisal or, at least in one reported case, been summarily fired, This act modifies the civil service law to remove the early disclosure requirement and thereby protects whistleblowers and enables them to expose improper actions by their superiors.

December 19, 2015

OMCE SETS LEGISLATIVE AGENDA FOR 2016 SESSION

At the December 11, 2015 meeting the OMCE Board of Directors adopted the 2016 Legislative Agenda. It is focused on speeding up payment of the withheld 2009-2010 across the board pay increases currently being piecemealed through 2019. The Board additionally recognized the need to continue the fight to remedy the retirement benefit losses suffered by MCs retiring since 2009.

To fix the ongoing across the board pay increase issue OMCE has had A7448 (Farrell) introduced in the State Assembly and is awaiting the appointment of a new Senate Finance Chair for the introduction of the same legislation. Our bills call for the remaining 5% of withheld across the board pay increases from 2009-10 to be paid in April 2016. Our quest will be to have these bills included in the adopted budget for 2016-2017.

Current law (Civil Service Law Section 130) calls for 2% to be paid in April 2016, 2% in April 2017 and 1% effective April 0f 2018. This creates an unacceptable 10 year pay scenario from the time the increases were withheld through the date of complete pay restoration. Pending union negotiations could result in the MC wage gap with other units becoming even worse. Also scheduled this year will be the recommended pay increase proposals for the Judiciary, Legislature and Statewide elected officials as recommended by the Pay Commission. During this time of “fixing salaries”, it is the perfect opportunity to fix the MC pay debacle without any further delay!

Equally important is the need for pension correction for those MCs who have or will be retiring before the full restoration and impact of that restoration is considered for their final average salary (FAS) computation. OMCE’s agenda has called for the adoption of two distinct bills aimed at addressing these pension losses. They are referred to as the WPPAA bills-Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Acts.

WPPAA Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Act- MCs Retired between 4/1/2009 through 3/31/2014

This proposal will provide an additional month of retirement service credit, but not in excess of 24 months, for each month of employment from April 1, 2009 through 3/31/2014 for members either in the classified service of the state of New York in a position designated managerial or confidential pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service law or in the service of a public authority under the jurisdiction of the state civil service department, Such members must have been in active service during the previously stated time period and had previously authorized general salary increases withheld in fiscal years 2009 and 2010. These changes shall become effective notwithstanding any other law, rule or regulation.

WPPAA Withheld Pay Pension Adjustment Act -MCs Retired between 4/1/2014 through 3/31/2019

This proposal will provide that those retirement system members designated managerial or confidential pursuant to Article 14 of the Civil Service law or in the service of a public authority under the jurisdiction of the state civil service department and had previously authorized general salary increases withheld in fiscal years 2009 and 2010 shall have their annual pension benefit adjusted as follows:

When computing the FAS (Final Average Salary) using the highest average of wages earned during any three consecutive years, each year of wages earned that is utilized in the FAS computation shall be increased by the annual cost of living index percentage for that year ( All Urban Consumers –CPI Index). The resulting FAS will reflect the original highest average of wages earned as stated above, increased by the applicable cost of living index for that respective time period. These changes shall become effective notwithstanding any other law, rule or regulation.

The WPPAA bills are currently being reviewed by the retirement system actuary for cost analysis. Such analysis is required and must be attached to the bills upon introduction. We expect introduction in January upon the legislature’s return. The OMCE board recognizes the challenge of obtaining successful retirement legislation but it is a goal that cannot be abandoned.

Veteran’s Pension Equity although vetoed twice by the Governor has now been targeted by the Executive for a cooperative effort to achieve passage. OMCE supported and continues to support Veterans’ Pension Equity and will continue our work with all other AFL-CIO affiliated unions to achieve a fair resolution of this issue.

The Governor has announced that his State of the State message will be combined with his 2016-2017 Fiscal Year Budget message on January 13, 2016.

DEFFERED COMPENSATION MAXIMUM CONTRIBUTION LIMITS-- CALENDAR YEAR 2016

Maximum contribution limits for employees enrolled in the New York State Deferred Compensation Plan for calendar year 2016.

An additional deferment is available to employees age 50 and over.  These employees can defer up to $6,000 in addition to their regular contribution amount, for a combined total contribution limit of $24,000 in 2016.  Employees are not eligible to choose both the “Retirement Catch-Up” and the “50 and Over Catch-Up” in the same calendar year.

November 24, 2015

2ND Phase – Job Analysis Project

Civil Service Department’s Testing Services Division has contracted for a second phase of a job analysis project which will involve a review of entry level professional titles G-14-18 and traineeships. Incumbents in these titles may be asked to participate in project study/focus groups during December2015 and/or to  take an on-line questionnaire in February 2016 . OMCE supports projects which foster and strengthen the merit system. If you are asked to participate and have any questions or concerns, please contact OMCE.

