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Greetings,

I want to update you on the State’s plan to move to a biweekly pay cycle. We’ve been hearing from a number of ASEA members and know this is a concern that many have. We will continue to work to protect your pay and benefits. ASEA Business Agents (Hartlieb, Walters, and Isett) are in active discussions with the Director of Labor Relations (Jared Goecker) and a senior Payroll Specialist (John Foster) over the terms of a required Letter of Agreement (LOA) that is necessary for the conversion to take place. We will never accept any change that violate our contracts or bring our members any harm. 

ASEA Staff will make sure that your net pay and benefits remain intact. ASEA Staff are carefully monitoring leave accrual calculation processes by SOA to ensure that no net loss occurs.

To address additional questions or concerns we are receiving, we put together this FAQ:

1. Is the State allowed to change to a biweekly payroll system?

The short answer is, yes. The State has been considering this type of transition since 2013. Multiple unions included language that laid the groundwork for this change years ago. While it can’t be avoided at this point, we can ensure that our pay and benefits aren’t negatively impacted by the process. 

2. What is the impact to my paycheck and leave benefits in a biweekly payroll system?

There will be 26 pay periods per year instead of 24 in a biweekly pay schedule. Because of the additional paychecks, the amount on each check will be less than it would for 24 pay periods. This will impact the amount of money received per month for most months, and can result in more money per month in May and October (according to the State’s most recent proposed calendar). ASEA staff will continue to work to find solutions that can help members over the course of this transition if the State decides to move forward in this direction.

3. The calculator the State provided makes it look like I am losing money –

The calculator provided to employees only goes out two decimal places, which is why some are experiencing small deviations (both increases and decreases) in the amount of pay and leave accrued. ASEA staff are aware of this and in communication with the State to ensure they too are aware of this issue. ASEA will not sign any letter of agreement that results in contract violations, including losses of net pay and benefits. ASEA will continue to demand our contracts are honored and defend your net pay and benefits that were hard fought and agreed on by all parties.

4. How will this impact my eligibility for monthly health care benefits through the ASEA Health Benefits Trust?

There should be no adverse effect on eligibility for health care benefits.

5. How much notice will ASEA members receive if the State moves forward in making its transition?

The state plans to make the transition effective 12/16/19. The date of implementation may be negotiable.

6. How will this impact my dues deductions?

Dues will be calculated for 26 pay periods on lower wages per pay-period. The calculation will need to change so that it is revenue neutral.

7. How will this impact my retirement benefits?

Retirement benefits are not provided through the CBA. The Div. of Retirement and Benefits should be consulted on this subject by calling (907) 465-4460 | TDD: (907) 465-2805. State employee retirement resources are available online here: http://doa.alaska.gov/drb/retirement/retirement_links.html

Once again, none of these changes can take place without a letter of agreement that must be signed by ASEA. We will not sign anything that violates our contracts or cause members any harm. Please don’t hesitate to contact our office with additional questions or concerns: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or (907) 277-5200.

In solidarity,

Jake Metcalfe
Executive Director
ASEA/AFSCME Local 52