State Employees Association of North Carolina, SEIU Local 2008 P.O. Drawer 27727, Raleigh, NC • www.seanc.org 800-222-2758 • 919-833-6436 • Circulation 55,000
• Vol. 31, Issue 9
McCrory Signs Budget with No Pay Raises State employees receive five extra vacation days in spending plan By Toni Davis SEANC Communications Director
After months of debate, the General Assembly passed a state budget in late July that included five bonus leave days for state employees but no pay raises or retiree cost-of-living adjustments. The $20.6 billion spending plan was a compromise of proposals from the House, Senate and Gov. Pat McCrory. SEANC Executive Director Dana Cope said in a message to members when the compromise was announced that he was “disappointed” in the final plan. “Without a pay raise, a five-day vacation for the average employee becomes a staycation or an opportunity to work more at the second job in order to pay bills which keep rising while wages do not,” Cope said. “Don’t get me wrong, the vacation days are appreciated, but a modest cost-of-living adjustment was strongly advocated for by the association and warranted this year.” SEANC believes that $20.6 billion is a lot of money, and how lawmakers choose to spend it speaks volumes about their priorities. This year’s misplaced priorities became apparent when tax breaks for yachts became more important than healthy teeth for tots. The budget will close several prisons at the request of the Department of Public Safety and eliminates 685 positions, including Duplin Correctional, Robeson Correctional,
• • • • • • • •
2013-14 State Budget By the Numbers
One-time five additional days of annual leave to be used by June 30, 2014 $1 million for a statewide compensation study $1.1 million to fund 175 new probation officer positions $2.5 million to fill 69 state trooper vacancies $7.5 million to the salary adjustment fund $33 million for the State Health Plan $36 million to fully fund the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System (TSERS) $56 million for a general fund reserve for increased contributions to existing benefit employee programs in fiscal year 2014-15
Bladen Correctional, Wayne and Western Youth Institution. Johnston Correctional Institution will be converted to a minimum custody prison and will shed 50 positions as a result. Many of the employees at these closed prisons were offered positions in other parts of the Department of Public Safety or other agencies in state government. The Department of Public Safety’s Youth Development Centers and the 90 people who work in the facilities also took a hit with closures impacting Lenoir, Richmond and Buncombe Detention Centers. Finally, the State Highway Patrol Communications Center will be consolidated, resulting in 30 lost positions. On the plus side, the budget fully funds the retirement system and creates new jobs within the State Highway Patrol and in Probation and Parole that persons displaced from prison closures
could apply for within the Department of Public Safety (DPS). The DPS budget allots 175 new probation officer positions and a new Western Multipurpose Group Home is funded with an unknown number of positions to support this facility. Two other prisons — Orange Correctional and the North Piedmont Correctional Center for Women — were under consideration for closure in previous budget drafts, but were restored in the final budget. After intense lobbying to maintain preventive oral health services in high-risk schools, employees at the Department of Health and Human Services Oral Health section will maintain 35 of the 50 employees. The Senate proposed eliminating all these positions, while the House fully funded these vital dental services.
President’s Message By Sidney M. Sandy SEANC President
SEANC Positioned Well in State Politics
ith Republicans in charge of the General Assembly and governor’s mansion for the first time in 140 years, we all knew things were going to be different. We are truly blessed that during the past two years our lobbyists have continued to cultivate a good working relationship with our Republican-dominated General Assembly. With the motto “No permanent friends or permanent enemies, just permanent issues,” we have been able to keep our priorities at the forefront. During the past few years, we have been able to weather many storms in the General Assembly. My hat is off to the SEANC leadership and lobbyists that are on the front lines every day. They continue the battle to fend off Sandy the bills that will whittle away or downright abolish the protections and benefits that we have fought so very hard to obtain for all of us as well as future employees. To preserve these benefits, we need to continue to work hard for EMPAC, our political action committee. The statewide EMPAC committee does a superb job of listening to local concerns, screening and interviewing candidates prior to making their final recommendations for which candidates to endorse. They work to get our members registered in their local precincts and to the polls on election day. We have to keep SEANC leadership strong. Now is not the time to stand back and watch from the sidelines or make changes not in our best interests. We have a strong, dedicated and persistent team of lobbyists and an active EMPAC with a track record of success. SEANC’s strength comes from an educated and informed member base, and that starts with SEANC leadership and works its way down. We don’t need to let our guard down. We must continue to fight even harder now than ever to preserve our benefits for all active, retired and future employees. This is why I call on each SEANC member to stand up and be counted, be heard and be strong for today, tomorrow and all the days to follow. A positive future for state employees
The Reporter • September 2013
“We don’t need to let our guard down. We must continue to fight even harder now than ever to preserve our benefits for all active, retired and future employees.” and retirees relies on members staying active, recruiting, and lobbying their legislators. Don’t let your guard down now, come join me as we fight to stay on the right path and protect what we have. Stand with me! We can and will make a difference for generations to come.
