The purpose of this webpage is to provide a publicly available site for the College to provide information about the collective bargaining negotiations presently on-going between the College and the Nevada Faculty Alliance/American Association of University Professors (NFA/AAUP). Communication and transparency are important to understanding and analyzing the different perspectives coming out of the collective bargaining effort. We also believe it is important to make information easily available to all CSN community members.
Materials exchanged between the College and the NFA/AAUP will be posted here. This webpage will be updated as new proposals are exchanged, and we encourage you to check back frequently.
The sole basis and authority for collective bargaining within the Nevada System of Higher Education is the Regents’ Handbook provisions at Title 4, Chapter 4. Federal law or Nevada statutes concerning local governments do not apply.
In the Spring 2016, the academic faculty, counselors and librarians voted by majority vote to pursue collective bargaining through the NFA/AAUP, and notified the College in November 2016 that it was ready to commence negotiations.
a) Governance models for the College
An important issue that has arisen in the negotiations is the governance models for CSN going forward. One important element currently of the shared governance enjoyed at CSN is a strong Faculty Senate with Senators elected from across the College schools. The CSN Bylaws provide and the current practice is that Faculty Senate is the primary recommending body for CSN policy. It is the College’s belief that the better continuing governance model is to have policies debated within Faculty Senate. The NFA/AAUP’s approach to include various policies in the collectively bargained agreement (CBA) will modify and weaken the role of Faculty Senate. The NFA/AAUP has not proposed that all policies be put into the CBA, but to the extent they are they will be negotiated in the context of these negotiations. Once a CBA is approved, modifications to a policy will require that negotiations be re-opened.
A second issue regarding governance is the role of the CSN president. For example, the NFA/AAUP’s proposal for arbitration will apply to all provisions in the CBA. The arbitration provision provides that a third-party arbitrator selected from outside the College will make decisions brought to them. The College’s position is that this shifts responsibility and obligation on the arbitrated issues away from the President. The NFA/AAUP proposal also requires the losing party to pay the costs of the arbitration which can be thousands of dollars.
b) Regents’ Handbook mandate
As noted earlier, the sole authority for the collective bargaining is the Regents’ Handbook. It is the position of the College that Title 4, Chapter 4, Section 13 prescribes the topics for mandatory collective bargaining when it provides that “…mandatory collective bargaining shall be limited to the following topics....” The College will only negotiate on the topics listed in Section 13. Click Title 4, Chapter 4, Section 13 to view the Handbook.
WHO WILL VOTE ON A CONTRACT?
Who will vote on the collective bargaining agreement?
The NFA/AAUP expressed the opinion in December 2016 that only NFA members should participate in voting regarding any collective bargaining agreement. The College believes that the clear language of Title 4, Chapter 4, Section 10(2) provides that all academic faculty, counselors and librarians in the bargaining unit must have the opportunity to vote regarding the agreement. In December 2016, the NFA/AAUP requested the NSHE Vice Chancellor-Legal provide an opinion on that point. On January 6, 2017, the Vice-Chancellor concurred with the College’s position.
NFA/AAUP has presented almost 2 dozen proposals so far, and the College has presented several counter-proposals. CSN has not presented to other proposals for the reasons discussed in other sections of this page, and some proposals are still being reviewed. NFA/AAUP has proposed the following:
CSN’s PROPOSALS & COUNTER-PROPOSALS
CSN has proposed the following counter-proposals:
1a) Safety - Counterproposal
1b) Safety - 2nd Counterproposal
1c) Safety - 3rd Counterproposal
1d) Safety - 4th Counterproposal
2a) Non-Discrimination Counterproposal
2b) Non-Discrimination - 2nd Counterproposal
3) Distribution Counterproposal
4a) Financial Exigency Counterproposal
4b) Financial Exigency - 2nd Counterproposal
4c) Financial Exigency - 3rd Counterproposal
5a) Market Hires Counterproposal
5b) Market Hires - 2nd Counterproposal
6a) Salary Counterproposal
6b) Salary - 2nd Counterproposal
6c) Salary - 3rd Counterproposal
6d) Salary - 4th Counterproposal
6e) Salary - 5th Counterproposal
