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JBLC Message From the President

July 4th, 2013

The calendar shows July, but the water still seems to be early June. Evidence of the Gulf Stream moving in our direction abound, with Giant Turtles and Portuguese Man of War sighting, but still no warm water. We had days of on-shore wind driven surf last week. I am sure all the beaches were very busy keeping everyone safe. We had a number of rescues at RM4, and our new full-time beach staffing, with the most senior and most junior crew now combined, proved quite capable with some harrowing rescues in large surf, cold water and fog. Congratulations to the Class of 2013! All 100+ new lifeguards are now working and hopefully enjoying their new jobs and perhaps new careers. The big news of course is the settlement of our outstanding labor issues, with the signed agreement between NYS and UUP/NYSLC. This was 6 years of a big effort by a lot of lifeguards. Years of meetings, telephone calls, rallies, and speeches, have finally reached a conclusion. As I noted at our union meeting last week, we have been part of unions for about 50 years now. Our parent unions have varied as to their commitment to the lifeguards and our needs. Some totally ignored us; some seemed to work against us, some

have been helpful. Our new relationship with UUP seems to be heading in a positive manner, and I do hope it continues. A financial settlement for back wages is the big item. Bruce Meirowitz has put together a summary of the highlights and his interpretation as to the effect on us. There has been criticism that the retro pay for lifeguards does not include anyone not working this year. Many claim rights to that pay. NYS was insistent that only lifeguards working this summer would qualify. This issue came down to the very end, with the Legislature going on vacation on June 20th; it was a take-it or leave-it option. Take the 21% to 25% wage increase and a retroactive pay offer that positively affects all 1100 lifeguards represented by the NYSLC, or hold out and not accept the offer with no hope of further discussions for perhaps another 2 years. UUP and the NYSLC chose to accept the wage offer in the best interests of its current member. Everyone who was involved in this long arduous effort feels terrible for those who are not included in the pay package, but as I stated, decisions were made for the best interests of current members. Options are being formulated for those that may not be working this year. One of those is to consider working Upstate, where jobs are available. Links to these options are available on our web sites. Opinions on the negotiation process are varying. Two members of the team of negotiators have written a statement that is also included in this issue. Why we did not vote on this contract was another issue. In the end UUP and the NYSLC were recognized as being able to represent the lifeguards and agree to this settlement without a vote.

A copy of the Master Agreement has yet to be provided. Below are the annotated highlights of the agreement. Bruce Meirowitz has provided the comments.
New York State Lifeguard Corps Contract Highlights Agreement between UUP and the State of New York, September 14, 2013 Duration: July 2, 2011 to July 1, 2016 Compensation: Percentage increases apply to salary and hourly rates April 1, 2004 – 2.5% April 1, 2005 – 2.75% April 1, 2006 – 3% April 1, 2007 – 3% April 1, 2008 – 3% April 1, 2009 – 3.0% April 1, 2010 – 4.0% April 1, 2011 – 0 April 1, 2012 – 0 April 1, 2013 – 0 April 1, 2014 – 2.0% April 1, 2015 – 2.0% Eligibility for retroactive increases: Employees must have been in employment status on effective date of the salary or hourly rate increase or during a season that commences during the fiscal year that includes the effective date of a salary or hourly rate increase and must be in employment status on April 1, 2013 or during a season that commences the fiscal year that includes April 1, 2013. Explanation: UUP is planning further meetings with The Governor’s Office of Employee Relations (GOER) to discuss implementation of the above and whom this affects. The 2% increase effective April 1, 2014 will be payable to employees after the State and UUP have reached an agreement on issues of mutual concern included in the “Joint Meeting Minutes between Long Island State Park and Recreation Commission and the Jones Beach Lifeguard Corp.” Explanation: The final 2% is subject to the conclusion of productive meetings with Long Island Parks. Joint Meeting Minutes and Agreements

Labor-Management Agreements concerning the Jones Beach Lifeguard Corps, excluding the agreement for handling lifeguard performance or attendance deficiencies, wash up time, and call in during inclement weather, shall continue through September 30, 2013. The State and UUP will meet to discuss and reach agreement on issues of mutual concern included in the “Joint Meeting Minutes between Long Island State Park and Recreation Commission and the Jones Beach Lifeguard Corp.” The State and UUP shall begin meeting for this purpose no later than September 30, 2013. Explanation: Lifeguard Performance, attendance deficiencies, wash up time, rainy day call in will be addressed this year. Inclement weather call in, is calling additional men in on a rainy day. That was given up. Wash up time allowed us to work 7.5 hours in park and get paid for 8. We now will be in the park for 8 hours. The way this will be scheduled is subject to discussions with Agency on Long Island. Labor Meeting Minutes are official meetings with UUP and Long Island Parks. Exit Interview After three years of continuous service of six pay periods on a scheduled half-time or greater basis in each of those three years, employees who receive notice of involuntary separation shall be entitled to an exit interview session. A union representative may accompany the employee at the employee’s request. The employee may present reasons, arguments and/or evidence, including relevant witness statements as to why the employee should not be involuntarily separated. Explanation: Exit Interview addresses termination of employment. It is the intention to continue with the process we currently have in place on Long Island. Upstate New York has moved from 6 years of service for the interview to 3 years. Deficit Reduction Plan  Salary or hourly rate will be reduced by the value of a total of nine days, prorated for part-time employees  The cash value of up to seven days will be repaid over 39 payroll periods beginning with the final payroll period of Sate Fiscal Year 2015-16. Employees who do not work 39 consecutive pay periods will be repaid any remaining balance as a lump sum after the repayment period has ended. Those who leave State service will be repaid the cash value of what was deducted for these days. Seasonal employees who leave the payroll at the end of a season and are expected to return the following season will not be paid as if they separated from State service, but will be repaid at the end of the contract period.  Salary/hourly rate reductions will occur over 52 consecutive pay periods, from approximately September 1, 2013 to August 31, 2015

