President's Perspective, October 2007: This afternoon, the membership of NTEU Chapter 293 voted almost unanimously to ratify the new Collective Bargaining Agreement. The final vote result, which was certified by NTEU Counsel Michael Piacsek, was 99.8% in favor of the new contract. We appreciate this strong showing of support from our members across the country.
I would like to thank the other members of Chapter 293's negotiating team, Dean Suehiro, Netta Williams, Katie Nix and Veronica Lewis (pictured here), for all of their hard work on this CBA. The negotiations, which spanned over the past eighteen months, were difficult at times -- but these volunteers hung in to the end, always keeping their eye upon what was in the best interest of all of the bargaining unit employees at the SEC. I am personally very grateful to each of them for their strong commitment to all of you. While employees in other agencies have seen their rights and benefits chipped away, we have maintained a strong contract and enhanced it with substantial improvements.
The CBA will now go to SEC Chairman Christopher Cox for agency head review. He will have thirty days to decide whether to execute the final ratified agreement. We anticipate that he will do so, particularly given the strong support for this contract among SEC employees in every office in the nation.
This contract is but one of several key NTEU victories on behalf of SEC employees in the past year. We are proud of this accomplishment, but we do not intend to rest in our continuing efforts on behalf of all of you. We are continuing to work towards a resolution of the problems with the Merit Pay system in the wake of NTEU's recent arbitration victory, and we are also pressing ahead with our lobbying efforts to bring an increased match to employees' retirement accounts, as well as increased funding for merit pay in the coming year.
I hope that you will continue to support our efforts -- and that you will encourage your friends and colleagues to support us as well by joining NTEU. The greater our numbers, the greater our strength -- at the bargaining table, on Capitol Hill and when we deal with management on a day to day basis. Thanks for your support.
NTEU Chapter 293 President Greg Gilman