New York Daily News

State union bigs bounced

- Glenn Blain

ALBANY — Furious over a contract struck with the Cuomo administra­tion, an insurgent labor group ousted the leadership of the state government’s second-largest employee union.

Public Employees Federation President Ken Brynien was defeated for reelection by Susan Kent, a state Education Department worker and leader of the insurgent group Union Proud.

Union Proud’s entire slate of candidates, including Kent’s running mate Carlos Garcia, was also elected. The federation represents nearly 54,000 state workers in the profession­al, technical and scientific ranks.

Kent, who won by 1,177 votes, and the membership of Union Proud had fiercely criticized Brynien and PEF leaders for caving to Cuomo’s positions during contract negotiatio­ns last year.

Union members rejected an initial contract agreement negotiated by Brynien and the Cuomo administra­tion. But in November, under threat of thousands of layoffs, the leadership approved a repackaged deal that still featured a pay freeze and increased health care costs for workers.

Union Proud members also objected to the landmark pension reforms passed by Gov. Cuomo and lawmakers this year.

“I offer my congratula­tions to the New York Union Proud slate and wish them well as they take over the reins,” Brynien said in a statement.

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