8.17.20 Updated Salary Reduction Schedule & Bargaining Update
Updated Salary Reduction Schedule
As you’ll recall, UAOSU negotiated a progressive salary reduction program as part of our first contract. That program bases reductions on projected revenue shortfalls with three check-in points. At each of these points, the reduction level may be adjusted so that the ultimate size of the salary reduction aligns with the actual revenue shortfall experienced.
When we negotiated that salary reduction program, we anticipated a $49M revenue shortfall and salary reductions beginning at that level on August 1. In July, the administration and UAOSU agreed to postpone the beginning of the reduction until September 1. Salary reductions will now begin on September 1 with a projected revenue shortfall of $55M. The larger projected shortfall means a 43% larger salary reduction than originally anticipated for each of us. You can figure out what this larger reduction means for you by downloading this spreadsheet.
When we negotiated the salary reduction program, revenue projections assumed that there would be large cuts to state higher education funding and a moderate loss of tuition revenue. Thanks in part to the organizing efforts of higher education labor unions, we were able to keep the Public University Support Fund whole in the recent special legislative session. The administration’s revenue shortfall projection has nonetheless grown based on both real and projected declines in enrollment. The loss of out-of-state students is especially impactful, as they pay a much higher tuition rate. There is a tremendous amount of uncertainty in the shortfall number, as administrators must predict how enrollment will be impacted by the recent announcement that Fall Term will be almost entirely remote. We will meet with the administration in November to check in on the actual decline in enrollment and tuition revenue and then adjust the salary reduction level to align with these numbers.
We have two information sessions this week to discuss these salary reductions and answer any questions. Click the date and time listed below to register.
The UAOSU bargaining team and the administration team met 2:30–4 on Thursday, August 13 on Zoom. Our conversation continued to focus on the ability of any faculty member who can adequately perform their work remotely to elect to do so. We brought a counterproposal that clarified the need for conversation with unit heads while still preserving faculty choice. With the shift to almost entirely remote instruction in the Fall, the administration team felt we were close to reaching an agreement if that agreement only applied to this Fall. Our desire is to negotiate an agreement that can extend beyond the Fall Term so that faculty retain the right to choose to remain remote in any term impacted by the pandemic, even those where there may be a much greater push for in-person instruction. Given this desire, the administration needed some more time to think through the language. We expect a counter proposal from them at our next session.
The next bargaining session is 2:30–4 on Thursday, August 20 on Zoom (register here). Even if you can only drop by for half an hour, your attendance matters: show the administration that faculty are watching this process.
Over the next few weeks, we are hosting several information sessions on key provisions of our collective bargaining agreement. If you have questions, we encourage you to attend these events. Below is the schedule with links to register.
Salary Reductions – Tuesday, August 18, 12-1pm and Wednesday, August 19, 5-6pm
COVID and Reopening – Thursday, August 27, 1-2pm
Extension and Remote Research Issues – Thursday, September 3, 4:30-5:30pm
Leave Provisions – Tuesday, September 8, 12-1pm
To join with us and become a UAOSU member, click here.
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