Union bargaining XXI – Enter President Kyr

Thursday, 5/9/2013, 8-12 AM, Room 122 Knight Library. Your Guarantee of Truthiness: All UO Matters bargaining posts fact-checked by Randy Geller, HLGR and their lobbyist and public relations consultant, (and former Frohnmayer aide) Marla Rae:

Synopsis:

  • Gottfredson hunkers down in his bunker.

Prologue:


Live-Blog: My take on what people said or meant to say. Nothing is a quote unless in quotes.

Cast: The usuals, plus Ken Doxsee, Associate Vice Provost for Academic Affairs

Mauer: Let’s start with the NTTF stuff, Art 12. union counter-counter. We’ve added in some of your language from other sections. Evaluation of NTTF’s. Nice change to have a reasonable person like Doxsee at the table, the admin team sure needs a makeover. Lots of talk about librarians – Luebke’s got it on his blog. It’s like night and day – instead of Rudnick and Gleason’s usual snide, bitter obstructionism, we’re actually getting thoughtful, respectful comments from Doxsee. It’s even rubbing off on Rudnick, sort of. Gleason still looks really, really pissed about something. Meanwhile Doxsee and the faculty team are just going through the article, fixing issues, boom boom boom.

If Gottfredson woud dump Gleason for Doxsee, we’d be done in a month, easy.

Gleason loses it over the definition of a meeting. Aargh. Pratt, Rudnick try to make peace. Blandy makes a useful suggestion.

Pratt: Art 13, Tenure and Promotion: Rudnick starts arguing word choice with a philosophy professor. Actually this is all very productive for clarifying the proposal. Again, far better than previous meetings. Doxsee’s done his homework, line by line. Gleason keeps mouth shut – good. More agreement between Doxsee and Pratt – tenure process basically works, these are minor changes. Gleason makes a useful suggestion – his first in XXI sessions!

Break, waiting for President Kyr’s limo to arrive. Everyone remarks on the remarkable change in the tone and productivity of the administration’s team today. Can Rudnick keep it up?

Big one:

Meanwhile, Rudnick presents Art 49, use of university’s information assets. 
Can’t use UO computers or info to access certain kinds of information. Respect confidentiality. Bargaining unit members are prohibited from installing virus laden screen savers. No anon email. You can use uoregon.edu email for personal matters, within limits. UO can monitor everything for any reason or none at all, no expectation of privacy. Geller will be watching. You give up your constitutional rights if you use UO systems. This is here for legal reasons. Can’t post to chatrooms? No peer to peer file sharing? No encryption of UO data, no encrypted emails, no soliciting business with UO email.

Mauer: Kyr is here, but we need some clarification here. No limitations? Admin can just take away al computer access? Rudnick: We’ll refine that. Mauer: Someone studying child pornography and society wants to download some? Rudnick: Yes, we’ll need a child porn qualifier. Mauer: Sec 4, explain? Rudnick: You won’t corrupt files, use malware, suck up too much bandwidth, clog the tubes. Her example is some student who loaded up their dorm-room with servers and had started a profitable business. We don’t want our students doing that! Mauer: Isn’t that how facebook got started? Rudnick: Exactly. (I’m thinking she missed his irony.) Cecil: This would restrict use of pseudonyms like RocketMan98? Rudnick: That’s not the intent. Anyway we could still trace your IP. Gleason: Facebook would be OK. Cecil: Could someone post to UOMatters anonymously? Gleason:  We need to work that out. Cecil: What’s the scarce university resource here? Rudnick: The concern is use of university assets. Cecil: As its written logging on to UO wifi to update my personal blog would be a violation and could be disciplined? Rudnick: I don’t know where this language came from, we’ll look into this. Mauer: Section 11 – breadth of this? Suppose I sign an online petition while logged on to UO wifi? Rudnick: My reaction would be no, this is intended to limit people who want to make personal solicitations using UO assets.

Speaking of which, please donate $5 to pay help support UO Matters!

 

Bramhall: Is this new? Blandy: it’s a mix.

Doxsee’s gone, era of good feelings is at an end. Rudnick, Gleason back to their usual pissed off expressions.

Mauer: Let’s move on, President Kyr is here. I’d like to start with new preamble proposals. This highlights the dispute over who here is “The University”. Rudnick: Let me make one thing perfectly clear. The party to this contract is the UO. We will not be called the University Administration! Mauer: Here’s article 3, shared governance. This revision follows the wishes of the UO Senate. Even when the Pres has last word, he has to explain himself to the faculty. Incorporates the Constitution. The entire article is grievable. Mauer: Here’s our counterproposal on academic freedom.

