Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Chancellor White to Discuss California's Higher Ed Master Plan at 1 p.m.

Starting at 1 p.m. today, CSU Chancellor Timothy P. White will be joining UC President Janet Napolitano and California Community Colleges Chancellor Brice W. Harris at a UC Regents meeting, to discuss California's Master Plan for Higher Education. The meeting will be streamed live, if you have or wish to install the required plugin.

Links

Thursday, December 5, 2013

October Unit 9 Council Report

Bargaining Unit 9 Council Report

Overview of topics discussed: Current status of full-contract bargaining, Board of Trustees Meetings now on the Internet, Loss-prevention software to be installed, state-wide, on December 1st, exempt employee work hours, classification issues and meet-and-confer updates.

Unit 9 Council Members attending: Rich McGee, Chair, Susan Smith, , Vice-Chair, , Rose Greeff. Ken Jones, Rocky Waters, Ricardo Uc, Gus Leonard, Christina Valero, Matthew Black
Guest: Matthew Kay

Introduction from the Chair

Our terms on the Unit 9 council are more than half completed, with elections coming next year. How do we develop the next generation of activists? The majority of the council are “Long Term” CSU employees, we all must consider how to develop interest in the Union, and mentor those activists who will come after us.

Due to a recent vacancy, Matthew Kay from Sac State has been appointed as the Unit 9 representative on the classification committee. Thanks, Matt, for agreeing to take on this important role!

Bargaining

Full contract bargaining is now in the planning stages. If anyone has suggestions, additions or changes to contract language, please get this back to the chair within the next few weeks, as the time remaining for this is very short.

All bargaining sessions, except for the caucuses, are open to the membership, and each of you are encouraged to attend. Even if you spend only a lunch hour observing bargaining, it really helps when you see the “give and take” which is such a part of full-contract bargaining. Since this is a full-contract bargaining cycle, we don’t yet know what articles we will want to bargain over, and we haven’t yet seen any information from the CSU about their choice of articles, either. Our “sunshine proposal” will be due early next year, and will be posted and distributed as we are legally required to do.

Once bargaining begins, we will be actively seeking employees willing to speak on key topics. The bargaining team can discuss the articles, but the CSU really does appear to pay more attention when they hear the voices of campus employees explaining why a particular article is important to them.

Board of Trustees Meetings

The monthly CSU Board of Trustees meeting is now being broadcast live on the Internet, plus recorded and saved for later viewing. The website and monthly schedule can be found at the CO’s website http://www.calstate.edu/bot/agendas/. Watching these meetings on-line is actually better than attending them at the Chancellor’s Office – the audio is clearer, and the camera zooms in close enough to allow you to identify the speaker. It’s worthwhile to listen to in the background while you perform other tasks, as the information you learn from these meetings can be extremely useful.

Data Loss-Prevention Software

The CSU has spent over $400,000 to purchase 40,000 copies of a data-loss prevention software package. This software, called “IdentityFinder” (Vendor: http://identityfinder.com), will be installed state-wide on most computer workstations starting December 1st.

Several members of the bargaining team held a meet-and-confer about this software in late October. The following is a summary of what was discussed and agreed upon. The process of codifying this agreement, in writing, is currently underway.
  • The CSU has the right to install this software on any workstation/server which is owned by the state.
  • Each campus ISO office will determine which workstations/file servers this software is to be installed on. The focus will be on those machines which potentially could contain “sensitive data” (Social security numbers, driver license information, birthdates and credit card information only)
  • This software shall only be used to identify what is called “Level 1” data, as defined by the State Administrative Data Processing Manual. It will not be used to search for any other data, files, keywords, etc.
  • The campuses will notify and train users prior to this software being installed on their workstations.
  • This software will not scan e-mail messages, or capture any live data.
  • If a campus wishes to purchase modules to enhance the capabilities of the IdentityFinder software (Such as SQL database or e-mail scanning), the Union shall be notified and given an opportunity to meet and confer over the effects of that module.
  • The end-user will be allowed to initiate a private scan, and deal with the results (Delete, edit, encrypt or leave the data intact) prior to the campus performing a centralized scan. This provides a grace period for all users to remove un-necessary sensitive data on their system remaining from prior work tasks.
  • Only the end-user or the ISO can initiate a software scan. No inventory of files, documents, etc. is created, and any sensitive data discovered will be “masked off” in the reports produced by this software. This means an ISO manager may see only the last few digits of a SSN, not the entire number.
  • Each campus ISO will, on an annual basis, maintain an inventory of all systems containing sensitive data, in response to audit requirements.
Exempt employees – Work hours vs. core hours

According to the law, and our contract, “For exempt classifications, there are no fixed, minimum or maximum hours in a workday or workweek.” (Article 18.7). However, due to a state arbitration decision, the courts have ruled that an employer can set “core hours” for exempt employees. Some CSU managers are misinterpreting the meaning of this, and are telling their employees that “our core hours are 8 am to 5 pm, and you must be here during those hours”. If you hear of this occurring on your campus, please notify the Unit 9 Council, and file a grievance on it. Core hours are just that – core, the essential part. Telling an exempt employee to be here for the entire day at a pre-assigned time equals fixed hours. An example which has been successfully used at some campuses is to ask the manager “If you take a core body conditioning class, does it exercise all your muscles?” Our contract is only good when it is properly enforced, and enforcement is up to each one of us.

