State reaches tentative deal with union

Posted: Friday, March 21, 2003

JUNEAU (AP) The state has reached a tentative deal with its largest labor union, the Alaska State Employees Association.

Under terms of the agreement, the state would pay $75 a month more in employee health insurance costs but give no general wage increase, state officials said.

Officials with ASEA/AFSCME Local 52, representing about 8,000 state employees, plan to submit the proposal to members for ratification.

Union business manager Jim Duncan said Friday the proposed one-year contract includes several non monetary incentives the union had sought. The union plans to seek cost-of-living increases during bargaining for the next contract, expected to begin in August, Duncan said.

We don't think this is adequate. (But) the negotiating team clearly says this is the best we can do,'' Duncan said.

The state announced earlier this week that it had reached a similar tentative agreement with five other unions representing about 3,100 employees.

The five unions include two bargaining units of the Public Safety Employees Association representing state troopers and correctional officers; Public Employees Local 71, Alyeska Central School Employees Association and Mount Edgecumbe Teachers Association.

It was not immediately clear how much the contracts will cost the state.

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