2011 SEBAC Agreement and Possible “Conflicts of Interest” of union negotiators

More interesting information Connecticut State Employees may not know.

I’m not sure how the negotiations could have been considered to be “performed in good faith”  and truly on the behalf of State Employees when at least two negotiators have what I see conflcits of interest directly tied to their Positions on Boards of Directors and their positions in negotiations for Ct. State employees. (Whether these are legal conflicts of interest I’m not sure.)

The first is  Sal Luciano, president of Afscme, Council 4, who also sits on the Board of Directors of SustiNet

http://www.raisinghale.com/2011/05/09/two-union-negotiators-earn-as-much-as-malloy/

and the second (more important) …

it would appear that the Head Negotiator, Dan Livingston is on the Board of Directors of  CHART (Connecticut Health Advancement and Research Trust)  of Connecticut

“CHART was created in 1999 as a result of the settlement of a lawsuit brought against the for-profit Anthem Insurance Co. during its merger with the non-profit Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Connecticut. The settlement also required the creation of a second, separate foundation, The Anthem Foundation of Connecticut, Inc. (now Universal Health Care Foundation of Connecticut). The purpose of the Foundation is to support CHART’s mission, principally by making grants that will further the goals established by CHART.

“CHART is a research, development and education organization that hosts forums on various issues related to health care policy in Connecticut. Universal Health Care Foundation of Connecticut, Inc., supports CHART’s mission by making grants, developing public policy and supporting research to further the vision of quality, affordable health care for all Connecticut residents.”

 

Together with Universal Health Care Foundation, CHART has changed the debate from whether universal health care is possible, to how to achieve the quality, affordable health care system that is best for Connecticut.

 

Meet the CHART Board of Directors

http://www.universalhealthct.org/about-board.php

http://www.universalhealthct.org/publications.php

also associated with sustinet Kevin lembo and Nancy Wyman who are listed as co-chairs of SustiNet
 
and Bob Rinker
 This is a very long report but well worth a scan (on page 49 you’ll find a letter regarding Healthcare System Change by Executive director of CSEA SEIU Bob Rinker).
sites  also of interest
 
 
 
 
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20 Responses

  1. SEBAC… inthistogetherct.org I WANT MY VOICE BACK.

    It is amazing that many us are against this union contract. I have been banned from my union web sites because I am opposing this crap of a deal… I agree we need to give back. Everyone in the media and public believes this is a great deal but no one is talking about the back door dealing that is screwing the average state worker. So the republicans have one thing right this deal is horrible. So all my fellow state employees who believe in the poll I have created. GO and vote and let your voice be heard.

    http://www.easypolls.net/poll….

    lets see where we stand… keep voting.

    Votenotoconcessions.com

  2. Don’t worry…my posts are no longer accepted at inthistogether.org….what a sham!
    I think MOST are against the convoluted BS! And the rest are learning quickly!
    What happened to collective bargaining???????
    We’re hearing it’s only ONE VOTE…..to open the 2017 agreement, change it, and make the wage concessions…no option for arbitration when the whole package fails…only Malloy’s predicted tantrums.

    THIS IS NOT COLLECTIVE BARGAINING!!!!!!!.

    They can not change the agreement unless it is opened….any talks they have had so far, really mean nothing until it is opened. ( and they are just that “talks”I don’t think they can technically be called negotiations. We have never been consulted in this matter…and now are being “brushed off” and having questions that can’t be answered with yes or no deflected. Not a single “information session” held yet!

    It seems this is Wisconsin without the fanfare! Maybe worse…as at least some union negotiators and Government leaders at the talks were deeply involved with the formationof SustiNet and the plan “formerly known as Sustinet”….the plan that they are trying to sell us now…that doesn’t include a public option but adds Husky, Charter Oak participants into the State Plan, followed by non profitrs and municiplaities, and small buisness. Tye if the “experiment” works (or pilot program as they call) …they will add in the public otption.

    • It is Obamacare!! Malloy is a clone. WATCH OUT
      VOTE NO–HAVE AN OUTSIDE INDEPENDENT AGENCY COUT THE VOTES/

  3. I agree with everything you are saying- I was also told in a meeting that my question was “negative” so it was not answered and I was brushed off.

