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.
Click here for a pdf of the flyer with
April 18, 2018
IMPORTANT: 2018 family HSA contribution limit change
On March 5, 2018, the IRS announced that the 2018 health savings account (HSA) contribution limit for families has been lowered to
$6,850 ($7,850 if eligible for catch-up contributions) from the previous limit of $6,900, effective immediately. The individual limit was not
changed and remains at $3,450.
If you are on a family plan, please review your current contributions for 2018 to ensure you have not over-contributed and are not scheduled
to do so.
If you have over-contributed and wish to remove any excess contributions made through your employer’s payroll, please work through your
employer; they have until the last pay period in 2018 to reverse payroll contributions.
March 14, 2018
TAKE ACTION: Michigan Legislative Update--Senate Bill
795 & 796 - Union Business Leave
Today the Senate Education Committee passed two new bills that represent a direct attack on working people and our freedom to
Specifically, Senate Bills 795-796 would ban public employee union officials from representing their members and collaborating with
school and local government administrators during normal business hours.
We need to take quick action to fight back and stop these bills. Can you help?
Visit the AFL-CIO website by clicking here to send a quick email to your state senator. Tell them to vote NO on SB 795-796.
These shortsighted bills will cost taxpayers millions of dollars, and make our schools, as well as local and state government, less efficient
and less effective.
We defeated these same bills when they came up two years ago. I know we can do it again, but we need to speak up right now to make our
voices heard in Lansing.
TAKE ACTION and email your senator right now
Thanks for stepping up.
Visit http://miaflcio.org/ | Facebook | Twitter
March 5, 2018
Michigan Legislative Update--Senate Bill 795 - Union
The Senate Education Committee will vote as early as Tuesday on a bill that will end union leave time for public sector employees to
bargain contracts, handle grievances, and talk to their legislators about important issues facing their work.
Sen. Knollenburg, along with 11 other Republican Senators has reintroduced legislation designed to prohibit paid union leave time. This
time he has also added Community Colleges to K-12 schools in the prohibition on dues collection by payroll deduction.
Release time—or official time—allows workers to use time from their jobs to take care of issues in the workplace—most of it central to
keeping the workplace running well.
Unfortunately, there have been efforts in several states to prohibit public-sector union release time. The American Legislative Exchange
Council has a model bill to outlaw release time. Legislation was introduced in 2017 in at least four states (Connecticut, Minnesota,
Missouri and Pennsylvania) to eliminate release time for public employees.
The organizations attacking public service worker release time are the same organizations attacking workers’ rights around the country.
This attack is part of a coordinated, systematic attempt to weaken or outright eliminate workers’ rights. The groups behind the attack on
release time are the same ones promoting efforts to take away working people’s freedom to join together and negotiate, weaker wages
and benefits, more dangerous workplaces and lower taxes for corporations.
Release time is a widely followed management practice in the public and private sector. Employers recognize the value of releasing
employees from their usual duties for small amounts of time in order to focus on workplace issues. States, schools, and municipalities
should not be prevented from practicing sound management strategies because of the objections of a few anti-union ideologues.
Please contact the following Senators and urge them to vote NO on Senate Bill 795:
Phil Pavlov (R-St. Clair) Committee Chair, 25th District
Marty Knollenberg (R-Troy) Vice Chair, 13th District
Darwin L Booher (R-Evart) 35th District
Joe Hune (R-Hamburg) 22nd District
Hoon-Yung Hopgood (D-Taylor) Minority Vice Chair, 6th District
Release time benefits the public by creating a safer, fairer and more efficient workplace.
Public service workers use release time to resolve employee disputes, protect workers’ safety and basic rights in the workplace, represent
workers in conflicts with management, address issues of discrimination or retaliation, and work with management to improve the
workplace. Release time saves taxpayer resources in the long run.
Release time helps to resolve workplace conflicts in a more timely and cost-efficient manner than would otherwise be the case.
Public service workers can use release time to serve on labor-management committees that help to solve problems and improve the
workplace. Without release time, conflicts that could have been resolved in these committees instead may end up as part of expensive and
time-consuming legal or administrative procedures.
Release time also saves resources by allowing public employees to serve on labor-management committees that develop cost-saving
proposals. Taxpayers have saved millions of dollars as a result. Release time allows public employers to benefit from the expertise of
public employees in these important and effective labor-management committees.
image for a
pdf copy of
TO: All Members, GAA Wayne County Airport Authority Chapter
FROM: Lorenzo A. Blount, Association Executive
Karen Offerman, GAA Wayne County Airport Authority Chapter President
RE: 2018 Contract Survey
DATE: February 23, 2018
The Collective Bargaining Agreement for GAA members of the Wayne County Airport Authority Chapter expires September 30, 2018, 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 March 23, 2018, to the GAA office, 3031 W. Grand Blvd., Suite 415, Detroit, MI 48080, fax to 313-224-
0064 or e-mail to email@example.com.
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.
WORKING PEOPLE'S DAY OF ACTION
On Saturday, February 24, working people across the country will gather to stand up for our right to form a union and to fight for a better
quality of life for ourselves and for our families. We’ll also be honoring the long history of labor rights activists and civil rights activists
coming together to strengthen our communities.
