2021 Reopener Update #1

Background

In 2019, the Federation negotiated a four-year contract that included an economic package with the following items: 

  • Annual Cost of Living Adjustment (COLA) to the salary schedules
  • Catchup COLAs for APs and step compression for Faculty
  • Regular step movement
  • A new top step for Full Time Faculty
  • Increasing parity between Full Time Faculty and Part Time Faculty salary schedules

For more details, you can read about the agreement here. The Federation agreed to a wage reopener in 2021 only if 2020-21 enrollment dipped below 21,196 student FTE or if the 2021-23 Oregon Community College Support Fund fell below $631 million. The Coronavirus pandemic has caused enrollment to fall below 21,000, so at least one of the criteria has been met. We will know more about state funding in June, though we do not anticipate a reduction. 

FFAP negotiates wages in collaboration with our colleagues in the Federation of Classified Employees (FCE). Together we form a Joint Bargaining Team (JBT). Other contractual issues, such as working conditions, professional duties, and assessment, are negotiated every four years during full contract negotiations. The next full contract negotiation will take place in 2023. 

The JBT is supported by our Labor Relations Specialist Vincent Blanco (vincent.blanco@pccffap.org). FFAP members on the negotiations team include: Frank Goulard (frank.goulard@pccffap.org), Matt Stockton (matt.stockton@pccffap.org), Emiliano Vega (emiliano.vega@pccffap.org), Shirlee Geiger (shirlee.geiger@pccffap.org), and Michelle DuBarry (michelle.dubarry@pccffap.org).  

Timeline

The first wage reopener meeting was held on April 22, 2021. Under Oregon state law, the teams have 150 days to come to an agreement. For more information, please see the Bargaining FAQ.

First Meeting Summary

The agenda for Thursday’s meeting was to set ground rules and work out the details for release time for bargaining team members. Administration also presented their initial offer. There were two main points of contention:

Open Bargaining: PCC administration asked that the ground rules keep bargaining meetings closed to observers, citing technical challenges of providing remote access, as well as disruptions caused by the presence of observers during the last two rounds of negotiations. The JBT feels strongly that observers should be allowed in order to promote transparency and trust between administration and the federations. The JBT presented a counter proposal to the ground rules that allowed for observers.

It is interesting to note that the main concerns with observers during 2019 was room capacity and safety. The fire marshall was repeatedly invoked as a way to limit the number of observers. Now that we are remote, the JBT is excited about the prospect of increasing accessibility to more members. 

COLA Reduction: Administration’s opening offer was for a 1.5% reduction in the negotiated COLA in years 2021-22 and 2022-23—from 2.5% to 1% in both years. Administration did not propose any changes to the other four economic contract gains described in the first paragraph. The JBT is committed to holding the line on COLA, and will present a counter-proposal at the next meeting, scheduled for May 6 at 1:00 p.m.