The Role of OSE

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The Michigan Civil Service Commission established a system of collective bargaining for state classified employees, based on its constitutional authority over terms and conditions of employment for state classified employees. The Michigan Civil Service Commission rules recognize the Governor as having the authority to:

  • develop, direct, and coordinate the Employer's employment relations policy;

  • negotiate with exclusive representatives; and

  • recommend to the Civil Service Commission, in consultation with principal departments and elected department heads, a comprehensive plan for rates of compensation and other conditions of employment for non-exclusively represented employees.

The Governor(s), through a series of Executive Orders, established the Office of the State Employer as the Governor's representative to carry out this responsibility. Executive Order 1979-5 established an Office of the State Employer with an unclassified director, appointed by and reporting to the Governor. The functions of the Office include representing the Employer in primary negotiations with recognized employee organizations, determining the issues that are subject to primary and secondary negotiations, coordinating Employer responses to personnel policy and rule changes being considered by the Civil Service Commission, and reviewing classified employee positions to be included in or excluded from specific bargaining units.

Executive Order 1981-3 expanded the Office of the State Employer's function to include matters affecting state police troopers and sergeants, who exercise the right of collective bargaining pursuant to Article XI, Section 5, of the Michigan Constitution of 1963.

Executive Order 1988-6 clarified the authority and duties of the Office of the State Employer. Duties include making management determination on which grievance cases should go to arbitration; approving the management advocate in the presentation of all arbitrations; and supervising the training of all management personnel involved in the labor relations process, with the full cooperation and participation of the departments.

The role of the Office of the State Employer was further expanded by Executive Order 1996-5, which transferred the Employee Benefit Programs and the Suggestion Awards Program from the Department of Civil Service to the Department of Management and Budget and allowed these functions to be assigned to the Office of the State Employer. Executive Order 2002-13 then returned these programs to the Department of Civil Service.

Executive Order 2002-18 consolidates all of the duties and responsibilities of the Office of the State Employer into a single Executive Order.

The role and authority of the Office of the State Employer was further clarified by Executive Order 2004-31. The Office of the State Employer shall retain primary responsibility for compliance with state and federal disability rights laws on matters relating to state employment. Duties include providing Departmental ADA Coordinators with guidance, training, education, and technical assistance on workplace accommodations for employees with disabilities. These activities will be conducted in cooperation and coordination with the State ADA Coordinator.