6f) Salary - 6th Counterproposal
7a) Discipline and Termination Counterproposal
7b) Discipline and Termination - 2nd Counterproposal
7c) Discipline and Termination - 3rd Counterproposal
7d) Discipline and Termination - 4th Counterproposal
7e) Discipline and Termination - 5th Counterproposal
7f) Discipline and Termination - 6th Counterproposal
8a) Grievance Procedure Counterproposal
8b) Grievance Procedure - 2nd Counterproposal
8c) Grievance Procedure - 3rd Counterproposal
9a) Work Out of Title Counterproposal
9b) Work Out of Title - 2nd Counterproposal
9c) Work Out of Title - 3rd Counterproposal
10a) Overload Requests Counterproposal
10b) Overload Requests - 2nd Counterproposal
11a) Masters of Fine Arts Counterproposal
11b) Masters of Fine Arts - 2nd Counterproposal
12a) Arbitration Counterproposal
12b) Arbitration - 2nd Counterproposal
12c) Arbitration - 3rd Counterproposal
13a) Program Directors Counterproposal
13b) Program Directors - 2nd Counterproposal
13c) Program Directors - 3rd Counterproposal
14a) Librarians Counterproposal
14b) Librarians - 2nd Counterproposal
14c) Librarians - 3rd Counterproposal
14d) Librarians - 4th Counterproposal
15) Benefits Counterproposal
16a) Summer School Counterproposal
16b) Summer School - 2nd Counterproposal
16c) Summer School - 3rd Counterproposal
17a) Emergency Hires Counterproposal
17b) Emergency Hires - 2nd Counterproposal
18a) Professional Enrichment Counterproposal
18b) Professional Enrichment Programs - 2nd Counterproposal
18c) Professional Enrichment - 3rd Counterproposal
19a) Hiring Counterproposal
19b) Hiring - 2nd Counterproposal
20a) Faculty Offices Counterproposal
20b) Faculty Offices - 2nd Counterproposal
20c) Faculty Offices - 3rd Counterproposal
21a) Contact Hours Counterproposal
21b) Contact Hours - 2nd Counterproposal
21c) Contact Hours - 3rd Counterproposal
22a) Department Chairs Counterproposal
22b) Department Chairs - 2nd Counterproposal
23a) Counselors Counterproposal
23b) Counselors - 2nd Counterproposal
23c) Counselors - 3rd Counterproposal
24) Shared Governance Counterproposal
25a) Faculty Engagement and Participation Counterproposal
25b) Faculty Engagement and Participation (now Faculty Contracts) 2nd Counterproposal
26) Successorship Counterproposal
CSN has proposed the following proposals:
THE NEGOTIATING TEAMS
|NFA/AAUP team||CSN College team|
|David Steel||Patty Charlton|
|Jennifer Nelson||Mary Kaye Bailey|
|Glynda White||Juanita Chrysanthou|
|Steve Soltz||Richard Hinckley|
|Jerry Hodges||Clarissa Cota|
|Caprice Roberson/Ted Chodock|
ATTENDING THE BARGAINING SESSIONS
The two teams discussed and decided at the outset of the negotiations to invite anyone to come to the negotiation sessions. Non-team members won’t participate in the discussion, but everyone is welcome to attend and observe. So far, there have been 13 negotiation sessions, and the next scheduled meetings are:
- March 10, 2017, 9 am, NLV Campus - Conf Rm A/B
- March 24, 2017, 3 pm, Henderson Campus - C-106
- April 7, 2017, 9am, West Charleston Campus
- April 17, 2017, 3pm, West Charleston Campus
- April 28, 2017, 3pm, West Charleston Campus
- May 8, 2017, 3pm, NLV Campus
- May 19, 2017, 9am, West Charleston Campus
- May 30, 2017, 9am, NLV Campus
- June 16, 2017, 9am, NLV Campus
- June 26, 2017, 9am, Henderson Campus
WHY HASN'T CSN ACCEPTED NFA-CSN's PROPOSAL DEALING WITH DISCRIMINATION?
The College of Southern Nevada has consistently demonstrated its commitment to providing an environment that is free from any form of discrimination towards College faculty, students and staff. CSN does not tolerate discrimination in any form, and actively addresses any allegation otherwise. The Board of Regents of the Nevada System of Higher Education (‘Board’) has adopted a comprehensive regulation prohibiting discrimination that includes a strong policy statement, extensive investigation practices, management oversight, and hearing requirements (all of which have the force and effect of law). This regulation is over 20 pages long.
CSN follows this comprehensive policy not only because it must do so, but also because it is the right thing to do. One of CSN’s efforts to fully implement the non-discrimination policy is to support its Office of Institutional Equity (‘OIE’) which is staffed with well-trained, experienced investigators who receive all complaints or concerns of discrimination. OIE fully investigates and provides a written report on each investigation. If an act of discrimination has occurred, the remedies include discipline up to suspension or termination from the College. The hearing board for any suspension or termination can include a third party law-trained hearing officer and a panel of faculty members selected at random to hear the case.