Toni Davis, Editor-In-Chief Jonathan Owens, Managing Editor Alicia Miller, Associate Editor Josh McCrain, Associate Editor State Employees Association of North Carolina P.O. Drawer 27727 • Raleigh, NC 27611 1621 Midtown Place • Raleigh, NC 27609 Telephone 919-833-6436, 800-222-2758 www.seanc.org
Advertising Policy SEANC accepts advertising material from companies and persons seeking to communicate with SEANC members. Acceptance of this advertising does not indicate SEANC approval or endorsement of any representation that the message, product or service is as represented by the advertiser. SEANC accepts no responsibility and shall not be liable for any use of or reliance on any such information, product or service. SEANC is a private entity and is under no obligation to carry advertisements of any nature, political or otherwise, that may be viewed as contrary to the interests of the association and its membership.
Legislators Give Treasurer Freedom to Gamble Cowell can risk more of members’ money on ‘alternative investments’ with high fees by Jonathan
SEANC kept more of state employees’ retirement funds from going to Vegas just before the General Assembly adjourned its long session in late July, convincing legislators to rein in state Treasurer Janet Cowell’s request to gamble more of the funds on “alternative investments.” Senate Bill 558, which passed the General Assembly in the last week of the session, gives Cowell permission to invest up to 35 percent of state employees’ retirement funds — an increase of 1 percent — in hedge funds, real estate and credit markets that carry high risks as well as high fees from Wall Street money managers. Originally, Cowell had requested the freedom to invest up to 40 percent, but SEANC worked with legislators to rein in this risky investment scheme. Still, an increase of just 1 percent will still allow millions of dollars to go out-of-state. “In the end a bad bill became better,” said SEANC President Sidney M. Sandy. “Money managers will come out with millions of dollars in fees from this bill with no risk, while the state employees who contribute 6-percent of their paycheck every month are saddled with risk and I mean all of it.” SEANC Legislative Affairs Director Ardis Watkins addressed the House Finance Committee on July 17 and made the association’s opposition to the original bill clear. Since 2000, she said, the General Assembly has allowed investments in alternatives to grow from 5 to 34 percent of the retirement system and has no positive growth to show for it. She pointed out that Cowell is only currently using 20 percent of the fund for alternative investments, and that such investments come with high fees that erode gains made by them. “We’re rolling the dice literally like it’s Vegas,” Watkins said. After Watkins spoke, N.C. State Business Management Professor Richard Warr stood and provided additional testimony that supported SEANC’s argument. Warr told the committee that if they passed the bill, money managers on Wall Street would have a champagne toast in honor of their vote, since they stand to gain more than $160 million in fees from the change. “The risks here are horribly understated,” Warr said. “In the end it’s Wall Street that gets rich through fees. You could save $200 million by firing Wall Street.”
Photo by Josh McCrain
SEANC Asst. Communications Director
SEANC Legislative Affairs Director Ardis Watkins speaks to legislators and media members after the House Finance Committee’s 14-13 vote to pass the State Treasurer’s alternative investments bill to a vote on July 17.