November 12, 2015  

GOVERNOR CUOMO, SENATOR LARKIN AND ASSEMBLYMEMBER PAULIN AGREE TO ADVANCE LEGISLATION TO EXPAND MILITARY PENSION CREDIT PROGRAM

Governor Also Signs Two Additional Bills on Behalf of New York State Veterans

Governor Andrew M. Cuomo, and two legislative bill sponsors, Senator William Larkin and Assemblymember Amy Paulin, today agreed to advance legislation during the next State budget to provide up to three years of additional public pension credit for an expanded pool of eligible state and local employees who served in the military. Governor Cuomo also signed legislation today to provide additional benefits to veterans throughout the State.

“Our Veterans exemplify dedication, patriotism, and sacrifice – and we owe them a debt that can never be repaid. As we celebrate Veterans Day, we honor not only the extraordinary sacrifices they’ve made on our behalf, and their service here and abroad, but also the contributions they make to our communities once they return to private life,” said Governor Cuomo. “New York is one community and one family. Together we hope and pray for the safe return of our military men and women serving around the world. Above all, we remember those who have paid the ultimate price to protect our freedom and security. To our Veterans and military families, on behalf of all New Yorkers, thank you.”

Veteran Pension Credit Legislation

The agreement between the Governor and the legislative bill sponsors will amend existing law to expand the scope of veterans who can receive pension credits for military service.

Current law allows active members of the New York State public retirement systems to purchase service credit for up to three years of military service if the member was honorably discharged, has five years of existing public pension credit, and served during World War II, the Korean War, or the Vietnam Era; or received an Armed Forces, Navy or Marine Corps Expeditionary Medal in connection with service in Lebanon, Grenada, or Panama; or served during theatre of operations in Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, Bahrain, Qatar, United Arab Emirates, Oman, the Gulf of Aden, the Gulf of Oman, the Persian Gulf, the Red Sea and the airspace above these locations.

New legislation to be introduced will balance the needs of New York State’s deserving veterans with the State’s larger fiscal goals. The proposal will expand the pool of eligible veterans that were not previously covered by law and will also remove restrictions that prevented women from being eligible for the additional pension credit because of prior military policy that barred women from being deployed to a military conflict. The military ended its policy against women being deployed to combat in 2013.

The Governor and legislative sponsors plan to work over the next two months to refine the proposal for introduction in the next budget.

 

November 06, 2015

Management Confidential Employees

Flex Spending Account - UPDATED The 2016 Open Enrollment period is now through November 24, 2015. The enrollment process is on line and is quick and easy. You will need your most recent pay check stub. If you should need assistance with your enrollment call 1-800-358-7202 or visit the website hppt://www.flexspend.ny.gov/. Representatives are available 7 am to 10 pm daily, and will be available until midnight on November 24, 2015.

Health Insurance Choices for 2016 plan year - The annual NYSHIP Option Transfer period will be open after the 2016 health insurance premiums are approved. We will post the dates as soon as they are approved.

Productivity Enhancement Program - Under the Productivity Enhancement Program (PEP) eligible full and part-time employees SG 23 and below may exchange previously accrued annual and or personal leave in return for a credit to be applied toward the employee share of their NYSHIP premium. The credit will be included in biweekly paychecks and divided evenly during the plan year. Credits vary by grade. Please see link: https://bsc.ogs.ny.gov/sites/default/files/2016_PEP.pdf

Full-time employees in positions at or equated to Salary Grade 17 and below:

Employee Group:
Management Confidential:

Forfeited Days NYSHIP Credit
3 $500.00
6 $1000.00  

Full-time employees in positions at or equated to Salary Grade 18-23:


Employee Group:

Management Confidential:
Forfeited Days NYSHIP Credit
2 $500.00
4 $1000.00

To elect PEP for 2016, you must apply between October 26 and November 27, 2015. Ask your HBA for details and an application.

If you are currently enrolled in PEP and are still eligible to participate, you must re-enroll to continue your benefits in 2016.

 

October 26, 2015

Governor Cuomo Vetoes Veterans' Equality Act - Again

In his second consecutive veto of essentially identical bills, Governor Cuomo again strikes a blow against veterans' equality.

The bill again went through the NY state legislature in bipartisan fashion and, in fact, a total of just one legislator voted against it.  

As the law now stands, certain combat veterans are included by the dates and place of their service and certain combat veterans are excluded; certain wartime era veterans are included and certain wartime era veterans are excluded; and all peacetime veterans remain excluded.