Wrap-Up

The October 2013 Bargaining Unit 9 Council meeting concluded with a brief discussion of career vs. expert classifications, the status of the Unit 9 classification clean-up project, which is nearly completed, and a review of some of the technical meet-and-confers we’ve had over the past few months including campus cellular telephone polices, as well as video surveillance on the campuses. Remember: An arbitrator has ruled that video surveillance is now a mandatory subject of bargaining, so we have a right to both request information about campus video surveillance systems, as well as to request a meet-and-confer when such a meeting is warranted.

Respectfully submitted,
Rich McGee
Chair, CSUEU Bargaining Unit 9


Sunday, October 13, 2013

BUC Agenda for October 2013 Meeting

Unit 9 BUC Agenda – October 13th 2013

  1. Introductions - Group

  2. Chair’s remarks – Rich McGee

  3. Vice-Chair’s remarks – Susan Smith

  4. Officer assigned remarks – Alisandra Brewer

  5. The CSU’s data loss prevention software project

  6. Exempt employees – Work hours vs. core hours

  7. Career vs. expert classifications –What is the difference?

  8. The CSU’s Unit 9 classification cleanup project

  9. Video Surveillance and the meet/confer process

  10. New Business – Group – Classification standard proposal for EOP Special Assistant and Space Utilization

Sunday, June 30, 2013

BUC 9 Report for June 2013 Meeting

Bargaining Unit Council 9 (BUC 9) met in Sacramento on June 9, 2013, after the all-BUC meeting on June 8. Here is the report of the Chair, Rich McGee, prepared for this weekend's Board of Directors meeting:


Bargaining Unit Council 9 Meeting
June 9, 2013
Sacramento

Classification Cleanup

CSU has provided a set of proposed changes to various Unit 9 Classification and Qualification Standards (CQS). The stated goal of the changes is to standardize the "look and feel" of all classifications, rather than making substantive changes to duties or qualifications. This involves dozens of classifications, some of which are being combined into series as well. Reviewing the proposed changes requires comparing the proposed CQS with the existing CQS line by line. The BUC split into smaller workgroups, each taking a stack of CQS proposals to go over. This task consumed most of the 4 hours scheduled for the meeting, but saved us from having to hold a separate meeting to tackle this.

Additional items discussed included:

Monitoring position postings
Campuses continue to post positions which are incorrectly classified or have other problems. Please monitor your campus's job postings and contact Rich McGee if you find something questionable.
Data Centers

Very little information has been released regarding the CSU's mandate that all but two campus data centers be shut down by June 2015. We've been told that several campus presidents are openly disagreeing with this mandate, insisting that their own multi-million dollar data centers continue to function. Please share any information you have about plans for your campus data center with Rich McGee.

Exempt Employees

We are increasingly hearing of exempt employees being told to "stay until the work gets done, because you are exempt!", yet the next day, these same employees are being told "You came in at 8:15 today. You're late!" Per our contract, exempt employees do not have fixed hours:

18.7 For exempt classifications, there are no fixed, minimum or maximum hours in a work day or work week.

Some campuses attempt to bypass this by stating that an exempt employee can be assigned "core hours". When asked to define those core hours, the response tends to be "Our core hours are 8 am to 5:30 pm." Sorry, no. If you encounter this, challenge it.

Annual Performance Reviews

Remember that there should be no surprises in an employee's review. If there is a valid concern about the employee's work, the manager should have informed the employee about it at the time so it could be corrected, rather than withholding the information so as to ambush the employee on the evaluation.

Student Assistants

Sonoma has a grievance presently at level 3 on student assistants improperly performing bargaining unit work. We need grievances filed from other campuses where this is occurring.

Video Surveillance

A recent ruling confirms that video surveillance of employees can be an issue employers must bargain with the union. In general, if the camera is used only for physical security, that use is allowable. But if there is the possibility of an employee being disciplined for anything which might appear on a video, that merits a meet and confer. If your campus is conducting video surveillance of areas where employees work, gather, or enter or exit a building, please contact Rich McGee so we can draft an information request to check for problems.

Meet and Confers
Cell Phones

We've met with several campuses in order to discuss employee cell phone policies. Some campuses, like Long Beach, have well designed policies which include fair reimbursement for use of employee-provided cell phones. Other campuses appear reluctant to offer their employees fair reimbursement, and the difference can be several hundred dollars per year. In general, a campus may issue you a cell phone limited to work-related purposes only. However if you're asked to provide your personal cell phone number to your campus for any reason, that may merit a meet and confer. Please contact Rich McGee if your campus asks employees for their personal cell phone numbers, or issues cell phones, with having negotiated with the union over the effects of this practice.