Cowell also testified before the committee in a rare appearance at the legislature. Despite her testimony, several legislators voiced their concerns about the bill and Cowell’s role as the sole fiduciary of such a large pot of money. When asked directly about her role as the plan’s sole decision-maker, a power that only four of the nation’s 50 state treasurers have, Cowell touted the Investment Advisory Committee as proof that she does not make decisions alone. Further prodding by the committee, however, revealed that she was the person who appoints those advisors, so if they do not agree with her, she is free to replace them with someone who does. That’s not a check or a balance. The bill passed through the committee by a slim 14-13 margin, made it through the Senate and sits on McCrory’s desk as of press time. He had yet to sign it. Just as it passed the Senate, the U.S. Department of Justice charged the hedge fund SAC Capital, with wire and security fraud that resulted in millions in fees for the company. Interestingly, the most outspoken members for the bill seemed to be House members Rep. Jeff Collins (R-Nash), a professional financial consultant himself, as well as Rep. Stephen Ross (R-Alamance), a Vice President & Investment Officer with Wells Fargo Advisors. When it comes down to an $81 billion retirement system people will say anything to make sure that they or their buddies may get a piece of it.
firstname.lastname@example.org The Reporter • September 2013
Mixed Bag for State Employees at 2013 GA Session Each year SEANC advocates for legislative policies as determined by SEANC members during the annual convention. This year SEANC achieved five out of the Top Ten Policy Platform Objectives and other items important to public services and the people who provide them.
Secured Bonus Leave
This year’s budget includes five days of bonus leave that employees can use until June 30, 2014.
Set Three Christmas Holidays
A small but welcome fact in the State Personnel Modernization Act makes permanent a three-day Christmas holiday. Previously the Christmas holiday alternated between two and three days depending on the day Christmas fell.
Maintained Worker Rights
SEANC maintained the integrity of the State Personnel Act by having 36 troubling provisions, including due process and patronage concerns, removed from the State Personnel Modernization Act.
Maintained Defined Benefit Program
SEANC successfully maintained and protected the current defined benefit program. SEANC worked with House members to halt a bill containing a new optional 401(k) retirement system that would have undermined the current retirement system, an anti-spiking provision and a return to five-year-vesting in the retirement system.
FOLLOW SEANC ON SOCIAL MEDIA
Be sure to “Like” SEANC on Facebook at facebook.com/seanc.Local2008, follow the association’s Twitter feed @seanc2008 and watch SEANC videos at youtube.com/seancmedia
The Reporter • September 2013
SEANC stopped three attempts in the House Appropriations Committee to remove the prohibition on contracting out prison maintenance.
Fully Funded Retirement System
SEANC helped secure full funding for the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System for the third-straight year. This year the state contributes 8.69 percent.
Continued State Health Plan Premium-Free Option
The PPO Basic 70/30 Plan continues to be a premium-free health care option with no benefit reductions. The Reporter, USPS 009-852 (ISSN 1069 2142), is published nine times a year in the months of February, March, April, May, June, July, September, November and December for $2.50 per year, per member, by the State Employees Association of North Carolina, Inc., P.O. Drawer 27727, Raleigh, NC 27611-7727. Periodicals postage paid at Raleigh and additional offices. POSTMASTER Send address changes to: THE REPORTER P.O. Drawer 27727 Raleigh, NC 27611-7727
public policy Other items of importance to state employees from the 2013 General Assembly session include:
The State Health Plan will convert to a calendar year effective Jan. 1, 2014. SEANC advocated for this change to assist Medicare-eligible retirees who were struggling with two different calendar years for their health care. Currently Medicare uses the calendar year and the State Health Plan uses the state fiscal year which created headaches keeping up with different deductible periods. This change should help Medicare-eligible retirees plan better and save the plan money.
Photo by Josh McCrain
Converted State Health Plan Calendar
Protected Worker Privacy
SEANC members Doug Skinner and Sharon Sharpe speak with Sen. Floyd McKissick (D-Durham) at the General Assembly about a bill. Members turned out several times during the 2013 session to stand up for state employees.
Mitigated Job Losses
section prevents the State Personnel Commission from adopting its proposed rule that would have made RIF’d employees lose their RIF priority re-employment rights even if they were offered a position and salary less than that held or earned at the time of the RIF notification.
SEANC protected state workers’ performance evaluations from being made public. The bill never made it to a vote. Although we’d prefer to lose zero jobs, SEANC fought tooth-and-nail to keep public services and the people who provide them intact this session. The N.C. Senate’s budget proposal cut 1,600 jobs, but thanks to SEANC’s efforts, the final budget cut less than 600 positions and the majority of these employees have already been placed in new jobs within the Department of Public Safety. Examples include limiting prison closures from eight to five and saving 35 positions from the Department of Health and Human Services’ Oral Health Section.