The Governor’s veto (#221) contained the Vet’s Equality Act and 4 additional retirement bills. Lumping these together allowed the Governor to postulate that these (5) bills would impose costs that …”were not accounted for in the State’s financial plan and the unfunded costs and expenses would impose a substantial burden on New York State taxpayers….” . This bill (S 5937-A) did provide for a $31 Million appropriation to cover anticipated employer costs but obviously this was dismissed by the Governor as inadequate.

The Governor continues to claim that the near term costs of this bill approaches $60 Million. That figure is dismissed by bill supporters as excessive and based on all possible eligible veterans (again an extremely high estimated number) immediately taking the benefit and then retiring.

http://www.MoveOn.org has also created a petition campaign urging legislators to override the Governor’s veto.

There remains the possibility that a compromise can be worked out with the Executive Branch and this issue can be finally resolved as part of the 2016-2017 budget negotiations which just happens to also be an election year for the legislature.

October 14, 2015

Veterans’ Buy Back Bill (S5937-A Larkin) (A8174-A Paulin) sent to Governor Cuomo  

The Veterans’ Buy Back Bill has been sent to the Governor.  He has 10 days excluding Sundays to act on this bill.  

Supporters may send electronic messages to the Governor urging his approval by using the automated link on www.nysaflcio.org website.  

This bill in enacted into law will provide up to three years of service credit to members of public retirement systems of the state for military service rendered during times of peace; removes requirement that such military service occur during specified periods of hostilities; requires such members have at least five years of credited service, not including military service; This bill appropriates $24,800,000 to cover the expense of providing this benefit.

 

 

 

 

October 6, 2015

NYSHIP ALERTS!  

Excellus Health partners (a NYSHIP plan partner) has suffered a cyber attack where personal information of plan enrollees  may have been obtained. Those at possible risk will receive written notification and instructions on how to register for free identitiy theft protection. OMCE MEMBERS ALREADY ENJOY FREE IDENTITY THEFT PROTECTION THROUGH OUR OPEIU AFFILIATION WITH InfoArmor.

Please see the original notification regarding this newest data breach as posted by NYSHIP/Civil Service which can be found at: https://www.cs.ny.gov/employee-benefits/nyship/shared/apps/whats-new/index.cfm

 

 

September 22, 2015

OMCE Board Elections:

Our recent Board of Directors election produced the following results:
Mark MacConnell, Chad Shelmidine, Robert Perez, Caroline Westbrook, and Rosa Castillo-Kesper were re-elected.

Subsequent to the completion of the election process, Lew Pulver resigned from the Board. Raemel Pascual was approved by the Board of Directors to serve on the Board for one year, the remainder of Pulver’s term.

Officers Elected:
At the September 11th Board meeting the following officers were elected:
President – Barbara Zaron
1st VP - Mark MacConnell
2nd VP - William McCartney
Secretary - Rosa Castillo-Kesper
Treasurer - Robert Perez

August 24, 2015

OMCE President Zaron Comments on Thruway M/C Employees Lawsuit

President Barbara Zaron was the featured guest on Monday's Edition (August 24, 2015) of Capital Tonight, the Time Warner Cable statewide political news and public affairs program.

Similar to the Federal lawsuit filed by OMCE in 2009 when executive branch M/Cs had their previously authorized salary withheld, a group of Thruway M/C employees have now filed a Federal suit and Court of Claims action seeking the restoration of their salaries.

The interview on the treatment of M/C employees can beviewed by Clicking Here, or select tv images on left.

 

 

 

 

August 20, 2015

M/C Lawsuit Versus New York State Thruway Authority

 8/19/2015 Earlier today OMCE learned through media reports that legal actions have been initiated against the New York State Thruway Authority and by extension the State of New York by a group of current and former M/C employees involving wages that have been withheld. More specifically, the plaintiffs have filed a Notice of Intent to File Claim was filed in the New York State Court of Claims, and a separate a Class Action Complaint was filed in U.S. District Court. OMCE litigated similar issues (Levine v. Paterson) in Federal Court (New York Northern District) unsuccessfully in 2011. Our legal team is reviewing the content of what was filed today.

In June, OMCE shared with its members an analysis of relevant Federal and New York State precedent on the viability of litigation to recover salary withholdings occurring in fiscal years 2009-10 and 2010-11 as it relates to current and retired management and confidential employees.

The memo may be accessed by members (Click Here).

August 3, 2015

Senator DeFrancisco Named New Deputy Majority Leader

NY State Senate Majority Leader John Flanagan recently announced that Senator John DeFrancisco (R/C/I-District 50) would serve as the Deputy Majority Leader of the New York State Senate . As a longtime fervent supporter of MC pay parity issues, he introduced and fought for OMCE sponsored legislation seeking an MC Salary Commission. While serving as the Senate Finance Committee Chair he was an outspoken advocate for MC pay parity and an end to the compensation injustice heaped upon those designated MC. OMCE applauds this announcement and looks forward to our continuing cooperation as we seek complete pay parity for MC employees.

