Despite the existence of a “no strike clause,” SEIU 1000 members recently authorized a one-day strike on December 5th if they cannot reach an agreement with the Brown Administration on a new contract.
Governor Brown has offered a 12% raise over four years, which is larger than many other similarly situated workers can expect. But union members are rejecting the offer because Brown wants state workers to “pay an offset of the cost of their retirement health benefits,” according to the Sacramento Bee.
“That deduction could climb to about 4 percent of an employee’s salary over four years, according to similar contracts that other state unions have accepted,” states the Bee report.
A more recent Sacramento Bee article suggests that the Brown Administration should cave to the union’s demands and now only has less than a week to wrap up negotiations with the state’s largest public sector union, which represents about 95,000 workers in nine of its 21 bargaining units.
According to the Bee, the alternative would be to “risk embarrassing disruptions for lawmakers’ return to the Capitol on the first day of the new session and during the annual Christmas tree-lighting ceremony that evening,” according to the Bee report.
The Bee’s line of reasoning is exactly what SEIU 1000 and union members want everyone to believe but represents terrible advice for the Brown Administration.