Sunday, March 28, 2010

Supplement to BUC 9 Report

We have some supplemental material and links for the Bargaining Unit Council (BUC) 9 report published earlier today:

Student Assistants

From the contract:

17.12 Student assistants may be assigned duties within the classification and qualification standards that are applicable to bargaining unit employees.

Here's the entire text of the Classification and Qualification Standard (CQS) document for Student Assistants:

Student Assistant
Class Code: 1870
Date Established: 09-07-55
Date Revised: 03-28-03


Under immediate supervision, incumbents in this classification work part-time during academic periods and may work full time during break periods in any of the various areas of a CSU campus. Incumbents perform clerical, technical, maintenance, custodial, laboring or other work as assigned.


Knowledge and Abilities:
Ability to learn and perform assigned work; ability to work cooperatively with faculty, staff, and other students; and ability to accept responsibility.

Special Qualification:
Admission or registration as a CSU student.

Library Services Specialist (LSS) Classification Implementation


Furloughs expire June 30, 2010.

Section 5 of the Furlough Agreement states During the period of the furlough, the number of student assistant hours and the number of administrators in a department shall not be increased for the purpose of performing bargaining unit work.


Check Campus Job Postings

BUC 9 Report

Below is the Chair's report on last night's BUC meeting. This report is being presented to the CSUEU Board of Directors this morning.

BUC 9 Report
Report of BUC 9 Chair Rich McGee

Bargaining Unit Council (BUC) 9 met Saturday, March 27, 2010.

Student Assistants

The Classification and Qualification Standards (CQS) document for Student Assistants describes Student Assistants as working under "immediate supervision." The contract permits Student Assistants to do bargaining unit work, but only under immediate supervision.

This is an enforcement issue, and we should be filing on cases where Student Assistants are not working under immediate supervision.

Library Services Specialist (LSS) Classification Implementation
Negotiations for the LSS classification are in abeyance until 2011, when we hope the budget picture will have improved enough to support the implementation of the more-demanding classification.

In February, I asked chapter Bargaining Unit Representatives (BURs) for updates and feedback on furlough implementation. I'd like to thank the BURs who sent out the survey information to Unit 9 employees on their campuses, and who responded to me directly. Having this information was extremely helpful at the statewide Furlough Labor Management Committee (LMC).

The responses indicate that some chapters either don't have active Furlough LMCs, or are crippling themselves by excluding the people elected to represent the bargaining units – the BURs. BURs should be on chapter Furlough LMCs.

Please continue to file grievances on violations of the furlough agreement, including workload problems (since no workload complaint procedure was ever worked out), and increased student assistant hours.


So far this year we've been noticed on Unit 9 layoffs at 2 campuses: 31 at East Bay, and 27 at Humboldt. We expect layoffs at additional campuses. For comparison, in the 2003-2004 layoffs (the last large round of layoffs in our bargaining units), we had:

Layoffs Statewide 2003-2004
LayoffsUnit 9Total
Initial Layoffs60139
After Bargaining51106

Vice Chair Alisandra Brewer and I spent 2 days at East Bay interviewing employees, examining the information so far provided, and working with the chapter to prepare for bargaining. We bargained there in March, and return in April. The March bargaining was primarily about the implementation of the voluntary reduced worktime program provision in the contract – the campus is attempting to impose additional constraints on the program, which are not provided for in the contract.

We've scheduled bargaining at Humboldt in April.

A few reminders:

  • Notice must be to headquarters
    • Notice cannot be to a chapter
  • Layoff end runs — such as time-base reductions — are still layoffs
    • Headquarters must be noticed on these
    • Article 24 must be followed
  • Layoffs cannot be negotiated directly with the chapter/LRR
  • Non-renewal of temporary employees is not a layoff
  • Contact me if you hear campus manager talking about layoffs

Layoff bargaining, especially for large numbers of employees, becomes complicated and time-consuming. Two things we focus on are:

  1. Verifying that the contract is being followed. This includes the order of layoff, laying off probationary and temporary employees before permanent employees in the same classification, seniority points, exemptions, etc.
  2. Getting the best result we can for employees whose layoff can't be avoided.
Email Outsourcing

A Meet and Confer on the outsourcing of campus email is tentatively scheduled for April.

Check Campus Job Postings

Campuses continue to post jobs under lower classifications than the duties and requirements justify. Please keep monitoring your campus job postings, and file as necessary.

Saturday, March 27, 2010

Closed Session Added to Today's BOD Meeting

The CSUEU Board of Directors (BOD) voted earlier today to go into closed session at 1 p.m. to discuss Organizing. The meeting schedule sent out in advance shows only last night's session as closed.