 

 

 

 

July 8, 2015

Budget Bulletin Released For July 2015 General Salary Increase

DOB has officially released Budget Bulletin D1132 (https://www.budget.ny.gov/guide/bprm/bulletins/d-1132.pdf) authorizing the July 2015 general salary increase. As OMCE published earlier, the pay dates will be:     

       July 23, 2015 for Institution Payroll employees (June 25th pay period)     

       July 29, 2015 for Administration Payroll employees (July 2nd pay period)

Please note the following excerpted from the bulletin:

Additionally, Part H of Chapter 55 of the Laws of 2015 (i.e., the M/C Parity Bill) provides a situation where certain M/C employees are NOT eligible to receive the increase and a situation where others may only receive a partial increase.

The intent is to prevent State employees who received the collectively negotiated General Salary Increases in their union-represented positions from receiving │ them again as parity increases in their Management/Confidential positions when the resultant M/C salary would exceed the job rate of the employee’s position on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule.

 The two situations include:

 1. Not Eligible for 2% Parity Increase. M/C officers or employees who were promoted or appointed to M/C positions from positions represented by one of the State’s public employee unions and whose salary, immediately prior to July 1, 2015, is at or above the job rate of their M/C salary grade or equated salary grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule are not eligible to receive the 2% Parity Increase;

2. Eligible for Partial Parity Increase. M/C officers or employees who were promoted or appointed to M/C positions from positions represented by one of the State’s public employee unions are prohibited from receiving any portion of the increase which causes such officer’s or employee’s salary to exceed the job rate of their M/C salary grade or equated grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule. Such employees may only receive a partial increase capped at the job rate of their salary grade or equated grade on the July 1, 2015 M/C Salary Schedule. Nevertheless, even in these two situations, it may be appropriate to provide the 2% Parity Increase if the employee’s salary does not properly reflect the effect of the three percent general salary increase effective April 1, 2009 or the four percent general salary increase effective April 1, 2010. For these cases, or other situations that may transpire, agencies will be contacted to review the salary histories of certain employees and will work with the Division of the Budget to provide these increases, if appropriate, retroactive to July 1, 2015.

June 26, 2015

Vets' Buyback Bill Passes Both Houses:

The Veterans' Buyback bill (S.5937/A.8174A) passed in the Assembly on Wednesday and, therefore, has now passed both houses of the legislature. This bill was vetoed last year by the Governor. Aside from updated fiscal notes the bill is the same as last year's bill.  

The bill will allow members of public retirement systems who are veterans of the military to purchase up to three years of retirement credit for their service to our nation. Currently, pension buyback for veterans only applies to those who served during times of foreign conflict and who served in the theatre of action. OMCE has worked as part of the coalition of AFL-CIO unions, veterans groups and all those who support equitable pension treatment and parity.

The passage of this bill indicates that pension parity can be considered, passed and hopefully be made law. No date has been set for submission of this bill to the Governor for consideration.

June 26, 2015

APRIL PAYMENTS MADE...JULY 2% RAISE AWAITS BUDGET BULLETIN...STILL!

April 2015 general salary increases, performance advances and applicable (to M/C-17 and below) longevity awards have now all been paid to both Administration and Institution Payroll M/C employees. MCs with an N/S salary designation should inquire with their agency about the status of their respective agency submissions of the N/S salary plan covering advances for those so designated as N/S. July Budget Bulletin has not yet been issued. Regardless, the pay period schedule (the majority of which occurs on and after the effective date of an increase) indicates that given the effective date of July 1, 2015, the Institution Payroll period of 6/25-7/8/2015 will be used to effect the next pending increase for Institution Payroll M/Cs and the Administration Payroll will utilize the 7/2-7/15 pay period. This is not yet official, but reflects the application of pertinent law, rule and practice.

Since no official Budget Bulletin has yet been issued, no official dates have yet been established for the paychecks that will contain the 2% general salary increase. 

May 20, 2015

Last Call for OMCE Board Nominations:

A reminder that the deadline for submitting nominations to the OMCE Board of Directors is fast approaching: Friday, June 12th. For information (in case you missed it), scroll down to the 4/30/15 announcement below.

 

May 19, 2015

Update: Payroll Bulletin #1408, April 2015 M/C Performance Advances, issued May 19 and included below.

