House, Senate OK higher ed retro pay

The Massachusetts House and Senate have approved the next installment of retroactive pay for 13,000 public higher education employees.

By unanimous votes on Sept. 20, the House and Senate passed H4370, which contains retroactive funding for FY03. The bill also includes funding for retirees who retired after July 1, 2003, and whose pensions will be adjusted accordingly.

The bill also contains funding for the newly negotiated contract of the Association of Professional Administrators.

The bill now goes to Gov. Mitt Romney, who has ten days in which to sign or veto it.

MTA President Catherine A. Boudreau praised lawmakers for "keeping to their schedule for funding the higher education contracts."

"MTA members, who fought so hard and long for this funding, should thank their legislators for their commitment and continuing support for full funding," Boudreau added.

She also praised, "for leadership on this important issue," Senate President Robert E. Travaglini (D-East Boston); Senate Ways and Means Chair Therese Murray (D-Plymouth); Speaker of the House Salvatore F. DiMasi (D-Boston); and House Ways and Means Chair Robert A. DeLeo (D-Winthrop).

One more installment remains, for FY02, to complete the funding of the contracts.