ANNAPOLIS (December 21, 2018)—The Hogan administration today announced that the state has completed negotiations and reached a contract agreement with the American Federation of Teachers—Healthcare Maryland (AFT) for Fiscal Year 2020. While this agreement has been reached with AFT's bargaining team, the final agreement must be ratified by a full member vote.
Employees represented by AFT will receive a three percent cost of living increase effective July 1, 2019 and another one percent cost of living increase effective January 1, 2020 if revenues exceed projections by $75 million. Employees in specified Alcohol and Drug Counselor, Epidemiologist, Mental Health Counselor, and Nursing positions will also receive an additional six percent pay adjustment to assist with state recruitment and retention efforts. Those employees, along with certain specified physicians, will also be eligible for a Student Loan Repayment Plan that will repay up to $20,000 in student loan debt.
"I'm pleased that we have reached yet another agreement with an exclusive bargaining representative. When the bargaining process works, employees benefit. In this case, our hardworking and dedicated healthcare professionals are the beneficiaries of the mutual cooperation between the AFT and state negotiation teams," said Department of Budget and Management Secretary David Brinkley.
These new considerations are in addition to the two percent cost of living increase for state employees that takes effect in January 2019 and the half percent increase and $500 bonus employees will receive in April 2019 due to last year's agreement.
This is the third agreement reached with a state employee union for Fiscal Year 2020. The administration has previously announced agreements with the Maryland Professional Employees Council and the State Law Enforcement Officers Labor Alliance.