August 2021 General Membership Meeting

General Membership Meeting-AFSCME 404

August 19, 2021

430 PM Redman Club/Zoom


Adam Castle, Ryan Cates, Judy Ehrman, Steve Wilking, Eric Hesse, Antonino Guerrero, Hans Paulson, Jamie Schwartz, Ben Zarn, Jake Schoenecker

1.Secretary Report:

Motion to approve July meeting minutes by Adam Castle. 2nd by Eric Hesse. Motion passes.

2. Treasurer-Antonino Guerrero:





*Negotiations from 5/24


SAVINGS: $ 125630.60

SUBMITTED BY: Antonino Guerrero

Motion to accept July Statement subject to audit by Eric Hesse, 2nd by Adam Castle. Motion Passes

Please direct any treasury inquiries to Antonino Guerrero via email.

3. Correspondence: Convention call for end of September. Executive board for council 5 approved to reduce convention to 2 days instead of 3 and will be virtual.

MSOP Meeting Minutes:

FMHP Meeting Minutes:

4. New Business:  TA on contract and voting. Instructions were sent out for mail in voting. Will also be in person on August 30th on 1st floor of admin in HR conference from 6am to 5pm. There will be other locations in Rochester-September 2nd and Mankato-on the 31st at MNDOT office and MNSCU will also have one on campus. There is also an option to vote on memberlink.

T/A-Master agreement is 2.5 cost of living both years and step increases. No plan design changes for health insurance. 3 percent increase each on employer and employee side which is 1 dollar for single or 8 to 9 dollars for family. 70 cent per pay check and 4.50 for family per pay check. Increase of fertility coverage, 3D mammograms coverage, agreed short term disability will open every 5 years starting next year. Not much for language changes. Opportunity to split overtime in comp and vacation. Received Juneteenth holiday. Increase in IOD from 400 to 500. Deferred comp math went up 75 dollars. Pilot program IOD you get paid 4 hours. A complete list will be sent out. Supplemental changes Vacation is 1 year out. bid movement language is gone. You bid and days off are adjusted by seniority. Part time cannot be mandate between day or days off unless an emergency. Ability to mutual into doubles two times instead of once. If you bid on a position, there is no longer a waiting period, you get the position.

Last Friday the delegate assembly voted to approve it. Then goes for member vote which then goes to Commissioner of MMB for approval. When they approve it goes to relations which have 30 days to act. If they don’t act, it is approved until the legislature votes. If they approve it will be enacted, if not, it will wait until the full body can meet. They are already raising fits about it how the raises can go above the budget. The layout of SCR is 5 democrats and 5 republicans. If there is a tie vote, it goes into effect. Expect October or November. If it is implemented, we will get back pay to July 1st. If contract gets more no’s from membership, we go on strike. We stay under old contract as long as actively negotiate and if we don’t actively negotiate, we may have to start from scratch.

Lead leveling process is being ironed out and they will meet with the union to go over it.

Vaccine and testing mandate-Starting September 8th. The local does not support mandated testing of members. We encourage people to vaccinate if they can but we also support members freedoms of choice. They have not determined testing sites. It is paid by the state. If you have a cultural or medical reason, they will find a reasonable accommodation through ADA. You will have to be placed on ETL for refusal of testing. They are looking for more clarification when they know more. There are a lot of unanswered questions. If you test positive, you will be paid sick time out of your bank. If you don’t have any, you will be able to use covid pay. Patients are not required to do any of this. Patient outings will be based on county covid case levels.

They are giving you an out by offering a test. We can decline the vaccination and submit to testing. This is the way they are using around this. We are no longer under peacetime emergency. If you have any questions, please contact an eboard member and we will try to get an answer to you.

Lanyards: we are almost out of lanyards and badge reels. Judy makes motion to purchase lanyards and badge reels up to 500 dollars. 2nd by Adam Castle. Motion passes.

5. Old Business:

6. Items from the membership: The committee has until Labor Day to figure out how they will delegate the 250 million dollars to front line employees. They would like to give 1000 dollars each at this time. They are accepting people to testify as to why they deserve the money. Contact an eboard member if you would like to participate. Council 5 has sent people to testify for state employees overall.

There were 4 citations to the facility from osha. They are unsure of the specifics yet. 3 are PPE related and 1 is failure to follow response plan related to covid. The 2nd visit about staff injuries. The closing will be next Monday to see what the citations are. End of August is when they foresee the citations.

Abusing sick time for holidays: Anything we can do about that. Ryan-If they call in, they lose 12 hours of pay. It hasn’t been a problem usually. Contractually, it would have to be changed to fix it. You do have to be in pay status the day before and after the holiday. Applies to ETL only. Some staff feel you should use sick accruals if calling in sick on a holiday instead of getting 8 hours of pay. A proposal was put in for forced overtime on a holiday but they refused it.

7. Good and Welfare:

8. Officer Reports:

President: Ryan Cates-  Attended Forensic Meet and Confer- Notes are attached to the meeting minutes.

  Attended MSOP Meet and Confer- Notes are attached to the meeting minutes.

 Filed multiple grievances and sat investigations.

 Talked with members in multiple work areas and listened to their concerns.

 Presented and argued grievances.

 Communicated information to E-Board members about issues facing the Local.

 Chaired the Executive Board Meeting.

