Minutes 2022-11

Date/Time: Thursday, November 17, 2022 (Institutional Issues) / Friday, November 18, 2022 at 10:00am

Location: Zoom (11/17/2022) / Salem State University (SSU) and Zoom (11/18/2022)


APA Statewide

  • (17/18) Seth Bean, President
  • (17/18) Susan McNeil, Vice President
  • ( /18) Maria Brunelle, Treasurer (Non-Voting)
  • ( /18) Aaron Childs, Membership Coordinator (Non-voting)
  • ( /18) Gerol Petruzella, Web Manager (Non-voting)
  • (17/18) Catherine Santiago, MTA Field Representative (Non-voting)

APA Chapter Presidents

  • Seth Bean, Massachusetts College of Liberal Arts
  • (17/18) Renee Bernier, Bridgewater State University
  • ( /18) Brian Cahillane, Westfield State University
  • (17/18) Jane Decatur, Framingham State University
  • (17/18) Peter Fenuccio, Worcester State University
  • (17/18) Sherry Horeanopoulos, Fitchburg State President
  • Susan McNeil, Massachusetts College of Art & Design
  • (17/18) Rosa Taormina, Salem State University
  • (17/18) Edward Vacha, Massachusetts Maritime Academy


  • Auditors: Peter Brown & Amber Beachen


APA Statewide

  • (17/18) Mark Powers, Secretary
  • (17/18) Roberta James, MTA Field Representative (Non-voting)

APA Chapter Presidents

Call to Order

  • 8:46 pm (11/17/2022)
  • 10:15 am (11/18/2022)

Approval of Minutes

  • Per agreement of the Executive Board, the Minutes of the October 21, 2022 Executive Board Meeting were approved electronically on November 9, 2022.

Public Comments

  • None.

President’s Report – Seth Bean

  1. C. Santiago spoke about the upcoming contract negotiations and parameters. Push back for good parameters that meet cost of living increases should be emphasized. All State Higher Education Unions should support good parameters and not settle before they goals are reached.
  2. Petition – bring demand for good parameters to Governor Maura Healey in January. There is a press conference in early December – attendance will be limited due to size of room.
  3. It will be important to gain cooperation with all the state higher ed unions to attain better parameters – S. McNeil suggested a meeting with the State University Council of Presidents (CoP).

Treasurer’s Report – Maria Brunelle

  1. Auditor’s Report
    1. Fiscal 2022 Finances in two parts.
      1. Logistics of Audit (finances (dues collection) trending down – possible membership decline, and more expenses – additional Executive Board members with salary and new technology costs). This is not unusual in other financial audits. Auditors asked if there was any thought of increasing dues.
        Auditor advice: Be aware of the direction being taken – plan accordingly. Some issues with collecting Local Aid from the state. Inflation is also a factor.
      2. Disbursements went down in 2022 (less mileage and travel for in-person meeting)
      3. Financials – Available in Draft form, pending questions by auditors) Auditors commented that Maria is great to work with for the audit
        1. Clean opinion on financials (no audit findings)
        2. Cash method basis – correct for this sized organization
        3. Only point raised in statement is the usual caution regarding segregation of duties
          1. Control Suggestions: Transfers out of the bank can only go to the payroll account
          2. Dual signatures on amounts over $500.00
          3. Someone else should review the payroll
      4. Auditors are requested to make a general statement to the membership about the financial status of the Union at the General Membership meeting.
  2. Payroll due on Tuesday, November 22, 2022 by 12:00pm.
  3. Approval of October 2022 Treasurer’s Report
  • Amendments: None
  • Motion to approve membership report as presented/amended made by: S. McNeil
  • 2nd by: B. Cahillane
  • Vote: Unanimous
  • Action: Motion Carries
  1. Paper statements sent to Westfield will end and only electronic statements will be sent in the future.
  2. The current mileage reimbursement rate is $0.625 per mile.

Membership and Data – Aaron Childs

  1. 1325 Overall Membership since October 2022. An increase of 8.
  2. 157 Non-Dues Paying Members. An increase of 4 since October 2022.

Website – Gerol Petruzella

  1. 1 October – 31 October 2022
    1. Website Overview – Users. During September 2022, maapa.org saw increases in users and sessions relative to September 2022 (Figure 1). The most popular days/times for users to visit the site were Thursdays between 12p and 2p ET, and Fridays between 10a and 1p ET (Figure 2).
    2. Website Overview – Traffic. Traffic to maapa.org was predominantly direct traffic or the result of a Google search (Figure 3). The top 10 most visited pages are indicated (Figure 4).
    3. Website Overview – Other. 
      • I performed content updates on the site including:
        1. Updated meeting minutes.
      • On 26 June, Google Analytics notified that the current “Universal Analytics” product (which we use for maapa.org) will sunset on 1 July 2023. Web managers are encouraged to move to their new product, Google Analytics 4, as soon as possible. This will require a property setup process to implement and transition, to maintain data continuity. (link to Google’s blog post about the analytics transition.)
      • I continued to maintain an internal WordPress instance of the site in parallel with the “live” Drupal instance. As the Drupal instance falls further behind in security updates, I continue to recommend transitioning to the WordPress CMS as soon as possible. I also suggest that aligning the CMS transition with the Analytics transition will minimize both labor and disruption.

