Clarification on the Bargaining Agreement

I would like to take this opportunity to clarify what the following section to the bargaining agreement means to corrections officers in layman terms.
This section has nothing to do with guaranteed vacation, putting in for a day off, or any other forms of leaves. It simply allows for an employee to apply well in advance for leave for special events. Example: If your sister is getting married in September you can turn in a leave slip in January requesting the day off. The timekeeper must keep a file for each month of the calendar. Your leave slip would go into the September file and be placed there in the order in which September requests were made.  This means you would be the first employee requesting that date off and would make it easier for you to get that day off.

This has NOTHING to do with you requesting other leave. The three slips in this special file have nothing to do with this.  You can still request next Tuesday off and it is not counted as one of the three slips. This only pertains to requests beyond the month the timekeeper is currently working on.
If there is an institution that is going above and beyond accepting three slips we commend them for this and encourage they continue this practice. However, most institutions in the state have been handling this by denying the leave and telling the employee to apply at a later date closer to the time requested off. This puts a stop to this practice and benefits the employee.

If you have questions please call us at 866-346-6262 for further clarification if needed.

Thank you,
Gary Gross, Executive Director, MOCOA

Section 11.9 Annual and Compensatory Leave
a) Applications for annual or compensatory leave for that calendar year may be submitted at any time during the calendar year, beginning January 1st of that year. In this circumstance, leave must be earned before it can be requested.
b) A reasonable effort shall be made to grant annual or compensatory leave when requested, but granting leave is subject to approval of the shift supervisor based on the needs of the department.
c) Employer agrees to maintain a pending file for future leave applications each month of the year and to file and to consider leave applications by the order in which they received them.
d) The employer agrees to accept and file no more than three leave applications from an employee at any point in time.
e) Such requests will be responded to as early as is practical but no later than fourteen (14) days prior to the beginning of the leave requested either approved or denied.
f) If an employee requests leave fewer than fourteen (14) days prior to the requested leave date, the supervisor will approve or deny the leave as soon as practicable.

Announcement

House substitute for House Bill 1090 referencing Overtime for COI and COII’s was recently signed into law. What does this mean to Missouri Corrections Officers? This means you will have control over any overtime worked and have the choice whether to collect it in pay or to use the hours as time off. Potentially this could add up to several million dollars more in cash income for officers each year and stop the forced flexing off of hours. CO’s will still have the right to maintain up to eighty hours of compensatory time on the books and would have to be given fourteen days written notice of any mandatory comp reduction of hours accrued over the eighty hours that is protected by law.

After my discussion with the Office of Administration today, it appears that probably sometime in August we will be signing our new work agreement with the Department of Correction and the Office of Administration. Progress on this agreement was slowed because of the overtime lawsuit as well as the overtime legislation which has now been signed into law. The Department of Corrections did not want to agree to the fourteen day notice regarding comp time reduction as it is in our current agreement. We would not give ground on that issue and now have the issue resolved and in law so we can finish the new agreement with the language included. Until the new agreement is signed we will be under the old agreement. If you have a supervisor tell you that the current agreement is no longer in effect, that is not accurate. The agreement has been extended several times and will remain in effect until the new agreement is signed.

Governor Freezes State Employee Raises

Governor Nixon has placed a “freeze”  on state employees 1% raise, which should have gone into effect January 1, 2015, as well as the Deferred Compensation contributions that were to take effect July 1, 2014.  We shall keep you updated when we know more. Please feel free to contact your legislators regarding this issue.