LCCEA Bargaining Report: 11/12/13

LCC Faculty Colleagues,

Your Bargaining Team met with the College’s representatives again today.  At last week’s session we had provided a significantly modified proposal, and the College had clearly indicated that they were willing to come to an agreement at a cost to the college of “$1.7m,” the faculty share of “the $3m Bargaining Allowance” (Dennis Carr).  In order facilitate reaching an agreement within that parameter, both teams agreed to exchange our calculations of the costs of our respective proposals.  We did so this past week, and anticipated that today we would receive a College counterproposal, consistent with that parameter, and that likely we would spend time seeking common understanding of the costs where our figures differed, and move toward eliminating the remaining differences.

Instead, the College representatives showed up today and said “we are done”, “we’re going to consult with the Board about next steps,” clearly indicating they are favoring declaring impasse and going to “mediation.”  Obviously, such a step is at great odds with President Spilde’s repeated public statement that “all we need to do is sit down across the table from each other, look into each other’s eyes, and find agreement.”  We’re near agreement on the economic cost of the contract, the Association moved significantly last week, and yet the College is threatening to walk away and are simply refusing to bargain in good faith.

We pressed them to stay and look at the ‘costing’ data, since the College’s commitment to $1.7m provides adequate support for the Association’s proposals.  Their refusal to even look at the numbers indicates they are refusing to honor last week’s commitment or even try to reach agreement.

When pressed as to whether the College had any response to any of our non-economic proposals, the College again refused to provide any counterproposals.  In fact, when asked about the issue of “classroom safety”, Dennis Carr, chair of the College’s team, said “We think this is a problem that doesn’t exist” (faculty ranked it as the #1 issue in the bargaining survey this spring, a fact we have shared with the College).   Nor have they responded to our proposal to collaboratively identify the existing workload parameters for departments not currently listed in Article 35.1; they have stated that they “like it the way it is” (obviously because it prevents faculty members from knowing what their department manager can assign them, and management can continue to try to drive workloads up in departments not listed in the contract).

Given the above, and a lot more that your Team has suffered through with the College’s “bargaining,” we ask that upon finishing reading this email, that you immediately send a new email, addressed to President Spilde (spildem(at)lanecc.edu), Board Chair Rosie Pryor (rospry(at)comcast.net), and College Bargaining team Chair Dennis Carr (carrd(at)lanecc.edu) (please cc lccea (at) lanecc.edu) and encourage them to bargain in good faith, honor their agreements, recognize that classroom safety “is” a real issue and that faculty have a right to know what their assignable workloads are, and to stay at the table until an agreement is reached.

Please see the attached ‘costing’ of the sets of proposals.  As you’ll see, we are really very close to agreement, with both sets of proposals at or under the figure the college said it would live with just last week.  Let’s reach an agreement. 

Your Bargaining Team:
Dean Bergen
Polina Kroik
Adrienne Mitchell
Jim Salt
Dan Welton

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