Health and Welfare Fund Report – Susan McNeil

  1. Health and Welfare updates from October 28, 2022 (McNeil’s first meeting)
    Minutes from the June 2022 meeting presented and approved.
    October 2022 Monthly Report presented
  2. Portfolio review as of October 25, 2022
    4 million-liquidity (cash)
    1.4-1.5 million invested in market
    Enrollment has been steady at around 9091
  3. Tim Gray: (Gray Group Investment Advisor)
    6/2022 Mr. Gray notes fund down by $305,000 which is to be expected given current market conditions. Gray does not recommend any immediate changes to investments at this time. We have had 5.74% positive returns even through all the ups and downs with the market Inflation will continue to affect us there will always be ups and downs. An excellent 3% return has been negotiated with our new bank Salem 5.
  4. Mike Abela: (Met Life Dental Carrier Rep) will be retiring and the new representative on the board a person whoAbela has mentored for many years.
    6/2022 Mr. Abela states he has reviewed the Fund’s performance to date and noted it is tracking closely to the previous year. A reminder in 2023 the contract with Met-Life is up for renewal. Renewal will include annual caps moving forward, which could protect the fund in a worst-case scenario.
  5. October 2022
    Premium Billed $1,595,079.49
    Claims Paid $1,462,425.07
    Ratio Claims to Premium 92%
  6. The Passing of Question 2: We will see an increase on cost of claims. A good guess of around 6% to 8% by Spring of 2023, the Trustees will need to be looking at this as well as the impact of inflation.
  7. Next Meeting will be in December, things are quiet right now the busiest time for the Board is in April.

Committee Reports

Budget Committee – Rosa Taormina & Seth Bean

Employee Relations Working Group –

Professional Development – Edward Vacha

Special Committees:

  1. Committee on Legislative Action – Susan McNeil, Seth Bean, & Sherry Horeanopoulos
  2. Committee on Health & Safety – Renee Bernier & Susan McNeil
  3. Negotiations – Contract Committee
  4. Employee Relations Committee – Brian Cahillane, Jane Decatur, & Rosa Taormina

Old/New Business

  1. FAQ of the Month for the Website for December – nothing suggested
  2. Silent Negotiators for next Bargaining session. Does it require a change to the bylaws? Silent Reps vs. Silent Observers – decision should be made before next negotiation. Silent Reps are actually members of the Bargaining teams (would be accomplished most cleanly by changing the bylaws – would not allow Management to object). To be discussed in December.
  3. Survey for Bargaining should go out in January.
  4. Some discussion ensued where we discussed the financial parameters to catch up to levels achieved previously.
  5. Suggestion to survey employees who are leaving to discuss topics related to exit interview/reason
  6. J. Decatur asked for average and median salaries of all APA members prior to negotiations. Asked that we sit down and calculate take-home pay after deductions. C. Santiago offered to draft an information request and template for this data
  7. Suggestion to write to Governor-Elect Maura Healey – Petition – Use this as a vehicle to change the parameters to keep up with inflation.

Institutional Issues


  1. Announcements: Executive Board Meeting begins Friday morning at 10:00 at Salem State. Meet in in Lobby School of Business at 9:45


  1. Motion to Adjourn made at 8:57pm 11/17/2022 by: S. McNeil
    2nd by: E. Vacha
    Vote: Unanimous
    Action: Motion Carries
  2. Motion to Adjourn made at 11:30am 11/19/2022 by: S. McNeil
    2nd by: M. Storey
    Vote: Unanimous
    Action: Motion Carries

Next APA Meetings:

  • APA Executive Board | 10:00am | Friday, December 16, 2022 | In-Person | Worcester MTA Office
  • APA Executive Board | 9:00am | Friday, January 20, 2023 | Virtual | Zoom
  • APA Executive Board | 9:00am | Friday, February 17, 2023 | Virtual | Zoom
  • APA Executive Board | 9:00am | Friday, March 17, 2023 | Virtual | Zoom
  • APA Executive Board | 9:00am | Friday, April 21, 2023 | Virtual | Zoom
  • APA Executive Board | 10:00am | Friday, June 16, 2023 | In-Person | TBD

Topics for next round of negotiations:

  • Salary Compression
  • Longevity
  • Workload
  • Sick Bank Leave Committee Language