According to sections 401.02 and 401.03 of the CSUEU Policy File, only certain topics may be the subject of a closed meeting. Topics which must be discussed in closed session are:

  1. Litigation matters
  2. Matters involving privileged relations such as attorney-client or doctor-patient
  3. Personnel matters, including the employment, suspension or dismissal of a CSUEU employee

Matters which may be discussed in closed session are:

  1. Discussion of bargaining strategy
  2. Member grievance appeals and disciplinary actions
  3. Representation appeals
  4. Legislative matters

CSUEU Bylaws and Policy File Language on Closed Sessions

The full language regarding closed sessions is below. This was taken from the Bylaws and Policy File downloaded from the CSUEU web site today. The CSUEU Bylaws document is labeled June 2009, and the CSUEU Policy File document is labeled November 14, 2009.

CSUEU Policy File on Closed Sessions

401.01 Meetings

(a)Except as noted below, meetings or hearings at which official actions are taken, including but not limited to, meetings or hearings of the Board of Directors, Executive Officer Committee, committees, units, councils, and sub-groups thereof shall be open to all members of the Association.

(b)CSUEU shall publish an annual calendar of statewide meetings on its website, which shall be updated regularly.

(c)Bodies of the CSUEU may conduct business by telephone conference call, video conferencing, e-mail and fax, and may conduct meetings by conference call or video conferencing. Meetings via conference call or video conferencing shall meet the same standards of this Policy File.

(d)The Board of Directors, Bargaining Unit Councils, Presidents’ Caucus or CSUEU committees may utilize staff assigned by the Chief of Staff in order to implement their responsibilities. (BD 41/03/09)

(e)The CSUEU Bylaws, Policy File, and Robert’s Rules of Order, in that order, shall govern the conduct of the meetings. (BD 41/03/09)

401.02 Closed Session Mandatory

Bodies of the CSUEU must meet in closed session to consider the following:

(a) Litigation matters;

(b) Matters involving privileged relations such as attorney-client or doctor-patient; and

(c) Personnel matters, including the employment, suspension or dismissal of a CSUEU employee. (BD 34/04/08)

401.03 Closed Session Optional

Bodies of the CSUEU may meet in closed session to consider the following:

(a) Discussion of bargaining strategy;

(b) Member grievance appeals and disciplinary actions; (BD 34/04/08)

(c) Representation appeals; and

(d) Legislative matters.

401.04 Holding Closed Sessions

(a) Attendance at closed sessions shall be limited to: the elected or appointed member(s) of the appropriate CSUEU body holding the meeting; members of the Board of Directors; and staff and other individuals who have pertinent information and whose presence is determined to be necessary by the presiding officer, subject to disaffirmation by the body.

(b) Closed sessions, when held as a part of regular meetings, should be scheduled for an announced time certain. Announcement of the closed session and its purpose must be made to the members in attendance, if held during a regular meeting. All Board of Directors and Bargaining Unit Council closed sessions must be reported in the minutes of the next regular meeting, and shall include a list of actions taken.

(c) A meeting, except a Chapter’s Steward Council, shall conduct business in closed session or return to open session only by motion passed by a majority of the body. The body may not suspend this rule.

(d) A Chapter’s Steward Council shall always meet in closed session, and shall discuss only items listed in sections 401.02 and 401.03, above.

401.05 Reporting and Minutes of Closed Sessions

(a) All closed sessions must be reported in the minutes of the next regular meeting and shall include a list of actions taken.

(b) The minutes or record of closed sessions shall indicate when and for what purpose the closed sessions were held, and shall further state that no other matters were considered.

CSUEU Policy File on Closed Sessions

Section 3.10. Open Meetings. Except as set forth in this Section 3.10, all meetings of the Executive Officers, the Board of Directors and all committees at which the business of the Corporation is acted upon shall be open to all members in good standing of the Corporation, and all meetings of each Chapter and of its officers and committees shall be open to all members of such Chapter. A meeting may not be closed except for reasons in accordance with established policies and procedures and subject to applicable laws.


Friday, March 26, 2010

Meeting Snapshot

The CSUEU Board of Directors has just voted down a motion to end tonight's closed 4-hour meeting on time at 10 p.m. The hotel has locked the restrooms near the conference room, forcing attendees to travel upstairs for facilities. Today's meetings began at 9 a.m., and tomorrow's Bargaining Unit Council meetings for Units 2 and 5 are scheduled to begin at 8 a.m.

Update: The meeting finally broke at about 11:40 p.m.

