Assemblyman Pete Lopez Votes For State Union Cost Savings And To Protect Jobs

June 23, 2011
Assemblyman Pete Lopez (R,C,I-Schoharie) voted for legislation to implement negotiated cost savings resulting from collective bargaining agreements with the New York State Civil Service Employees Association (CSEA) and Management Confidential employees (M/C). This legislation, Assembly Bill 8513, will save roughly $100 million and help move the state’s enacted budget toward fiscal solvency.

Passed by both houses, the legislation amends state law in relation to labor contracts for CSEA and certain unrepresented governmental employees, which were originally drafted in 1969, and implements the agreement between the organizations and the governor.

Although this year’s state budget was passed on-time and reduced spending, some portions were left to be negotiated by the Governor and the state labor unions and organizations to save more than $450 million.

“This vote was just the start,” said Assemblyman Lopez. “Now, the other unions need to follow suit.”

The governor’s five-year agreement with CSEA and M/C was announced earlier today and includes an accord on a three-year moratorium on broad-based raises, or a “wage freeze.” In return, the governor’s recent threat to lay off roughly 4,500 CSEA employees has been called off. However, other major public employee unions have yet to reach an agreement and still face potential layoffs. Assemblyman Lopez hopes that they will be able to come to terms soon to meet state budget targets and protect these employees from being laid off.

“We have much more to do,” said Assemblyman Lopez. “Now, we need to continue our work to transform government, relieve property taxes and build our economy.”