Reduced Risky Alternative Investments in Retirement System
The State Treasurer requested the authority to invest 40 percent of the $81 billion Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement Fund in risky alternative investments. SEANC opposed any expansion of alternative investment authority. Ultimately a bill was passed to increase investment authority by only 1 percent more than the current portfolio allowance.
Clarified Reduction-in-Force Rights
The bill to change the State Personnel Act included a section clarifying re-employment rights for employees who lose their job due to a reduction-in-force (RIF). These employees will only lose their RIF priority re-employment rights if the rights are not exercised within one year of RIF notice or if they are offered a position or salary that is equal to or higher than the position held or the salary earned by the employee at the time of the RIF notification. This new
Reduced State Health Plan Charges for the PPO 80/20
SEANC was the only group to speak out against a premium increase for the PPO 80/20 plan during State Health Plan Board meetings. SEANC cited the fact that the plan is now in “the black,” the utilization rate of the plan has decreased and reserves have grown as reasons why no premium increases were needed.
Halted a Minimum Retirement Age
Legislation was set for introduction that would have instituted a minimum retirement age for state service. SEANC discussed the potential for safety problems with bill proponents changing the age limit in demanding physical jobs within several agencies including the Departments of Public Safety, Transportation and Health and Human Services. The bill was not introduced.
Stopped Treasurer from Handing Out Health Plan Contracts
SEANC worked to eliminate a provision in the State Health Plan corrections bill which would have given the state Treasurer the sole authority to approve an unlimited number of State Health Plan contracts, each with a value of up to $500,000.
The Reporter • September 2013
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The Reporter • September 2013
Check out SECU’s Auto Power Program!
Shop at your leisure with a blank pre-approved check for the purchase of your new* vehicle from an authorized dealership! Visit www.ncsecu.org for more information! * Current year, prior year or upcoming year models with 10,000 miles or less on the odometer.
SPECIAL PULL-OUT SECTION
What’s Happening @ Convention 2013? • Elect statewide SEANC officers • Determine SEANC’s Top 10 Policy Platform Objectives • Attend the Celebrate N.C. banquet on Thursday evening and enjoy food, music and fun • Enjoy the Saturday evening A Night with the SEANC Stars banquet, when officers will be inducted and SEANC awards will be presented* • Participate in the community service project to benefit the State Employees Credit Union Family House *Participation in all banquets and the community service project is optional for attendees.
CASH RAFFLE! Convention Delegate Checklist
GRAND PRIZE $6,000
Looking to get a jump start on convention activities? Visit seanc.org/ convention for more information. o Study the proposed policy platform objectives and bylaws amendments up for consideration o Remember to bring your items to support the SECU Family House community service project (optional) o Find out more about special events Do you have questions about convention? Contact Alicia Miller, CMP, at firstname.lastname@example.org 919-833-6436 or 800-222-2758
FIRST PRIZE $3,000
SECOND PRIZE $1,000
For more information, contact Beth Dew at 919-833-6436 or 1-800-222-2758
Sep State Employees Association of North Carolina Thanks to your generosity, last year SEANC awarded 41 scholarships totaling $33,500
The Reporter • September 2013
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Candidates for SEANC Statewide Office Announced SEANC leadership for 2013-2014 will be determined by approximately 850 delegates at the 30th Annual SEANC Convention on Sept. 6. SEANC Bylaws require members to announce their candidacy in writing or in person to the Board of Governors no later than 45 days prior to the annual convention or nominations can be submitted from the convention floor. Only the incumbents filed to run before the deadline this year. Statewide officer terms are for one year and begin Oct. 1, 2013, and run through Sept. 30, 2014. Officers may hold the same office for two consecutive years.
2nd Vice President
President Sidney M. Sandy is seeking reelection. He is a retired 33-year state employee who served as a maintenance engineer for the N.C. Department of Transportation. He has been a SEANC member for nearly as long. Sandy served in the Army National Guard and graduated from Fayetteville Technical College with a degree in civil engineering technology.
