..
Stephen Ogundipe,
Chapter President
gaawayne@comcast.net
GAA Detroit
Wayne Mental
Health Authority
Chapter Officers
Vice-President:          Vacant
Secretary:                   Niecy Jones
Area
Representative
:        Esther Twitty
Counter
3031 W. Grand Blvd, Suite 415
Detroit, MI 48202
313-224-5076
Fax 313-224-0064
gaa@gaawayne.onmicrosoft.com
Association Executive
Lorenzo A. Blount
lorenzoblount@outlook.com

Deputy Association Executive
Patricia Peña
gaawayne@comcast.net

Administrative Assistant
Shemika Jamison
"Working for Better
Government through Better
People"


    GAA Is Seeking to Improve Member Communication
                             with Personal E-mail Addresses

    GAA is committed to its entire membership, and we are working proactively seeking the communicate, especially during work
    hours, the status of every given activity, we that is not being addressed, please contact the GAA Office. Issues of a personal
    nature, disciplinary dispositions and other confidential matters will not be displayed on the website.

    In addition, we are asking for all members to notify GAA with your personal e-mail address to increase the effectiveness and
    timeliness of Association communication in confidential matters related to union business. This e-mail address will be used
    solely for the communication of GAA business.  Please designate your chapter affiliation with your full name when you submit this
    information to us.

CHAPTER UPDATES


    September 24, 2017

    NEGOIATION UPDATE

    Negotiations continue as the September 30, 2017 expiration of the current Collective Bargaining Agreement looms in the near future.  
    Most of the non-economic contract articles have already been tentatively agreed upon.  The Association presented many of its economic
    proposals.  However, the Authority has yet to present their economic package.  However, it is anticipated, the Authority’s economic
    proposals will be presented at the next meeting.

    The classification system is a major area of concern during these negotiations.  If you believe you are misclassified, i.e., assigned
    extensive duties performed by employees in a higher classification, or performing extensive duties at a higher level than other
    employees in your classification, please contact the GAA office at gaawayne@comcast.net with the specific details of your situation.



    September 24, 2017

    NOMINEES SOUGHT FOR GAA MEMBER OF THE YEAR

    Since 1983, an award has been given honoring the GAA member of the Year.  Demanding criteria for such selection states that the GAA
    Member of the Year is “awarded to a Government Administrators Association member for job dedication, employment recognition, notable
    accomplishments and significant contributions to the Association or community.  

    In order to achieve a representative selection, we invite all GAA members who are aware of a member exemplifying these attributes, to take
    a few moments to nominate this person.  Click here for an nomination form.  Only GAA members may make nominations.  Nominations
    are due by Monday, November 2, 2017.  Late nominations will not be considered.



WE ARE MOVING
-------------October 6, 2017-------------

Our New Address is
Government Administrators Association
New Center One
3031 W. Grand Blvd, Suite 415
Detroit, MI 48226
313-224-5076
(Woodward and W. Grand Blvd.)

    After 30 years in the Cadillac Tower, GAA is moving its office.  The Cadillac Tower is not renewing long term
    leases while its new owners determine their future plans for the building.  In the meantime, GAA searched for a
    fiscally responsible and affordable office space that is convenient and assessable to the membership.  Our new
    office space provides members numerous amenities including ample validated parking in Lot 4 on Lothrup directly
    behind the building.  New Center One is also convenient for members using Detroit's new Qline.  We hope that
    everyone will take the opportunity to tour the GAA during our open house in November.  The date will be
    announced shortly.


    July 18, 2017

    GAA POLO SHIRTS FOR SALE/FRIDAY, SEPTEMBER 1, 2017, SHOW
    YOUR SUPPORT AND WEAR YOUR GAA SHIRT TO WORK

    With the scheduled wage negotiations at Wayne County and continued contract negotiations at the Detroit Wayne Mental Health
    Authority, GAA is asking all members to show their unity and solidarity by wearing their GAA Polo Shirt to work on the Friday before
    Labor Day, September 1, 2017, if your Department’s dress code allows you to do so.    

    Should you have not yet purchased a shirt, there are still shirts available at the GAA office.  Shirts are $30.00, and you can e-mail
    gaawayne@comcast.net or call the office at 313-224-5076, with your size and contact information, and we will arrange to get a shirt   
    to you.

