Contract Negotiations Update

by , under Contract Negotiations

Subsequent to the MOA defeat on January 24th, the UTN Negotiations Team immediately began discussions, both formally and informally, with the District in an effort to reach a fair and reasonable settlement which would be acceptable to the membership.

On Thursday, March 1st, representatives from the District and Union Negotiations Teams met to discuss reasons for the defeat. It was made clear to the District that three key factors contributed to the membership’s rejection of the January 10th MOA—loss of incremental steps, lack of augmentation to step 20, and the Teaching Assistants’ 5 Step Schedule.

The parties returned to the table on Wednesday, March 14th at which time a conceptual proposal was offered by the District to the Union. That proposal did not adequately address the three key factors. The Union agreed to develop a counterproposal. The UTN Negotiations Team met for over four hours that evening and for an additional four hours on Monday, March 19th. That afternoon, President Blanck provided the UTN counterproposal to both Board President Waldenburg and Superintendent McDermott.

It is with both disappointment and frustration that we inform you that the District has rejected our counterproposal and moved to the next level of factfinding. Board Counsel Gross today officially requested a factfinding hearing date with PERB appointed mediator, Robert Douglas.

While the UTN Negotiations Team continues in its preparation for the factfinding process, all members are called to action. This afternoon, upon notification of the District’s decision, the Negotiations Team convened in emergency session just prior to the Board of Directors’ meeting. A long-term action plan, in response to this recent development is being developed and will be reviewed and finalized by the Action Team tomorrow afternoon. Please be advised that your Building Representatives and Action Team Leaders will be providing details of that plan beginning on Friday.

The Negotiations Team is also developing a schedule of building visits to commence upon our return from spring recess.

Your continued support and participation in unity actions is greatly appreciated.