Uniforms

The policy for IT staff to wear uniform shirts at Fullerton now appears to be voluntary, with some staff wearing them, while others do not. If you hear of any new requirements to wear a uniform while on campus, please let the Unit 9 chair know.

Background Checks

We have a Meet and Confer scheduled in July for a systemwide policy covering employee background checks.

Smoking

Chancellor Tim White has indicated he wants to eliminate smoking on CSU campuses, and expects it could take several years to phase out smoking, system-wide. Fullerton's president is keen to move ahead on her own, and has a proposed policy which would ban all smoking anywhere on campus, including in private vehicles. We held a meet and confer recently to discuss Fullerton's planned implementation, and the campus agreed that employees will not face discipline over anything in the campus smoking policy. If you hear of plans to make your campus smoke-free, please let someone from the bargaining team know, as this really should be a state-wide policy, rather than an individual policy at all 23 campuses plus the Chancellor's Office.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

VP Rep Quoted In Article On Chancellor White

Southern California Public Radio has done a piece on new CSU Chancellor Tim White, the challenges facing him after years of budget cuts, and his approach to getting to know the university. Our own Vice President for Representation Alisandra Brewer was quoted:

"He's really out there listening to the people, the little guys not just the upper management," Alisandra Brewer, a vice president with the California State University Employees Union.

The article mentions Chancellor White ditching his suit jacket and spiffy shoes to learn a break dance move at Dominguez Hills. We have links to that and some other White clips below (titles taken from the videos at the time of posting).

Links

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Former MPP Charged in SFSU Bribery Case

A former San Francisco State University (SFSU) manager is facing 128 felony charges in an alleged bribery scheme involving waste management contracts for the campus. Robert Shearer, who was the Director in charge of Environmental Health and Occupational Safety, was arrested April 18.

Shearer allegedly took bribes totaling over $180,000 from 2002 to 2009, in exchange for approving payments and renewing contracts.

From the San Francisco Chronicle:

Several companies offered to take the contracts for less money, but Shearer told his bosses that Cheung's firm was the only bidder, said District Attorney George Gascón. Cheung collected a total of $4 million from San Francisco State over the years, far more than the university should have paid, prosecutors said.

The charges against Shearer consist of:

  • 59 felony counts of commercial bribery
  • 59 felony counts of accepting a bribe
  • 5 felony counts of making a contract in an official capacity by a financially interested person
  • 5 felony counts of perjury

The perjury charges stem from repeatedly failing to report the income he received from Cheung on his annual Statement of Economic Interests filed with SFSU.

Shearer is in custody on $5,000,000 bail. The District Attorney says he faces more than 100 years in prison.

Management Personnel Plan (MPP) salary lists from 2008 and 2009 show that Shearer was making $8,063 per month ($96,756 annually).

Links

Friday, March 15, 2013

BUC 9 Report for February 17, 2013 Meeting

Bargaining Unit Council 9 (BUC 9) met last month as part of the all-BUC meeting weekend in Sacramento, February 16-17. Here is the report of the Chair, Rich McGee, prepared for this weekend's Board of Directors meeting:


Bargaining Unit Council 9 Meeting
February 17th, 2012
Sacramento

On February 16, 2013, Bargaining Unit Council (BUC) 9 met with BUCs 2, 5, and 7 to begin planning for full contract bargaining, which gets underway early next year. Now is the time to start collecting ideas for our next contract. If you have a comment or suggestion for improvements, please send them to Unit 9 Chair Rich McGee.

BUC 9 met separately on February 17th. We welcomed Matt Kay, the new Bargaining Unit Representative (BUR) 9 at Sacramento State. A request for all BURs: If there is any turnover in chapter officers, please let the BU Chair and headquarters know, so we can update the appropriate contact lists.

Here's what we discussed:

SLRR Support

Teven Laxer, the Senior Labor Relations Representative (SLRR) who was assigned to Unit 9, has retired. He is now a part-time consultant to CSUEU. As a cost-saving measure, his position will remain vacant for now. This means that SLRR Lois Kugelmass has been reassigned to cover all bargaining units. If you have a problem or issue that you believe requires the services of a SLRR, please work through your local Labor Relations Representative (LRR) first, or contact Chair Rich McGee for assistance.

Job Merging

Job merging continues to increase within the CSU, as duties from different classifications get blended into that vague other duties as required portion of the position description. Continue to formally challenge these wherever you find them. Doing so helps create record of the problem even when there is no immediate change.

In-Range Progressions (IRP's)

The 2012-2014 contract includes new language allowing an employee denied an IRP for lack of funds to request that their IRP application be re-evaluated the following fiscal year. Each chapter should educate employees about this, and urge affected employees to request the re-evaluation.

