TESC SSSSU Tentative Agreement Summary



The following is a summary of the Tentative Agreement that will cover the period of July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2015.

The Tentative Agreement is in DRAFT form, subject to editing for typos, and formatted for final posting and printing. Any questions about this summary or the Tentative Agreement should be directed to a member of the bargaining team or Debbie Brookman at WFSE HQ, 1-800-562-6002.

Compensation (Article 40)
All employees covered by the Agreement will receive the following pay increases:

Across-the-Board Increases totaling 4%:
Effective July 1, 2013, a 3% across-the-board increase will be applied.
Effective July 1, 2014, a 1% across-the-board increase will be applied.

Step and Bonuses totaling 2%:
Each employee will receive one 1% step increase on the first day of the month in which the employee’s date of permanent/project hire occurs, once the employee has been employed for 12-months or more (for current employees, this will occur during the first year of the Agreement. Employees hired after July 1, 2013 will get the increase once they achieve 12-months of service). The step increase will remain a permanent part of each employee’s base salary.

In addition, effective July 1, 2013, each employee will receive a one-time bonus payment equal to 1% of the employee’s annual salary.

Memorandum of Understanding:
A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) has been reached to work together to discuss specific positions that need salary corrections. The MOU also provides for the Administration and the Union to create a sustainable step system for employees covered under the Agreement.

Preamble
Agreement that the implementation of the CBA is intended to create a harmonious working relationship based on mutual respect and other principles espoused in the TESC Social Contract.

Article 1, Union Recognition
Recognizes the Washington Federation of State Employees as the bargaining representative and provides a description of the bargaining unit.

Article 2, Non-Discrimination
Protections against discrimination are described. Protected status includes race, color, religion, creed, national origin, sex, sexual orientation, gender identity, gender expression, genetic information, marital status, age, disability, pregnancy, disabled and other covered veteran’s (as per TESC policy), and/or participation or lack of participation in union activities.

Article 3, Union Rights
Highlights include a right to union representation on all levels on any matter adversely affecting conditions of employment; release time (paid) for stewards and employees during working hours to participate in grievances and Union-Management meetings; allowances and rules for use of email and distribution of union material on campus; and other provisions for temporary employment with our Union and time off to serve as a statewide Union officer (President and Vice-President).

Article 4, Management Rights
Ensures management retains all the lawful rights necessary to run the College.

Article 5, Workplace Behavior
Requires all employees to foster a good work environment and also provides a complaint process for employees subject to inappropriate workplace behavior.

Article 6, Hiring and Appointments
If there are qualified bargaining unit applicants for a position, a minimum of 3 will be invited to participate in initial interviews (these can include former bargaining unit employees who were laid off within the last two years, too).

Article 7, Hours of Work
Defines the nature of overtime exempt work (consistent with status quo). Allows occasional absences of up to 2 hours without the use of leave. Provides process to request and be granted “offsetting” time off when excessive or extraordinary hours are worked.

Article 8, Training and Professional Development
Clarifies that employer required training is considered work time. Allows for 2-hours of training on the new Collective Bargaining Agreement for all employees and an additional full day of training for shop stewards (the steward training will be reduced to 4-hours in successor agreements). Maintains and clarifies the status quo on tuition reimbursement and licensure/certification costs.

Article 9, Dues Deductions and Status Reports
Requires all employees covered by the Agreement to pay union dues or fees within 30 days of employment. Provides an exception to those with bona fide religious beliefs against union membership, allowing them to pay an equivalent amount which is donated to a charitable organization. Requires the College to provide a monthly report to our union.

Article 10, Performance Evaluation
Provides for a performance evaluation to be completed at least every 2-years. Performance is determined “satisfactory” in the absence of an evaluation. In addition, provides for job descriptions to be reviewed and updated during the evaluation process (or between evaluations if job duties change significantly).

Article 11, Employee Files
Defines what files may be maintained by the College on employees and provides employee’s with access to those files, including rights to view, add to, and remove materials. Limits the retention of disciplinary actions to 3-years.

Article 12, Holidays
Maintains the current holiday schedule, including personal holidays. Allows an alternative day off if an employee is required to work on a holiday.