1St Vice President
First Vice President Art Anthony is seeking re-election. A 22-year state employee and SEANC member, Anthony received his bachelor’s degree from Shaw University and is now employed at North Carolina State University as a research specialist. Anthony is a Raleigh resident.
Second Vice President Stanley Gales is seeking re-election. He is a maintenance supervisor at Polk Correctional Institution. A Durham resident, he is a 26-year state employee and SEANC member. Gales is a U.S. Army veteran and completed the electrical program at Durham Technical Community College.
Treasurer Betty “B.J.” Jones is seeking re-election. A graduate of St. Augustine’s University, Jones also earned her master’s degree in business administration from Strayer University. Jones is a Medicaid Financial Analyst and Clinical Policy Contract Specialist for the Department of Health and Human Services. She is a 28-year state employee and SEANC member who lives in Zebulon.
a nigHt witH tHe
Hosted by our own steve Lawson
EMPAC donors: Can you sing, dance, play an instrument, perform magic or make people laugh? Come show off your talent!
Saturday, Sept. 7 at 7 p.m. Sheraton Greensboro Hotel at Four Seasons Koury Convention Center
9th Annual EMPAC Event It’s Showtime @ SEANC Friday, Sept. 6
Dress Code - Black Tie Optional
7:30 p.m. - Legislative Reception 8:30 p.m. - Talent Competition followed by Karaoke Tickets can be purchased through registration or in person on Wednesday, Sept. 5 at convention. Ticket price $45.
For more information, please contact Alicia Miller, CMP at email@example.com.
Sign up to compete by contacting Carri Derrick at firstname.lastname@example.org or sign up at the EMPAC booth at convention by 6 p.m. on Thursday, Sept. 5. Free to delegates and registered convention guests who sign up for or are currently giving through EMPAC payroll deduction or for members who make a minimum $25 annual donation to EMPAC.
The Reporter • September 2013
2013 Convention 2013 Community Service Project
SEANC to Assist SECU Family House By Josh McCrain
SEANC Communications Specialist
President Sidney M. Sandy has selected the SECU Family House in Chapel Hill as this year’s community service project for the 30th Annual SEANC Convention, to be held September 5-7 in Greensboro. The SECU Family House provides housing, healing and hope to families while their loved ones seek treatment at UNC hospitals. It serves patients in all 100 counties and relies on grants and donations to sustain its services. Requested donations include household goods, such as dishwasher detergent and paper towels, grocery items like canned food, and gift cards that will be used to purchase larger items such as furniture and appliances. The full list of requested donations can be found at seanc.org/convention/community-project. A representative from the SECU Family House will be on hand Thursday to receive the donations at the end of the opening day of the convention. Not going to this year’s convention? You can still give your donation to a SEANC delegate who will contribute it to the cause. Find your district chairperson at seanc.org/ bog/district-chairpersons. Thanks in advance for making this year’s community service project a success! email@example.com
Health Care, Retirement Trainings Offered by Jonathan
SEANC Asst. Communications Director
Retirement and health care are two topics that affect every state employee no matter where they work. Members will have a chance to gain insight on both topics from SEANC’s experts in each subject at the convention. Prior to the start of the convention on Thursday, SEANC lobbyist Mitch Leonard will host two hour-long training sessions similar to the retirement workshops SEANC hosted throughout the state this summer. At the same time, SEANC lobbyist Chuck Stone will host sessions on health care. The sessions will begin at 9 a.m. and 10 a.m. on Sept. 5 in the Imperial Ballroom in the Sheraton Koury Convention Center in Greensboro, the site of the annual convention. Leonard, SEANC’s longest-serving staff member, will present on issues facing retirees, including the current state and federal budgets and funding changes to the Teachers’ and State Employees’ Retirement System.
The Reporter • September 2013
Leonard worked in the Department of Transportation before joining the staff of SEANC’s predecessor organization in 1977. He has been with the association for 36 years and today is its main lobbyist on matters pertaining to retirement. Stone, a former SEANC president, will focus on changes to the State Health Plan including the surcharges being added in January, as well as Medicare Advantage, during his trainings. Stone is a 31-year veteran of state service, having retired in 2004 after spending his entire career at the O’Berry NeuroMedical Treatment Center in Goldsboro, 25 years of which were spent as the center’s administrative officer. Both sessions will include a question-and-answer portion where the experts will field inquiries from the groups. These sessions are open to any member as space is available. For more information on any of these events, contact SEANC’s Central Office at 919-833-6436.