Thursday, March 25, 2010

BUC 9 Meeting Saturday Evening

Bargaining Unit Council 9 (BUC 9) meets this Saturday, March 27, 5:30 – 7:30 p.m., at the Holiday Inn Capitol Plaza in Sacramento. The agenda is short, though some discussions may not be:

  1. Chair's Report (Rich McGee)
  2. Vice Chair's Report (Alisandra Brewer)
  3. Staff Report (staff assigned)
  4. Additional items as requested and as time permits

As usual, this is an open meeting, and chapter Unit 9 Representatives are particularly encouraged to attend.

The CSUEU Board of Directors meets in closed session Friday evening 6 - 10 p.m., and in open sessions Saturday 10 a.m. - 5 p.m., and Sunday 10 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Judge Orders Some Civil Service Furloughs to End

Alameda County Superior Court Judge Frank Roesch has lifted the stay on his previous decision ending furloughs in certain state agencies. Roesch found that the governor lacked the authority under the law to impose furloughs on agencies not funded by the state's general fund. The ruling affects 65,000 employees working in agencies such as the Department of Motor Vehicles, the Employment Development Department, and the lottery.

The ruling states:

It is clear to the Court that irreparable harm will occur to the members of Petitioner's organization. … The Court takes judicial notice, on its own motion, that a 15% loss of pay establishes irreparable harm to the employees represented by Petitioner SEIU.

It is likewise clear to the Court that irreparable harm will occur to California's taxpayers, including Petitioner Yvonne Walker. California taxpayers will suffer irreparable harm if the appeal operates as a stay because the taxpayers will continue to lose the benefit of these employees' work for the Respondent Agencies while still being required by this Court's judgment to pay wages for those days that the employees are improperly furloughed.

The governor's office has said they will appeal, and ask for another stay of the ruling.

Local 1000 represents state civil service employees, and like CSUEU is an affiliate of the California State Employees Association (CSEA).


CalPERS Retirement Planning Fairs Begin March 30

CalPERS is offering a series of one-day retirement planning fairs, beginning March 30. The retirement fairs include workshops and information tables, and will be held in Los Angeles, Sacramento, Fresno, and Redding.

Visit for more information.

SJSU President: Layoffs "Part of Our Planning"

San Jose State University President John Whitmore has sent an email to employees confirming that layoffs are a part of our planning for next fiscal year, and describing the expected layoffs as limited.

He states:

The decisions about positions this action will affect and when any action will take place have not been finalized. Once a plan has been developed, it must be approved by the Chancellor's Office and then reviewed by our union groups.

Formal notice of layoffs is made directly to CSUEU headquarters. The contract language states:

Union Notice

24.2 When the CSU determines that there is a need for implementation of any procedures outlined in this Article, the CSU agrees to immediately notify the Union. The Union may submit a written request to the Office of the Chancellor to meet and confer with the Union on the bargaining unit impact.

Thanks to Steve Sloan (Chapter 307, San Jose) for posting the email.


Union Death Benefit: $1,000 to $3,000

Reminder: CSUEU provides a death benefit to actively employed, rank-and-file members of CSUEU. The benefit ranges from $1,000 to $3,000 depending on when the member joined. Claims must be made within 12 months of the date of the member's death. See the Notice of Benefit for more details.

If you're aware of a member's death, it may be helpful to advise your campus benefits office of the union death benefit, so they can have the information at hand when the family contacts them.

The union death benefit is in addition to the $10,000 life insurance provided under section 21.8 of the contract:

Life, Accidental Death and Dismemberment Insurance

21.8 The CSU shall provide eligible employees with a life insurance and accidental death and dismemberment insurance policy at no cost to the employee. This program shall provide life insurance and accidental death and dismemberment insurance during the term of employment in the amount of ten thousand dollars ($10,000) each for both types of coverage.

Thanks to Alisandra Brewer, Unit 9 Vice Chair, for tracking down the Notice of Benefit.

Update: Sonoma HR Using Benefit Information

Unit 9 Vice Chair Alisandra Brewer notes in the comments that Sonoma State University's Human Resources department has already added the Notice of Benefit to the information packet for this situation. She goes on to say We encourage all chapters to make sure their Benefits Departments know about it.


Thursday, March 18, 2010

Furlough Friday Rap

This recently arrived in my in-box, the "Furlough Friday Rap", a very funny, well-produced YouTube video by several Unit 4 (APC) employees at CSU San Marcos. Here is what they said about their furlough video:

Hello friends and colleagues,
Josh Galea’i and I thought it would be a lot of fun to write a song about furloughs…which turned into a video…which is now on You Tube! It is all meant in good fun and taste in hopes that we might share a collective laugh together. Feel free to share this with your family, friends, and co-workers as well! If you’re in the video, thanks for being a part of our project. Hope you enjoy it!

Furlough Friday Rap

Warmest regards,
Tiamo De Vettori