AO 37

On February 8, 2013 with literally minutes left to file for Assembly seats, Mayor Sullivan released a proposal for severe changes in how the Municipality relates to its workforce.
The impact of the changes reduces the number of people that would be able to be in on organized bargaining unit (BU) and limits items the BU can negotiate about with the Muni.  While the Muni has stated they are not trying to copy Wisconsin, it has almost exactly the same result.
This is a huge shift and has clear implications for what might happen with AEA if it does come to pass.  Because we are in bargaining (meaning many rules cannot change) and we are under some different laws than Muni BU's, there will not be any immediate change for us, but this cannot be ignored.
We'll attempt to bring here information that is accurate about what the proposal is and why everyone working under a Collective Bargained Agreement (CBA) should be concerned.

You can see a copy of the Mayor's proposal here.

Impacts

Muni BU's have had minimal time to revue the document so far, but these would be "highlights:"
- Benefits would be standardized and not be a negotiated item, leaving salary as the only real item to bargain for.
- Bargaining for salaries would be limited to essentially the recent Consumer Price Index, or less.
- The Muni would become the mandated arbitrator for disputes between BU's and the Muni.
- In the event of a bargaining impasse, after 150 days, the Assembly would choose one of the two "last best offers" and implement it as the contract.
- all supervisory positions would be pulled from BU membership.
- only positions specifically indicated by Municipal Code would be allowed to participate in a BU.  All others would not.

The numbers of people participating in a union would be substantially decreased.  
The ability of the union to advocate for members would be gutted.
The ability to bargain working conditions and benefits would be gutted.
By capping salary advances to inflation, the position of union members in the community would be leveled, and never rise again.  It would hold even, or decrease.
Being a member of a BU would no longer make much economic sense to an individual.

What to Do Right NOW!

Right now, email your Assembly members and tell them what you think.  
If you're not sure who they are, click "Basic Facts" on menu bar and find out who all your reps are.  Print it!
Click "Contact Information" or just go to this link to get the email addresses for your Assembly members.
Without waiting for statements I can tell you that Patrick Flynn, Dick Traini, Elvi Gray-Jackson, and Paul Honeman hate this proposal.  THANK THEM for supporting the right of working people in Anchorage to bargain.
Ernie Hall and Jennifer Johnston are sponsors of this mess.  Please express your opinions to them.
Debbie Ossiander, Bill Starr, Cheryl Frasca, Adam Trombley, and Chris Birch have yet to make statements that I am aware of. As I hear them, I'll come back and update this page.
I urge you to write to your personal representitives, and if you have a more general message also, you can send it to all Assembly members at wwmas@muni.org .

What to do NEXT!

March 5 & 6 - Public Testimony continues at the Loussac.  This is ONLY public testimony.  Starts at 6 PM and continues until 11.  Each person gets 3 minutes.  If they run through everyone that wants to speak, public testimony closes.  We're trying to schedule people evenly so we've got enough, but you don't have to sit until 11 PM.  You can sign up at this page.  Bring a friend if you can.  There are advantages to the volume of testimony, and so far, there's been one person in favor of AO 37 and over 100 against.
In the meantime, continue to write to Assembly people.

February 27 - More public testimony to the Assembly, back at the Loussac.  At the moment, it's hard to tell what the schedule will be like after that.  The Muni has not made their plans clear.

February 26th - the following Tuesday.  Back at the Loussac.  The Assembly will open public testimony on the Mayor's Proposal.  All Muni Unions will turn members out to sign up to give testimony.  We hope AEA members will turn out again in support of collective bargaining. Please sign up to talk. Every citizen that wishes to speak gets 3 minutes.  We want the city to develop proposals WITH the bargaining units - not spring something on them late on a Friday.


February 23 - At the Loussac.  The Anchorage Legislative Caucus is a chance for citizens to speak to state legislators.  Most House and Senate members from Anchorage will be there.  The primary purpose is to listen to citizens.  Mayor Sullivan is invited to speak to the delegation, and that's drawing Muni Labor groups.
We want AEA members to turn out in force, first for education funding!
We also want AEA members to turn out to speak against the school voucher ammendment being considered in the House and Senate.
We also want AEA members to support Muni Labor groups that will be there suggest the Mayor is making a bad move.

February 23 - At the Loussac.  The Anchorage Legislative Caucus is a chance for citizens to speak to state legislators.  Most House and Senate members from Anchorage will be there.  The primary purpose is to listen to citizens.  Mayor Sullivan is invited to speak to the delegation, and that's drawing Muni Labor groups.
We want AEA members to turn out in force, first for education funding!
We also want AEA members to turn out to speak against the school voucher ammendment being considered in the House and Senate.
We also want AEA members to support Muni Labor groups that will be there suggest the Mayor is making a bad move.

February 20 - Wednesday night - AEA Candidate Forum.  The one night all the questions are from us, and  about education.
A strong showing makes an impression on the people that will sit on the Assembly and on the School Board.  You can watch them answer questions on stage, and chat with them informally over snacks after.  Come make a connection with the people that set policy.