Quotes to Note
“The House version of the (SPA) bill would really have been devastating to state employees and to the independence of state employees to be able to do their public service jobs. But in the end, the process became so much fairer, and we had a final product in which we compromised with the governor’s office and the General Assembly and which will serve North Carolina well.” Executive Director Dana Cope in an Aug. 5 News & Observer article, “State employees get some protections in bill, but grievance procedures shortened”
“If we managed the portfolio by a passive management method (by cutting out managers’ fees and using index funds) we could probably save $200 million. That’s what 40 years of academic research supports.” N.C. State business professor Richard Warr, siding with SEANC in an Aug. 6 Carolina Journal article “Bill gives Treasurer Added Investment Flexibility.
“To say that this is disappointing is an understatement. Retirees, public employees and the services they provide deserve more. Don’t get me wrong, the vacation days are appreciated, but a modest cost-of-living adjustment was strongly advocated for by the association and warranted this year.” Dana Cope in a July 23 story in The Insider responding to the state budget compromise.
“To gamble with the money of hardworking state workers and retirees who are counting on that check to exist, that’s inexcusable. In North Carolina, there’s a tradition of not gambling with our retiree’s money. We want that tradition to continue.” Legislative Affairs Director Ardis Watkins in the July 12 WTVD story “A gamble with state pension money?”
“We gave that extra five days of vacation time as an indication to the state employees and the teachers that we care about them. We are trying to do everything we can to free up more money to provide them more (compensation), which we all believe they deserve.” House Speaker Thom Tillis promised in the same story on the state budget compromise from July 23 in The Insider.
From Social media Thank you SEANC staff for your steadfast resolve to prevent the SPA bill from being reality in its initial form. Your dedicated and unrelenting work has prevented this bad bill for all state employees from being realized. District 69 Chairman B. Keith Renner on a post on changes to the State Personnel Act in the “I AM SEANC” open group.
Happy July 4th — Thanks to our many state employees working/serving today to keep us safe/able to travel the airways, waterways, roadways #ncpol An Independence Day tweet from Dana Cope (@DanaDCope) Visit seanc.org/socialmedia for links to all of the association’s social media accounts. The Reporter • September 2013
SEANC Awards Annual Scholarships Compiled by Jonathan Owens
In June the SEANC Scholarship Foundation awarded 41 statewide scholarships for a total of $33,500. The five categories of statewide scholarships include:
Four-Year Financial ($1,000) Cassie Bagwell Durham
School: Appalachian State University Daughter of District 38 member Cynthia Bagwell Department of Public Instruction
Four-year financial — a $1,000 scholarship to attend a two-year junior college or four-year university. Four-year merit — a $1,000 merit scholarship to attend a two-year college or four-year college or university. Two-year financial — a $500 Mathilda Kendrick Dudley
School: Barton College Member of District 59 Department of Health & Human Services
Whitney Davis Henderson
School: Winston-Salem State University Daughter of District 42 member Felicia Davis Department of Health & Human Services
Tori Dunlow Bertie
School: Western Carolina University Daughter of District 63 member Zebulon Dunlow Department of Transportation
De’Gary Martin-Hargrave Winston-Salem School: N.C. Central University Son of District 16 member Patricia M. Martin Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools
The Reporter • September 2013
Alina Shevchenko Holly Springs
School: N.C. State University Daughter of District 20 member Nataliya Rice Department of Health & Human Services
Lauren Kozup Greenville
Wylonda Surles Raleigh
School: UNC-Wilmington Daughter of District 65 member Sherri Kozup East Carolina University
Jasmine Breanna Blair Fayetteville
School: Campbell University Daughter of District 22 member Elaine Blair Department of Public Safety
scholarship to attend a community college, technical school or trade school. Two-year merit — a $500 merit scholarship to attend a community college, technical school or trade school. Member only — a $500 scholarship awarded to SEANC members.
