General Meeting for April 2020
The regular monthly AFSCME General Meeting for Tuesday, April 21, 2020 at 6:30 p.m. is cancelled due to the COVID-19 Virus.
Letter to the City Manager Regarding the COVID-19 Virus
On March 31, 2020, AFSCME President Chris Cassidy sent a letter to the City of Hollywood’s City Manager Dr. Wazir Ismael to express employee concerns regarding workplace safety due to the potential exposure to the COVID-19 virus while performing their duties. AFSCME is waiting for the City Manager to respond. Click on the letter or the link below to read the letter. Your health and safety is paramount, so we will keep you posted on a response.
Stay tuned for information on the next scheduled General Meeting.
A CRA is a Community Redevelopment Agency which cities create to fight “slum and blight”. The City of Hollywood created its Beach CRA more than twenty (20) years ago to fight “slum and blight” on the beach. For those fortunate enough to own property on the beach, the Beach CRA District has flourished. Beach property values have exploded.
The CRA is run by a Board, the Hollywood City Commission. They are one and the same group.
As we know, every year, the City Commission grapples with City budget shortfalls. Jobs get threatened. Employees’ wages, healthcare and pension benefits get put on the chopping block. Despite the dramatic growth in beach properties, and the related growth in tax funding going to the Beach CRA. For everyone else, those tax dollars flowing from the beach — which is the economic engine of the city and that belongs to all residents — cannot be used to improve any of our neighborhoods outside of the beach. As things stand now, the Beach CRA does not expire until 2027.
To make things clear, when it comes to the Beach CRA, the City Commission can and does spend up to 1 million dollars on each street on the beach. Despite the Beach CRA being able to spend all of that tax money on beach properties, the City Commission’s hands are tied. They can’t use any of those funds outside of the Beach. Consequently, the recent capital budget for streets, beautification, etc. for the rest of the City outside of the CRA, has been around 1 million dollars. Just like City residents, we, the City’s employees have borne the brunt of the pain. A few of our elected Commissioners see the folly of this current setup and are ready for change. We need to help make more Commissioners see the light.
City management has confirmed that the potential outsourcing of City departments is now under consideration! Come to the Commission Meeting @ 5PM today (Tuesday), July 3rd at City Hall in the Commission Chambers, Room 219.
Your participation is critical in showing the Commission that AFSCME employees have a vested interest in the advancement of the City. The grass is not greener using contractors as they have learned with the (Waste Pro) Sanitation outsourcing debacle.
Wear your AFSCME Local 2432 T-Shirt. Don’t have one, wear a green shirt. Parking is available at the Union hall if you are unable to park at City Hall – 2734 Hollywood Boulevard (rear lot off Van Buren). Show the Commission that we help make Hollywood happen!
Christopher Cassidy, President
AFSCME Local 2432
This afternoon, one City Commissioner put all of us on notice.
She told everyone, that she FOUND OUT that the City could OUTSOURCE ALL of the jobs in at least 2 departments. But, she made it known that she would never outsource the police or fire departments.
Parks, Recreation and Cultural Arts?
Other departments? She wouldn’t say.
And it only gets worse! Watch her tell everyone that your health and pension benefits should be slashed!
Don’t believe it? See the following clip from this afternoon’s workshop meeting:
Come to the Budget Hearing next Tuesday, July 3rd at City Hall, in the Commission Chambers, Room 219. The Budget can affect your job, your family’s healthcare, and your pension benefits.
As soon as we can determine what time this will be brought up at the meeting, we will send you an update.
Wear your AFSCME Local 2432 T-Shirt. Don’t have one, wear a green shirt.
Christopher Cassidy, President
AFSCME Local 2432
Brothers and Sisters of AFSCME Local 2432,
AFSCME Local 2432 Vice-President Ian Albertson has resigned his position with the City of Hollywood. Union officer positions must be held by an active employee who has been a member of the Local in good standing for at least one year. Due to the vacancy, per the Union Constitution, the Vice President position is filled by the current Secretary to fulfill the term. Therefore, Barbara Armand per our Constitution, now fills the Vice-President position.
We thank Ian for his service to the Union and wish him well.
On Tuesday night, I shared with the Executive Board that I have been left with no choice other than to reduce my involvement in Local 2432 activities, as my family needs my attention on a priority basis. Regrettably, I advised the Board that I had to step down from being Union Vice President, but shared my pride in their efforts on behalf of all of us, my continuing commitment to help our union however possible, and my interest in staying involved, as my time permits.
Thankfully, many years ago when our Local Union Constitution was drafted, it took into account that we each have our own lives and commitments, and that despite our best intent, some of us after being elected, may not be able to complete our elected terms of office.
In this instance, the Constitution provides that when the Union Vice President leaves office before his/her term has expired, the Union Secretary is automatically elevated to Vice President.
Union Secretary Ian Albertson stepped up his game and graciously accepted the appointment, without any reservation, knowing full well all of the responsibilities and time required to serve our membership. Based upon my prior experience working with Ian, I am confident that he will undoubtedly prove to be a worthy successor to me as our Local 2432 Vice President.
As most of you know, when the City took away some of our pension benefits back in 2011 in Financial Urgency, Local 2432, the PBA and IAFF Local 1375 filed unfair labor practice charges against the City with PERC to contest Financial Urgency, and ultimately, those claims ended up before the Florida Supreme Court.
The Florida Supreme Court held that the City violated the State Constitution, and ordered PERC to hold hearings to determine what remedies would be appropriate. Those hearings have now been held, and we are awaiting PERC’s decision as to whether the City will be required to restore all of the pension benefits back to what was in effect before Financial Urgency. Once the PERC process has run its course, we do not expect that the PBA, IAFF nor AFSCME will bring any additional litigation against the City regarding Financial Urgency.
During our first contract negotiations session, the City expressly stated that it recognized that it needs to treat all of its union-represented employees equitably, whether members of Local 2432, the PBA or IAFF Local 1375. Not only are we seeking to have our pension benefits fully restored, but also, to have the City address the shortcomings that we have all experienced with our healthcare coverage since the switch from Blue Cross Blue Shield to Cigna.
The Florida Public Employee Relations Commission (PERC), based upon the Florida Constitution and state laws, determines which city jobs are to be included with the General, Professional or Supervisory Units, and which must be excluded.
Last year, we filed a petition with PERC to have our units recertified, and to get clarification as to which jobs should be included within our bargaining units. Based upon this process, it became clear that over the years the City had improperly slotted several job classifications outside of our bargaining units into Managerial or Confidential positions.
We have a final hearing on May 1st, and then PERC will issue its final orders listing all bargaining unit positions, and all excluded Managerial or Confidential positions.
Once this PERC recertification process has been completed, and since we have already started contract negotiations with the City, we will also bargain hard for these additional employees.
City Management has sent out a survey to get employee feedback about the 4 day workweek. Please take a few minutes to complete the survey:
As promised, below are more pics from the Union Picnic. Thanks to all who made the day a great success!