Kyr: I’d like to thank everyone for their efforts on these issues. The Senate is not at the table, and does not speak for the union or the admins. Nor does the union or the admin speak for the Senate. I do. We are not a faculty Senate, we include students, staff, OA’s. I am not presenting my personal opinion. Here is our motion. He reads it with a very strong, intense voice. Rudnick stares at him. Gleason looks bored.

Motion: 
Section 1

1.1 WHEREAS – On December 7, 2011, the statutory faculty of the University of Oregon approved unanimously the current University Constitution, which mandates shared governance at the University of Oregon under terms provided by the University Charter of 1876, which stipulates that “The president and professors constitute the faculty…and as such have the immediate governance and discipline of the public university and the students therein”;

1.2 WHEREAS – On December 15, 2011, President Lariviere ratified the University Constitution;
1.3 WHEREAS – President Gottfredson, since assuming office on August 1, 2012, has repeatedly affirmed his commitment to academic freedom and shared governance;

1.4 WHEREAS – There is precedent in our state and elsewhere for including academic freedom and shared governance among the terms of a collective bargaining agreement, as specified in the supplementary material attached as an appendix to this motion;

Section II

Be it hereby:

2.1 RESOLVED – The University Senate reaffirms its commitment to the ideals of academic freedom and shared governance;

2.2 RESOLVED – The University Senate, because of the faculty’s own statutory role in shared governance, strongly urges the university administration, during its negotiations with United Academics of the University of Oregon, to refer to itself not as “the University” but as “the university administration”;
2.3 RESOLVED – The University Senate strongly urges the President to manifest the University of Oregon’s commitment to academic freedom and to shared governance by including language in the Collective Bargaining Agreement with United Academics of the University of Oregon that incorporates those principles and protects the role of the University Senate in shared governance.
2.4 RESOLVED – The University Senate strongly urges the President to strengthen academic freedom and shared governance by agreeing to incorporate the University Constitution and existing policies adopted by the Senate and the President into the relevant articles of the Collective Bargaining Agreement with United Academics of the University of Oregon.

Two other key principles. The Senate’s view is that the CBA must reflect the senate constituencies interest in strong shared governance. The CBA must reflect the ground rules of academic freedom, which the Senate is now discussing with the president. The Senate’s will is that the CBA must protect shared governance. Our university constitution was unanimously ratified by the faculty assembly. Any questions?

Rudnick: This is a CBA between the union and the administration. It’s a legal obligation. It’s not a policy manual. It’s a CBA and we don’t want anything else in it. You are aware that we made shared governance and freedom. You might not like them, but we’ve affirmed these principles. State law governs and supersedes the University Charter. The OUS board has the authority. It has delegated it to the President, not to the Senate. Our answer to putting the details into the CBA is no. The President is the faculty, by the way. (WTF?) You want to make this grievable. Our bottom line is that shared governance is central to the operation of the university and we are not going to allow you any mechanism for actual enforcement of the constitution.

Kyr: So why is this in other university contracts? Rudnick: I don’t know but, I’m going to bullshit you anyway. In particular, our authority will soon come from Phil Knight’s UO board and we are not going to give up any of it or let you have any way to enforce your little constitution thing.

Kyr: Yes, but nothing legally precludes you from putting the constitution into the agreement? Rudnick: We don not want anyone besides Randy Geller interpreting your constitution, and putting it into the CBA would mean some outside, neutral person could interpret and enforce this. We do not want this! We are willing to reaffirm some vague principles so long as they can never be enforced, except by the President and his lawyers, like me and the rest of my Harrang gang.

Kyr: Ok, Ok, I get what you are saying, believe me. The Senate is saying that insofar as the constitution regulates conditions of employment it wants it in the CBA. Rudnick: This is not a mandatory subject for bargaining and so if we put your shared governance into the contract it’s inappropriate. (Crowd starts laughing at her). Kyr: Here’s an example – committee composition. Who the hell would grievable. Rudnick: The Senate should not have done this! Kyr: Let me explain labor law to you. Rudnick: I understand you are not a labor lawyer! Mauer: I object. We have never said anything about grievances about Senate decisions. Rudnick: We’ve heard you. This comes from the President: No! 

Blandy and Rudnick remember there other talking point: Putting this in the contract would limit the Senate’s authority. Bramhall: huh? That’s an opinion. Rudnick: That’s the president’s opinion. Bramhall: This is in the PSU contract. Rudnick: Fine. But Gottfredson and Knight are not going to allow it here! Cecil: What specific parts of the constitution are not appropriate? Rudnick: I’m not going to tell you!

