7/10/2018: Administration proposes more real wage cuts
UO’s Board of Trustees had no problem coming up with millions to give raises to the football coaches, the athletic director, and our new president. But now the well is dry. Funny how that works.
With raises at our comparators running at around 3.5% a year, and the Portland MSA CPI increasing at about 2.5% a year, the administration is proposing real wage cuts for the faculty of about 1.3% per year.
Live blog below, proposals here (updated Monday), and a quick summary:
1) Admins were doing OK until they tried to pretend the General Counsel represents the faculty, not just the Johnson Hall administration. Try telling that to James Fox.
2) The admins increase their salary proposal by just 0.5%. All raises will be delayed 6 months from the current CBA timing. So this works out to 3%, spread out over 2.5 years – let’s call it 1.2% per year.
Jan 1 2016, 1% overall:
And then wait another 12 months for this:
Jan 1 2017, 2% overall:
2% Merit pool by unit (But up to 20% held back at Dean’s discretion.)
Wait 18 months for merit raises? What has merit done to make our administration hate it so?
And they propose to cut raises for 6th year review of full professors from the current 8% to 4%. WTF?Current UO policy is here:
A positive evaluation at the sixth-year major review of a faculty member holding the rank of Full Professor or Tenured Senior Instructor shall result in the recommendation to the Provost of an increase to the base salary of that faculty member comparable in amount and funding source to that given for promotion.
And the current CBA language on promotion raises is “at least 8%”:
Section 5. Promotion Raises All bargaining unit faculty members in the Tenure-Track and Tenured Professor classification who achieve promotion will receive an increase of at least 8% of base salary.
Live-blog: Usual disclaimer, these are my opinions of what people said or should have said, nothing is a quote unless in quotes. And try the UAUO Facebook blog, here.
Dave Cecil kicks things off with some UAUO counters. I’m guessing it’s going to be a while until we get to the economic proposal from our Johnson Hall colleagues.
9:00 AM. Article 8: Personnel files. Union wants the faculty to have free access to personnel records. Basic good management stuff.
9:15 AM. Article 16, Notices of Appointment. Union wants some minimal job stability for funding contingent NTFF research appointments. Cecil talks about benefits for joint appointments, etc. Brady wants to know where the resources will come from – university, college, department?
9:37 AM, Summer Session Appointments. If they haven’t already, units need to adopt and post a policy on summer session appointments.
Sec 6: The union is sick and tired of the administration saying that it is the union that is preventing them from giving raises. So “There is no cap on summer session salaries.” Got it?
9:53 AM: Administration’s turn:
Bill Brady is challenging the union’s interpretation of case law in a recent grievance, and is putting forth language in Art 14,16,17, and 21 to deal with it. Something about discrimination training? I got no idea what he’s talking about, sorry.
9:56 AM, Article 15, Academic classifications. Administration proposes to start calling adjunct (i.e. limited duration) professors “Pro Tem” faculty. Cecil: We’ll take a look.
10:04 AM, Article 19: Administration agrees to slightly loosen FTE requirements for promotion to career NTTF. Cecil raises question of how FIG’s and other overloads don’t count for FTE. Shouldn’t they?
Admin wants to retains up or out rule for librarians, even though they don’t get tenure. Union is opposed.
10:17 AM, Article 20: TTF Review and Promotion. Some stuff about confidentiality of letters.
10:27 AM, Article 21: Appeal from denial of tenure or promotion. Lots of continuing disagreements here. Bill Brady is claiming the UO General Counsel’s office provides independent legal advice. Really. Deb Green pushes him on this. Brady and Blandy jump to the defense of the GC – “they represent the institution”. Green: But the grievant is up against the institution. Brady: They might help the faculty! [This is such bullshit. We all know that the GC works for JH, and against the faculty.] Green keeps pushing Brady and Blandy on this. Cecil: So why does the university claim there is an attorney-client privilege between the GC and administrators, but that privilege never seems to work for faculty?
10:39 AM. 10 Minute break.
10:55 AM, they’re back, after some chit-chat about how UO’s drug policy will make it difficult for faculty to go to a Knight Arena concert.
Art 24, Discipline and Termination for Cause. Timeline stuff.
Art 26, Salary: See top of page for summary of the proposed real wage cuts.
The union team is ignoring this proposal, which is pure Kabuki. The discussion instead moves on to the issue of the administration’s previous efforts to cut faculty pay by raising faculty workload while keeping FTE constant.
Bill Brady reacts to the union’s ignoring his raise offer by talking about the costs of UO’s fringe benefits. Doesn’t mention that much of these costs subsidize Bellotti and previous retirees PERS benefits and the rest of the state government on health costs. A cost to UO, but not exactly a benefit to current employees!
Cecil asks about Jamie Moffitt’s unicorn report in the RG yesterday, and why it’s not reflected in raises. Brady tries to claw Moffitt’s remarks back, saying it’s not much more money. Then he says the administration hasn’t fully digested the numbers.
Cecil: Your position will be hard to explain to our membership.
Cecil: Why nothing for equity? Brady: “We are very pleased with how we are stacking up”.
Cecil: Do you know how much it would cost to address remaining external equity problems? Brady: No. Cecil: If you’re curious, it’s about $2.5M. [Brady doesn’t seem very curious].
Cecil: Why are you proposing lower salary floors for research RAs? Brady: Don’t know.
Deb Green gets into UO’s monopsony hiring power, points out that this means that market rates in Eugene are not accurate measures of their value of marginal product of labor.
Conversation dissolves into a disagreement as to whether or not the Eugene hiring market for NTFF’s meets the Arrow-Debreu requirements.
Cecil rescues things by offering to search out comparator data. The administration seems interested, then starts making the administration nervous.
Blonigen then, unfortunately, starts to forget the well-known inefficiencies of local labor monopsonies. This is Econ 201 stuff, simple deadweight loss triangles, and there’s a standard efficiency argument in favor of unions, when facing a monopsonist employer. I’m resisting the temptation to walk over to the whiteboard ….
Deveraux: So if we get you the comparator data, will it matter? Brady: We’ll throw it in the hopper.
Cecil to Brady: So, Bunsis predicted UO would end the year on June 30th with a large cash surplus. How did that go?
Brady: I don’t know.
Article 27, Benefits: Union wants to give a year of insurance to faculty who are over 0.5 FTE for the whole year, even if below it for certain quarters. Admin says no.
Brady starts getting snippy. Not fully Rudnickesque, just a bit flip and illogical, which is not a good combo.
Article 36 – Academic Freedom. Admin was trying to set up “standards of conduct” to allow them to enforce civility restrictions.
Brady starts to lose it. “We were trying to protect faculty, and the union didn’t seem interested in that”.
One of the administration’s goals was to get some language that would let them shut down this blog. The Senate’s Academic Freedom policy made that much harder. So the language Brady proposed would have also made it easy for students to make false accusations against faculty.
Deb Green isn’t giving an inch on this. Nor is Cecil.
Brady “We still need how to protect faculty from aggressive individual faculty members”. Cecil points out that the CBA protects members from working in a harassing, intimidating or abusive environment”. Article 13. So file a grievance.
Brady: Faculty won’t file grievances.
Green: Work through Ombudsman. Very helpful.
Cecil: Why won’t you agree to language that protects the faculty from administrators?
Blonigen points out potential conflicts of interest if grievances involve two union members. [Hmm, where was this argument when we were talking about the General Counsel’s conflicts?]
Cecil agrees with potential for conflict of interest, explains how union will deal with it if necessary, then proceeds to shred Brady’s position on this.
Cecil: What about the third year on the economic proposal you’ve been talking about? Brady: We’re working on it.