Pa. unions and Gov. Wolf strike deal after a year of talks

    After about a year of negotiations, a tentative contract agreement has been struck between Gov. Tom Wolf and Pennsylvania’s two biggest state employee unions. The agreement will affect state workers who belong to the American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees Council 13, and the Service Employees International Union Local 668.

    Tom Herman, president of SEIU Local 668, said the contract provides a “decent” wage increase that will keep union workers “abreast of the cost of living.”

    But, he added he’s anticipating some backlash from anti-union organizations.

    “The governor and public workers are going to take a beating for this, and we would have taken a beating if we got no raise,” he said, adding that the package is, however, “more than fair for us.”

    AFSCME Council 13 Executive Director David Fillman released a statement saying he’s also pleased with the agreement.

    Both unions have declined to comment on the specifics of the agreement until they notify all their members throughout the state.

    Herman said the delay is so the members can “see it and absorb it.”

    The new contract will be voted on over the next month.

    Herman says his union’s ballot count will be done by September 8th.

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