Mauer: Most of what we’re talking about is not black or white. Taking up Gleason’s point. Peer review is all about academic governance and about terms of employment. There’s an interplay. We’ve tried to strike the appropriate balance. We are not saying the union should have a role in the constitution, just that it is part of the terms of employment. Rudnick: We understand that, put those things in the contract, but I won’t tell you what particulars are not appropriate. We will not enshrine these things in the contract! Restrict this to what we are legally obligated to put in the contract. (Why is it that other university presidents are willing to do this, but Gottfredson – after all his statements about how important shared governance – is not? Hmmm.)

Kyr: The Senate wants the constitution in the CBA. (Me: If Gottfredson didn’t like this, why didn’t he debate it with the Senate during the discussion on the motion? Scared? In any case he’s now got his $300 an hour lawyer doing his job for him, explaining how he thinks. Not exactly respectful of the principle of shared governance.)

Kyr: Thanks to you Sharon for this civil discourse and for explaining to us how your boss feels about this. When do you think this will be done? Rudnick: We are close. Surprising. So long as you cave on raises, shared governance, and stop demeaning us as “The Administration” could be soon.

See y’all in two weeks. Still no counter from the administration on raises – what’s that about?

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15 Responses to Union bargaining XXI – Enter President Kyr

  1. Anonymous says:

    On the 10% or more Old Man got wrong. I think we have redefined what is meant by “teacher”. We now have TTF and NTTF, career and adjunct. Those include many librarians, researchers and other job descriptions that do not involve “teaching”. Yet, as I understand it, the Constitution describes the statutory faculty as TTF and Career NTTF above .50 FTE, not as “teachers”. So, current Constitution, and thus the assembly, also represents individuals that are not “teachers’ in the traditional sense (as does the University Senate).

    He’s also wrong that the Union could negotiate the Constitution away. The Union’s language on shared governance says: “the University of Oregon Constitution shall remain in existence for the duration of this agreement subject to review and modification in accordance with applicable procedures.” That last part means it can only be changed in the ways it can be changed now and it gives contractual force to what has been, up to now, pretty much at the discretion of the President…regardless of Charters or statutes.

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  2. Anonymous says:

    OLd Man is right (or 90% right — I don’t want to sign any blank checks).

    He starts by quoting the same BS from Rudnick that I logged on to highlight: “State law governs and supersedes the University Charter.”

    As a lawyer, Rudnick should have been informed (by someone who does research at Harrang) that the University Charter **is** state law. It was adopted by the State Legislature. It remains in state law: Oregon Revised Statutes (ORS) section 352.010 says:

    “352.010 Status of faculty. The president and professors constitute the faculty of each of the state institutions of higher education and as such have the immediate government and discipline of it and the students therein. …”

    Didn’t Bonine write a legal memo about this back in 2009?

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  3. Old Man says:

    UOM ascribes to Sharon Rudnick the following: “State law governs and supersedes the University Charter. The OUS board has the authority. It has delegated it to the President, not to the Senate.”
    The DOJ Memo of November 7, 2008 says: “Finally, we conclude that while the Board’s IMD on institutional internal governance sets parameters and procedures for the operation of the University’s “internal governance structure,” the faculty’s statutory role in the University’s “immediate government” remains effective.”
    What does that all mean?
    The State Charter imposed upon the Faculty (professors plus Prexy) the authority to provide the immediate governance of the UO. The Legislature later granted authority to the State Board to impose conditions on the execution of that authority. Ono of those was that ultimate authority is in the hands of Prexy, formalized as veto power. Our Constitution, painstakingly constructed and ratified unanimously by the Teaching Faculty and President Lariviere, ensures that such power not be whimsically or secretly exercised.
    Without such a Constitution to define it, “shared governance” has no meaning. (You may recall that DF used to say “shared governance” about 10 times per Senate Meeting). Our Constitution is currently protected by a State Board policy (quoted below) stating that any changes to a University’s Constitution shall require ratification by both the Faculty and the President. If/when we swap the State Board for a Local Board, that policy needs to be brought along, Preservation of our Constitution is key to the revival of the UO. It is essential for Prexy to express his personal support for our Constitution and to take effective steps to ensure that it is protected from interference by any governing board.
    PS: The UO Constitution is the instrument by which the Faculty (Teaching Faculty plus Prexy) execute the responsibilities imposed upon them by the Charter. The Union is a body that fails to represent a large part of the Faculty while representing individuals that are not teachers. Moreover, the presence of the Constitution in the CBA might imply that the Union could, at some future date, negotiate it away.