    We would like to thank the members for their continued support.


    July 17, 2017

    NEGOTIATIONS CONTINUE FOR THE GAA DWMHA CHAPTER

    Negotiations for a successor Collective Bargaining Agreement between GAA and the Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority are ongoing.   
    GAA has tentatively agreed to several non-economic contract articles while continuing to work on areas of concern for members.  One
    such area is the DWMHA Pay-Grade Classification system.  If you feel that you are misclassified in that you are performing job duties of
    a position in a grade higher than your present classification, please e-mail the specifics to gaawayne@comcast.net  so that we can
    include your position in our discussions with the Authority.

    Also, if you have not yet completed a general negotiation survey, there is still time to do so.  Click here for a copy of the survey, and
    continue to check back for updates on negotiation progress.


    July 17, 2017

    THE GAA OFFICE IS MOVING TO NEW CENTER ONE
    IN MIDTOWN DETROIT

    After almost 30 years in the Cadillac Tower Building in downtown Detroit, the GAA office will be moving to the New Center One Building in
    midtown Detroit in early September 2017.  This move was made necessary as the new owners of the Cadillac Tower are renovating the
    building with purposes other than office space in mind.  A formal announcement to the membership with the exact details and dates of this
    move will be made as the details are finalized.   GAA will also hold an open house in the fall to welcome members to the new office space.


    July 14, 2017

    GAA 1st ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP PICNIC, JUNE 25, 2017

    The GAA 1st Annual Membership Picnic was held Saturday, June 24, 2017, at the Parkland Recreation Area in Hines Drive, Dearborn
    Heights, Michigan from 12:00 p.m. to 4:00 p.m.  The Picnic turned out to be a fun day for members and their families who had the
    opportunity to get to know one another increasing the solidarity among the Association’s various Chapters.   We hope this event will
    continue to grow in the future with greater membership participation.  If you would like to be on the planning committee for the 2018 GAA
    Membership Picnic tentatively scheduled for June 23, 2018, contact the GAA office at gaawayne@comcast.net.  

    Click here to view photos of the picnic.


    May 20, 2017

    GAA/AFSCME MENTAL HEALTH JOBS AT STAKE
    PUBLIC MENTAL HEALTH CONSUMERS AT RISK

    Both the House and Senate have passed their FY18 budget recommendations. Now legislative leaders will come together to mold their
    two separate budgets into one compromised budget bill for FY18. These discussions will begin to heat up again this week and should be
    finalized sometime over the next three weeks.

    REQUEST FOR URGENT ACTION: Please contact your House and Senate members urging them to make sensible changes to the final
    298 boilerplate language. Timing is critical.  We have roughly three weeks to put pressure on lawmakers as they finalize the FY18 budget.
    We are asking that you reach out to your lawmakers between now and June 2, urging them to remove the Senate language in Section 234
    insisting on outsourcing all Mental Health Medicaid money to HMOs and to drop health plan run pilot programs in the final version of
    section 298.

    These contacts are critical, legislators must hear from us in order to counter the efforts by others opposed to the public management of the
    State's publicly sponsored behavioral health and intellectual/developmental disability services and supports system.

    Below are quick talking points:

    •        REMOVE LANGUAGE - Section 234 of the Senate DHHS budget language referring to total Medicaid benefit and financial integration
    by 9/30/20, which would transfer all Medicaid resources to Medicaid Health plans.   

    •        INCLUDE LANGUAGE - Ensure that the policy and management role for Michigan's Medicaid behavioral health and
    intellectual/developmental disability services and supports system remains public.

    Concerns Regarding a HMO Run Programs  

    1.  Health Plans do not have a good track record managing behavioral health services
    2. Less money available for services because of higher overhead costs at HMO’s

    •        No direction in proposed pilots as to what are we trying to accomplish? What are we measuring? Outcomes?

