ALAA Roots — An Unofficial Site

December 13, 1994

1994.12.13: ALAA/1199 News Update

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Union Reps:  Please distribute to all ALAA & 1199 Members

ALAA/1199 News Update
December 13, 1994 Association of Legal Aid Attorneys/Legal Aid Chapter of 1199

568 Broadway, Rm. 702A, NY, NY 10012-3225•212.343.0708•FAX 212.343.0966

City Contract Negotiations

Board president Tom Brome will meet again today with City officials concerning the terms of the City’s proposed Legal Aid criminal contract.  ALAA’s suggestions on the contract draft were conveyed to the Board over the last few days.

Buyout Clarifications

Availability in Non-Criminal Divisions.  The Society has confirmed that the maximum number of 50 buyouts contained in its December 8 memo to staff refers to those available to attorneys in the Criminal Defense Division and Criminal Appeals Bureau.  Attorneys in other divisions will be considered for buyouts only if a CDD or CAB attorney is interested in transferring into a non-criminal division, thereby ensuring that the receiving division will not lose a funding line.

Because of confusion on this point, the Union has proposed that the buyout deadline be extended, and will notify attorneys when the issue is resolved.

Preference for Open Non-Criminal Positions.  Staff Attorneys will have preference over supervisors for open positions in non-criminal divisions.  However, there is no rule about the particular jobs into which transferees will be placed.  Therefore, non-criminal attorneys who are interested in a particular position within their division should put in a regular transfer request ASAP.

Three-Year Commitment Rule Waived for Transfer.  The Society will suspend the 3-year commitment rule for attorneys wishing to transfer from CDD/CAB to other divisions.

Seniority Calculation.  Seniority for buyouts will be based on actual time in service, rather than pay step.

Unemployment Information.  The Society’s December 8 memo states that:

Volunteers [for severance] are eligible for unemployment insurance benefits.  The Society will regard these terminations as economic layoffs.  We will provide additional information on how to file for benefits to individuals who accept this offer.

According to government agencies, unemployment benefits are payable for up to 26 weeks, at a rate of approximately half of one’s weekly gross earnings, up to $300/month.  Benefit rates are based on your total earnings in the past 52 weeks.  In the week of filing, an applicant must not have worked 3 days or earned more than $300.

To apply for unemployment benefits, go to the office of the NYS Labor Department nearest your home or office (a listing can be found in the Blue Pages of the phone book).  Offices are open Monday – Friday, 8:30 a.m. – 5 p.m.  Mondays are the busiest days.  Bring your social security card, your LAS ID and your paystubs.

For further information, call the Department of Labor:  718-488-1800.


Subject to membership ratification, the following clarification would apply to the Bargaining Committee’s proposal for a one-week furlough:

Applicability to Management.  ALAA’s proposal calls for the furlough to apply to Management.  We are awaiting the Board’s response to this proposal.

Applicability to Non-Criminal Divisions.  Savings from a furlough in non-criminal divisions would not be available to ease the effect of City budget cuts in the criminal contract.  Discussion is now underway with the Board about how savings generated by a furlough could be used beneficially in the non-criminal divisions.

Vacation Substitute.  The Society has informed ALAA that no savings would result from allowing attorneys to contribute vacation days in lieu of work days.

Applicability to Step 13.  Because step 13 attorneys do not receive step increases, some members have advocated that attorneys on that step be exempt from a furlough.  Without expressing any view on this proposal, the Society has confirmed that it has no objection to raising an equivalent amount of money by spreading the pain among those attorneys who are not on step 13.

Compensatory Day Buyback

The “comp. day buyback” referred to in the Union’s December 5 bulletin actually refers to ALAA’s proposal that CDD Staff Attorneys relinquish their right to sell back five compensatory days during this year.  CDD attorneys earn compensatory days as a result of evening or weekend arraignment assignments.

CDD Developments

Restructuring.  The ALAA Executive Committee will vote this evening on a Bargaining Committee proposal that ALAA reiterate its view that the “team” concept is an experiment, and that ALAA endorse restructuring based on the agreement it has reached with the Board on most issues (continuity, coverage of institutional assignments, election and role of co-coordinators, etc.) and the resolution of other pending issues.  Support Staff issues remain in abeyance pending further discussion between 1199 and the Board.

ALAA Membership Meeting

Tonight, the ALAA EC will discuss the timing of a city-wide membership meeting vote on the Bargaining Committee’s offer to the Board.  A major consideration is how to time the vote to consider a package to which the City has already responded.  Also under consideration will be an earlier city-wide membership meeting for discussion only.


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