Article 13, Vacation Leave
Maintains current accrual rate and clarifies existing practices for the use of vacation leave. Adds reimbursement for travel costs (airfare, etc.) when an approved vacation is cancelled by the College due to emergency or exceptional business needs.

Article 14, Sick Leave
Maintains current accrual rate and clarifies existing practices for the use and cash-out of sick leave.

Article 15, Shared Leave
Shared leave denials would now be subject to the grievance procedure but otherwise maintains current practices for shared leave.

Article 16, Miscellaneous Paid Leaves
3-days of bereavement leave are provided. Allows paid time off for jury duty, job interviews (within state service), and life giving procedures such as blood donation. Preserves personal leave days at the current rate (1 per fiscal year).

Article 17, Family and Medical Leave
Like shared leave, the provisions for Family Medical Leave (FML) would now be subject to the grievance procedure, but otherwise maintains current practices for FML.

Article 18, Leave Without Pay (LWOP)
Establishes when LWOP must be approved (FML, work-related injury/illness, etc.) and when it may be approved (educational leave, etc.). Also, provides a procedure for the employee and the College to work out written return rights for returning to work after LWOP.

Article 19, Suspended Operations and Closures
Allows up to 2-hours for late arrival without requiring the use of leave during inclement weather. During closures, employees covered by this Agreement suffer no loss of pay.

Article 20, Compensable Work-Related Injury or Illness
Allows employees injured or made ill on the job to receive full Labor and Industries benefits in addition to accrued sick and/or vacation leave. Also, does not require the use of FML for compensable work related injury/illness.

Article 21, Reasonable Accommodation
Like shared leave and FML, this section maintains the status quo but does provide access to the grievance procedure, if needed. In addition, the College agrees to provide re-employment assistance for up to 2-years following a disability-related separation.

Article 22, Drug and Alcohol Free Workplace
Requires employees to report to work unimpaired by alcohol or drugs. Employees must report the use of medications when such use and/or side effects has an impact on job safety or performance. Limits drug testing to employees who perform safety sensitive functions (typically, those who drive trucks, forklifts, etc.) but only if there is reasonable suspicion of drug/alcohol use on-the-job. The College can request drug testing of any employee involved in an accident at work that caused death, serious injury, or significant property damage. Training is provided.

Article 23, Safety and Health
Establishes a safe workplace requirement, safety committee participation, and other basic safety provisions. Also, provides the right to request an ergonomic assessment and provides new processes to resolve workplace environmental concerns such air quality and fragrance issues. Vaccinations and testing in some circumstances, and safety training are also included here.

Article 24, Travel and Per Diem
Reimbursements will be paid within 10-work days. Training on travel reimbursement policies and processes will be provided upon hire and at least annually.

Article 25, Commute Trip Reduction and Parking
Encourages employees to use alternative means of transportation to get to work and maintains the status quo on other parking related issues. Provides that our union can request and will receive information on how parking funds are utilized (Increases to parking fees will now be a negotiable item).

Article 26, Discipline

  • All discipline will be for “just cause” (fair, consistent, timely, etc.).
  • Termination of employment can occur for legitimate performance reasons, without prior discipline (this does not include misconduct which will require progressive discipline, unless egregious).
  • New employees will serve a 12-month probationary period.
  • Grievances for oral reprimands, written reprimands, and suspensions of 7 calendar days or less can be processed to the top College step (Step 2, Vice-President).
  • Grievances for terminations and suspensions greater than 7 calendar days can be processed through step 2, too, but if not resolved, can be appealed to a new Discipline Review Panel.
  • The Panel is made up of 5 exempt employees: 2 selected by the Union; 2 selected by the VP for Student Affairs; and the 5th selected from a list (Appendix X) of currently employed faculty who have previously held the position of Dean at TESC.
  • The Panel’s decisions are final and binding.
  • A Memorandum of Understanding allows an evaluation and renegotiation of the Discipline Panel process and structure one year after the agreement is in place.

