May 2019 Advocate: Negotiations Report


Slow progress in contract negotiations

AFT and District negotiators met on April 11 in the most recent contract bargaining session. Following is a report of the session:

Negotiators present: AFT: Joaquin Rivera, Monica Malamud, Paul Bissember; District: Mitch Bailey, David Feune, Joe Morello, Charlene Frontiera, Max Hartman (by phone)

Scheduling upcoming bargaining dates

During this round of bargaining, we began by establishing upcoming bargaining dates. We agreed on the following dates for our next negotiations sessions:

• Wed., May 1, 1:00pm-5:00pm
• Tues., May 7, 12:00pm-2:00pm
• Thurs., May 16, 9:00am-5:00pm

District responds to AFT proposals

For the rest of the session, the District’s bargaining team presented a document responding to our initial bargaining proposals. Firstly, the District requires more time to respond to several of our initial proposals. They indicated that they should be able to offer counter-proposals to the following items by May 3:

• 1.7: Communication with members
• 8.8: Part-Time Salary Schedule
• 8.14: Large Class Pay
• 11.9: Maternity/Child Bonding Leave
• 17: Grievance Procedure
• 18: Summer Session Employment
• Appendix G: Evaluations
• Class Assignment – Class Cancellations (new language)
• Complaints against a unit member (new language)
• Just Cause and Progressive Discipline (new language)

District accepts some AFT proposals

Next, there were some proposals which the union proposed clarifying edits, or updated language due to changes in state/federal law that the District found acceptable. To review these proposals, visit: These proposals include:

• 2.4: List of unit employees and job information
• 7.2: Definition of Academic year
• 8.5.1: Pay and Allowances – Two years of service at Step 23 are required for advancement to Step 25
• 11.14: FMLA and CA Family rights act (CFRA) Benefits
• 4.1: Layoffs

In addition, there was a positive response from the District regarding our proposal around Article which would grant part-time faculty pay, at the special rate, for attending flex day activities that fall on days that a part-time faculty member is not scheduled to teach.

District rejects numerous AFT proposals

There were a number of AFT proposals that the District rejected altogether and offered no counter-proposals at this time. See below for those articles relating to the AFT proposals, along with brief notes to provide context, which the District rejected:

• 7.5: Workweek for Full-time Instructional faculty – AFT proposed removing the hourly requirement for faculty to be present on campus. Currently, full-time faculty are required to be on campus for 25 hours per week.
• 9: Health and Welfare Benefits – The union proposed language for faculty teaching in the District Study Abroad Program to receive medical insurance that goes beyond emergency care. In the discussion on this issue, the District made it clear that this was not a question of money, as there are not many faculty who teach in this program. They argued that teaching a study abroad course is a choice that faculty make, not a requirement, and, therefore, the District should not have to provide this additional medical coverage for faculty.
• 11.6: Public Service Leave – The District rejected this proposal indicating that it represents a limited scope (only 2 members affected) and that the District receives no direct benefit from and has no interest in this “personal, elective employee activity.”
• 19: Part-Time Employment – In an effort to strengthen part-time faculty seniority and load rights, and to follow recent California state law (AB 1690/SB 1379), the union proposed edits in Article 19 to base part-time faculty’s class assignments on the highest load ever assigned to them. The District rejected this proposal.
• Appendix F: Faculty Load Credit (FLC) Allocation – Our union has heard from many members from the Sciences, Art, Music and Physical Education/Athletics to prioritize increasing the FLC for these classes. While the District disagreed with the AFT proposal, citing that “it is not consistent with the Carnegie Unit allocation for such assignments,” AFT bargaining team members responded that the Carnegie unit is not relevant to this issue; it’s a question of parity and compensation. Additionally, there are several other community college districts that already have language like this in place.
• XX: Additional Faculty Rights – Evaluation of Administrators – The District responded to our proposal that it “finds no compelling rationale for including additional language relating to this matter as it does not relate to traditionally-bargained issues such as employee wages, benefits, hours, or working conditions.”

District counter-proposals

Next, there were additional AFT proposals that the District disagreed with, but provided counter-proposals. See below for these counters along with a brief explanation:

• 2.8: Employee orientation – The District proposed the following additional language to our proposal – “the union will participate in these new employee orientations in a structure, time and manner agreed to by the District and the Union prior to such orientation.” We discussed the need to review current practices around new faculty orientations. Additionally, we discussed ways to involve new part-time faculty employees (i.e. through flex days, online orientation, etc.) who do not currently participate in District orientations.

• Compensation – The District proposed to maintain the current total compensation formula for one year – if we do not reach an agreement by the expiration of the contract. We have sent out a survey to get feedback from members on how our union should allocate compensation (i.e. salary, benefits, part-time parity, etc.)

• Article 13: Professional Development Funding – The District rejected our proposal to increase funding from 1% to 2%. In addition, they proposed language to change the composition of the Professional Development committees to 3 members appointed by the Academic Senate and 3 members appointed by the administration.

This change would increase the number of administrators on these committees and decrease the number of faculty members.