Democratic Gov. Dannel P. Malloy is urging the General Assembly to reject proposed wage increases for non-teachers at the University of Connecticut.
Democratic Senate leaders agreed Wednesday the contract is unsustainable given the state's fiscal problems.
Senate President Martin Looney and Senate Majority Leader Bob Duff say they're afraid the contract will lead to "massive layoffs and painful tuition increases."
“There is a nearly $40 million gap between UConn’s estimate and OPM’s and the nonpartisan Office of Fiscal Analysis’ estimates of the true cost of the contract. As a result, we believe that the contract is not sustainable at this time especially in light of the projected revenue decline announced last week following the vote in the Appropriations Committee. We are afraid that, if approved, the contract will lead to massive layoffs and painful tuition increases forcing talented Connecticut students out of state," their joint statement on Wednesday read.
The proposed labor agreement recently cleared the General Assembly's Appropriations Committee and is awaiting action by the full legislature. It was negotiated last year with the union representing 1,900 workers.
Malloy released a memo showing the Office of Policy and Management and the Office of Fiscal Analysis estimate the contract would cost $93.9 million over five years. UConn analysists had estimated $55.9 million.
“We must value and support those that serve the public. This contract was negotiated in good faith, and I appreciate the work of UConn and UCPEA. At the same time, agreements negotiated between labor and management must reflect our new economic reality. This contract, which was negotiated last year, does not. At a time when the state is realigning spending and services, rescinding raises for nearly 2,000 managers, and significantly reducing its workforce, I believe this is a contract Connecticut cannot afford. It would set a precedent that would necessitate the elimination of even more jobs. I urge the General Assembly to reject this contract, and respectfully ask that UConn and UCPEA return to the bargaining table," Malloy said in a statement on Wednesday.
The administration is negotiating with other unions.
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