AFSCME, MAPE members ratify contracts with state

Project1_Layout 1State employees voted to ratify new two-year contracts in balloting earlier this month, unions representing the workers have announced.

Members of both the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) and the Minnesota Association of Professional Employees (MAPE) supported the contracts by wide margins.

The 2015-17 contracts won’t go into effect until they gain approval from the legislative Subcommittee on Employee Relations.

The contracts, which cover about 27,500 workers, call for annual raises of 2.5 percent. Workers would cover a larger portion of their health care costs, but the increase would be more than offset by the contract’s wage and step increases, according to the unions.

MAPE said 94 percent of voting members gave approval to their contract; AFSCME Council 5 reported an 84 percent approval rate.

Council 5 also said a similar contract proposal covering 1,900 state correctional officers was voted down by members of that unit. As “essential employees,” officers cannot strike, meaning the union will pursue interest arbitration to resolve the dispute.

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