AUGUSTA — The Maine Labor Relations Board has rejected the Maine State Employees Association’s contention that the state is prohibited from hiring contractors and reorganizing agencies after a contract expired last year.

The board on Monday rejected the union’s complaint that the state’s right to reorganize or hire contractors expired with the contract, but it gave the state’s largest labor union the right to file an amended complaint.

The board’s chief previously rejected a similar complaint in April.

Julie Armstrong, attorney for the state, said the ruling was important. Without it, she said, the state would have been at a disadvantage in contract negotiations.

Chief of Staff John McGough said the decision reaffirms that the “administration is well within its right to reorganize state government” to make it more affordable and accountable.


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