Next Monday, the Supreme Court will hear a case called Janus vs. AFSCME, which could limit the ability of unions to negotiate on our
behalf and improve our communities. This weekend we’ll make our voices heard to show our strength when we come together.
Join us in Detroit this Saturday to make your voice and help unrig the system! If you’re not able to make it to Detroit, find the event nearest
to you and join us there.
LABOR AND CIVIL RIGHTS: THE TIE THAT BINDS
SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 24
10:30 A.M. TO 1:30 P.M.
NORTHWEST ACTIVITIES CENTER
18100 MEYERS ROAD
DETROIT, MI 48235
AFSCME COUNCIL 25 | AFT MICHIGAN | COALITION OF BLACK TRADE UNIONISTS – DETROIT CHAPTER | COALITION OF LABOR
UNION WOMEN – DETROIT CHAPTER | DETROIT ASSOCIATION OF EDUCATIONAL OFFICE EMPLOYEES | DETROIT FEDERATION OF
PARAPROFESSIONALS | DETROIT FEDERATION OF TEACHERS | MICHIGAN EDUCATION ASSOCIATION | MICHIGAN AFL-CIO | METRO
DETROIT AFL-CIO | MOTHERING JUSTICE
AND A GROWING LIST OF OTHERS
December 7, 2017
FINALLY, GOOD NEWS OUT OF LANSING
At 3 am this morning both Houses adopted and passed substitutes to their Municipal Finance Reform package that essentially adopted the
Governor’s Task Force report and removed the onerous provisions attacking collective bargaining and jeopardizing retiree health care.
There is still more to do as the bills now must sit for 5 days in the other chamber before concurrence and presentation to the Governor.
There are a few places that need some language cleaned up and the other side has agreed to work with us on fixing those glitches but
even if they don’t we were able to get most everything we asked for. Unless something really strange happens, we will have a major
legislative victory for the first time in a long time.
All of organized labor stood together and stood strong proving that solidarity is more than just a big word. Thanks to everyone for your
activism. If we keep it up we can finally start to turn things around.
NICK CIARAMITARO, Director
Legislation and Public Policy
Michigan AFSCME Council 25
Reprinted from www.subchapter38.com
November 22, 2017
State and Municipal Public Employee Retirement at Risk Again
Please read the following webpost from the Wayne County Retirees Association. We need all GAA members, retirees, and their families to
contact their legislators and if possible attend the November 29th rally in Lansing.
The current move in Lansing to eliminate your health care benefits is moving forward - NOW. If you think this doesn't affect you and
your family, think again, and then DO something about it. All the tools you need were presented at the November 21st Emergency
meeting and are being provided for you below. Please share with every retiree and active government worker you know.
A message From Nick Ciarmitaro Director of Legislation and Public Policy for Michigan AFSCME Council 25;
THIS IS NOT A JOKE .... Drafts are under consideration for introduction and possible hearings as early as next week which would
make retiree health care for current municipal retirees optional with the employer unless you retired under a collective bargaining
agreement that "clearly and expressly" conferred a longer period of time. Other provisions would allow action after a full review of
funding but this provision would apply to ALL current retirees.
We do not know what the final bill will look like but this is clearly on the table. It would apply to all employees of cities, townships,
counties, road commissions, airport authorities and other public authorities including public hospital employees like nurses, and
even those not eligible for Medicare.
November 22, 2017
GAA WCAA Election Results for Chapter Officers
January 1, 2018 – December 31, 2019
At the GAA Wayne County Airport Authority membership meeting held November 15, 2017, Karen Offerman was nominated President, and
Diane Spencer was nominated Vice President. As there was no further opposition, both candidates were elected by acclamation. Their
term of office begins January 1, 2018, and ends December 31, 2019.
Also, if you have not yet RSVP’d for GAA Annual Meeting/Holiday Party please do so as soon as possible. We look forward to seeing you at
this event. It is a chance to meet and network with other GAA colleagues across Wayne County and its various Courts and Authorities.
Click here for a pdf version of this notice.
Click here for a pdf version of this notice.
October 30, 2017
GAA AIRPORT AUTHORITY CHAPTER ELECTION SCHEDULED
FOR NOVEMBER 2017:
The GAA Wayne County Airport Authority Chapter election is scheduled for November 2017. The Chapter will be electing their President,
Vice-President, and Secretary. A membership meeting will be scheduled in mid-November to solicit nominations. A notice will be mailed
shortly with additional details.
REMINDER: GAA Member of the Year Nomination Form due Thursday,
November 2, 2017.
If you know a GAA member who has exceptional job performance or has provided extraordinary service to the Community or the
Government Administrators Association, please take the time to nominate this deserving member for GAA Member of the Year. This award
will be presented at the GAA Annual Meeting/Holiday Party, December 1, 2017. Click here for a nomination form.
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
(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
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
firstname.lastname@example.org or call the office at 313-224-5076, with your size and contact information, and we will arrange to get a shirt
We would like to thank the members for their continued support.
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 email@example.com.
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
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.
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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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 email@example.com 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
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
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
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 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 firstname.lastname@example.org 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,
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 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
GAA Members: Suggested $5 Donation
to The Open Door
GAA Retirees & Guests: $50.00
(Tickets Sold in Advance)
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.