Author Archives for Utah Public Employees

Take Advantage of UPEA Membership Discounts

Now that the holidays are over, take advantage of an opportunity to save money with Utah Public Employees’ Association (UPEA) membership discounts.

As a UPEA member, you have access to many discounts. These discounts apply to Utah Grizzlies hockey events, Sprint mobile phone service, and even hotel charges wherever you travel. If a login or access code is needed to get the discount, contact UPEA at 801-264-8732 and we can assist you.

Visit, to view a full list of discounts.

UPEA 2nd Vice President Elections Begin Feb. 1

UPEA second vice president elections will be held Feb. 1. Please become familiar with the candidates and make an informed decision. Within UPEA, the second vice president’s responsibilities include:

  • Serving as chairman of the Resolutions Committee, which reviews resolutions and makes recommendations to the General Council and proposes a platform for the coming year.
  • Representing the State Board as a voting member of the Citizen Action by Public Employees’ (CAPE) Committee.

You will receive a ballot by email when it is time to vote.

Here are the two candidates and their platforms:


Dennis Kay

Thank you for your consideration of me as a candidate for the Utah Public Employees’ Association’s Second Vice President.  I hope you agree that my experience and training make me the best candidate to represent UPEA and public employees.  I have worked and lived for most of my career in Southwestern Utah with the Department of Natural Resources. I signed up as a member of UPEA on February 1, 1973, the same day I became a full-time employee of the state of Utah.  I am also proud to be a retired Utah public employee.

One of my personal highlights of service with UPEA has been the opportunity to serve as the President of our Association.  I served as an officer from 2011-2015.  My term of office came at a particularly demanding period as Utah’s governments dealt with the challenges of the Great Recession.

We, UPEA, were able to help defend against aggressive efforts to eliminate the public employees’ merit system, workplace protections, as well as health care and retirement benefits.

In addition, I offer the following qualifications for you to consider as a candidate for Second Vice President and, if elected, to serve as President of UPEA:

  • Current Advisory Council member
  • Current Color Country District Board member
  • Current CAPE Committee member
  • Current Bylaws Committee member

During my term as President of UPEA and as part of my four-year term as an officer, I also served in the following positions:

  • Chair of the Resolutions Committee
  • Chair of the Legislative Committee

I have served a number of terms on the Citizen Action by Public Employees (CAPE) Committee, and have held both the Vice Chair and the Chair positions. Through the CAPE Committee, UPEA has supported and helped to elect hundreds of candidates for public office who truly value the public employees of Utah and its local governments. I feel particularly fortunate to be part of what UPEA has been able to accomplish through CAPE.

If elected as your Second Vice President of UPEA, I would be in a position to help these same elected officials gain a better understanding of UPEA and its members.  They need this information to be able to effectively support us.

As an officer I will promote a fair and competitive salary and benefit package, a team-oriented work environment, and respect and cooperation from political leaders.  Fair employee compensation should be the top priority for UPEA members and our elected officials. In pursuit of this team approach I will propose that the legislature place employee compensation and benefits decisions first on their agenda.

To achieve these goals I want and need your vote. I hope you agree that my experience and training make me the best candidate to represent UPEA and public employees in this important office.

Lori Benton

 I would like to introduce myself to those who may not know me. My name is Lori Benton and I am running for 2nd Vice President of UPEA.  I have worked for the state for 21 years with three different agencies. My job duties have included:  Accounting, Payroll, Human Resources technician and as a State Payroll Specialist.  I am currently employed as a Financial Analyst II for the Utah Department of Transportation.  I have been active with UPEA for 20 years.  During that time I have served in numerous capacities, I have been elected as Chapter President, District Chair and Treasurer. Currently, I am serving on the Advisory Committee and State Board. I have also been a member of all the various committees that are authorized through UPEA.  The knowledge and information I have acquired from serving on these committees makes me believe I am the best person for the 2nd Vice President position.

I have a thorough knowledge of what UPEA does for you as employees, and what we need to do on an ongoing basis.  Being a currently employed member, I am dealing with the same things that all working employees are while still believing in the importance of all our retirees.  When the Legislature makes a decision, it affects me just as it does you.  There are so many things that I can offer to you as members.  I will give you my time, my experience, and my understanding of what is needed.  I am happy to devote my time to make our jobs more rewarding and to help us increase our opportunities as Government Employees.  I will always be available to listen to your hopes and your concerns.  I will be YOUR officer that is there to work for YOU.  Please as you vote for the 2nd VP, consider all that I can offer you and the benefits of having me there to work for and with you.