    We need an objective- outside of the union ballot counter or you know what will happen……….

    People are being snowed- the feared tactics and threats of job loss are making people shut down-

    WE CANNOT BE SHEEP!
    VOTE NO

    • Some union stewards call you negative or crazy if you don’t agree and support “the plan” 100%. It’s one of those things that” If your not for them, your against them”.
      There is no middle ground or grey area here….apparently no arbitration when the deal fails…just back and white thinking. A few days ago there were a few yes votes around our office building…it seems to 100% NO Votes now. The unions F—ed up…it’s too late to talk to us now.
      This is not collective bargaining!

      • I am a union steward and if you can express your opinions in a civil and informed manner, then I will never call you negative or crazy, regardless of whether I agree with you. But if you go to meetings and are shouting, and not letting people speak, and generally being disrespectful, then, yes, you are acting negative and crazy. I learned today that a union leader had his safety threatened. Is this how we behave as state employees?
        I don’t tell people how to vote. Your vote (if you are an actual state employee) is your choice. You have to make the best decision for yourself based on the information you have. I would hate, however, for anyone to vote a certain way because they were grossly misinformed. And there is a tremendous amount of misinformation out there!
        Further, and I mean this with all due respect, I think we have a bit of a spoiled mentality. We need to look at what is going on around the country. If you think this deal is not collective bargaining, you have another think coming. States around the country (including our neighbor Massachusetts (http://www.boston.com/news/local/breaking_news/2011/05/state_senate_pa_1.html)) are voting to limit or eliminate collective bargaining for public employees. The anti-government worker sentiment is growing, not shrinking.

      • Dee

        I am not talking about “acting crazy” and I agree with you that NO ONE should be threatened with Physical harm in these “talks” or ever!!!
        What I am talking about is legitimate, intelligent questions being called ” and “Negative” and “crazy” when they do not support the overall goal of the unions and administration, and they are being. asked politely and professionally. Questions such as “what EXACTLY is this insurance package and what are the coverages after July 1, 2012” Right now this question can not be answered as the contracts expire with Anthem and United July 1, 2012, and the new “plan” doesn’t exist yet!
        Or ….asking about the connections of Sal Luciano of AFSMCE and his position on the Board of Directors of SustiNet and (Lead Negotiator) Dan Livingston ( Chairman of the Baord of CHART…the parent organization of the Universal Healthcare Foundation of Ct.) to the creation of “The plan formerly known as SustiNet”, insurance “pooling” to the plan we are being offered now?

        see link… http://gov.cbia.com/inside_the_capitol/article/sustinet-name-lives-on-sans-public-option

        Yes we have the right to know the truth, background, and connections of those negotiating our future ! Will this “plan” be turned into the public option after non-profits and municipalities join in? .These questions asked in a completely respectful manner were essentially called conspiracy concepts.
        Truth is… this is the long term objective of “the unnamed pooling plan” from information on State websites posted elsewhere in this blog.
        Are we not supposed to think ahead? Are we supposed to accept this “deal” at face value soley based on fear of reprisal from the Malloy Administration?
        Deflection, brushing off…and one word answers are commonplace responses from stewards to questions from members.
        “Clean”, respectful, and source cited postings to the INTHIS TOGETHERCT website blog, when presenting reality, facts, and truth are censored out and not posted, while others that could be rants, and might be considered insulting are posted.

        The insurance plan is still a concept….not an actual insurance plan…and one of my reasons for voting NO.
        The problem here is there is no information…not misinformation!

