Minutes 2019-10

10:00am – October 18, 2019

In Attendance: Catherine Santiago (MTA Field Rep), Alan Jackson (APA Rep to Health and Welfare), Brian Cahillane (Westfield State APA President), Mark Powers (Framingham State APA President), Maria Brunelle (Treasurer, APA Statewide), Seth Bean (MCLA Statewide APA President), Aaron Childs (Membership, APA Statewide), Mike Storey (Bridgewater State APA President), Maribeth Wrobel (Worcester State APA President), Susan McNeil (MassArt APA President), Sherry Horeanopoulos (President, Statewide APA and Fitchburg State President), Kathi Bradford (Secretary, Statewide APA), Mike Pelletier (Salem State APA President – arrived 11:20pm)

Guests: Colleen Fitzpatrick (MTA rep for Mass Art), Katie Durso (MTA Higher Ed rep for UMASS)

Absent:  Liz Novak (APA Web Manager) Edward Vacha (MMA APA President), Charlie Cianfarini (Vice President, APA Statewide)


I. Call to Order 

10:02pm by Sherry

II. Approval of Minutes of September 20, 2019 meeting

with MOTION made by Seth and seconded by Mike S  10-0-0 PASSED 

III. Public Comments


IV. President’s Report  – Sherry

  • HELC Update
    • APA, MSCA and MCCC have joined the UMass Unions in filing a ULP due to the taxing of employees in September wages for PFML
    • PFML taxing has begun.  The Unions have NOT agreed to the division of payment (state vs. employees) and continue to bargain in coalition
    • It was pointed out the the Higher Ed Division of MTA has again failed to communicate valuable information to all of its affiliates regarding the status of negotiating PFML
    • MTA was planning a Higher Ed Conference for November 21 and 22 – with no notice to date to the members.  This will likely be changed to January.
      • MTA is hosting a Bargaining Summit on Saturday, October 26.  Registration is required.  The venue is Devens Common Center – 31 Andrews Parkway, Devens, MA 01434 (right off of Route 2) Will have a Higher ed group.  Cathy has flyers to the summit.   Open to all.
      • New member liaison program offers $350.00 stipend per year to locals or chapters who apply.  First 90 applications.  Sherry will send a SCAN OF APPLICATION
  • Annual meeting
    • On November 15, the Board Meeting will be held in the Hammond Building, Rm G11 from 10:00 – 12:00.  Breakfast included. The Annual Meeting and Lunch to be hosted in the Hammond 1st Floor lounge. More details to come.
    • Working on Institutional Issues meeting/dinner for Thursday,  November 14.  Poll indicated 10 would come early.  Will arrange for hotel and dinner with Sherry
  • Framingham Chapter Elections – We have lost Mark in the recent election.  His attention to detail and work with the Employee group has been very helpful to this board.  New leadership begins November 1.  Mark will forward contact information. Add President to agenda and minutes
    • APA Framingham President: Jane Decatur,
    • APA Framingham Vice President/Grievance Officer Lauren Keville, 
    • APA Framingham Secretary/Membership Coordinator: Maureen Fowler
  • Contract updates/issues – Release Survey – Same 5 questions.
  • Higher Education Touring Schedule – Cathy sent schedule to the eboard
  • December meeting at the Publick House in Sturbridge – Dec 13 confirmed, 9:00am start (chapter presidents, grievance officers and membership)
  • Freedom to Join Act – Impact on membership and representation
    • Regarding representation for non-paying members vs. paying members
    • Our duty as Union Officers is to represent the Contract – not the Grievant, Outcomes or remedies sought – satisfy the contract.  Therefore, the outcome is the same whether or not the bargaining unit member pays.
    • The difference in the “duty to represent” is when a dispute is not about contract language.  Some examples include the following AFTER a grievance has been filed.
      • WhistleBlower
      • State Ethics violations
      • Discrimination/Race/Title IX
      • Workers Compensation
      • Criminal Offenses
      • Retirement Disputes
      • Benefit issues
  • It can be UNLAWFUL to not represent a contract issue through all the steps (up to and including arbitration)
  • Charging members (non-payers) for representation may also be unlawful – being tested now by NAGE
  • Benefits of Freedom to Join Act to the Union
    • Access Rights (Union Security to build membership)
    • Reach out to employees at earliest possible stage of hiring
    • 30 minutes within 10 days of hire
    • Contact information must be provided to Union – including address, phone numbers (home, cell, office) personal and institutional email
    • May be up to Union to request info and provide language of the law
    • Union Rights Guaranteed
    • Right to meet on -premises, during workday to discuss union business, grievances internal union matters
    • Use of University Email systems for Union business including elections
    • Use of government buildings and other facilities for bargaining
    • Printed contracts
  • Field Rep update – Final report from Katie Durso.  She said, “You do a great job at getting the work done and you use your time efficiently.  Remember organizing works!” (Click Clack Moo, Cows that type book as a gift)
  • Employee Relations Working Group – MOTION by Susan and 2nd Maribeth to retain Mark as the chair of the Employee Relations Working Group at a stipend of $75 per month.  7-0-1 PASSED
  • Operations Manual — New idea, why not sit down and finish the manual at the Holiday meeting in December?  Kathi will provide the framework and we will make it happen!  