When you see that ballot arrive, please vote for me – as a vote for me…is a vote for ALL OF YOU!

Thank you,

Lori Benton





Follow UPEA’s 2018 Bill Tracker

Each legislative session lawmakers draft hundreds of bills.  Some of these bills pass through the House and Senate, while others are abandoned before they are even read.  Click here to find out which bills UPEA is tracking for you. Visit our website regularly to see the updated tracker.

The links change daily, so after visiting, be sure to click 2018 legislative tracker under the Legislative Session drop-down menu for the most recent version.


General Council Set to Begin on March 22

Mark your calendars!  The Utah Public Employees’ Association’s (UPEA’s) 2018 General Council will be March 22 – 23 at the Sheraton Hotel, 150 W. 500 South, Salt Lake City.

Registration forms will be sent to district leaders at the end of January.  This year’s workshops will include:

  • UPEA 101
  • Self care for working professionals
  • Online scams and senior scams
  • Utah State Parks

Friday morning’s keynote speaker will be General Jeff Burton, adjutant general and commander of the 7,300 soldiers and airmen of the Utah National Guard.  Lt. Gov. Spencer Cox will speak Friday at lunch. Each district has a select number of delegates, be sure to grab your spot once they are available.

For more information about the 2018 General Council and how to attend, please contact the UPEA office at (801) 264-8732.

Apply for the UPEA/MACU Scholarship by March 1

Every spring, Mountain America Credit Union (MACU) partners with the Utah Public Employees’ Association (UPEA) to offer three scholarships to members of the association or their dependents. Only members of both UPEA and MACU, their spouses, their dependents and/or grandchildren are eligible to apply for the scholarship.

The awards are based on skill, scholastic ability, community service, and future employment plans.

Click here to access the scholarship application, which is due by March 1, 2018, at 5 p.m. All forms should either be sent to the UPEA office, 1000 W. Bellwood Lane, Murray, UT, 84123-4494 or emailed to

Scholarships will be awarded at the UPEA General Council recognition dinner on March 22 at the Downtown Salt Lake City Sheraton Hotel. Contact Kendle Zdunich at 801-264-8732 ext. 209 if you have any questions.

Salt Lake County Council Approves 2018 Budget

Salt Lake County Mayor Ben McAdams on Oct. 24 presented his proposed 2018 budget to the Salt Lake County Council.  Below is a brief overview of McAdams’ proposed compensation plan for county employees:

  • 2 percent  salary structure adjustment (in response to job market changes)
  • Provide a 2.5 percent across-the-board pay increase for eligible employees
    • 1 percent structure adjustment to pay
    • 1.5 percent merit increase
  • $2.7 million set aside for pay compression (in addition to 401(k) money)
  • Redlined employees will not receive a lump sum or salary increase
  • Health insurance
    • Traditional PPO Plan: 7 percent increase (beginning Jan. 1), which equates to $2.3 million, and no change to the “80/20” split
    • High Deductible Health Plan (HDHP): no increase.

At the county’s Committee of the Whole Meeting later that day, the Utah Public Employees’ Association (UPEA) was given the opportunity to comment on the mayor’s proposed 2018 compensation plan.  Below is the statement Alene Schwei, UPEA representative, gave at the meeting: Continue reading

Help UPEA Help You By Seeking a District Office

Do you want to become more involved in the Utah Public Employees Association (UPEA)? Nominations for district leadership positions are coming up.

UPEA is a member-run organization. The dedication and passion of our members empowers the organization to create change. Come get involved in district leadership and help facilitate communication and represent public employees’ interests on the State Advisory Council and at the annual General Council.

The Association is organized into districts; each district has a District Board consisting of a chairman, vice chairman, secretary, treasurer and occasionally past chairman. General members of the district elect district officers to serve three-year terms when elected vice chairman and one-year terms when elected secretary or treasurer.

District officers support and organize individual districts. Responsibilities include attending regular district and chapter meetings to provide input.  Meetings are held during the lunch hour so responsibilities can be carried out without interfering with an officer’s schedule.

If you are interested in any of the following positions and want to know when elections will be held in your district, contact your employee field representative or ask your current district leadership for more information. If you are unsure who your employee field representative is, call the UPEA main office at 801-264-8732 and our staff will be happy to assist you. Continue reading

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