Consistent with the foregoing, the College adheres to all federal and state laws pertaining to non-discrimination. Whenever a complaint is made to a state or federal agency, it also is fully investigated and a response provided.
CSN believes the Board’s policy, investigation requirements and hearing procedures are comprehensive and are, frankly, superior in content to the proposal made by the NFA. There is no difference in attitude or perspective between NFA and CSN with respect to rejecting any form of discrimination. The difference is in the response. CSN believes the Board’s and CSN’s approach is superior to what the NFA has proposed in protecting against and remedying any concerns of discrimination. It is in the best interest of the entire college community not to take a step backward on this important topic.
Another reason for CSN’s position not to accept the NFA’s proposal is that the Board’s policy has specifically prescribed the focus of a non-discrimination provision in a collectively bargained agreement. The Board’s policy is the only authority in Nevada allowing collective bargaining at CSN, and this authority must be followed.
The Board’s policy and direction, in respect to this matter, states:
The scope of mandatory collective bargaining negotiations under this chapter shall be limited to the following topics:
. . .
l. Protection of employees in the bargaining unit from discrimination because of participation in recognized employee organizations consistent with the provisions of this chapter. Regent’s Handbook, Title 4, Chapter 4, Section 13.
CSN has provided a proposed contract provision that fully embraces the foregoing requirement. Therefore, there is no disagreement between CSN and NFA as it pertains to non-discrimination for those within the Collective Bargaining Unit.
NFA’s proposal is brief and proposes no investigation or hearing process, except that its proposed arbitration provision would apparently apply. Pursuant to that proposal, a 3rd party arbitrator will hear and decide complaints under the NFA proposal. CSN will not support provisions that limit the obligations or the authority of the institutional president or the Board of Regents of the Nevada System of Higher Education.
Also, CSN does not support limiting training for discrimination and/or other related programs to not more than once every 5 years. CSN administration asserts such a minimal requirement is inadequate.
CSN does not have an ethnic majority in its student body. It is recognized as one of the most diverse community colleges in the United States. It is designated as a Hispanic Serving Institution and a Minority Serving Institution.
WHAT IS THE COLLEGE'S POSITION AND PROPOSAL FOR SALARY ADJUSTMENTS FOR ACADEMIC FACULTY?
NFA criticized CSN’s counter-offer on salary arguing that faculty have received zero raises over the last ten years, which they believe indicates that faculty aren’t valued.
NFA’s argument that there have been no raises for 10 years is incorrect as demonstrated by their own data. The argument that faculty aren’t valued is an emotional reaction that is absolutely untrue. Also, NFA has written that CSN is not willing to commit any resources to CSN’s salary proposal. Again, this is an incorrect conclusion clearly contrary to the CSN salary proposal.
Faculty base salary levels rose 23% since FY07 because of merit and COLA increases. Additionally, the Governor has proposed a 2% increase on July 1, 2017 and another 2% increase on July 1, 2018.
CSN is also fully supportive of efforts to request that the Legislature make an appropriation for merit pay. The College leaves that task primarily to the NFA through its legislative contacts, especially those who have written in support of NFA-AAUP/CSN negotiations.
In addition to merit and COLA increases, CSN performed an internal Equity Study in 2013, and 336 academic faculty (approx. 70%) received increases to base salary levels in 2014. The largest adjustment was just over 42%, the smallest was slightly less than 2%, and the average adjustment was approximately 18.5%. These adjustments were funded by internal CSN resources pursuant to the NSHE Procedures and Guidelines Manual.
Therefore, using the data from the last 10 years, academic faculty base salaries have increased substantially.
NFA also has used a comparison of merit appropriations with step increases for the classified employees. CSN does not believe this is an appropriate comparison because the classified employees’ salary levels are lower (generally ¼ or ½ of the salary levels of academic faculty). This is one of the underlying justifications for the Legislature’s appropriations for step increases.
Nevertheless, the reference to the classified employees emphasizes the point that the Legislature is the source for appropriations for special adjustments, and this overall responsibility is not placed with each individual college or university absent legislative appropriation.
NSHE’s established method to enable a review of the appropriateness of the professors’ salaries relative to the job-market is to perform the NSHE salary study. Everyone agrees that this should be done, and CSN urges that we collaboratively insist that it be done. Thereafter, depending on the results, Legislative appropriations need to be made to match the outcome of the study.
In reply to NFA’s salary proposal, CSN has proposed to:
-Perform another internal Equity Study with a target completion of 4 months after CBA ratification. CSN recognizes that these studies must be performed at appropriate cycles. As noted earlier, the results of Equity Studies are implemented with CSN internal funding sources.
