The Executive Council has approved the Tentative Agreement and has referred it to the membership for ratification. You will receive a ratification ballot in your PDX mailbox soon. The ballot will stay open until Monday April 4, 2016 11:55 PM. The negotiating team is attempting to schedule a member Q&A for the Tentative Agreement during the first week of spring term. If you do not receive an email from Election buddy.com with voting instructions, please contact Phil Lesch.
Summary of changes to PSU & PSU-AAUP Collective Bargaining Agreement
November 2015- November 2019
- Establishment of a Sick Leave Bank. Members who donate three hours of unused sick leave become eligible to withdraw up to 30 days of paid leave to cover a catastrophic illness, to care for a family member or to take parental leave.
- Non-tenure track instructional faculty, with at least six years of experience, will now be employed on Continuous Appointments rather than fixed-term contracts. Current NTTF who have reached seniority and have evidence of satisfactory evaluation will have their contracts converted to a continuous appointment with job security protections. A new evaluation system for NTTF will be constructed that provides for reviews before, at, and after the award of continuous appointments. Fixed-term appointments will still be used, but only for limited, temporary hires.
- Summer session salaries are now part of the Collective Bargaining Agreement. Faculty must be paid historic rates (2.5% of annual salary rate/credit hour). Assignment of summer work and cancellation of classes will be monitored.
- An academic professional classification/compensation study will be commissioned and paid for by the PSU administration. The study will reorganize the current AP job families and compensation structure and create pathways for AP promotion and pay structures that recognize and reward experience and expertise. Study results will be bargained and both parties must come to agreement before changes are implemented.
- Academic Professionals should not be assigned unreasonable and excessive workloads. AP workloads should approximate 2080 hours per year, which is about forty hours per week. If hours or job duties exceed this average, the AP should receive a reduction in hours or workload within a reasonable time frame. APs are professionals and should not have to provide an hour by hour accounting of their workday. There is a new labor/management resolution process academic professionals who have unreasonable workloads can use to get relief. The process terminates in arbitration.
- Academic professional employment status was clarified. APs can be let go if they receive sanctions warranting termination, in cases of retrenchment, or if there is a change in departmental needs or programmatic requirements.
- Twelve month AAUP represented employees will not have to use vacation day during University closures.
- The Transfer of Tenure Home procedure was finalized and will be an addendum to the contract.
- All AAUP members will receive Individual Professional Development Accounts with guaranteed, annual allocations that can be used to pay for conferences, travel, professional memberships, licensure, equipment, training and more. IPDA money can accumulate in your account for up to four years. Starting in AY 2016/17, Tenure-related faculty will receive $1000, NTTF $600 and APs $500 each year to spend on professional development activities for the life of the contract.
- Sabbatical pay rates will increase to: 85% for one term (no change), 80% for two terms and 75% for three. These changes will be instituted in the 2017/18 academic year.
- Research NTTF are eligible for continuous appointments, if their employing unit has a strong track record of being able to consistently fund their position.
- A Bridge Funding pool will be established in September 2016. This pool will temporarily fund research positions if there is an unanticipated funding lull or gap. The/initial pool will be $70,000. Additional funding for the pool will be determined after its pilot year.
- Faculty Enhancement Grants will remain funded at $650,000 annually and will go up to $675,000 during the 2018/19 academic year.
- Cost of living increases will be guaranteed for the life of the contract. COLAs will be pegged to the annual CPI-U rate (Consumer Price Index for the Portland/Salem metropolitan area) and will be awarded in January/February of each year. The COLA will be no less than 1.5%/year and will be capped at 3.5%. The initial COLA will be 2% and will be retroactive to January/February 2016.
- Market equity adjustments for tenure-related faculty will occur annually starting in 2017. Salary pools funded at 0.75%, 0.80% and 0.90% each year through 2019 will be allocated according to market equity formula used in earlier contracts.
- Post-tenure review pay increases will continue at the same rate through 2019.
- Internal/external market equity adjustments for non-tenure track faculty will occur annually starting in 2017. Salary pools funded at 0.75%, 0.80% and 0.90% each year through 2019 will be allocated to address problems with internal equity (i.e. recognizing years of service, providing pay bumps for faculty hired at ranks without promotional opportunities) and with external equity (lower than market rate salaries).
- Length of service adjustments for Academic Professionals will occur in January 2017. APs with 3-5 years of service will receive a salary increase of $500. 5-7 years $1200, 7-10 years $1600, 10-15 years $1800, and more than 15 years of service $2000. Salary pools of 0.80% and 0.90% will be set aside in 2018 and 2019 to help fund the implementation of the class/comp study. If bargaining over the study is not complete, APs will receive this money as an across the board adjustment.