        Next, if you think you have “spoiled mentality” that’s your thought about yourself and it’s your choice to think it. I surely hope other Union Reps are not keeping that judgement in mind as they speak to us, and then project their thinking about themselves onto us.
        I do have a healthy level of self esteem!
        Like many members I entered State Service by choice. That choice involved sacrificing higher pay in the private sector, for future job security and a good health plan and a retirement plan. I do feel I have a right to the contracted pension I “signed up for” when I entered State Service on the terms it was offered. This is a bad deal for a tier 2 in their mid forties to age 50.There is almost no “recovery time” after paying the proposed 3% for 10 years. This proposal does not really add up to 0.0.+3,+3,+3 for many members. Also, since positions are not being filled, career upward mobility is severely limited, and therefore any potential increase in salary through promotion is restricted. Many positions are becoming “career dead-ends”.
        State Employees didn’t cause the budget problem and did not cause the Tier 1 pensions to go unfunded…why should we pay for it! Let the administration go after the banks and corporations that do not pay their fair share or even zero to do business in this State.
        As far as “what’s going around the country”…well that doesn’t mean we have to allow and follow it here! The flu virus travels the country too…doesn’t mean you have to go find someone to catch it from!

        Sentiment against government employees has been and always will be present. If I had to worry about whether people liked me or not I wouldn’t able to do my job, which is regulatory in nature.

        Finally,… can you explain how this process has been collectively bargained so far?
        I am only going on what I have been told from union stewards, and that is …..if the “Agreement/Deal” fails there is NO arbitration at this time…just Malloy’s wrath and layoffs.
        If this was truly collectively bargained…a vote by members would have been taken to approve or reject the opening of the 2017 agreement …..this did not occur.
        Secondly…providing the 2017 Agreement was opened…changed…then voted on…and the deal failed…the process would then go to arbitration ( not lead to immediate layoffs)
        So what’s the “story”?

        None of this process was made transparent to members…”talks” (not even official negotiations, the legal term) were held in silence. Having kept members “in the dark” will be one of the largest causes of the failure of the Agreement.
        As an observation and my opinion…the Agreement having been presented honestly and transparently and having all protocols followed may have had a better chance of surviving. Unfortunately the presentation is much the like the way management is experienced by many State Employees in their day to day employment. Many managers have few people skills…while their ideas and concepts are not “bad”….they present them as the “do as I say NOW, or else” option or in a way that is punitive. I see the same thing in these talks. A Governor that says “do as I say NOW, or else”, and some concepts that are good but need time to be organized, solidified, and negotaited before being placed in a contract Agreement. “The tail is wagging the dog” here.
        July 1, 2012 many bargaining unit contracts expire, as do the health insurance contracts with Anthem and United/Oxford. There is a more than a full year to work on this…to get the insurance plans in Hard Copy, negotiate a more amenable pension agreement, and wage compensations.
        More importantly there is time for employees to actually have a vote to approve or reject the Opening of the 2017 Agreement.

        ~~~~~~~~~~~~~VOTING NO!~~~~~~~~~~~VOTING NO~~~~~~~~~~~~~VOTING NO~~~~~~~~~~~~~

      • WELL SAID!!!!!!! DEMAND AN INDEPENDENT AGENCY TO COUNT THE VOTES.

      • Possible conflict of interest??? Definate conflict of interest. Obamacare for sure and they stand to benefit.

    • AGREE 100%

  4. […] They cut the public option FOR NOW…and “renamed the concept”.   Union Leaders/ Negotiators are trying to separate themselves from their deeply held self interests in organizations and foundations involved in the creation of SustiNet and this SustiNet type plan.   See this —https://wisdomovertime.wordpress.com/2011/05/23/sebac-2011-and-possible-conflicts-of-interest-of-unio… […]

  5. I’m a state employee who will also be voting NO. I resent the back-door nature of this process…Union “negotiators” have too many conflicts of interest and too cozy a relationship with Gov. Malloy. Reading this and other blogs confirms my first impression regarding this so-called labor agreement…..it is, and I believe, always has been mostly about the Universal Health care agenda for the State….and achieving this Liberal Progressive dream on the backs of State employees. Thanks to those helping to get the word out…I thought I was alone in my suspicions.