 

May 17, 2015

Payroll Bulletins Issued for April 2015 M/C Salary Increase, Performance Advances and Longevity Payments: 

The Office of State Comptroller has issued bulletins with payroll instructions (#1407 April 2015 M/C Salary Increase, #1408 April 2015 M/C Performance Advances, and #1405 April 2015 M/C Longevity Lump Sum Payment) providing for payment of the 2% April 2015 M/C Salary Increase and the fiscal year 2015-16 M/C Performance Advances and Longevities, as authorized by the Division of the Budget (Budget Bulletin 1131). The Salary Increase and Performance Advances will be paid, using the following payment effective dates and check dates:

               Administration Payroll Employees, effective 3/26/15, check dated 6/17/15
              Institution Payroll Employees, effective 4/2/15, check dated 6/25/15

For Longevities, payment will be made as a one-time, lump sum payment (in the amount of $1,250 or $2,500, depending on eligibility - minimum of 5 or 10 years at the job rate), effective 4/1/15, and processed in a separate check dated 6/17/15 (Administration) or 6/25/15 (Institution). There is no direct deposit for the longevity payment.

Questions concerning payments and eligibility should be addressed to your agency/facility payroll office.

Related M/C payroll bulletin affecting employees of the State University Construction Fund: #Other-26 April 2015 State University Construction Fund M/C Salary Increase

In May 2014 Senator Flanagan seized the initiative in soliciting support from his fellow Long Island Republican Senators for a letter (Click Here) urging the Cuomo Administration to find a way to achieve pay fairness and parity for M/C employees. He was a strong supporter of the 2015 Senate budget draft that called for a 2-year pay restoration (3% July 2015 and 4% April 2016), rather than the Governor's 4-year restoration of the previously authorized, but withheld pay increases of 2009 and 2010. Without the Assembly's support in their budget draft, the Governor's 4-year pay restoration plan was adopted as part of the enacted budget.

Congratulations to Majority Leader Flanagan! We look forward to continuing our joint efforts on behalf of fairness and pay parity for MCs. 

 

May 8, 2015

Division of the Budget Releases April 2015 MC Pay Budget Bulletin:

Division of the Budget released the April 2015 Budget Bulletin authorizing payment of the 2% M/C general salary increase, performance advances for employees eligible to receive them, and longevity awards for eligible job-rate employees in Grades 17 and below. The bulletin also contains instructions for agencies to submit salary plans for employees in NS (non-statutory) positions that are not equated to grades. OMCE will closely monitor agencies whose N/S plan submissions have historically been exceptionally tardy.

Employees who were on the payroll as of March 26, 2015 (Administration Payroll) and April 2, 2015 (Institution Payroll) will automatically receive payment (retroactive to the start of the fiscal year), as follows:

          June 17, 2015 (Administration Payroll employees)
          June 25, 2015 (Institution Payroll employees)

OMCE has and will continue to urge DOB to develop a timely Bulletin for the scheduled July M/C general salary increase.

Budget Bulletin D-1131

Management/Confidential Salary Actions - 2% General Salary Increase, Effective April 1, 2015; Performance Advances; Longevity Payments

          Effective May 8, 2015

TO: ALL DEPARTMENT AND AGENCY HEADS

FROM: Mary Beth Labate

Subject: Management / Confidential Salary Actions 2% General Salary Increase, Effective April 1, 2015; Performance Advances; Longevity Payments

Pursuant to Chapter 491 of the Laws of 2011, this bulletin provides guidelines for the payment of a 2% General Salary Increase to Management/Confidential (M/C) employees and other unrepresented employees in the Executive Branch, retroactive to April 1, 2015.  This is the same increase recently paid to union-represented employees with collective bargaining agreements expiring March 31, 2016 and beyond.

Guidelines are also provided for payment of FY 2016 Performance Advances and Longevity Payments.  Agencies are expected to pay for these increases from existing resources through increased productivity.  No additional resources will be provided. . . . More ►►

April 30, 2015

Nominations to OMCE Board: 

Here's an opportunity to use your talents while broadening your professional experience. Consider running for a seat on the OMCE Board of Directors!

The Board is responsible for setting policy and providing guidance and direction to the organization. The Board is a diverse body that fights to improve the working conditions of M/C employees, while protecting their rights and benefits. Board members attend four meetings per year and serve on one or more committees. It is an unpaid position, but travel expenses are reimbursed at the state rate. The fifteen member board serves staggered three-year terms. Five seats will be up for election or re-election this year.

All that is necessary to run for a seat on the Board is to submit your resume and a cover statement outlining the qualities you would be bringing to the Board and what issues and priorities you would like to focus on. This statement will be sent with the ballot for consideration by the voting membership. Submissions may be mailed, e-mailed or faxed and must be received at the OMCE office no later than Friday, June 12. The Nominating Committee will review all submissions and present a slate of nominees to the Board. The election by mail ballot, if there are more than five candidates, will take place during July/August. Results will be announced at our Annual Meeting in September.