    THE STATE BOARD POLICY: (7) Each institution is authorized to formulate a statement of internal governance expressed as a constitution or in another appropriate format which will be ratified as the official statement of internal governance by the relevant institutional body or bodies and the institution president. All statements of internal governance will be consistent with statutes governing the Oregon State Board of Higher Education, the Oregon University System, and any applicable Board rules, policies, or IMD.
    (8) The statement of internal governance is subject to review and amendment when a new institution president assumes office or at other such times provided for in the internal governance statement. Any amendment to the statement of internal governance will be subject to ratification by the relevant institutional body or bodies and the institution president.

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  4. Anonymous says:

    I’m guessing Cheney Ryan could write and produce a fine parody.

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  5. Anonymous says:

    Did anyone else read “Harrang gang” and wonder if there were some talented person out there who could work out an O-ppa Harrang gang Syle parody?

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  6. Anonymous says:

    I was just laughed at when I told someone my Oregon salary. Of course, it was followed with a question about whether I was interested in moving.

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    • UO Matters says:

      I’m guessing you don’t work in Johnson Hall.

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  7. Anonymous says:

    Is it possible under a public records request to find out if there were other candidates than Gottfredson for prez and who they were?

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    • Anonymous says:

      There were two other finalists. Pernsteiner and his handlers decided to only bring Gottfredson to campus. He spent half the visit going up to Portland to meet Knight. Gottfredson’s first choice was the University of Arizona, he didn’t get an offer.

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  8. awesomeo says:

    Can I mine for bit coins on my univ hardware?

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    • Anonymous says:

      Does this mean that even if I am using ymail or gmail through UO wireless that I have surrendered all my rights?

      Could Geller read an email sent to my lawyer about my will? or to my children if I am using gmail on UOwireless?

      is this currently the case? and we did not know it? or is this something new?

      or does this affect only what is on the UO servers? I won’t protest if it affects only my uoregon.edu account, but accessing gmail through UOwireless should be private and confidential.

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    • Anonymous says:

      N.B.: Regarding the statement “accessing gmail through UOwireless should be private and confidential”, nothing on gmail is remotely private and confidential, but is routinely mined by Google for their own purposes!

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    • Anonymous says:

      that I trust google more than Geller is ver troubling to me.

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    • “Could Geller read an email sent to my lawyer about my will? or to my children if I am using gmail on UOwireless?

      is this currently the case? and we did not know it? or is this something new?

      or does this affect only what is on the UO servers? I won’t protest if it affects only my uoregon.edu account, but accessing gmail through UOwireless should be private and confidential.”

      It is well established that employers have a legal right to access your work email for any reason they wish. So, that would be your uoregon.edu account.

      On the other hand, if the Employer were to access your Gmail or Ymail, without first informing you (for example, by putting inserting that right it into the CBA), they would probably be committing a computer crime / illegal interception of electronic communication. I’m not sure that would stop them though.

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    • Anonymous says:

      I am no lawyer. If you access GMAIL/YMAIL on your work computer over your work network. The employer does have the right to watch (think remote desktop and screen reader as well as access your camera, audio and use external cameras) as well as intercept any network traffic and if the network were encrypted on the wire to circumvent this, the employer could block all encrypted traffic if they wanted, but who would do that.

      Next they could lock out all access to all networks except for work business, yada, yada, yada…

      HOWEVER, it would be extremely hard to justify this stance: the UO as do most universities (and coffee shops for that matter) has built a public access network in places. If there is free Wifi, or if anyone off the street could get on the network, then when you are not acting in the capacity as an employee you should have all the rights and protections as other users (unless of course their public policy clearly states employees are not authorized to use the network).

      Next, to prove that this is the institutional policy they would need to make sure the consistently applied the policy, that would include all employees. At this point if they gave access to Student Athletes, and a monetary value could be applied to the cost of providing internet service to Athletes to play Xbox, that may well run afoul of paying student athletes. Then, there is the whole what if people make phone calls and send emails to donors across the exclusive business services and the money goes to a private foundation that then pays them a direct funds? That could be using the absolutely private systems for personal gains. For that matter what if the sell a seat at a public function and the proceeds of this goes to a private foundation?

      Bottom line:
      Yes, assume when you login to look at uomatters on UO network space they know every thing you look at, when, how long you are there, and what you write in these little boxes (Hey UOM can you move to HTTPS?). Also, assume that they really do have a system that has about 5 lines of code that is logging this.

      Do not let anything less than this stand anywhere around computing and should not be in the CBA[PERIOD]: Students, employees(AKA faculty, staff, and administration), and anyone granted access to University computing resources will all be bound by the same terms.

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