Ryan Chartrand

Long Beach – The California Faculty Association announced today that it accepts the recommendations set forth by neutral third-party fact finder Sylvia Skratek, who spent several weeks listening to arguments from the CSU Administration and the Faculty concerning the contract that expired in June 2005. The report recommends that the CSU Administration raise the faculty’s salary by 24.87 percent over four years plus 10 percent in SSI pay (service step increases), which “are not an additional cost to the University.”

John Travis, President of the California Faculty Association stated, “It is
time for the Administration and the Board of Trustees of the California
State University to face the facts and settle this contract.

“The fact-finder’s report which becomes public today validates our
long-standing position – that CSU faculty are underpaid and that other
issues including class size need to be addressed. Further, the fact finder’s
report validates that CFA’s bargaining proposals for a new collective
bargaining agreement are reasonable.

“CFA broadly supports the fact finder’s recommendations and finds them to be
a sound basis for the resolution of our contract dispute. We call on the
CSU administration to accept them as well.

“The fact finder’s recommendations would make meaningful progress toward
closing the salary gap between CSU professors and our peers around the
country.

“The CSU administration has more than $1.2 billion in unrestricted funds
available – meaning the administration has flexibility in how those funds
will be used. Knowledge of these funds is provided by Moody’s Investor
Services in their report on CSU bonds for potential investors.

“Yet, the faculty has received one 3.5 percent raise since 2002 (given in July
2005), which is less than one percent a year. Meanwhile, the Administration and Board of Trustees have given top executives 23 percent in raises in just the last two
years.

“The fact finder’s recommendations may cost the CSU an additional $60 million over the four years of this contract – funds that are available and that will help to retain quality teachers in the classroom.

“If the Administration is truly committed to providing students with a
quality education, and if it truly cares about the future of the CSU system,
it would accept the fact finder’s recommendations and settle this contract
dispute.”

CFA member and Senate Majority Leader Gloria Romero said, “I am not
surprised by the mediator’s report and recommendations. The professors have
been saying for 23 months that they deserve to be paid at the same level as
their peers. Now that an independent, third party has analyzed the
situation and set forth her recommendations, it is time for Chancellor Reed to return to the table and negotiate in good faith.”

Senator Alex Padilla added, “The mediator’s report validates what the faculty has been saying from day one, which is that they are being underpaid and that they have proposed a reasonable solution. I cannot see a reason why the Administration cannot sit down with the faculty and work out a
settlement. Based on this report, I do not think the Administration is in a position to continue haggling with the faculty who are only asking to be paid fairly. I strongly encourage the Chancellor to return to the table, and bring closure to this process without delay.”

Informal conversations through intermediaries occurred this week between the two sides, but there is no progress to report yet. The CFA Board of Directors is considering its strike options at this time. The faculty will provide updates as the organization gets them this week.

Below are the main points provided by the fact finder report:

  • “While there was much discussion during fact finding as to how various
    figures should be viewed, there was no dispute that no matter how the
    figures were viewed, the faculty at CSU were lagging, in the double digits
    behind their comparable institutions. There was also no dispute that the
    faculty at CSU were falling in the rankings amongst its comparable
    institutions as evidenced at Displays 4 and 5 of the Commissions” Report on
    Faculty Salaries (p.19)

  • “the fact finder must take into consideration the Commission’s finding
    that there is a double digit parity discrepancy at the University. It is
    important to note that the Commission is not a creation of the Union, nor is
    it a function of the University, but rather has been established by the
    Legislature to focus on higher education and policy issues. Its findings
    represent the best evidence available on faculty salaries at California
    Public University’s which cannot be ignored by the fact finder.” (p. 20)

  • The fact finder’s recommendation recognizes “it was unlikely that this
    round of negotiations was going to eliminate the gap,” and that “the
    challenge was to shape a recommendation that would make progress toward
    closing the gap while recognizing that there was not an infinite amount of
    money available” (pp.19-20)

  • The faculty should be given a 24.87 percent raise over four years plus the 10 percent in SSI pay (service step increases), which “are not an additional cost to the
    University.” (p.22)

  • SSI’s are “dependent on satisfactory performance” “not additional year of
    service” “Given the University’s stated interest in pay for performance its
    resistance to fund SSI’s is puzzling.” (p.22)

  • In 2006/2007, the faculty should receive a 4 percent raise (3 percent retroactive raise
    to 7/1/06 and an additional one percent retro active raise to 1/1/07). In addition,
    the faculty who are eligible for service step increases should receive the
    2.65 percent to which they are entitled.

  • In 2007/2008, the faculty should receive a 5.53 percent raise (4.53 percent effective 7/1/07 and one percent effective 1/1/08) plus the .5 percent equity [see definition below] and .5 percent PPI [post-promotion increase; see definition below]. In addition, the faculty who are eligible for service step increases should receive the 2.65 percent to which they are entitled.
  • In 2008/2009, the faculty should receive a 5.84 percent raise (4.84 percent effective
    7/1/08 and one percent effective 1/1/09 plus the .5 percent equity and .5 percent PPI. In addition, the faculty who are eligible for service step increases should receive the 2.65 percent to which they are entitled.

  • In 2009/20010, the faculty should receive a 6.5 percent raise (5.50 percent effective 7/1/09 and 1 percent effective 1/1/2010) plus the .5 percent equity and .5 percent PPI. In addition, the faculty who are eligible for service step increases should receive the 2.65 percent to which they are entitled.
  • “The Union has put forward a compelling argument that the Service Salary Increases are not an additional cost to the University and in fact, there may be savings to the University due to the fluctuation within the bargaining unit as faculty retire or resign resulting in lower overall cost of the salary schedule.” (p.22)
  • “he University has put forward an equally compelling argument that the
    savings realized by the University due to the fluctuations should not automatically be provided to the bargaining unit members” (p.22)

  • “the University confirmed for the Panel that it was not contending that it did not have the ‘ability to pay’” (p.22)

    See the fact finders report and related documents later today here.

  • Leave a comment

    Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *