Local 2829: Statewide with Pride

May 2014 General Membership meeting minutes

AFSCME COUNCIL 5 – May 28, 2014

President Kevin Norbie called the meeting to order at 5:33 p.m. on Wednesday, May 28, 2014. All Local Executive Board Members were present in person or via telephone. Attendees: Mel Preczewski, Kristin Kirchoff, Eric Mattson, Mike Nelson, Roberta Suski, Bill Smith, Theresa St. Aoro, Curt Erickson (for Christi Nelson), Julie Tinkham, Nathan Titus, Pam Todora, and Kevin Norbie. Phone: Kristin Dennis.


Motion made by M. Nelson, seconded, and carried to accept the April 2014 minutes.


The April 2014 Financial Reports were distributed and summarized by Mattson. Motion made by Mattson, seconded, and carried to accept the Balance Sheet and Revenues and Expenses Report of April 2014. Motion made by Mattson, seconded, and carried to accept the Register Report of April 2014, subject to audit.


Norbie discussed the following:
Seasonal employees back at the Racing Commission.
Council 5 Executive Board meeting minutes available to view.
Arbitration decision for University of Minnesota.
Replies by Arbitration Review Team for the two submitted grievances, both denied.
East Central Labor Quarterly Meeting on June 16th at 6:30 p.m.
Council 5 President’s Meeting. Norbie and Kirchoff attending.
Financial Responsibility Training at the Council 5 office in South St. Paul on June 18th.
International Executive Board meeting on July 9-10 in Washington, D.C.
Requests for achievement awards for Council 5 Convention in September. Due by August 8th.
Request for a donation for the Duluth AFL-CIO Central Labor Bodies Labor Day Picnic on September 1st.
AFSCME Family Picnic on August 17th.
Council 5’s for the Fight per capita increase proposal.
Request for a donation from CHUM, food shelf in Duluth.
AFSCME’s Got Talent contest at the International Convention in July.


The Executive Board meeting was canceled this month.


St. Aoro discussed the following:
Calls from members.
Building a good relationship with the HR at Commerce.
A meeting with Commerce management in June regarding the reorganization. St. Aoro will set up a meeting with our members at Commerce after this meeting to give them information.
Commerce HR is working on getting bulletin boards. Vicki Alsides is the contact regarding this.
Still waiting on a response from an investigation at Commerce.
Arbitration Review Team denied both of our arbitration requests. Need more info from C. Nelson regarding the review team’s decision to deny these.

Military Affairs:
Smith discussed the following:
Accruals and military leave without pay issue. Step 3 was denied. Discussion regarding whether or not to send it to the Arbitration Review Team at the next Executive Board meeting.
Job openings in St. Cloud and Holman Field. Both applicants were denied the job. Denied for too much experience and not submitting bid per posting. Possible grievance.


St. Paul RLF:
St. Aoro discussed the following:
BBQ meeting.
Tom Bakk attended.
Consulting with private company to get Union’s message out to get public opinion to turn.

Minneapolis ALC:
Mattson discussed the following:
Vikings Stadium.
Endorsements coming.

Council 5 Executive Board:
M. Nelson discussed the following:
Council 5’s Five for the Fight per capita increase proposal.
Additional informational sessions for the Five for the Fight. Department of Revenue and Camp Ripley will be additional sites, and Council 5 is looking at more sites in St. Paul.
Metro Transit Green Line light rail opening. Council 5 has signage in the cars.


Norbie noted that C. Nelson mentioned that she’s trying to get the two pending arbitrations to mediation or expedited arbitration.

The membership reviewed the Stewards Retreat’s training session on Basic Arbitration and the fair share density discussion.

Update given on Unclassified issue at AGO. Thirty-one Unclassified Leaves on seniority roster. Jo Pels is working on the issue and St. Aoro will file a class action grievance.


The membership discussed Council 5’s Five for the Fight per capita increase proposal. The Council 5 Executive Board recommends adoption of the proposal at the Council 5 Convention in September. Council 5 is proposing an increase in per capita dues of $5 per member per cycle, starting in January 2015. Council 5’s budget has had around a $5,000,000 deficit over the last 3 years. Four of the $5 going to the deficit, the remaining $1 will go to training, community organizing, in-house counsel, and research. Discussion included the cuts made by Council 5 to account for the deficit (cut back field reps/support), fixing the structural deficit to avoid increases in the future, a progressive increase to $5 instead of a sudden $5 increase, Council 5 cuts to services to locals and locals having to pick those services up (education and training), high costs to running a business (space, utilities, pensions, and insurance) and finding a way to save money as these costs increase, alternatives to a dues increase, and getting fair shares to full members to increase the dues Council 5 receives.

Mattson discussed the impact of the per capita increase to the Local. The Local was rebated about $111,000 in 2013, and will be close to that for 2014. If Five for the Fight is implemented, the Local’s rebate would be about $65,000 in 2015, around a 40% budget reduction. This projection is based on the Local not shifting the per capita increase onto individual members’ dues within the Local.


Condolences to Nathan Brown (Duluth Firefighter) for his wife’s passing from brain cancer. A card and a plant will be sent from the Local.

Sharon Simi (SOS) is on medical leave, and is asking for vacation donations through the Vacation Donation Program. M. Nelson will get the flyer out.

Laurie O’Brien (PCA) was in a terrible motorcycle accident. A card will be sent from the Local.

Dennis won the nightly drawing.

Adjourned at 7:45 p.m.

Respectfully submitted by Secretary Kirchoff.


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