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

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.


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.


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).