Monday, February 25, 2019
As indicated in the SEBAC response to Governor Lamont’s proposed SERS COLA change, state employees are currently saving the state nearly $2 billion a year by previously agreeing to wage freezes, furlough days, and higher contributions to pension and healthcare costs. It is time that the Lamont Administration and the General Assembly stop looking to balance the budget on the back of state employees.
It is patently unfair to ask 10, 15, 20 and 25 year employees, who took state jobs with the promise of specific pay & benefits, to now have to forgo those benefits due to no fault of their own. Employees who have dedicated their entire careers to protecting and serving the citizens of Connecticut are now being asked in the eleventh hour to change the pensions that they have worked their entire career to achieve.
As state employees and tax payers, union members are more than willing to discuss “win-win” solutions for achieving efficiencies that will create cost-savings for the state. But—we are unwilling to discuss changes to the pension plan that will negatively impact current employees. When negotiations begin on a new agreement, we would be glad to discuss these proposed changes to the pension system for new employees.
Tuesday, February 18, 2019
Leaders of the State Employee Bargaining Agent Coalition (SEBAC) issued this response to Gov. Lamont’s proposal to reduce future pension benefits:
“State budgets now and into the future include nearly $2 billion a year in savings provided by state employee union members through three savings agreements negotiated over the past decade. By agreeing to hard wage freezes, reduced pension and healthcare benefits, higher employee contributions and higher premium share costs, our members have done far more than their fair share to improve Connecticut’s fiscal health.
“Our latest agreement in 2017 will save taxpayers $25 billion over the next 20 years. That’s an average of $17,500 per state employees to help close chronic budget deficits that imperil vital public services.
“Meanwhile, our union members, like all working and middle-class families, pay an effective local tax rate nearly double what Connecticut’s richest few get away with paying.
“We will, however, continue working with the Lamont Administration and the General Assembly on “win-win” solutions for achieving efficiency and that will benefit everyone. Additionally, we will continue fighting for a fair budget that empowers all to thrive together here in Connecticut.”
SEBAC represents 15 State Employee Unions on bargaining over retirement and healthcare benefits, and other issues of mutual concern.