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University of Alaska regents approve faculty pay increases. But the union says negotiations aren’t over.



The University of Alaska Southeast campus in Juneau, shown on July 25, 2019 (David Purdy/KTOO)
The University of Alaska Southeast campus in Juneau, proven on July 25, 2019 (David Purdy/KTOO)

The University of Alaska Board of Regents has taken unilateral motion to extend salaries for its full-time college, regardless of ongoing federal mediation with the college’s union on a brand new collective bargaining settlement.

“This is an unusual step for sure,” stated UA President Pat Pitney concerning the unprecedented motion accredited by the regents throughout a particular assembly Monday.

Pitney stated mediation has did not convey the college and United Academics, or UNAN, considerably nearer collectively on the phrases of a brand new three-year collective bargaining settlement.

“And so last Friday we declared that we were at impasse,” stated Pitney.

With time working out to get a brand new contract accredited and funded by the Legislature earlier than the session ends, Pitney stated the college feels compelled to behave.

“It is the eleventh and a half hour,” she stated.

UA college have solely obtained a 1% increase over the previous 5 years, and amongst provisions within the college contract submitted to the Legislature is a 3.5% wage hike for the brand new fiscal 12 months which begins July 1, adopted by 2.5% and a couple of% raises the next two years. Pitney stated the will increase are in step with these in different UA worker agreements earlier than the Legislature.

“UNAC”s compensation and advantages place in contrast was greater than 4 occasions the extent the college is providing, unsustainable by any normal,” she stated.

Tony Rickard is a professor of arithmetic training on the University of Alaska Fairbanks and chief negotiator for United Academics. He stated the union has adjusted its proposals to attempt to attain an settlement and needs to maintain speaking.

“This a very puzzling action by President Pitney and the Board of Regents,” stated Rickard. “They seem to think that the mediation is over, and it’s not. We mutually agreed to a session that we have yet to have.”

Rickard stated UNAC shall be on the third and ultimate mediation session scheduled for Wednesday.

“And we expect the university to be there too,” Rickard stated.

It’s unclear if the college will attend, however UA lead negotiator David Eisenberg instructed regents on Monday that declaring an deadlock solely means the college is just not legally required to maintain negotiating.

“That said, obviously we are going to receive and consider any reasonable proposals from the union,” stated Eisenberg.

There’s some hypothesis {that a} UA college contract could possibly be thought of by the Legislature exterior the common session, however Pitney stated a particular session is unlikely in an election 12 months.

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