The Executive Board voted for the contract tonight without seeing it but the New Action people asked to table it and then voted against the contract they never saw.
I am posting below in its entirety the email President Mulgrew sent out earlier today.
Two points are clear from reading this:
1-The UFT is going to argue that the city had no money in spite of major surpluses. Mulgrew stated directly, "The cupboard was bare." That is difficult to swallow when each day we hear about the city surplus growing.
2-The retro money will be compounded but without any interest. Some have said that there would be interest but it wasn't mentioned by the President in this email.
I'm pleased to report that the Municipal Labor Committee, the umbrella group representing New York City's 350,000 municipal workers, voted overwhelmingly today to approve the health care savings program.
The city and its municipal unions will convene a joint citywide healthcare committee that will work collaboratively and transparently to identify ways to deliver health care more efficiently and streamline administration of benefits for all city workers. All the municipal union presidents feel confident that this program will meet the agreed-upon savings targets without diminishing city workers' health care benefits.
With the health care piece in place, we can now move forward with our contract ratification process. Our previous mayor tried to make it impossible for the next administration to give educators the raises they deserve. Michael Bloomberg set aside no money in the city budget to pay for the two 4 percents for 2009 and 2010 that other city workers received. Over the five long years that Bloomberg refused to negotiate the cost of paying out those raises ballooned. That's the budget that Mayor Bill de Blasio inherited. The cupboard was bare.
Despite that virtually empty labor reserve, we figured out a way forward with our new mayor, who was a willing and respectful negotiating partner. By agreeing to stretch out the retroactive payments and raises, we made our members whole and at the same time won significant raises in the contract's later years. Without the delay, we could not have achieved either. At the end of the day, UFT members will get more money in their pockets.
The phase-in of the retroactive raises has no bearing on the final amount of retro payments you'll receive. All in-service and retired members will receive 100 percent of the money they are entitled to, compounded back to Nov. 1, 2009, by 2020.
The way this contract handles the retroactive raises is not unusual. What is unusual is the recklessness of the previous mayor, who ignored the city's largest union local and allowed such an enormous retroactive debt to build up. Bloomberg's plan failed: We now have a proposed contract that pays members every dollar they would have earned if they had received their raises when other city workers did.
Here's the bottom line: With this landmark proposed settlement, UFT members will get every penny they earned and a total of 18 percent in pay increases over a nine-year period that includes the worst recession this country has experienced since the Great Depression.
We will be posting the Memorandum of Agreement, once it's finalized, and additional information, including FAQs, in our special Contract 2014 section.