What's Really Happening - 2002/07/23



What's Really Happening

Columbus State Education Association Newsletter of July 23, 2002


We have reached tentative agreement on maintenance of personnel files. The tentative agreement achieves the Association's goals of ensuring your right to privacy-to the limited extent possible under the state's Open Records laws-ensuring your right to review your file and providing a process through which you can challenge items in your file that you feel are inappropriate or inaccurate.

Discussions continued this past week on grievance procedures and guidelines for disciplinary/ corrective action. Although we are still a distance apart on these items, we believe that we can reach agreements that will provide due process protections for faculty. Small-group discussions (with two members from each negotiating team) will also consider seniority rights and processes for dealing with the unlikely occurrence of a reduction in force.


We have to date discussed only non-compensation issues, which is frequently (though hardly exclusively) the practice in negotiations. We were ready to discuss workload this past week but informed the College that we believe we cannot negotiate workload without discussing compensation. The College countered our proposal for a salary schedule with no increase beyond what it would have given faculty if we had not organized: a 3% raise retroactive to January 1 plus a 2% raise retroactive to July 1, with no new increase until July 2003. Given the additional increases given to managers and staff, we do not consider this a serious or reasonable offer. When we submitted our original and counter proposals for a salary schedule, we provided the College with both electronic and hard-copy costing data. The College subsequently distributed information to managers indicating costs significantly higher than our estimates, so we have asked the College for:

  1. a meeting with the College's financial managers to review the College's finances and our estimates of the costs of our compensation proposals; and
  2. a clear statement on whether the College intends to consider adoption of a salary schedule.

We do not see how progress in negotiations can continue unless the College indicates a willingness to address this central issue.

We have also requested the College's financial statements for FY 2002 (ending June 30). Preliminary figures provided to the Board of Trustees last week indicated a year-end surplus of around $5 million.


Greg Goodhart (Math) and Amine Kidane (Biological & Physical Sciences) have accepted appointments as faculty representatives to the College Health Care Committee, comprised of representatives of the College, its unions, and non-union staff. Both of these faculty have previously served on the Benefits Committee and have experience in evaluating benefits packages. The committee will work together to consider benefits options for next year.


Once a contract is ratified, your dues can be paid through payroll deduction. However, if our contract is not concluded by the beginning of Autumn Quarter, union dues will come due in a lump sum. Although we hope to have ratified a contract by then, we urge you to start setting money aside to assure that your dues and membership will be current so you can participate in the ratification vote.

We are willing to seek mediation if negotiations appear to be stalling. We are committed to the goals you supported in choosing union representation. We know that we cannot achieve all our goals in one contract, but your support and encouragement so far has made our progress possible. Stay strong. Keep talking to your colleagues. Spread the word.

What's Really Happening is produced by the Communications Committee of the Columbus State Education Association. We welcome your comments, news, and insights.

Steve Abbott, President / x5096
Karl Rieppel, Vice President / x2500
Amy Brubaker, Secretary and Association Representative / x5068
Greg Goodhart, Treasurer / x5431
Darrell Minor, Parliamentarian / x5310
Bill Mundy, Association Representative / x5176
Dr. Jane McDowell, Association Representative / x2656 
Dave Busch, Association Representative / x5079
Dr. Charlie Gallucci, Association Representative / x5499
Leslie Smith, Association Representative / x5302
Dr. Wendy McCullen-Vermillion, Association Representative / x2693
Lisa Schneider, Association Representative / x5124

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