Outsourcing/Contracting Out

Contracting out continues to be one of the largest issues facing Unit 9. For many new IT projects, we're discovering that outside contractors appear to be the CSU's employee of choice — even though study after study has shown that outside contractors can cost far more than performing the work in-house, and usually results in an inferior product. Please notify Chair Rich McGee whenever you become aware of outsourcing, to make sure we know about it and can bargain over it if necessary.

Data Center Initiative & Corporation for Education Network Initiatives in California (CENIC)
CSU's data center initiative, the move to consolidate all CSU data centers into two regional locations, may be fracturing. Unit 9 employees report that some campus administrators are saying We're not going to let our data center be closed, or We're going to become one of the regional centers when no decision has yet been made as to their locations. CSUEU has been assured by the Chancellor's Office that all current employees will be retained despite any data center re-alignment. If you hear any talk of layoffs, please immediately notify your Bargaining Unit Chair directly.
Meet and Confer Updates

There have been a number of Meet and Confer sessions on Unit 9 issues over the past several months. Among them are:

SFSU Health Center
The campus Health Center at San Francisco State is determined to pay more than $10,000 per month for Information Technology (IT) support — to a vendor who is only on-site one day a week. They claim this is cheaper than using a staff member. Yet they also are using a Unit 7 staff member to assemble computer equipment, erase confidential data, and other Unit 9 tasks which are not in that employee's classification.
CSULB Cell Phone Policy
After several months of effort, CSU Long Beach finally has an acceptable cell phone policy in place. If your campus decides to adopt any type of policy regulating the use of cell phones, whether campus-owned or employee-provided, please let the Chair know, since it may require a Meet and Confer.
Note: Whether something requires bargaining is not decided at the chapter/campus, since there may be factors which chapter officers or assigned staff not aware of. Send the information you have to your Chair, and let the bargaining team figure it out.
Data Security
Many campuses are requesting that employees sign and agree to data security policies. There is no centralized CSU data security policy, so each campus appears to be creating their own. Some, such as CSULA, are perfectly fine, and acceptable to the Union, while others appear to go far beyond the provisions of the contract, and a Meet and Confer may be necessary to discuss them.
Distance Learning and Unit 9
The Unit 9 Council has been asked by the CSU Labor Council to monitor and track the CSU's online learning programs CSU Online and CalState Online. If you know or hear of any issues with either of those two programs, please send that information to the Chair.
IT Career Growth and Training
The council had a short discussion regarding IT career paths and training. When asked who in attendance had received training within the past year, the group laughed. In past layoff negotiations, one of the CSU's favorite questions has been What has this employee done to improve their skill set? Every employee should work with their manager on a career development plan, and request whatever specialized training may be necessary. Even if the request is denied, it puts the CSU on record for having denied training. That record can be useful during bargaining.
Classification and Qualification Standards (CQS) Revisions

The final discussion item was an overview of the re-working of the CQS for certain Unit 9 classifications, as requested by the Chancellor's Office. This will be a tremendous amount of work, and is expected to involve all members of the Council, both in participating in the revision of the descriptions as well as finding members who are willing to testify about their spectific job duties and skills.

Respectfully submitted,
Rich McGee
Chair, CSUEU Bargaining Unit Council 9
csueu.unit9@gmail.com

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Listen to CSU Board of Trustees Live

The CSU Board of Trustees is meeting now.

You can listen to the CSU Board of Trustees meeting live via the link on their homepage:
Live CSU Board of Trustees Meeting

Yesterday Governor Brown attended the meeting.
The CSU ended yesterday's meeting early, and withdrew the proposal to increase student fees on top of current levels.

The CSU Board of Trustees agenda page has been changed to list the Joint Meeting of the Committee on Educational Policy and the Committee on Finance, which contained a proposal to further raise student fees, has recently been marked "Not meeting."
[This is a change since last week, after the required public notice.]

Attendees to yesterday's Board of Trustees meetings reported seeing outside catering food being brought in as yesterday's meeting was ending early.

Links

Friday, November 9, 2012

Board of Trustees Meets Next Week, Nov. 13-14

The CSU Board of Trustees meets next Tuesday and Wednesday, November 13 and 14, 2012. A closed session begins at 8:30 a.m. Tuesday for unspecified Executive Personnel Matters and collective bargaining issues. The open session begins around 10:00 a.m., starting with the Committee on Collective Bargaining. Meetings continue all day, and resume at 8:00 a.m. Wednesday, with the Plenary session estimated to begin at 10:30.

There is also a Special Committee on Pension Reform meeting listed for 11:30 a.m., after the Board of Trustees adjourns. No agenda seems to be published for it, but it is not listed as a closed meeting.