For those employed during a summer season only, the salary or hourly rate reductions will occur during the summer season during fiscal year 2014-15 and fiscal year 2015-16  Employees who join the bargaining unit after the Deficit Reduction Plan begins will be subject to salary reductions proportionate with the number of payroll periods remaining in the deficit reduction plan from the time they begin working. Explanation: Still needs to be discussed under implementation. Scheduling Job or Shift Assignments  No right to be called in during inclement weather  No wash up time Explanation: All lifeguards will work for 8 hours. Wash up, sign in and sign out times will be scheduling discussions. We cannot call in Lifeguards on a rainy day if we are down guards. Holiday Compensation Employees who work at least 160 hours during the season (at least 20 days) are entitled to additional holiday compensation at their hourly rate, up to a maximum of eight hours, for time worked on each of the first three days during their employment in any seasonal period (April 1 to Sept. 30 or Oct. 1 to March 31) which are observed as holidays by the State. Such compensation shall be paid retroactively upon completion of five weeks of work. Explanation: Unchanged Uniforms Uniforms for seasonal employees will continue to be provided according to the policies in effect in the employing agencies. Explanation: Unchanged Health Insurance Those eligible for New York State Health Insurance are also eligible for the Vision and Dental programs administered by the UUP Benefit Trust Fund Explanation: Applies to the Full Year Lifeguards Staten Island OPWDD, River Bank State Park. Attendance Rules Coverage Seasonal employees who have been continuously employed on at least a 40 hours per pay period basis for 19 pay periods shall be entitled to attendance rules coverage in accordance with Civil Service Attendance Rules. Employees not covered by the Attendance Rules will be allowed leave with pay for injuries sustained in the line of duty. Use of such leave is to be held to a minimum and shall not exceed three days or 24 hours pay per year, whichever is less. Explanation: Applies to Full Year Lifeguards

Below is a statement written by Bob Adler and Rich Malen, both part of the Negotiating Team.
“Bob Adler and I, Rich Malen, would like to respond to the emails that were sent out from both Tom Donovan and Bruce Meirowitz. While we apprieciate the fact that you want to thank us for our hard work over the last few years we are not comfortable with our names being associated with something that we were not able to review or be at the table for a final decision. We would like to point out that we were PROMISED to be able to review the final proposal and actual contract before it was to be signed and as of today we still haven't seen either. Bruce did share the first proposal from the state with Bob and I and we pointed out 5 items of grave concern with one in particular. We never did have a follow up to that meeting to see if any of our concerns were addressed. Please be advised, as of now we neither approve nor disapprove our current contract until we have been able to review it.”

Elections for Beach Representatives are to take place over the next week. Each beach is expected to elect, by simple majority, a representative and two alternates to represent the interests of you, the members. We meet once a month for the entire year, and those elected are expected to attend our meetings. Please consider representing your beach. Completed election forms need to be presented at our meeting on July 11th. Elections for the entire Executive Board also take place this summer. There are 9 elected positions. Please consider stepping up. Being on the Executive Board is very time consuming and again if elected you will be expected to participate at a number of meetings each month. Nominations are to be presented at our July 11th meeting. Voting will be conducted via US mail, and will be run by UUP. The results of this election will be announced at the August meeting. Lastly, the Jones Beach Invitational Lifeguard Tournament will be taking place at the East Bathhouse Ocean at Jones

Beach on Tuesday July 16th 11am Registration 12noon start. We urge all lifeguards to create your teams of 8! The $200 registration fee for all JBLC is being waived…so just come on down and have fun! This tournament is off the clock…but there is a party to follow for all competitors and lifeguards at The Scuttlebutt Tavern in Wantagh starting from 5pm. Come for free food and drink specials after you compete or get off of work! The 2013 JB Invitational is sponsored by Monster Energy Drink and Ultimate Athlete Magazine. To see a list of events rules log onto the JBLC Facebook page or email & request a packet! Eddie Costigan will be hosting a try out for the JB “A team” this Saturday 9am at the EBHO. If you think you have what it takes…come on down! We will also be fielding teams for the Smiths Point LI Championships and possibly The Rhode Island Invitational. USLA Regionals is open to all lifeguards and is taking place on July 10th in Rehoboth Beach, Delaware and Nationals August 7-10th in Manhattan Beach California. To become a member of the Jones Beach Chapter of the USLA contact Cary Epstein at the Central Mall ext 616. That’s the update for now. Enjoy your summer! Tom Donovan