    Community Mental Health Boards and Mental Health Advocates all agree that taxes raised for mental health services should go to mental
    health services and not to private HMO’s. People need these funds, not profitable companies. Make your voices heard by using
    the web addresses below to email your State Senator and State Representative.

    http://www.senate.michigan.gov/fysbyaddress.html

    http://www.house.mi.gov/mhrpublic/



    TO:                         All Members, GAA Mental Health Authority Chapter

    FROM:                   Lorenzo A. Blount,  Association Executive

    RE:                         2017 Contract Survey

    DATE:                     May 15, 2017        


    Collective Bargaining Agreements for GAA members of the Mental Health Authority Chapter, as you are aware, will expire September 30,
    2017 and we must begin negotiations forthwith on a successor contract.

    In preparation for these negotiations, the Association is seeking to determine issues of major concern, which you would like addressed in
    the upcoming contracts.  

    Click here for a survey of pertinent bargaining issues.  Please rank these issues in order of importance adding comments, as you feel
    necessary.  Then return the form by May 30, 2017 to the GAA office, 2625 Cadillac Tower, 65 Cadillac Square, Detroit, MI 48226, fax to 313-
    224-0064 or e-mail to gaawayne@comcast.net.  

    The survey must be signed to be considered so that we can ensure that only GAA members participate in the survey; however, all
    responses will be kept strictly confidential.  Your input and ideas are valuable in the Association’s efforts to assess the needs of the
    membership and formulate appropriate bargaining objectives.  


    May 1, 2017

    SECTION 298 OF THE 2017 MICHIGAN BUDGET TAKES MONEY
    FROM PUBLIC MENTAL HEALTH SYSTEMS TO FUND
    PRIVATE INSURANCE COMPANIES

    GAA mailed the following letter to each State of Michigan Senator and State Representative regarding the 298 Initiative of the 2017 State
    Budget which fund private insurance companies to provide administration of Mental Health Services.  Please contact your State Senator
    and State Representative and urge them to stand firmly against the 298 initiative.

    Click here to find your State Senator
    Click here to find your State Representative


    April 25, 2017

    Dear State Representative/Senator:

    The Government Administrators Association (GAA), a labor union of 600 mid-level public employee supervisors and professionals working
    in Wayne County, wishes to express
    unequivocally our collective objection to the continued discussion of the proposal to transfer $2.6 billion from the public mental health
    system to private insuance companies, the Medicaid Health Plans.

    The Government Administrators Association has always believed and remains committed to efficiency in the disbursement of public
    resources, and we are strongly opposed to any initiatives that propose to take away resources intended to support behavioral health
    services for persons with serious mental illness, children with emotional disturbances, persons with intellectual and developmental
    disabilities and persons with substance use disorders and transfer those funds to private for-profit entities.

    We are convinced that Section 298 of the FY 2017 budget will be a betrayal of our commitment to the citizens of this great state to provide
    timely, appropriate and quality services to persons with severe behavioral challenges that require our support and services for their
    continued
    sustenance and integration into least restrictive settings.  Private insurance companies do not have the experience nor the capacity to
    provide qualitative services to the population we serve.  This proposal to be “more cost effective,” is actually a sham/pretext to grab the
    funds intended for services and supports for this vulnerable population, and we urge you not to support this reckless initiative.

    Government Administrators Association members provide services, oversight of operations and are willing and ready to work with the
    Legislators on ways to finding practical and responsible cost-saving approaches to mental health services delivery across the state. In
    Wayne County, the Detroit Wayne Mental Health Authority has implemented several initiatives to reduce administrative costs and increase
    money for direct services for nearly 80,000 individuals that we serve. We believe in and continue to advance integration and coordination of
    physical and behavioral health services, reduced inpatient hospitalization and increased prevention programs in the communities. These
    are initiatives that are working and have shown positive results.

    We thank you for your service and ask that you stand with us by standing firmly against the proposed 298 Initiative!

    Respectfully,
    Lorenzo A. Blount
    Association Executive



    March 15, 2017

    GET YOUR GAA POLO SHIRT AND MARK THE CALENDAR FOR
    THE FIRST GAA ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP FAMILY PICNIC

    The Association will be selling Polo shirts with an embroidered GAA logo as a fundraiser to offset expenses for the first GAA Annual Picnic,
    June 24, 2017.  We are gauging interest for our first order.  The cost of the shirt is anticipated to be no more than $45.  If you would like to
    preorder a shirt, please e-mail gaawayne@comcast.net or call the GAA Office at 313-224-5076, and let us know what size you would like to
    order, your name, your work location, and phone number.  We will contact you as soon as we have a final price and sizes.  It is our desire to
    use these shirts as a show of solidarity as we plan future GAA events as well as during upcoming negotiations with our various employers.