-Join with NFA to request NSHE perform the NSHE salary study.
No one disputes the painful rise in employees’ out-of-pocket costs on the medical benefit. This is a national phenomenon driven by national policy decisions. Salary adjustments can help with this problem, but CSN is not permitted to absorb the increased cost of premiums.
CSN must follow all applicable law, which includes the Regents’ Handbook. Importantly, Section 9 of the Collective Bargaining chapter provides:
The System is constrained by funding resources external to its control and subject to approval by bodies not participant in negotiations such as are provided by these regulations. No provision of any bargaining agreement negotiated pursuant to this chapter which requires the expenditure of funds for any purpose shall be effective unless and until funds are appropriated and are made available to the System by the Nevada Legislature….
So far, NFA has not provided a meaningful or reasonable response to CSN’s point that this law must be followed. NFA’s only response is that “CSN can pay.”
CSN is not permitted to ignore lawful requirements. CSN is not willing to unilaterally modify the means and manner for funding salary adjustments.
At the next negotiation session on April 28, at 3 p.m. in K-134 on the Charleston campus, CSN will discuss the foregoing issues with the NFA negotiating team and will present financial data that is relevant to these salary negotiations. As always, all are invited to attend to hear this important information (if necessary, we’ll move to a larger room). You can also review NFA’s and CSN’s salary proposals posted on this webpage, and we encourage you to do so.
CSN's FINANCIAL RESOURCES POWERPOINT PRESENTATION PRESENTED ON APRIL 28, 2017
CHANCELLORS' MEMORANDA ON SALARY ADJUSTMENTS
- “Salary Adjustments for Faculty and Other Professional Staff,” dated July 24, 2017
- “Clarification- Salary Adjustments for Faculty and Other Professional Staff,” dated Sept. 21, 2017
On July 24, 2017, Acting Chancellor Jane A. Nichols issued a memorandum regarding salary adjustments: “Salary Adjustments for Faculty and Other Professional Staff.” This memo, with limited exceptions, proscribes salary adjustments to groups of employees while a legislative study focused in part on faculty compensation is in progress. The Nichols’ memo is available at: Salary Adjustments for Faculty and Other Professional Staff.
This memo was presented during the August 11, 2017 Collective Bargaining session.
On September 21, 2017, Chancellor Thom Reilly issued a clarification to the Nichols’ memorandum: “Clarification-Salary Adjustments for Faculty and Other Professional Staff.” This memo clarified that salary adjustments based on equity studies may be made. The Reilly memo is available at: Clarification-Salary Adjustments for Faculty and Other Professional Staff.
Please review the memoranda for their complete texts.
CSN has made a proposal to conduct an equity study (see proposal #6 under CSN's Proposals & Counter-Proposals) to review and revise faculty salaries.
CURRENT STATUS IN MARCH 2018 OF SALARY NEGOTIATIONS
Negotiations with the NFA have reached a critical juncture, particularly regarding salary discussions. NFA asserts that CSN has available money to enhance or increase CSN’s salary proposal.
The reality is that CSN does not have the money to increase or enhance base salaries. Nevada’s funding or appropriation method and CSN’s financial situation has been frequently described to the NFA bargaining team, with documentation and data to demonstrate CSN’s budget reality. NFA is not well served by anyone who suggests that CSN (or NSHE) has cash reserves at its disposal for discretionary spending. CSN has extended an open invitation for any discussion or questions about its financial condition, accounting, reserve balances, state funding, etc. in order to ensure an accurate understanding and perspective of its financial position.
CSN’s conclusion that it cannot add any financial resources to its salary proposal is based on the following two foundational points:
- The equity/compression studies that CSN is processing presently and has proposed in the 2nd year of the proposed Collective Bargaining Agreement will have a fiscal impact on the College. These studies are designed to alleviate inequitable salary levels internally, and are funded through existing resources, however due to limitations, this would require a reduction of service levels of current academic and operational activities.
- Salary and benefits for state employees must be appropriated by the Nevada Legislature. This is Nevada’s method to sustain its departments and its employees. The Legislature passed AB202 in the last session requiring a study of higher education salary levels; that work has recently been announced. The Chancellor is required periodically to perform a study on faculty salaries; that work is in process right now. The Legislature also determined that no appropriation for merit increases would be made. These efforts underscore the Nevada model of state appropriation for state employee salaries and benefits.
