MSEA Ratifies Labor Contracts with Mills Administration

The four contracts deliver a six percent pay increase January 1, 2024, an additional three percent pay increase July 1, 2024, and a lump sum payment of $800, among other benefits

AUGUSTA, Maine – Members of Maine Service Employees Association Local 1989 (MSEA-SEIU 1989) have voted to ratify four successor labor agreements with the State of Maine. The four contracts cover employees in the Administrative Services; Operations, Maintenance, and Support Services; Professional and Technical; and Supervisor Services bargaining units and are in effect through June 30, 2025.

Highlights of the labor agreements include:

  • Six percent pay raise effective at the start of the pay week closest to January 1, 2024
  • $800 lump sum payment to be distributed in February
  • An additional three percent pay raise effective at the start of the pay week closest to July 1, 2024
  • New higher step 9 pay tier providing four percent increase for most employees who reached their maximum allowed pay at step 8
  • Increase in Paid Parental Leave from 4 to 6 weeks
  • Bereavement Leave of 40 hours for all listed family members
  • Increased Child Care Reimbursement up to $2000 for qualified workers
  • Minimum seven percent pay raise upon promotion
  • Increased mileage reimbursement
  • Increased longevity pay starting at five years of service
  • Increased vacation time at five years of service
  • Improvements to Expense Reimbursement, Winter Allowance, Tool Allowance, Stipends and more

“We applaud MSEA members’ ratification of these new contracts, which demonstrates our commitment to providing competitive wages and benefits for State of Maine employees,” said Kirsten Figueroa, Commissioner of the Maine Department of Administrative and Financial Services. “We are now on track to increase wages by at least 23 percent since taking office while significantly improving benefits.”

Since Governor Mills took office, the State of Maine has provided nearly 23 percent in salary increases through July 2024. Prior pay raises (PDF) the State has provided for MSEA employees include: three percent in September 2019; four percent in January 2021; two percent in December 2021; and an additional four percent in July 2022.

In addition to these pay increases, the Mills Administration has:

  • Established paid parental leave during the 2019-2021 negotiations and then doubled that leave from two weeks to four weeks in the 2021-2023 negotiations for the birth or adoption of a child (now increased to six weeks in these new MSEA successor contracts);
  • Increased starting pay to $15 per hour, which increased pay for 382 employees, representing an average pay increase of 9 percent for the lowest paid positions in the State workforce, and an increase of more than 21 percent for those who had previously been earning the minimum wage;
  • Issued a one-time $2,000 payment to employees in December 2021 (payment was prorated for seasonal, part-time, and/or intermittent employees).
  • Contract ratification comes after more than six months of negotiations, including mediation assistance since early October.

Per PL2023, chapter 406, the State has approximately $99 million available to bargain the fiscal impact to the General Fund and Highway Fund in fiscal years 2024 and 2025 of all contracts ratified by December 31, 2023. The $99 million is the largest amount ever proposed for bargaining, which represents an acknowledgement of the State’s commitment to fairly compensate employees for their work while ensuring that the State will be able to sustainably maintain that level of compensation in future budgets.

The State is in the process of completing a classification and compensation report with recommendations due to the Legislature by the end of January 2024. At the same time, as required by the Legislature, the State must undergo another round of bargaining negotiations – distinct and separate from the current negotiations – to address the findings of that report. At this time, it is unclear what the cost will be and what additional funding will be available.