- Economic agreements could be renegotiated if there is a fundamental change in the budget picture at PSU. Changes such as a higher state funding allocation or major PERS increases could trigger a reopener on economics.
- We agreed to a four-year contract. There will be limited reopeners in 2017. The contract will expire in November 2019.
Questions about the TA can be directed to Leanne Serbulo, VP Collective Bargaining or any member of the bargaining team.
PSU-AAUP negotiating team:
Leanne Serbulo, Gina Greco, David Hansen, Anh Ly, Michael Clark, James Woods, Pam Miller, and Phil Lesch
We spent two days this week, including a Sunday session trying to resolve our outstanding issues and preparing for our Thursday, March 10th economic bargaining session. We still needed to finish bargaining over research NTTF appointments and academic professional transfer policies—two issues that had been unsuccessfully pushed to sub committees. We also laid the groundwork for our affinity bargaining (the IBB method for economic issue) day. We exchanged economic interests with the administration and listed the economic categories (referred to as silos in this method) that we will be negotiating over on March 10th.
We made progress on research NTTF appointments. In our new contract, some research NTTF will now be eligible for continuous appointments. Many of our NTTF researchers have been at Portland State for a significant amount of time and work for units or institutes both soliciting grant money and carrying out research projects. Some researchers have had the unfortunate experience of having been awarded a large grant, only to see their FTE reduced while they were working on other projects and waiting for the money to come-in. We manage to support a large administrative team on the soft money that flows into the institution, and we don’t expect them to put-up with periodic lay-offs or reductions in their FTE.
The option to provide a continuous appointment to research NTTF provides more stable opportunities for these faculty members, while recognizing the challenges faced by those funded by soft money. A continuous appointment can be eliminated if the funding dries up; however, we also agreed to create a Bridge Funding Pilot Program. When there is a temporary gap or loss of funding, a NTTF researcher can apply for bridge funding to fill that gap. The Bridge Funding Program will be housed in the Provost’s Office. An advisory committee that includes NTTF researchers and an AAUP representative will provide input about how the program will operate and which criteria should be used when considering applications. The committee will not make funding decisions. We will negotiate the amount of the Bridge Fund pool when we discuss economics on March 10th.
We have yet to resolve the AP transfer issue. We are working on a process to create and give preference to internal applicants first for AP positions. We will continue to discuss this issue on Wednesday morning.
We also spent significant time outlining our economic interests. PSU AAUP has an interest in:
- Increasing the percentage of the budget spent on instruction and direct student services.
- Having compensation that enables us to live a middle class lifestyle while residing within a reasonable commuting distance of PSU.
- Seeing salaries grow to meet the rise in core inflation and housing prices in the Portland metropolitan area.
- Achieving internal and external salary equity for our members.
- Valuing our members’ years of experience and service to PSU and eliminating salary compression and inversion.
- Providing adequate funding for professional development. Members should not have to pay out of pocket for job-related professional development activities.
- Creating a benefits package that reflects our shared commitment to a healthy work/life balance. Out of pocket health care costs need to be affordable. Retirement should be achievable for all members after a significant length of service. Commuting options should be both environmentally and economically sustainable.
- Ending discriminatory pay gaps that exist within our institution for protected classes of employees (race/ethnicity, national origin, gender, sexuality, etc.).
- Valuing research at Portland State. Researchers need to have adequate support and job security. Sabbatical lengths should be driven by scholarly needs rather than by financial constraints.
- Working at an institution that is committed to providing a living wage for all of its employees.
Administration shared their interests with us. While they acknowledged that our salaries should keep pace with inflation and be competitive with our peers (although, according to Kevin Reynolds—they are!), they did not articulate an interest in rewarding us for the work we do or for the years we’ve invested in this institution. They also did not address compression, inversion or equity. Most of the administration’s interests revolved around staying “fiscally responsible” and “balancing the budget.”
We also learned that the President and his executive team are pushing for a settlement that is no more than the current budget + 3% to cover all additional costs including salaries and benefits for our members and those from SEIU and PSUFA, services and supplies. We’ve heard this kind of nonsense before in previous negotiations. Remember the $15 million shortfall?
Despite all of the time we’ve sunk into the interest-based bargaining process, administration is pulling its usual shenanigans. First, we had Kevin Reynolds presenting his budget doom and gloom to the board, now the President and his executive team are directing the administrative bargaining team to stay within a tightly constrained economic box. If we want a raise, it looks like we’re going to have to fight.
That’s why we need to have our members turn out. We’re asking all AAUP members to commit to spending one hour in bargaining on Thursday March 10th in ASRC 515. Click here to sign-up