    Also, if you have not already done so, please e-mail your personal e-mail address to gaawayne@comcast.net and mark the date, June 24,
    2017, for the first Annual GAA Membership Family Picnic.  We will announce the details as soon as they are finalized.  We hope to see you
    there.



    March 6, 2017

    ATTENTION GAA WAYNE COUNTY RETIREES

    Click here to  find the agenda for the Wayne County Commission Committee on Government Operations, Tuesday, Match 7, 2017 starting
    at 9:30 AM.  Note that the Cornerstone Municipal Advisory Group, LLC contract extension is on this agenda under UNFINISHED
    BUSINESS.   That is because of the objections raised by AFSCME Wayne County Retiree Subchapter 38 at the previous Commission
    meetings.

    This is the opportunity for Wayne County Retirees to be seen by the County Commission and to have them hear your complaints, problems
    and your commitment to protecting retirees.  

    We encourage as many people as possible to attend this important meeting.



    February 28, 2017

    GAA MEMBER TOM YEE IS RUNNING FOR WCERS BOARD OF
    COMMISSIONERS

    GAA Member Tom Yee is running for the Wayne County Employees Retirement System Board of Commissioners representing Active
    Employees.  He is filling the vacancy left by retired Commissioner Denis Martin.  Yee was endorsed by the Wayne County Labor Coalition.  
    Yee is a Department Manager 3/Finance at the Wayne County Clerk’s Office.   He started his career in Wayne County in 2001 and has been
    a GAA member in good standing since 2013.  If you have not already done so, please vote in this important election.  We must all take an
    active role in protecting our retirement benefits.



    February 16, 2017

    AFLAC

    AFLAC has approached the Association about conducting another open enrollment for the GAA members.  The Association has heard both
    good things from member’s regarding their AFLAC experience as well as many complaints.  If you chose to sign up with AFLAC last year,
    please send an e-mail to gaawayne@comcast.net indicating your overall experience with AFLAC.  Do you think this is a valuable benefit for
    members GAA should continue to offer?  If you had a bad experience, we would like to hear that as well.  Please send your comments
    before Tuesday, February 28, 2016.  



    GAA HONORS CHAPTER PRESIDENTS ELIZABETH PATTERSON
    AND CASSANDRA MCDONALD AT THE
    2016 GAA ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING


















    GAA is proud to honor Elizabeth Patterson, President of the Wayne County Professional Nurses Chapter, and Cassandra McDonald,
    President of the General Fund Chapter, with the 2016 GAA President’s Award.  Their service to the Association has truly been
    invaluable.  Over the past two years, as Wayne County Administration implented its plan to outsource Jail Health Services using the
    Consent Agreement, Elizabeth Patterson and Cassandra McDonald, have led the fight to oppose privatization of Wayne County Jobs.   
    These individuals spent countless hours lobbying Wayne County Commissioners urging them to vote against privatization as well as
    educating the public through the media regarding the dangers of privatizing such a critical County function.  To our chagrin and
    dismay, the County Commission voted to outsource Wayne County Jail Health Services to Correct Care Solutions as of January 1,
    2017.  

    Elizabeth Patterson, Chapter President of the Wayne County Professional Nurse Chapter, is the longest serving GAA volunteer with
    over 20 years of service.  Nurse Patterson has spent considerable time and effort researching and developing alternative solutions for
    Jail Health Services.  She consulted with a nationally recognized Correctional Health Care Consultant to explore the development of a
    remediation plan which would allow Wayne County to solve the challenges faced at Jail Health Services “in house” with Wayne
    County employees.   Patterson was instrumental in organizing members to attend Commission and membership meetings in order
    to show solidarity in the opposition of privatization.   Patterson, along with Cassandra McDonald, was able to negotiate a transition
    agreement for those members who will be employed by CCS.  This Agreement included union recognition of GAA to represent certain
    CCS positions at Jail Health Services.  Patterson and McDonald were ultimately able to assist in excluding the Juvenile Detention
    Facility from the outsourcing contract saving at least twelve GAA County positions from being privatized.

