Contract Bargaining: It’s Not Business, It’s Politics
State of New Mexico
Negotiations with the State of New Mexico and Council 18 on a successor agreement continue to drag. The stretched-out negotiations are directly attributable to the state’s insistence on eliminating fundamental worker rights’ and ignoring years’ of fine-tuned language which benefit the state and provide a fair working environment.
“This has been one of the more objectionable negotiations I’ve been involved in for a very long time,” said AFSCME’s legal counsel and chief negotiator, Shane Youtz. “Gov. Martinez’ tax-payer funded anti-union consultant ignores well-established labor laws and SPO seems to operate under a mandate to cut costs and services be damned.”
The parties are still far apart on the main contract and have not yet begun negotiations on the (agency) appendices.
The CWA and FOP negotiations with the State are also contentious with the State taking the same indefensible positions.
The Supreme Court of the State of New Mexico is scheduled to hear oral argument in the State employee pay plan litigation on May 15, at 9:00am. AFSCME members are encouraged to attend the one-hour hearing to listen to the State argue against employees' contractual pay increase and for the Justices to see the faces of the affected workers.