The union representing the largest percentage of state government workers is requesting a three percent, across-the-board raise for employees.
Negotiations have begun on the next two-year union contract. Danny Homan, president of AFSCME Council 61, says many state employees have been critical front-line workers during the pandemic and they deserve a raise. He specifically cites prison staff risking their health as Covid outbreaks sweep through the facilities.
AFSCME represents about 19,000 state employees, including DOT staff, nurses at state institutions and some employees at the state universities.
State government managers will submit their counter offer in a few weeks. If the two sides do not reach an agreement by mid-March, an arbitrator will step in and decide what’s in the contract.