Selected Agenda Items

  • Salary and benefits for the incoming Chancellor, Timothy P. White:
    • Salary of $421,500
    • An annual salary supplement of $30,000 from the CSU Board of Governors Foundation
    • A house: the official university residence for the chancellor
    • Vehicle allowance of $1,000 per month
    • Reimbursement for travel and relocation expenses
    • Unspecified "executive classification" benefits, which at this writing are not listed with other employees' benefits
    • Eligibility to hold the academic rank of full professor with tenure at CSU Long Beach.
    White's official starting date will be December 31, 2012, meaning he will not be affected by the change in how pensions work beginning January 1, 2013. The Chancellor's Office is closed on December 31.
  • Title 5 amendment requiring managers and executives to disclose outside employment for the identification of and to preclude any conflict of commitment. This is in response to a 2007 audit of CSU compensation practices by the Bureau of State Audits (BSA). For this meeting, it is an information item, with proposed language to be voted on at the January 2013 meeting.
    • That's not a typo. Next year, the CSU may do something to address a problem identified in an audit 5 years ago.
    • The title of the 2007 audit was California State University: It Needs to Strengthen Its Oversight and Establish Stricter Policies for Compensating Current and Former Employees
  • Report on legislation of interest to the CSU. A few highlights:
    • AB 1434 adds CSU employees to the list of mandated reporters of child abuse or neglect occurring on campuses.
    • AB 1723 requires public meetings of the Trustees to be available by live video stream over the internet. CSU took no position on this, and it was signed into law.
    • There were a number of attempts to reign in CSU's extravagant approach to executive and manager salaries. The CSU opposed all of them. None succeeded.
      • AB 1561 would have prohibited the CSU from raising administrator salaries when state funding is reduced or tuition fees increased.
      • AB 1787 would have frozen CSU salaries until June 2015 for employees making over $100,000.
      • SB 952 would have prohibited raises for CSU employees making over $200,000 from General Fund sources through June 2014.
      • SB 967 would have prohibited salary augmentation for executive officers within 2 years of a mandatory systemwide fee increase.
      • SB 1368 would have prevented unelected state employees from earning more than the governor or $174,000.
    • SB 1515 would have reduced the number of governor appointees to the Board of Trustees from 16 to 14, and required that the appointments include 1 faculty, 1 represented staff, and 4 students. The CSU opposed this bill, and it failed.
  • CSU Seismic Safety Program's annual report. Some highlights:
    • Warren Hall at CSU East Bay, described as long our most pressing seismic concern, is mostly vacated and is scheduled to be demolished in July 2013. Still in the building are the campus telephone switch in the basement, servers on the third floor, and telecom antennas on the roof, all of which sometimes require in-person staff visits.
    • CLA building at Cal Poly Pomona is a priority List 1 concern, but no funds have been budgeted.
  • Update on current audits and follow-up on past audits including IT Disaster Recovery, ADA Compliance, and Sensitive Data Security.
    Current year audits include:
    • Data Center Operations (Chico, Channel Islands, Dominguez Hills, East Bay, Long Beach, Northridge, and Pomona)
    • Identity Management and Common Systems Access (Humboldt, Monterey Bay, San Diego, and San Marcos)
    • Information Systems
  • Ratification of a new contract with Academic Professionals of California (APC). APC represents Unit 4, composed of about 3,000 academic support professionals such as Credential Analysts and Student Services Professionals. CSU and APC reached a tentative agreement in July, and APC members voted overwhelmingly to ratify the contract. Most portions of this contract maintain the status quo.
  • Additional fees for students doing things like earning lots of units before graduating, taking a higher course load, and repeating classes.

About Trustees Meetings

For the most part, the discussion happens in the Committee meetings, and then the full Board meets in plenary session and approves whatever is before it.

Meetings are open to the public. Anyone can attend. Anyone can address the Board of Trustees in person, or write to them. See the main agenda for specific instructions.

Minutes of the previous meeting(s) — not yet approved, sometimes containing mistakes — are in the various agendas for the current meetings.


Links

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Ballot Measure Results Align With CSUEU Recommendations

Ballot counting continues, but with nearly all counties having reported their final election night update to California's Secretary of State, the outcome is evident for statewide ballot measures. Huzzah!

  Ballot Proposition    CSUEU's Position    Election Result  
30
Temporary Taxes to Fund Education
YesYes
31
State Budget, State and Local Government
NoNo
32
Political Contributions by Payroll Deduction
NoNo
38
Tax for Education. Early Childhood Programs
NoNo
39
Business Tax for Energy Funding
YesYes
40
Redistricting State Senate
YesYes

Links

Monday, November 5, 2012

CSUEU recommends: Yes on 30, No on 32 and 38

CSUEU has taken positions on several statewide initiatives and candidates. Here are three to remember as you vote tomorrow:

Yes on 30:
Temporary taxes to support education and safety. Helps stabilize California's budget, prevents deeper cuts to education including the CSU. If this fails, or passes with fewer votes than 38, the CSU faces $250 million in budget cuts for the 2012-13 budget year.
No on 32:
The "Special Exemptions Act" pretends to be aimed at keeping special interests out of politics, but really it's aimed at weakening union members' voices while leaving corporate political funding essentially untouched.
No on 38:
Raises taxes for most Californians to fund K-12, preschool, child care programs, and to make debt payments. Higher education and other services are left out. Trigger cuts would take effect. If this passes with more votes than 30, the CSU faces $250 million in budget cuts for the 2012-13 budget year.

