This is the time of year I typically look back and assess what we have accomplished. I find it useful and gratifying to reflect on the many things for which I have to be thankful. But this December I am also looking forward. This is what I see.
Salary Equity NOW! I am supremely aware of what our MOU doesn’t provide — full salary equity. But we can all see the many benefits it does provide — significant salary growth, protection of our many leaves and benefit programs, and stability to plan for the future. Relative to any of the current contracts negotiated on behalf of other state employees, the CAPS agreement is easily the best. We are receiving significantly more in general salary increases, we are receiving them sooner, and our contribution to guaranteed post-retirement health benefits is less. Regardless, your CAPS Bargaining Team has its sights set on improvements in many critical areas of the MOU when negotiations commence this coming Spring. Salary equity is tops on the list, but there are many other areas that need to be addressed. I will be guided in that effort by the results of our member bargaining survey, which will be released in early 2018. So please look for it, and return it with your choices and your thoughts.
Retirement Security Remains A Priority. We’ve beaten back efforts to degrade public sector retirement plans in California, but they continue. Every one of us deserves a secure, reasonable retirement based on a formula we were promised when hired. To have that promise changed while working—or worse, after you retire—would be a monumental failure by our elected officials. It’s simply unconscionable.