School: Methodist University Daughter of District 37 member Angela Surles Department of Public Safety
Mieshia Miller Goldsboro
School: William Peace University Daughter of District 60 member Jacqueline Troublefield Department of Health & Human Services
Two-Year Financial ($500) Jordan Bullins Danbury
School: Forsyth Technical Community College Son of District 16 member Gregory Bullins Department of Transportation
Anjali Paintal Raleigh
School: UNC-Chapel Hill Daughter of District 47 member Amanjit Paintal Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Ryan Roman Kinston
Kathryn Reilly Raleigh
School: N.C. State University Daughter of District 39 member Zola Turner Retiree
Audrey Rogers Hayesville
School: Young Harris College Daughter of District 1 member Julie M. Rogers Clay County Schools
School: Lenoir Community College Son of District 66 member Lori Roman Department of Health & Human Services
Jeffrey Warzinski Eden
School: Louisburg College Stepson of District 17 member Malcolm Ferrell Department of Public Safety
SCHOLARSHIP Four-Year Merit ($1,000) Taylor Alligood Craven
School: UNC-Chapel Hill Daughter of District 67 member Dwayne Alligood Department of Transportation
Hannah Mickey Clemmons
David Morrison Yadkin Seth Baker Gibsonville
School: N.C. State University Son of District 19 member Judy Baker UNC Hospitals
Two-Year Merit ($500)
School: UNC-Chapel Hill Daughter of District 16 member Mike Mickey Department of Environment and Natural Resources
School: N.C. State University Son of District 8 member Milton Morrison Retiree
Katherine Anundson Mount Gilead
School: Sandhills Community College Daughter of District 18 member Ronald Anundson Department of Environment and Natural Resources
Alexandra Raxter Lake Toxaway
School: Asheville-Buncombe Tech. Community College Daughter of District 1 member Linda Raxter Western Carolina University
John Nance Raleigh Alllison Brindle Rowan
School: UNC-Chapel Hill Daughter of District 13 member Jeffrey Brindle UNC-Charlotte
Hunter Williams Albemarle
School: UNC-Chapel Hill Son of District 38 member Tamara Nance Department of Commerce
School: Lenoir Community College Son of District 11 member Cheryl Williams Department of Transportation
Member Only ($500) Cory Bowes Apex
Connor Davis Cullowee
School: N.C. Wesleyan College Member of District 38 Department of Transportation
School: UNC-Chapel Hill Son of District 1 member Jeffrey Davis Western Carolina University
Holly Emmert Roxboro
School: UNC-Chapel Hill Daughter of District 21 member Nicole Emmert Person County Schools
Victoria Reynolds Dunn
School: East Carolina University Daughter of District 61 member Linwood Reynolds Department of Tranportation
Roderick Setzer Newton
Casey Grant Ahoskie
School: UNC-Chapel Hill Daughter of District 63 member Cy Grant Sr. Administrative Office of the Courts
Rebecca Lowder Clemmons
School: Appalachian State University Daughter of District 6 member Anne Lowder Department of Health and Human Services
School: N.C. Central University Son of District 9 member Felicia Culbreath-Setzer Department of Commerce
Emma Thomson Alamance
School: UNC-Chapel Hill Daughter of District 17 member Sarah Stitsinger Alamance-Burlington Schools
Sherri Cook Charlotte
School: Belmont Abbey College Member of District 12 Department of Public Safety
Cheryl Gainey Hope Mills
School: Fayetteville Technical Community College Member of District 23 Fayetteville State University
Mercedes Fordham Concord
School: Capella University Member of District 10 Department of Public Safety
(Continued on Page 14)
The Reporter â€˘ September 2013
SCHOLARSHIP Member Only (cont.)
Don Jones Memorial Golf Tournament
LaQuita Harris Raleigh
School: Wake Technical Community College Member of District 40 Department of Public Safety
Lolita Jenkins Morganton
Photos by Jonathan Owens
School: Liberty University Member of District 6 Retiree
Lou Ellen Riggans Elizabethtown
School: Fayetteville State University Member of District 24 Fayetteville State University
More than 40 golfers took to the course at Keith Hills Golf Club in Buies Creek on Aug. 9 for the Don Jones Memorial Golf Tournament. Proceeds from the event go to benefit the SEANC Scholarship Foundation.