NFA cites several ‘examples’ to support its belief that money is available:
- CSN’s appropriation increased in the last session from $138M to $145M. The increase is assigned to specific projects; it can’t be used for salaries.
- CSN announced that it will provide $7M for the Student Union bldgs. These funds have been in planning for multiple years and is the result of support from students. This is a one-time allocation of funding. The additional costs to construction and operate the Student Unions will be paid from the proceeds of a new student fee.
- CSN has announced plans to pursue the construction of the new Health & Sciences building on the Henderson campus. This is a state appropriation and even then the Legislature is requiring CSN and the CSN Foundation raise $6M toward that project.
Additionally, NFA cites to the furloughs several years ago during the recession as a prime reason to support supplemental dollars now. All state employees experienced that pain of those difficult economic times, and that tough experience has not changed the tight budgeting that CSN continues to experience. The Legislature has appropriated 6% legislative-approved salary adjustment increases (FY 15-16 through FY 17-18) and the restoration of the salaries since the furlough.
CSN has and continues to negotiate in good faith. Approximately eleven proposals have been negotiated and tentatively resolved. In regards to salary, the following proposals/counter proposals have been communicated;
- Salary & Benefits
- Equity/Compression Study: CSN has committed to completion of a salary compression study as outlined in the Nevada System of Higher Education, Procedures and Guidelines Manual. A committee is in place to facilitate the work as outlined in the policy. The committee’s first meeting was March 7, 2018.
- Summer Teaching – increase of pro-rata pay (base salary x factor (.01875) to (.02) this represents a 6.67% adjustment to the pro-rata pay rate.
- Relocation; CSN has committed to providing a limited budgetary allocation to assist in moving allowance for new hires that relocate to southern Nevada from locations approximately 220 miles or greater.
The NFA has proposed additional salary/benefit items CSN has not been able to agree to these proposals inasmuch as any salary/benefit items must be sustainable and legislatively funded.
- Salary Proposal – One-time bonus: flat $190 plus ten dollars per year of service: $190 + ($10 x years of service).*
- Equity study: consider salary levels at other colleges, guaranteed dollar amount for equity studies, and minimum increase to every faculty member in certain salary quadrant. Equity studies and allocation of increase of salary funds for each year of a proposed 3-year contract.
- Contact Hours – NFA requests lab/clinical/studio pay adjusted from .75 to 1.0. (CSN has proposed to assign this issue to a study committee to make a recommendation on the appropriate level of weighting for lab/clinical/studio teaching time because there is no uniformity nationally on this topic.)
- Overload Rate – NFA requests the overload rate be increased from $825 to $1,017, a 23.27% increase. CSN incorporated in its 2019 Budget Request to have part-time/overload rate increased to $1,200 per instructional unit to address southern Nevada competition (UNLV).
- Benefits – NFA requests certain benefits consistent with classified (sick leave bank, sick leave payout for retirees (with over 10 years of service – max of $8,000 per employee, parental leave (three weeks paid leave – above sick leave and prior to FMLA (birth of newborn, caring for newborn, or placement of child with bargaining unit member (foster or adopted). CSN maintains that changes in state employee benefits are within the purview of the Legislature.
Several policy and/or authority issues are also at a juncture point:
- NFA proposes to eliminate presidential power, Faculty Senate or Board of Regents authority by:
- Adopting third-party arbitration as the last step in grievance process
- Place various policy matters in contract (outside of Faculty Senate/presidential approval process).
- Proposals that limit or remove the authority of the Board of Regents or chancellor.
CSN continues to negotiate in good faith and to share information across the institution. A few examples include:
- All information on proposals and counter proposals are available on the CSN webpage;
- All bargaining sessions are open to any interested employees;
- A number of proposals have been countered multiple times;
- Work sessions with smaller groups have been held (summer teaching, arbitration/grievance/discipline)
*Previously understood to be $200 per year of service, but NFA has corrected our understanding of the proposal.
CSN HAS REQUESTED 3RD PARTY FACT-FINDING
At the negotiating session on July 13, 2018, CSN determined that the negotiation process and discussions bogged down to the point that additional sessions at this time would not be fruitful. Consequently, CSN invoked its right under the Regents’ policy to move the process to 3rd party fact-finding. The CSN letter requesting fact-finding is attached: Fact Finding Letter.
Also attached is a chart showing CSN’s tabulations of the increases in pay in the various areas it has proposed, totaling almost $600,000: Collective Bargaining Outlays Chart. The chart notes that there would have been an additional $310,000 in costs represented by the contractually guaranteed “B+” contracts for Program Directors. It also describes NFA’s position requesting base salary adjustments for all bargaining unit members.