 Chaired the General Membership Meeting. It was in person at Jakes Pizza Mankato.

Talked to Legislators about issues at MSH.

Talked with the Department of Labor and Industry about the safety issues in Forensics and the failure of management to address the issues.

Attended MNOSHA closing conferences that focused on complaints and citations for safety issues in Forensics.

  If any member of Local 404 feels they are not being represented by our Union, please let me know. We cannot fix problems if we do not know there is a problem.

 We ask that all members who are interviewed as non-subjects in an investigation, request Union representation. If management refuses, then members should refuse to answer questions. Participation in investigations is completely voluntary and they cannot coerce you to answer their questions. We need to do this to compel management to discontinue their practice of refusing to allow Union representatives into investigations.


VP: Steve Wilking-

VP: Eric Hesse-

Executive Board: Jake Schoenecker- Over the past month I have been sitting investigations and attending union meetings

Executive Board: Chief Steward: Judy Ehrman- I have nothing new to report.

Executive Board: Chief Steward Alex Flores-

Executive Board: Chief Steward Nick Weerts- It has been a busy month at MSOP and across our Campus. I attended our monthly Labor Management meeting, as well as New Employee Orientation where there were 33 New Hires/Transfers Campus Wide. Be sure to welcome these new folks & help them adjust!


In the last month I have sat a couple of investigations, filed grievances and/or met with Admin to address issues as needed on behalf of Members.

I filed & presented a 2nd Step Grievance regarding OT, which was won.

I presented one 3rd Step Grievance regarding a Staff Discharge, after later clarification with HR and follow-up questions from them, this grievance was also won!!

After a scheduled presentation of another 3rd Step Grievance next week, I will have cleared my load of pending grievances, at least for the time being.


There continue to be regular meetings with Admin regarding the Health Services Department. There is a joint MNA/AFSCME/Admin/HR meeting scheduled this coming week. This Department will continue to see significant change as they split into 2 separate work sites (Perimeter & CPS) as well as continue to fill vacant positions. August saw 1 RN, 1 LPN and 1 Nurse Practitioner begin New Employee Orientation. There will be additional new staff beginning in September, as well as the job postings for vacant, and newly created, Health Services positions within the 2 Sites (Perimeter & CPS). The addition of Laboratory Services from Forensics will also streamline some of the lab services & responsibilities within the Department here. There will be further updates to Departmental changes after our upcoming meeting, and by the September Labor Management meeting.


Remember July 1st was the beginning of the new Fiscal Year, and with that came a new Floating Holiday, don’t forget to use it. Eventually, Floating Holidays will expire at the end of the fiscal year, without any Administration oversight/scheduling. Plan to Use It or Lose It.


With the start of new Fiscal Year, those with FMLA qualifying medical conditions also need to reapply for FMLA coverage.


Reminder that contact for HR is [email protected]

Leave Management requests (FMLA) should go to [email protected]


Communication continues to be key to our success & strength, so Members are encouraged to reach out with concerns/observations. Please see for all meeting minutes.


Respectfully Submitted,

Nick Weerts

MSOP Chief Steward



Executive Board: Chief Steward Marvin Sullivan-

Executive Board: Jamie Sheppard- I attended MSOP Meet and Confer, Negotiations Assembly, E-board meeting and the General Membership meeting. I’ve also been fielding a lot of questions and listening to several complaints. Our Union positions are a very thankless job, so please be kind or at the very least get involved. We are not your punching bag and we do the best we can with what we have.


There has been a significate decrease with people sending me grievances so that either means management is actually following the contract or stewards are forgetting to send me their steps and outcomes. Cindy Blaschko, LPN retired after 33 ½ years please congratulate her before her last day.


In Solidarity,


Jamie Schwartz, E-Board


CS Facility Support: Eric Manriquez- I have had no grievances or investigations the past month. Attended FMHP Meet and Confer.

I have been approached on several occasions from GMW’s regarding being short staffed and management not offering OT for weekend coverage and short coverage. Brought up with management at Meet & Confer.

I spoke with a few plumbers and they requested for some clarification with job descriptions and duties required between Plumber and Plumbers & Fitters. I reached out to HR and waiting for a response.

I’ll continue to reach out/check in with other departments.


Chief Steward MSH / CRP / Nursing Nights: Kurt Crosby- Attended E board meeting and reiterated the request for the union to publish something that states that as a union, we do not endorse mandated vaccinations. That should be forthcoming. Also reminder that the AFSCME convention in Duluth will be virtual this year due to increased covid concerns. Please be sure to carefully read all the TA for the current contract so that nothing comes as a surprise, and if you have questions please reach out to any E board member.

Labor day is coming, and the holiday season is quickly coming upon is. Please watch for any information on this year’s toy drive for local families in need, I am certain we will again be a part of organizing this amazing show of giving from all the members and staff here.

Please be aware of the holiday and sick policy. I have had many questions pertaining to the contractual rights that you have as AFSCME members, and in the event you are ill on a holiday, please remember that you are able to use holiday pay for that day, and are not required to use sick time for a holiday. Any further questions please contact any E board member or refer to the contract language.

Be safe


Annie Jakacki-


Motion to adjourn by Steve Wilking. 2nd   Adam Castle. Motion Passes.


Adjourned at 535pm