Angela Scott Greensboro
School: Liberty University Member of District 17 Retiree
Linda Swarts Jacksonville
School: UNC-Wilmington Member of District 61 Department of Health and Human Services
Support the SEANC Scholarship Foundation!
Remember to Check 1563 in the Combined Campaign! The SEANC Scholarship Foundation is included as one of the organizations you can contribute to through the State Employees Combined Campaign (SECC). This gives all SEANC members who wish to support the SECC an opportunity to designate a portion or all of their contribution to the SEANC Scholarship Foundation. Please remember to support the SEANC Scholarship Foundation when you contribute your generous and thoughtful donation to the SECC. The SEANC Scholarship Foundationâ€™s designation number is 1563.
The Reporter â€˘ September 2013
Photos Submitted by Lynn Tuthill
Photo Submitted by Johnny Davison
District 65 held a member recruitment vendor fair on Aug. 6 at the Tipsy Teapot in Greenville. Pictured are Member Action Coordinator Tiffany Woodard, Lynn Tuthill, Eastern Region Representative Gloria Evans and Cynthia Hart.
District 13 members Laura Dunlap (left, foreground) and Linda Colbert (left, background) talk with prospective members at Central Piedmont Community College’s Benefits Fair on Aug. 7.
SEANC Member Action Coordinator Flint Benson talks with current and prospective members at the State Employees Combined Campaign’s Kick-Off event in Raleigh on Aug. 16.
District 22 recruited 40 new members at Cumberland County Schools on Aug. 5. Here, member Bill Spade waits patiently for his next chance to recruit!
The Reporter • September 2013
Photo Submitted by A.J. Albertson
Photo Submitted by Steve Lawson
Photo Submitted by Tiffany Woodard
District 65 recently donated 225 pounds of food to Stop Summer Hunger, a program sponsored by the Food Bank of Central and Eastern North Carolina designed to help meet the nutritional needs of children during the summer when they don’t have access to free and reduced-price meals at school. This is the second year in a row that District 65 has contributed to Stop Summer Hunger. At left, Angel Ray (left) and Lynn Tuthill show off the food at District 65’s annual meeting. At right, Eastern Region Representative Gloria Evans, Angel Ray of the food bank and District 65 members Tuthill and Debbie Austin deliver the goods.
Periodical Postage PAID Raleigh, NC P.O. Drawer 27727 Raleigh, NC 27611
SEANC Wards Off Attempt to Rewrite SPA Unfair grievance process, at-will status negotiated out of final legislation by Jonathan
SEANC Asst. Communications Director
It was a long, hard negotiation, but SEANC’s lobbyists stood their ground and fought off an attempted wholesale rewrite of the State Personnel Act in this General Assembly session. The final wording of the “Modern State Human Resources Management” bill that passed the legislature on July 18 is a far cry from what SEANC’s lobbyists faced when Gov. Pat McCrory’s team first started pushing it in the House a few months back. SEANC Executive Director Dana Cope, Legislative Affairs Director Ardis Watkins and General Counsel Tom Harris were able to work with lawmakers and convey that such a move could have dire legal consequences for the state and would wind up costing taxpayers more money. After several points of contention in the first draft of the rewrite were changed in employees’ favor early on in the process, SEANC’s main objections came down to making state employees at-will and an unfair grievance process that would have given the State Personnel Commission — consisting of political appointees — final say in the appeals process rather
The Reporter • September 2013
than the independent Office of Administrative Hearings. With those changes, Watkins was able to stand in front of the Senate Pensions, Retirement and Aging Committee on June 28 and offer SEANC’s support to the bill. “We have worked hard on this bill, but we have been able to work together,” Watkins said. “We think this is a better bill for employees.” Sen. Tommy Tucker (R-Union), who shepherded the bill through the Senate, praised SEANC’s team for its willingness to work with legislators on the bill, saying, “SEANC has been great to work with, though we know they do represent state employees and we accept that.” Of course, the fight is not over. State employees can expect attempts to rewrite even more of the SPA in the future. State Personnel Directory Neal Alexander said as much in the June 28 committee meeting, telling senators “We would have liked to rewrite the entire (SPA), but this is a start.” As always SEANC’s lobbyists will remain vigilant over the SPA, which is the most important law guiding state service in North Carolina.