Baker’s FY 2023 Budget and Day Contract Update

Dear MSCA Members,

Governor Baker released his FY 2023 budget today (“House 2”).  As always, the MSCA will be assessing its impact on the state universities and our members and will let you know of any significant items included in it.  The bill is on the Legislature’s website.

In addition, I’d like to give an additional update regarding funding of the day collective bargaining agreement. As the bargaining committee reported, the contract funding request is still in the governor’s office, despite efforts in the fall by the MSCA and the state university presidents to get the funding request to the Legislature more quickly.  (It should also be noted that the Legislature ended its formal session on November 17, 2021 and the new session began on January 6, 2022.)

It is common at this stage of a fiscal year (particularly this year) for some state agencies to have projected deficits. Given that, it is likely that Governor Baker will file a supplemental budget bill soon, likely by mid-February.  A number of collective bargaining agreements await funding, so we anticipate that the MSCA day contract funding will be included in this supplemental budget bill.

Once filed, the bill will need to be passed by both houses and signed by the governor before the executive branch can release the funds to the DHE, who then releases the funds to the universities.

To ensure that there will be no further delays once the day contract funding is approved, we have been working with the presidents on computing the COVID bonus at each of the nine universities.  The COVID pool amount has been verified at seven universities, and the list of day unit members eligible to receive the bonus has been verified at four of the universities.  I hope the COVID bonus computations will be completed next week.

In addition, we have put together a spreadsheet that will compute members’ new salary and will approximate the retro due (subject to rounding).  We will post the spreadsheet on the MSCA website once the contract has been funded and we have been informed when the funds will be paid by the universities (the amount of retro depends on the date the increases are implemented).

Finally, I want to thank everyone who took the time to fill out the Action Network letters and called their legislators in the fall. I know that this delay is very frustrating, but we are in a better position to get speedy approval because of your advocacy with the Legislature.

In solidarity,
CJ O’Donnell
MSCA President