The Nomination Committee is seeking active state M/C employees who are willing to commit their time, energy and talent to address the issues of concern to M/C employees, such as M/C compensation and benefits, protection of pension and health insurance benefits, workforce and succession management, conditions of employment, etc. If you're thinking of taking advantage of this opportunity, but would like more information, contact OMCE at 800.828.6623.

April 23, 2015

Independence Day Holiday:

The State has determined that another day will not be designated to be observed as a holiday by State employees in lieu of July 4, 2015.

Instead, full-time M/C employees and other full-time employees who are entitled to observe holidays, and for whom Saturday, July 4, is a regular day off, should be credited with compensatory time off in lieu of the Independence Day holiday; i.e. holiday compensatory time. Part-time employees who are regularly scheduled to work at least half-time, and who do not work on Saturday, July 4, but who are regularly scheduled to work on Friday, July 3, will be credited with holiday leave equivalent to the number of hours in the employee's regular Friday schedule not to exceed 7½ or 8 hours.

We have updated our Calendar page to reflect this determination. In response to OMCE's inquiry, the Department of Civil Service advises that MC employees will be given "Pass day Holiday Leave" which, unlike holiday leave, will not expire. Further information is available here or by contacting your agency/facility personnel office.

April 15, 2015

Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) Repayment Update:

Payroll Bulletin No. 1382, dated February 23, 2015 stated: As part of the Management/Confidential (M/C) Deficit Reduction Plan (DRP) created pursuant to Section 7 of Part A and Subsection 3 of Section 13 of Part B of Chapter 491 of the Laws of 2011 and the Division of the Budget Bulletin B-1197 issued November 14, 2011, the balance of each employee's actual deficit reduction plan reductions will be repaid to the employee in equal biweekly installments over 39 consecutive pay periods beginning with the paycheck which includes compensation for April 1, 2015. (emphasis added)

Dates for payment are: 4/16 Institution Lag Payroll, 4/22 Administration Lag Payroll.

This has been confirmed with OSC (Office of the State Comptroller).

April 15, 2015

Budget Overview:

The following is a brief overview of certain portions of the State Fiscal Year 2015-16 Budget related to the workforce, pension, ethics and financial disclosure. These are in addition to the budget's advancement of legislation providing for the July 1, 2015 (2%), April 1, 2016 (2%), April 1, 2007 (2%) and April 1,2018 (1%) M/C general salary increases.  

Forfeiture of Pensions for All Public Officials Convicted of Felonies The Budget, in conjunction with a stand-alone proposed constitutional amendment to Section 7 of Article V of the New York State Constitution (A.6722 / S.4611), contains language that would authorize the forfeiture of public officials' pension for a felony conviction related to public office regardless of when they became a member of the New York State and Local Employees' Retirement System and the New York City Employees' Retirement System (hereinafter collectively "Retirement Systems").

In 2011, the Legislature enacted Sections 156 and 157 of the Retirement and Social Security Law (RSSL), authorizing the forfeiture of certain public officials' pensions in the event they were convicted of a crime related to public office.  At the time, the statute only applied to public officials who became a member of one of the Retirement Systems after November 13, 2011.  Such limited applicability was due to . . . more

For Immediate Release:
March 31, 2015
Contact: Barbara Zaron
518.456.5241

STATE BUDGET INCLUDES PAYMENTS TO M/C EMPLOYEES FOR WITHHELD EARNINGS

OMCE to Pursue Legislation to Accelerate Payments in 2016; and Retiree Pension Benefits Adjustments

The Organization of New York State Management Confidential Employees (OMCE) today announced that nearly 10,000 M/Cs will receive a four percent combined salary increase and adjustment along with additional increases over the next three years.   In total, the payments approach $42 million under the 2015-16 state budget.  When combined with a general salary increase in 2014, M/C employees will have realized and received $63 million in current and previously withheld earnings in the last 15 months.In addition, OMCE's advocacy efforts have ensured that active M/C employees, irrespective of promotions and transfers, are also entitled to these benefits.  Prior to OMCE's direct involvement in this issue . . .  more

March 31, 2015

 Budget Update:

Public Protection and General Government budget bill A.3005B/S.2005B was passed and is expected to be acted upon soon by the Governor. This bill provides for the M/C salary adjustments, beginning July 1, 2015, to pay the previously authorized, earned and withheld 7% salary increases.

Budget and payroll bulletins are necessary to pay the April 2% salary increase, performance advance and longevity payments and the July 2015 2% payments. Although we anticipate the April bulletins soon, the specific bulletin release dates are not yet available.

The salary schedules for the April and July 2015 salary increases are here. We are calculating the salary schedule steps and will then post these expanded schedules.