    • yep…the unions will call it conspiracy theory if you let them know you know it was planned….
      See Bob Rinkers letter below from page 49 of 156 of the “Health Care Working Groups report to Malloy/Wyman December 2010.

      http://www.ct.gov/malloy/lib/malloy/6-Health_Care.pdf

      Healthcare System Change
      Bob Rinker
      Executive Director
      CSEA SEIU Local 2001
      Much of what has been written and offered by other members on the sub‐committee I agree with in
      regard to changing our healthcare system to focus on:
      • Wellness
      • Chronic Disease Management
      • Technology – Electronic Medical Records
      • Data Transparency
      • Long term care – including the creation of a quality homecare workforce to take care of
      citizens in their homes, where appropriate, instead of nursing homes. A task force should be
      created to address the care of the growing population of Alzheimer patients and its cost to
      our healthcare system.
      With regard to the healthcare plan for state employees, retirees and their dependents (214,000 lives), I
      would offer the following:
      • Open the State healthcare plan to municipalities, non‐profits and small business. My
      organization has 25 employees and is paying $13,000 per year more for family health
      coverage than the State healthcare plan which has more comprehensive healthcare
      benefits.
      • Allow the Medicaid covered lives to use the State’s employees’ prescription drug program.
      This would provide savings to Medicaid program and to the State healthcare plan. The
      State’s health care plan receives greater discounts from its PBM based upon the number of
      participants in the plan. The plan has recently accepted retired teachers and the City of
      Hartford’s municipal employees.
      • Include state employees who are receiving care under the State’s Worker’s Compensation
      program in the State’s healthcare plan. It is not efficient to have two health care provider
      systems running parallel to each other when the future focus will be on patient centered
      medical homes.
      • Continue to implement the patient centered medical homes delivered through primary care
      physicians that have implemented Electronic Medical Records system.
      • Implement a valued based plan design with a valued based reimbursement system
      The State of Connecticut spends nearly $7 billion on healthcare through a number of state agencies. The
      State healthcare plan for state employees, retiree and dependents accounts for over $1 billion of
      spending. This fragmented system should be coordinated through one agency or convening authority.
      Legislation should be passed that allows for transparency of data between providers, primary care
      doctors, health care purchasers and insurance companies. Currently reimbursement rates to providers
      are considered proprietary information of the healthcare insurance companies. Employers, especially
      self‐insured plans, should know the reimbursement rates for procedures from health insurance
      companies to providers not only to incent employees to less expensive care, but to those providers that
      have better outcomes. In other words, that competition as currently mandated by federal and state
      antitrust laws should be supplanted by a regulatory program to permit and encourage cooperative
      agreements between hospitals, healthcare purchasers, or other health care providers when the benefits
      outweigh the disadvantages caused by their potential adverse effects on competition.
      Finally, current expenditures by insurance companies for disease management should be pooled and
      provided directly as monetary incentives to primary doctors that have agreed to be patient centered
      medical home to provide disease management. A call from your primary doctor is more effective tool
      for chronic disease management than a call from an insurance company.
      If you would like to discuss my ideas further, please feel free to call me at 860‐951‐6614.

  6. Has anyone even READ the things they’re posting links to here?
    Sustinet is NOT what they’re giving us or even trying to give us. It’s a plan for municipalities, and small businesses, not State Employees.
    A quote from the Connecticut Sustinet Plan website:
    “Under the agreement, SustiNet would open the state employee health plan to municipalities and certain nonprofits.”

    I’m not saying yes or no to the plan on the table, but I wonder where people are getting the stuff they write here! It’s like I have to go to Snopes.com to check everything, and just about every bit of it has been misconstrued or just plain not read.

    Do your own investigation and see if it’s true or not.
    Just Someone looking for the truth.

    • First and foremost….we have an Agreement until 2017 for Health and Pension! it does not have to be opened!
      It can only legally be changed if we vote for the Agreement to be opened!

      Second…with all due respect…If you don’t want to read through all the posts and links here I suggest you research the background of the SustiNet Plan yourself…. from it’s genesis a few years ago, to today. See who formed it, and who the Board members are(Sal Luciano, and others who have been involved in the process.(Bob Rinker) I also suggest also looking up lead SEBAC Negotiator)Dan Livingston and his involvement with CHART and The Universal Healthcare Foundation of Ct. Look uo their backgrounds and resumes. There are no conspiracy theories here. All informationcan be verified by reading the linked sites, and some sites contain hundereds of pages of information so given your comment I highly suspect you have not read through all of them.

