Court workers win upgrades and salary increases

Some 200 court employees in the office clerical title series represented by Local 1070 will get upgrades and annual salary hikes thanks to an agreement negotiated by local leaders and the state Office of Court Administration.

“With the help of Jackie Dupree, the former head of Data Recording, the local had a series of labor management meetings to research the titles and operating systems and found OCA had not changed the grades or salaries of our members,” explained President Fausto Sabatino.

Over the years, the duties and scope of responsibilities have changed as the state courts, like other agencies, implement more technology.

“The job reallocations start from the bottom up and affect all court workers in New York State,” Sabatino said. The lowest judicial salary grade is now grade 10; OCA agreed to eliminate grades 4 through 8. The local is guided by the salary schedule for state employees.

“Employees will receive incremental salary increases depending where they are on the salary schedule for state employees,” said Sabatino.

In 1977 titles were merged and reclassified when the state took over the New York City court system. Since the 1980s, Local 1070 worked to create new titles, such as Court Revenue Assistant, County Supervising Court Reporters, and others.

“Reallocation is an ongoing process as the union and Human Resources complete job analyses for every title and its responsibilities. We continue to meet with management to negotiate for pay equity, updates, and changes to job specifications,” said Sabatino.

Members can expect to receive the pay bump up in March 2018.

“These upgrades and pay hikes underscore the importance of belonging to a union,” Sabatino said. “This could never have been negotiated independently by individual workers; it took a collective effort and working together. The union looks out for every member, not just some.