In addition, DRL withheld payments begin effective April 1, 2015 and will be paid out over 39 pay periods.

March 28, 2015

Update:

Budget bill A.3005B/S.2005B has been introduced and provides for the Governor's 4-year schedule of payment of the withheld 7% M/C salary increases from 2009 and 2010. The first 2% increase to pay the withheld monies is effective July 1, 2015. As angry and upset as some of you may be, this action does finally acknowledge that withheld monies must be paid, albeit in this instance on an unacceptably long schedule. OMCE will continue to address the need for an accelerated schedule with the administration and the legislature. Obviously, the outcome of pending union negotiations could negate any M/C parity gains, so we will continue to press that issue too.

While the budget bill removes language aimed at excluding bargaining unit promotees from these increases, it adds new language to ensure that an employee's salary does not exceed the job rate of the applicable salary schedule - and, in the event that the increase is withheld, provides for an effective date for the formal grievance process to challenge the withholding. So, if an employee believes that his/her salary calculation is not appropriate, it can be challenged through the grievance process. OMCE will assist members with this process, as needed.

As previously announced, M/Cs will receive a 2% salary increase - and performance advances and longevity payments, if eligible for them - effective April 1, 2015 (as authorized in Ch. 491, Laws of 2011) and the payment of the Deficit Reduction Leave (DRL) withheld payments, also beginning in April 2015. Once the budget is passed, we will post the new salary schedules on this site.

OMCE ACTIONS ALREADY PLANNED:

   Continuing advocacy with the Legislature and Administration;

   Introduction of legislation that will provide for payment of an additional 3% in next year's budget (on top of the 2% planned payment for April 2016), in order to complete payment of the withheld 7%

   Discussions with Budget Division and Executive Chamber staff as contract negotiations progress, so that contract agreements that include salary increases result in a new or revised MC pay bill

   Introduction of legislation to provide for a "Withheld Pay Adjustment" for pension purposes for MCs who retired since 2009 and who will retire before the withheld 7% is fully paid

   Current legal evaluation of potential litigation re the non-payment of retirees . . .

March 19, 2015

Payroll Bulletin Update:

Payroll Bulletins for various union-represented employees have been issued (or are pending issuance) that provide for the April 1, 2015 general salary increase (where applicable, e.g. to CSEA, but not PEF) and for performance advances, longevity payments, and other collectively-bargained payments.

The 2% general salary increase for M/C employees, also due April 1, is provided for pursuant to Civil Service Law, Section 130. However, before payment can be made, an authorizing Budget Bulletin (followed by a Payroll Bulletin) must be issued that provides for actual payment of the M/C general salary increase, performance advances and longevity payments, as well as for the N/S salary plan process.

Payments should be effective and paid, as follows:

   Administration Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective March 26 - Check dated April 22

   Institution Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective April 2 - Check dated April 30

While it is quite possible that a late or last minute budget would impact timely payment of the M/C increases, nevertheless, once the authorizations are made, the March 26 and April 2 effective dates will be used in calculating the amounts of any retroa

March 24, 2015

M/C Pay Parity Update:

We are now in our third week of meetings (10 in the past week, including today) with the Senate and Assembly leadership and members of both houses and want you to know that M/C pay parity continues to be a part of the budget negotiations. The issues we have raised - accelerate the Executive Budget's proposed M/C pay parity schedule to 2 years (4% July 2015, 3% April 2016) and eliminate the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions - are still very much in play. Your letters are very much in evidence, too - they are important, you are being heard - keep your letters coming!!

March 19, 2015

Payroll Bulletin Update:

Payroll Bulletins for various union-represented employees have been issued (or are pending issuance) that provide for the April 1, 2015 general salary increase (where applicable, e.g. to CSEA, but not PEF) and for performance advances, longevity payments, and other collectively-bargained payments.

The 2% general salary increase for M/C employees, also due April 1, is provided for pursuant to Civil Service Law, Section 130. However, before payment can be made, an authorizing Budget Bulletin (followed by a Payroll Bulletin) must be issued that provides for actual payment of the M/C general salary increase, performance advances and longevity payments, as well as for the N/S salary plan process.

Payments should be effective and paid, as follows:

   Administration Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective March 26 - Check dated April 22

   Institution Payroll (Lag)
  Payment effective April 2 - Check dated April 30

While it is quite possible that a late or last minute budget would impact timely payment of the M/C increases, nevertheless, once the authorizations are made, the March 26 and April 2 effective dates will be used in calculating the amounts of any retroactive adjustments that are due to be included in future payments.

