"In some cases, [the administration is] getting an unjustified bad rap, and I believe that if people are willing to sit down and talk with this administration they're going to get a lot accomplished," he said. "If they're going to keep poking and poking, they won't. That's just human relations, not labor relations."
Day's union sat on the sidelines of the debate over AFSCME members' pension. It did not participate in the rally or testify before the County Council, as other union members did. Day, who sits on the county's retirement-system board, also supported the administration this year in a bill before state lawmakers that would limit pensions for county employees who had previously worked for the state or other local governments. Other unions opposed the legislation.
Abby Beytin, president of the Teachers Association of Baltimore County, said her union has worked closely with Kamenetz.
"I couldn't have asked for anyone better to work with," she said. "They've been very supportive of us, so we've been very pleased."
John Ripley, president of the Baltimore County Federation of Public Employees, said it's still too soon for him to assess Kamenetz because his union is still trying to work out a contract extension.
"We're still cautiously optimistic that we're going be able to reach an agreement and get contract extensions, but it hasn't happened yet," he said.
But he said his group has been disappointed in the county's slow progress on contract talks.
"We get calls almost on a daily basis from employees trying to get updates on contract negotiations," he said. "Certainly, county employees' frustrations are growing as each day passes and we don't have an agreement."