      After doing your research you will notice that there was a ‘change in name” of the SustiNet plan when the “public option’ was removed…..it’s now called the “Partnership Plan”. Muncipalities and non profits will be allowed to join in (the bill was passed yesterday in the House) on the approval of SEBAC. The SustiNet plan is not “dead” just reformed and it’s basic structure remains. The State employee plan will be ready made to roll into SustiNet should SEBAC approve it…it would become Sustinet plan “E”. Will this happen in the next year….well we don’t know…the next 2 years…again, unknown….just some missing info from the Agreement.

      The health agreement itself is explained in the agreement…you enroll in the HEP Plan and comply with it’s demands, or keep the exact plan you have now and pay another $100 a month toward your premium and you will have a $350 deductible per year. Trouble with both plans is that the contracts with Anthem and United /Oxford expire July 1, 2012, and will be rebid for 2012. no one can assure who the winning bidders will be…and if they change, your current medical providers may not accept the new insurance companies coverage. This would happen even if the basic health plan structure wasn’t being changed…however the impact of the new format with a new doctor might be something some do not want to deal with. There are no real guarantees beyond July 1, 2012 except that you will have a health insurance plan

      Health Care aside, as you will have some sort of health insurance….if you are a tier 2 and over 43 the pension changes are just not acceptable.. For tier 2 and tire 2a the retirement ages change and there is no information to say what the age will be moved in 2022. If it’s moved to 67 then buying back 3 years to retire at 60 will have served no purpose.
      If nothing else ( at there’s a lot of else!) that is the deal breaker for me, and why I am voting NO!

      Also, depending on your union you might have been scheduled for a 2 to 5% wage increase and step this fiscal year. This agreement eliminates those! What makes anyone think that we will actually get all 3, 3% increases or longevity in this Agreement ….if a new governor comes in in 2015…they are trying to take it this time…why not again!

      We( myeslf and a few others) have spent a great deal of time researching this material and many links are from Newspapers in the State, State of Ct. (.gov) Websites,, and non profit organization webpages.They provide facts ….ie. Dan Livingston is the Chairman of the Board at CHART (The parent organization of the Universal healthcare Foundation of Ct.) look it up and see yourself.

      Don’t forget….we have an Agreement until 2017 for Health and Pension! it does not have to be opened!
      It can only legally be changed if we vote for the Agreement to be opened!

      When reading the Tentative Agreement don’t look at what is there… look for what isn’t there….missing numbers/calculations, dates for implementation (fyi…the agreement does not state the start or enrollment date of the HEP insurance plan), and vague language. A clear honest Agreement would not lead to so many questions
      and the “need” for a mass meeting to address members concerns
      This entire Agreement was “negotiated” without first opening the 2017 agreement, behind closed doors without input from State Employees. We were kept in the dark intentionally, as the Union thought it to be in ‘our best interests.

      …it can be very dissapointing when you find out that the people you thought had your best interests in mind, really only had their self serving interests in focus.
      If you choose to seriously reseacrh this, you will find the evidence to show the SEBAC unions all had a continuously developing interest in bring universal healthcare and the begiinings of socialized medicine to this State to benefit their own special interests….grants were given (see the CHART website) to the Unions to “educate” the members on this….guess they waited until now.
      Good Luck! Make the best choice for you

  7. VOTE YES!!!! You are looking to far into the crap.

    • Sorry ctstateemployee….those of us that “took the red pill” see beyond the appearances of the Agreement…and the “rabbit hole runs deep”…VOTING NO!

  8. […] closeness prompted concern among some state employees who wondered whether their negotiators represented them or SustiNet at the table with […]

  9. I have always suspected that the unions and the State of CT were in bed together. Now my suspicions are confirmed. The 2017 SEBAC/State of CT agreement screws State employees like never before. Even if the employees vote “no” the crooked unions will claim that the employees voted “yes’. It’s time for a class action lawsuit against SEBAC.

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