    Cassandra McDonald, General Fund Chapter President, is also a longstanding GAA volunteer having over seven years of service.   
    McDonald is a staunch supporter of union activism and membership participation.  McDonald, too, spent countless hours attending
    Commission meetings in the fight against outsourcing.  While the number of affected General Fund Chapter members was relatively
    few, McDonald advocated for each of these members with zeal and tenacity.    

    The Association would especially like to thank GAA members at Jail Health Services for the time and effort spent attending
    Commission meetings, membership meetings and supporting the fight against privatizing their jobs.



    November 19, 2016

    GAA ANNUAL MEMBERSHIP MEETING/HOLIDAY PARTY

    Friday, December 2, 2016
    5:30 P.M. Refreshments
    Business Meeting will
    begin at 6:15 P.M.
    Dinner 6:45 P.M.
    DJ & Dancing 8:00 P.M. - 10:30 P.M.

    707 East
    707 East Lafayette Street
    Detroit, MI 48226
    At the Corner of E. Lafayette and the
    Chrysler I-375 Service Drive on the Lafayette side
    of the Annunciation Greek Orthodox Church
    Complimentary Parking

    GAA Members:  Suggested $5 Donation
    to The Open Door
    GAA Retirees & Guests:  $50.00
    (Tickets Sold in Advance)

    AGENDA
    General Business Meeting
  •  Officer Reports
  • Chapter Reports
  • 2017 Budget
  • Service Awards

    Party- In appreciation of the support by the Membership, there will be dinner, an open bar and dancing after the meeting. To encourage
    more membership participation, the party has been moved to Friday, December 2, 2016.  We are selling tickets for those members who
    would like to bring a guest and GAA Retirees.  Tickets for Guests and retirees who retired before 2015 are $50.00 which includes the cost
    of dinner and open bar.  Click here for ticket form.   Please mail your check for $50.00 along with the attached Ticket Request form to 65
    Cadillac Square, Suite 2625, Detroit, MI 48226, and we will mail your tickets.   You may also purchase tickets at the GAA office.

    Absolutely No Admittance without RSVP
    RSVP by calling the GAA office (313-224-5076) or e-mail GAAWayne@comcast.net by Wednesday, November 23, 2016.   

    Again, the only charge for admission for members is a voluntary suggested monetary donation of $5 to the Fort Street Presbyterian
    Church's Soup Kitchen.  Please make any checks payable to: The Open Door.



    October 18, 2016

    ASSOCIATION ELECTION RESULTS:

    The Association Election was held at 4:00 p.m., October 18, 2016.  The Association President was the only candidate to be elected as Ann
    Mosley ran unopposed for Association Secretary, and Soraya Farver Williams was unopposed for Treasurer.  

    Election results for Association President are as follows:

    Margaret Keyes-Howard         89 votes
    Mark Plackowski                       21 votes
    Tyreesse Omani                        50 votes

    Margaret Keyes-Howard was elected Association President.  Keyes-Howard, Mosley and Farver Williams will begin their terms of Office
    January 1, 2017, and end December 31, 2018.

    We would like to thank all members who voted in this election.




    October 12, 2016

    ASSOCIATION ELECTION UPDATE:

    Nominations were held for GAA Association Offices beginning September 27, 2016, and closing at the GAA membership meeting  
    Tuesday, October 4, 2016.   Nominated for President were Margaret Keyes-Howard, Tyreesse Omani, and Mark Plackowski.  Ann       
    Mosley was the only nomination received for Association Secretary, and Soraya Williams Farver was the sole nomination for Association
    Treasurer.  Both Ms. Mosley and Ms. Williams Farver were elected by acclimation to Secretary and Treasurer, respectively.  

    Ballots for Association President were mailed Friday, October 7, 2016, and are due back in the GAA office by 4:00 p.m. Tuesday, October
    18, 2016.  If you have not received your ballot in the mail, please contact the GAA office to request another ballot as soon as possible.  

GOVERNMENT ADMINISTRATORS ASSOCIATION
DETROIT WAYNE MENTAL HEALTH AUTHORITY CHAPTER