March 11, 2015

Update: OMCE Leaders Engaging Legislative Leaders:

OMCE President Barbara Zaron, Executive Director Joe Sano and Counsel John Black are engaged all week in meetings with the legislative leaders, key legislators, and program and fiscal staff of the legislature.

Your e-letters (below) and individualized letters and contacts are making a difference. WE are moving closer to pay parity. The Senate's one-house budget resolution (S.4205) accelerates M/C parity to 2 years (4% July 2015 and 3% April 2016) and eliminates the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions. The Assembly's resolution (A.6005) also eliminates the Executive's proposed exclusion of former bargaining unit employees promoted since April 2009 to M/C positions, but it adopts the Executive's 4-year schedule of payments. The Assembly is reviewing the Senate's proposal and the opportunity to accelerate the schedule, as well. Joint legislative committee discussions begin soon and MC pay parity is an issue on the agenda.

We constantly hear about your letters in our meetings with legislators. PLEASE keep sending letters and calling and urging them to resolve this pay parity issue NOW!. The M/C pay parity issue issue is alive, and moving forward.

March 10, 2015

Update:

We have been meeting with Senate and Assembly legislative leaders this week - and will be the remainder of the week, with meetings scheduled Wednesday and Thursday -  urging them to include our OMCE M/C Pay Parity Proposal in their respective house budgets, as negotiations continue between the legislature and the executive toward adoption (on or about April 1) of a final budget for fiscal year 2015-16.

"Ten years is too long to wait for Management/Confidential state employees to get full payment of withheld salary increases!"

On Monday, February 27, OMCE President Barbara Zaron and Executive Director Joseph Sano presented OMCE's testimony (read here) to the Joint Legislative Budget Committee on Workforce Development at its hearing on the 2015-16 Executive Budget proposal. 

February, 25, 2015

Send your letters today!

The 30-day budget amendment period ended without Governor Cuomo taking action on our request to amend his 2015-2016 Executive Budget Article VII, Part H, Phase-In Management/Confidential (M/C) Salary Parity Proposal. During the next several weeks, the Governor and Legislature will be negotiating toward a final budget to be in place on or about April 1.

We have three (3) e-letters for you to send - to the Governor and to your individual representatives in the Senate and Assembly, with copies to the Senate and Assembly leaders - urging them to negotiate amendments to the M/C Salary Parity Proposal that will (1) accelerate the schedule, so that pay parity can be fully achieved in the upcoming fiscal year, (2) include former bargaining unit employees, now M/C, who the Governor's proposal excludes, and (3) achieve pension parity for those already retired who were subject to the pay withholdings. Please send these e-letters and urge them to take action today!

Instructions: Once you take action on your letter to the Governor and click submit, the Senate letter will appear on your screen. After you do the same with the Senate letter, the Assembly letter will appear on your screen for action and submission. Please send these e-letters and urge action today! Write to them HERE - Send your Letters TODAY (ended 3/28/15) 

 

Comptroller Tom DiNapoli stops by the OMCE Table at the 44th Annual Conference of the NYS Association of Black and Puerto Rican Legislators, which was held the weekend of February 13-15 at the Empire State Plaza in Albany. Shown here with the Comptroller (left) are OMCE President Barbara Zaron and George Delamar, OMCE Representative.

February 23, 2015

OMCE in the News: Editorial,

Albany Times Union: "The Missing State Raises" ISSUE: Non-unionized state workers who haven't seen raises in years will get them - eventually. THE STAKES: How long will one group of employees have to balance the governor's budget? Click Here to Read >>

February 6, 2015

Data Security Breach:

We have received an advisory from the Civil Service Department's Employee Benefits Division (reproduced below ▼) concerning today's news of a data security breach experienced by the hospital administrator for The Empire Plan and the NYSHIP Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield HMO.

We will post updates here as as additional information become available to us. Meanwhile, we call your attention to our ID Theft Protection benefit, which is available to OMCE members at no cost (Login Here and scroll down to Improved Free ID Theft Protection to register, or call OMCE at 800.828.6623 for information). If you haven't done so, sign up today - incidents like this highlight the importance of this free ID Theft Protection member benefit.

Anthem, Inc., the parent organization for Empire BlueCross and BlueShield (the hospital administrator for The Empire Plan and the NYSHIP Empire Blue Cross Blue Shield HMO). today reported an extensive security breach of their member data. Names, dates of birth, member IDs/Social Security numbers, addresses, phone numbers, email addresses and employment information of current and former members were impacted. In the coming weeks, Anthem will send letters to impacted members with an offer of free credit monitoring and identity protection services.

NYSHIP recognizes that enrollees are concerned about this situation and that they will have questions about their personal information. Please direct inquiries to www.anthemfacts.com or 1-877-263-7995. The web site includes a FAQ and will be updated as additional information becomes available.