V. Treasurer’s Report – Maria

  • Payroll due on Tuesday, October 22, 2019 by 12:00pm to Maria.
  • Auditors will come to the Annual meeting in November. 
  • See report in email

MOTION TO approve Treasurer’s Report by Mark, 2nd by Susan 10-0-0 PASSED

VI. Membership and Data – Aaron

  • 1438 Members (+4 since September), 109 Non-Paying Members (Same)
  • Worked with Rich at Fitchburg with some errors in their roster.  One member who transferred from Framingham in 2013 was accidentally deleted because I received an update form from Framingham a couple of months after I got the enrollment form from Fitchburg.  As a result we are being back-billed for the years we weren’t paying for her MTA dues which totaled to $3,378.
  • Our domain has been renewed for another 5 years.

VII. Website – Liz

  • Please send bylaws.
  • Updated calculator on site
  • Updated some software
  • REQUEST LIZ to upload self-employee narrative form on website for member use.

VIII. Health and Welfare Report – AJ

  • September 27 meeting, no quorum
  • Investments going well.  Not gaining much in interest but, going well. 
  • No complaints from members. 
  • Fund administrator is learning we are different.  State colleges doing well, UMASS is not sending the money expected on time.  
  • We are at bare bones.  Can’t cut more without losing benefits for our members.
  • AJ will complete his tenure on Health and Welfare on June 30.

IX. Committee Reports

  • Budget – Mike S
  • Employee Relations working group – Mark
  •  Vincent Pedone called indicating he has the reps from HR side of things.
  • Asked if legal folks can participate.  He and Sherry said no.
  • Professional Development – Edward
  • Negotiations – Please see list at the bottom of the minutes.

X. Old/New Business

  • FAQ of the Month for the Website – How can I get more involved in the union
  • Information for Operations Manual? FAQ for November – What if I get a new job description?  Do I have any rights?
  • Mike shared some feedback that he collected from his board re: negotiations, etc. for our review.
  • Discussion about lack of focus on the evaluation process.  Appears not to be as “important” as it was in the past.  Also, some supervisors are not checking the member’s job description during the review.
  • Mass pay equity review being done by the Mass Pay Equity Act.  Not looking at descriptions but, pay only. 

XI. Institutional Issues 

XII. Announcements: 

XIII.  Adjournment

Annual Meeting:

1. November 14, 2019 –  Meeting and dinner – Institutional Issues 6:30 PM and Slattery’s Restaurant
2. November 15, 2019 – Annual meeting – Fitchburg, MA  (see president’s report)


12/13 Publick House – Sturbridge Confirmed for 9:00am
1/17 – EAW
2/21 – Auburn (9:30 am-1:30 pm)
3/20 – EAW
4/17 – Auburn (9:30 am-1:30 pm)
MAY – MTA ANNUAL (and/or 5/15)
6/19 – MMA


  • Athletic Trainer appendix
  • Evaluation process clarification – needs improvement does not mean a PIP, loss of job or other punitive issue. 
  • Job description changes
  • Salary equity section – contradictions and result of Westfield’s arbitration          
  • Amount of time for Grievance filing – 10 days is too short.
  • Years to be on “probation” is too long
  • Salary ranges
  • Police portion of the appendix.  Need consistency in contract and practice.