Links

Handy Voting Information

A few bits of handy information for folks who didn't already vote:

Voting In Person

Check your polling location if you don't have your sample ballot handy. Polling locations change, so "I always go to X" might not cut it.

Problem? Cast A Provisional Ballot

If the poll workers can't find you on their list, you can cast a provisional ballot anyway.

If your vote-by-mail ballot never arrived, you can cast a provisional ballot at your polling place.

Your provisional ballot will be counted after local elections officials verifies your registration and that you didn't already vote.

Did the Machine Record Your Vote Accurately? Check It.

Voting machines are required to display your ballot choices on a printed paper record, before you finalize your ballot. Check that carefully.

You can review your county's voting machine instructions online before you go to the polls, so that you aren't trying to learn unfamiliar machinery while voting.

Voter ID: Not Required, Rarely Requested

Most people won't be asked to show identification at the polls.

You may be asked for identification if you are voting for the first time after registering by mail and did not provide your driver license number, California identification number or the last four digits of your social security number on your registration form.

You have the right to cast a provisional ballot even if you don't have your identification.

Time Off to Vote

The good news: If you can't vote otherwise, the contract provides for up to 2 hours paid time to vote.
The bad news: You needed to request that 2 working days in advance. But if you're stuck and won't be able to vote if you work your regular hours, it can't hurt to ask your manager anyway.

15.22     An employee who would otherwise be unable to vote outside of his/her regular working hours may be granted up to two (2) hours of work time without loss of pay to vote at a general, direct primary, special, or presidential primary election.

An employee shall be required to request such leave time in writing from the appropriate administrator at least two (2) working days prior to the election.

Voting By Mail

It's a bit late to count on the mail, so turn in your vote-by-mail ballot directly to elections officials:

  • Today, you can return it in person to your county elections office.
  • On Election Day you can take the sealed envelope to any polling place in your county (it doesn't have to be your own precinct), or to your county elections office, between 7:00 a.m. and 8:00 p.m.

If you can't return it yourself, the California Secretary of State's office says:

If, because of illness or physical disability, you are unable to return the ballot yourself, you may designate a spouse, child, parent, grandparent, grandchild, sibling, or a person residing in the same household to return the ballot to the elections official or the precinct board at any polling place within the jurisdiction.

If you requested a vote-by-mail ballot, and haven't returned it for any reason (never got it, lost track of it, the dog chewed it up), you can cast a provisional ballot at your local polling place.


Links

Voting
Issues

Friday, September 28, 2012

Agenda for Unit 9 BUC, October 7th 2012

                                                            Unit 9 BUC Agenda
                                                              October 7, 2012

Welcome

1. Introductions - Everyone

2. Chair’s remarks – Rich McGee

3. Vice-Chair’s remarks – Susan Smith

4. Staff assigned/ Officer assigned remarks – Teven Laxer and CSUEU Executive Officer

5. Overview and purpose of the Unit 9 Council – Rich McGee

Topics for Discussion

6. What is a meet and confer, and when are they necessary?

7. The CSU Data Center Initiative

8. E-Mail and network monitoring

9. Outsourcing

10. Consolidated HR – What do we know?

11. Cell Phones

12. Uniforms for IT

13. Managers and student assistants performing our work

14. Classification and CQS Issues

15. Proposition 30 and Layoff Discussion

16. New Business – Group

Adjourn

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

AB-340 Signed into Law

Governor Jerry Brown has signed AB-340, also known as the Public Employee Pension Reform act of 2012. What follows is a summary of how this law will affect current and future CSU employees.
  
TO:                         All CSU Employees

FROM:                  Gail Brooks, Vice Chancellor, Human Resources

RE:                          Public Employee Pension Reform Act of 2012

The Public Employee Pension Reform Act of 2012 was signed by the governor today and will become law on January 1, 2013. As you can imagine, there are many complexities to this legislation and we are diligently working with CalPERS on the interpretation of the bill (AB 340) as it pertains to CSU employees. We understand there are many questions regarding the impact of this bill and will provide you with information as quickly as possible. Listed below are some highlights of AB 340.