Article 27, Resignation and Abandonment
Establishes a 3-day threshold before TESC assumes an employee has abandoned their position. Under the agreement, if an employee doesn’t show up for work and doesn’t call in for 3-days, TESC must make attempts to contact the employee before terminating their employment. Then, the employee has 7-days to petition to be reinstated (for example, if the employee is in an accident resulting in serious injury, coma, etc.).

Article 28, Privacy and Off-Duty Conduct
Ensures employees the right to confidentiality related to personal information and personnel issues. Also, protects employees from discipline for off-duty conduct except if the conduct is detrimental to an employee’s work performance or to the program of the College. Requires employees to report arrests and/or court imposed sanctions that affect the employee’s ability to perform assigned duties.

Article 29, Mandatory Subjects
When the College wants to make a change to a “mandatory subject of bargaining,” i.e. changes to wages, hours, or working conditions, the College must notify our union and allow up to 21 days for our union to file a request to bargain the impacts of the change.

Article 30, Union – Management Committee
Provides a new way to communicate with management through a Union-Management Committee. Either party may propose discussion topics. Each party is allowed 4 representatives.

Article 31, Grievance Procedure
Establishes a 3-step grievance process that includes binding arbitration through a neutral third party (American Arbitration Association). Requires grievances be filed within 21-calendar days of the occurrence. The entire grievance process is available for contract violations (See Article 26, Discipline, for information on which grievance steps apply to disciplinary grievances). The grievance process allows, by mutual agreement, alternative dispute resolution methods such as mediation.

Article 32, Shared Services
Provides a non-grievable process to identify and provide services to other state agencies or institutions of higher learning (generally, in lieu of the other entity contracting the work out).

Article 33, Reductions in Force
In the event the College needs to cut staff due to a reduced budget, workload, or organizational change, they agree to notify affected staff and our union 30-days in advance, meet and discuss the situation, and apply seniority to the decision of whom to layoff if there are multiple employees performing similar functions, as established by an agreed upon “Positions List.” The application of seniority includes caveats for documented, exceptional job performance and disciplinary action. The Article also allows the College to consider requests from employees who wish to volunteer for layoff or reduced pay. The Article provides a process to implement temporary layoffs (furloughs).

Article 34, Voluntary Employees’ Beneficiary Associations (VEBA’s)
Allows VEBA’s (tax-free medical spending accounts) to be established for retirees from the bargaining unit.

Article 35, Legal Defense
This contract provisions maintains a current right: if you get sued for doing your job, you can request the Attorney General’s Office provide representation.

Article 36, Employee Assistance Program
Provides for an employee assistance program for employees and their families. Also, allows work time to go to EAP for an assessment.

Article 37, Childcare Centers
Maintains the status quo on employee access to the Child Care Center.

Article 38, Employee Lounge Facilities
Ensures lounge facilities will continue to be available and not used for other purposes during regular work hours (8-5:00pm).

Article 39, Volunteers and Student Workers
Ensures that current bargaining unit positions will not be supplanted by volunteers or student workers.

Article 41, Printing of Agreement
The Agreement will be posted on the College’s web site. Our union is responsible for producing and providing printed copies for stewards (our union will provide all current bargaining unit members with a complete, printed copy, too). Also, provides that employees with visual impairments will be provided accessible copies and, if there is a cost, our union and the College will share it.

Article 42, Strikes
Similar to our collective bargaining law (RCW 41.56), the Agreement does not permit or grant the right to strike.

Article 43, Entire Agreement
Nullifies all past practices and establishes that the Agreement supersedes any WAC’s and/or College policies with which it is in conflict.

Article 44, Savings Clause
Ensures that the balance of our Agreement remains intact in the unusual circumstance that part of it is determined to be unlawful.

Article 45, Term of Agreement
This Agreement will be in place for a 2-year term, July 1, 2013 through June 30, 2015.

Appendix X (See Article 26, Discipline)
Contains the list of faculty names available to the Discipline Review Panel.

Memorandum of Understanding
Allows either the Union or the College to request an joint evaluation and re-negotiation of the Discipline Review Panel process and structure after its been in place for one year.

Memorandum of Understanding – Special Pay Provisions
Allows review and discussion of job titles that need salary adjustments.
Provides that the College and Union will work together to create a new step system for the bargaining unit.

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