Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Spillovers to UC from the SEIU Deal with the Governor?

Are there any spillover effects for UC from the deal between SEIU Local 1000 and the governor as part of the budget enactment? There had been prior deals with some other state unions but Local 1000 was the biggie. The contract has yet to be ratified by union members. Directly, the contract has no effect on UC employees since none are covered by the agreement. Other unions represent UC employees. But indirectly there might be some effects, either positive or negative. Let’s look at the terms as described by the union on its website - actual contract language is not on the website as of today - followed by some comments below the italicized excerpt:

1) We won a 3 percent wage increase that will be added to the top of each pay range; this is up from the state's no raise proposal; annual step increases are maintained for all employees below the top step.

2) We reduced the governor's demand for a 5 percent increase in employee pension contributions to a 3 percent increase.

3) We won a guarantee of no additional furloughs during the first year of the contract and, because of the Supreme Court's recent decision, no furloughs in the second and third years unless the Legislature authorizes them in budget legislation.

4) We won a continuous appropriation guarantee, which protects our members from minimum wage in case of budget delays.

5) Our members will receive 12 personal leave days in exchange for a one-time,12-month, 4.62 percent decrease in pay.

6) Our members will receive two professional development days.

7) We renewed more than 95 percent of the guarantees from our last contract.

Note: The items above appear on


Item 5 more than cancels item 1 for the first year. But thereafter, there is a pay increase. That might make a pay freeze or reduction next year more difficult for UC to implement since it would be a deviation from other state workers.

Item 3 continues the furloughs (and according to the Sacramento Bee actually extends them to certain groups that had not had them before; see However, it appears that UC is willing to live with a situation with no furloughs for its employees while state workers continue to have them.

Item 4 ends the minimum wage threat if no budget is in place next July 1. UC employees were never directly affected by the minimum wage. But the minimum wage never went into effect, despite the governor’s efforts, due to litigation which is still continuing. (So we don't know what UC would have done if state workers were at the minimum but its employees were not.) To the extent that the issue might have ever arisen again in the future, it appears now to be dead.

Item 2 is an increase in pension contributions by employees to 8%. It is likely that UCOP and the Regents will cite that development in considering pension policy at UC.

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