                Impact to existing and new (hired on or after 1-1-13) employees:
·         Airtime - prohibits purchases of nonqualified service; however, applications received by CalPERS prior to 1-1-13 would still be eligible.
·         Post-retirement employment- requires a 180-day “sit-out” period before a retiree could return to work unless the appointment is:
o   Necessary to fill a critically needed position and has been approved by a governing body in a public meeting
o   Retiree is eligible to participate in the Faculty Early Retirement Program (FERP)
·         Forfeit pension benefits--felony conviction committed within the scope of official duties
·         Retroactive pension increases--prohibit retroactive pension benefit changes that apply to service performed prior to the enhancement

Impact to employees newly hired on or after 1-1-13:
·         Retirement contribution–employee will be responsible for contributing 50% of the pension contribution rate calculated by CalPERS that is used to fund the employee’s retirement benefit.  The employer will pay the remaining 50%.
·         New cap on compensation that can be applied to benefit formula--limits amount of compensation used to calculate the retirement benefit equal to the Social Security wage index limit ($110, 000 for 2012). This amount is adjusted annually based on the Consumer Price Index (CPI).

Defined Benefit Retirement Formulas
Retirement Plans
Hired prior to 1-15-11
Hired on or after 1-15-11
Hired on or after 1-1-13
State Misc. Tier 1
(all eligible employees except public safety)

2% at 55 (one year highest compensation)
2% at 60 (36 month average compensation)
2% at 62 (consecutive 36 month subject to cap)
Public Safety
Retirement Plans
Hired prior to 1-15-11
Hired on or after 1-15-11
Hired on or after 1-1-13
PO/FF (MPP Public Safety)
3% at 50 (one year highest compensation)
2.5% at 55  (36 month average compensation)
2.5% at 57 (consecutive 36 month subject to cap)
State Safety (limited to Intermittent Peace Officer)
2.5% at 55 (one year of highest compensation
2% at 55 (36 month average compensation
2% at 57 (consecutive 36 month subject to cap)

Hired prior to 7-1-11
Hired on or after 7-1-11
Hired on or after 1-1-13
PO/FF (Unit 8)
3% @ 50 (one year highest compensation)
2.5% at 55 (36 month average compensation)
2.5% at 57 (consecutive 36 month subject to cap)
Please note: Employees who became members of CalPERS on or after July 1, 1996 are subject to the IRC 401(a)(17) limit, which restricts the amount of compensation that can be used to calculate the CalPERS retirement benefit. For 2012, the limit is $250,000.

There is other language in the bill that may impact the CSU. We are working to identify those provisions and will provide you with periodic updates. In addition, we will be establishing a Pension Reform FAQ that will be available soon. In the meantime, you can forward your questions to BenefitsInsider@calstate.edu.

You can track the Pension Reform Plan on the governor’s website or on the CalPERS website.

Tuesday, July 31, 2012

CFA and CSU Reach Agreement

The California Faculty Association (CFA), which represents CSU Bargaining Unit 3, described as instructional faculty, coaches, librarians, and counselors in the CSU, has announced a contract agreement with the CSU.

If ratified by both CFA members and the CSU Board of Trustees, the contract will be in effect through June 30, 2014.

Links

Live Streaming Now: San Bernardino Budget Meeting

CSU San Bernardino is about to start its live WebCast of its University Budget Advisory Council:
http://acm.csusb.edu/videoproduction/livevideo_special.html

Outgoing CSUSB President Albert K. Karnig is expected to head this last budget discussion before retiring and being replaced by someone the CSU Board of Trustees evidently decided was 10% more valuable.

Links

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Trustees Meeting News Coverage Roundup

Yesterday's decision by the CSU Board of Trustees to raise campus presidents' pay — while simultaneously contemplating tuition increases, enrollment cuts, staff and faculty pay cuts, and layoffs — garnered plenty of media attention. Here's a roundup of some of the coverage we found.

A Few Excerpts

(Read these if you've time for nothing else.)

From KQED:

Pushing against the limits they set a few months ago, California State University trustees have given the maximum allowable salaries to two new campus presidents, and nearly the maximum for one more.

Big salaries offered to presidents have drawn criticism at a time when the university system has cut back on course offerings and hiked tuition. So in May, the trustees approved a policy limiting the salaries of new presidents to 10 percent more than their predecessors' salaries. The extra 10 percent has to come from private foundations.

On Tuesday, the trustees immediately zoomed to that maximum.

From LA Weekly:

…And that's just base pay. To get a better idea of their total salary package, all benefits included, consider this: IRS records showed that the CSU Los Angeles president, who had a university-reported salary of $325,000 last year, actually made $515,612.

From the Associated Press via the Monterey County Herald:

[Assistant Vice Chancellor Robert] Turnage outlined a series of options to close the deficits, including tuition increases, layoffs, enrollment cuts and employee pay reductions.

The President of CSUEU's Fresno Chapter captured a key problem with the Trustees' actions for KGPE, CBS 47 Fresno:

Nancy Kobata, president of the staff union at Fresno State said, "Staff have been cut, we've had layoffs, we've had two rounds of layoffs here in Fresno and we're down to the bone."

Kobata says the raises send mixed messages to voters who will vote in November on a proposed tax hike critical to Governor Brown's plan for state funding. "It really sends the wrong message to the public in general that we have all this extra money lying around that we can pay these people these kinds of salaries," said Kobata.

From the San Jose Mercury News, quoting one of yesterday's most devastating student speakers:

"I held onto that dream that college would get me out of poverty," said Cal State Northridge student Raiza Arias, who said she picks grapes to afford school. "It's a false dream you're giving us. I'm essentially homeless, living out of a sleeping bag."

From the Los Angeles Times:

…Nakia Brazier, who will be a graduate student in sociology at Cal State Los Angeles in the fall, wasn't swayed and called on the presidents to reject the extra compensation.

"If you believe in the promise of public higher education, do not take the pay raises," she said, as several campus presidents and trustees looked on.

Links mentioned above:

Even more links:

Accounting Classifications Bargaining Today and Tomorrow

Today and tomorrow, CSUEU is at the Chancellor's Office to continue bargaining over much-needed updates to the accounting classifications. Accounting classifications occur in both Units 7 and 9: the Accountant series is in Unit 9, and the Accounting Technician series and Accounting Clerk classifications are in Unit 7.

Yesterday John Orr, Chair of Bargaining Unit 7, addressed the Board of Trustees regarding the impact of the outdated Accounting Clerk classification. As he described it:

It's a classification that exists from the time we used cash registers, and that financial transactions were done on paper. Today that's not the way things are done.

He pointed out there are only 14 Accounting Clerks in the entire CSU system, clustered at just 6 campuses plus the Chancellor's Office. As he put it:

The reason they only exist on those campuses is not because the other campuses don't have that work. It's that at the other campuses, that work's being done by Account Tech I, which is a higher classification.

Addressing the presidents of those 6 campuses directly, he implored them to talk to their HR departments and reclassify the few staff still in Accounting Clerk positions so as to eliminate the classification.

Links

Trustees Raise President Pay While Contemplating Employee Pay Cuts, Layoffs

The CSU Board of Trustees met yesterday, approving more pay raises for campus presidents while contemplating tuition increases, employee pay cuts, and eliminating more staff and faculty.

Presidential Pay Increases

Trustees approved higher pay for three campus presidents. In addition to high base salaries and various augementations, campus presidents all receive either free housing or $50,000-60,000 annual housing supplements, $12,000 annual car allowances, and "executive" health care.

In an interview with CBS 5 (San Francisco), San Francisco State University Vice President Robert Nava called the incoming campus president's $26,251 augmentation (to a $298,749 base salary) a very small amount.

Speakers addressing the Board repeatedly urged them to stop raising already-high executive salaries, stating this gives the impression the CSU must have plenty of money and undermines the governor's November ballot initiative.

CSU Finances

After praising and approving the latest round of presidential pay raises, Trustees heard a presentation about various budget scenarios and options for handling them, including tuition increases, layoffs, enrollment cuts and employee pay reductions.

CSUEU Unit 9 Chair Rich McGee addressed the Board, relating the very real harm to employees from past pay cuts during furloughs. He described getting phone calls asking Rich, what do I do when I can't afford to pay my bills this month? (This is the context of the partial quote in the San Francisco Chronicle article.)

Two CSUEU speakers addressing the Trustees were shown in ABC7's evening news video, CSU board approves pay hikes despite protest. Rich McGee appears at 2:15 in the clip, describing the hardships faced by employees under previous pay cuts, including some who lost their homes. Mike Chavez, Chair of Bargaining Unit 5, also appears at 0:43, pointing out "We're all taking a hit."

Faculty Protest

Faculty protested outside the meeting, and urged transparency and prioritization of education during the public comment period.

Endorsement of Governor's Funding Initiative

The Board voted to support Governor Brown's Schools and Local Public Safety Protection Act of 2012, which will appear on the November ballot. The failure of this initiative would trigger another $250 million cut to the CSU.

Some speakers addressing the board asked what specifically the CSU would do to support the initiative and get the word out about its importance, expressing their readiness to pound the pavement and work with the CSU to get the initiative passed. Their query was not answered.

Plenary Session Outtakes

Chancellor Reed, stating This is maybe dangerous but I want to do this, called critics of extravagent executive pay totally wrong and again mentioned that presidents raise money as part of the job.

Board of Trustees Chair Linscheid took time out to share a sports report about CSU Chico. As CSUEU Vice President for Representation Alisandra Brewer put it, Rome burns but at least his team won.

Linscheid also introduced and welcomed the two new Trustees attending their first meeting. Lupe Garcia stated she was taking everything in and looked forward to serving. Hugo Morales taught in the 70's in La Raza Studies at CSU Fresno and cited his history of working with campus president Welty.

Links:

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Trustees Plenary Session Starts Early at 3

The Plenary session of today's Board of Trustees meeting was set to begin at 4:00 p.m., according to the published agenda. The Board has concluded its various committee meetings and will begin the Plenary session early at 3:00 p.m.

Listen to the live audio here:
http://www.calstate.edu/bot/opensessions/captioning.shtml

Links: