Biweekly news digest from the California State University Employees Union
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GOV. JERRY BROWN SIGNS STATE BUDGET
RESPONDING TO ARTICLES THAT BASH PENSIONS
NEW REPORT CHALLENGES CSU TRUSTEES’ PRIORITIES
STAFFORD COX NAMED CSULB OUTSTANDING STAFFER
STATEWIDE OFFICERS TO BE ELECTED THIS WEEKEND
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THIS DAY IN HISTORY
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Gov. Jerry Brown Signs State Budget
Gov. Jerry Brown signed a new state budget late yesterday that assumes voters will pass a multibillion-dollar tax hike in November. He’s projected that the state will raise $8.5 billion in the new fiscal year starting this July 1 by increasing the statewide sales tax by a quarter cent to 7.5 percent for four years and boosting the income tax on people who make more than $250,000 a year for seven years.
Both houses held floor sessions yesterday to pass a series of trailer bills that contained the guts of a compromise between Democrats and Brown.
Legislators also amended the main $91.5 billion general fund budget bill. The 2012-13 spending plan is intended to bridge a $15.7 billion deficit.
Democrats, many of whom had balked at various cutbacks in the governor’s original budget plan, struck a deal with the governor last week that involved imposing a harsher two-year time limit on welfare-to-work parents that starts in January, 2013; moving 880,000 low-income children from Healthy Families to Medi-Cal; and restoring $250 million in funding that Democrats originally wanted to take from counties.
In the last few days, details emerged on other provisions, including a change aimed at convincing CSU and University of California administrators to freeze tuition this fall. Holding fees flat, which will cost the state $125 million for each system, is contingent on voter approval of Brown’s November ballot measure to raise taxes. If voters reject the initiative, both systems face a $250 million cut.
"The budget that was just passed now turns the focus on passing Brown's tax measure," said CSUEU President Pat Gantt.
The budget also restricts Cal Grants to colleges with lower loan default rates and higher graduation rates.
Read the current budget summary, posted this morning to the California Department of Finance website (PDF). Gov. Brown’s line item vetoes are detailed in the last 10 pages.
Responding to Articles Bashing Pensions for Public Workers
Steve Maviglio of Californians for Retirement Security sends along this urgent note:
Public employees have been at the wrong end of a media punching bag since the election earlier this month. We need to act now to get the facts out there. Please take time today to log on and comment online to the following stories and to submit letters to the editor to the newspapers. We need this to be a blitz.
Read Maviglio’s insightful tips for writing letters to the editor in response to articles that attack pensions for public workers.
Some of the clips that need responses:
Los Angeles Times: Where is Democrats' urgency on pension reform? June 20, 2012
San Francisco Chronicle: Don't ignore pension problems, California June 27, 2012
San Francisco Examiner (editorial): Public-pension excesses could bring backlash
June 22, 2012
San Francisco Examiner: San Jose pension fight has statewide ramifications June 24, 2012
Santa Maria Times (editorial): A pension message from voters June 24, 2012
New Report Challenges CSU Administration’s Priorities
A new report from the American Council of Trustees and Alumni (ACTA) is stirring up some controversy. Titled “Best Laid Plans: The Unfulfilled Promise of Public Higher Education in California” (PDF), it shows that the real threat to California’s higher education is a failure by CSU trustees and other public university leaders to apply creativity and thoughtfulness to a new world of reduced resources and a shrinking tax base.
In the course of 79 pages, it points out major problems that require urgent attention, including dramatic hikes in cost to students, obstacles to university access, inadequate attention to educational quality and outcomes, and poor use of campus resources.
Among its more provocative proposed solutions is shutting down all majors across the CSU and UC systems that have only a small number of graduates each year. The San Francisco Chronicle took an in-depth look at the suggestion in this June 12 article.
Washington, D.C.-based ACTA was founded in 1995 with a mission to support liberal arts education, uphold high academic standards, safeguard the free exchange of ideas on campus, and ensure that the next generation receives a philosophically rich, high-quality college education at an affordable price. It does so primarily by calling on trustees to take on a more assertive governing role.
Stafford Cox Named CSULB 2012 Outstanding Staff Member
CSU Long Beach Chapter 315 certified steward and Bargaining Unit 9 member Stafford Cox has been recognized as the 2012 Outstanding Staff Member at California State University, Long Beach (CSULB).
The award was established in 1995 as a way to recognize those who have made significant contributions to the campus community, above and beyond their normal job duties.
Cox was first hired in the Department of Academic Computing Services as a statistician in 1988. He’s since served in a variety of roles, including network consultant, publications editor, workshop coordinator, web designer, information technologist, statistical consultant, and software licensing coordinator. Today, in addition to his analytical skills, he coordinates the distribution of site-licensed software and provides post-production support for multimedia projects.
A Michigan native, Cox holds a BS in zoology, MS in environmental health, and a master’s in public health from the University of Michigan. Following those studies, he moved to California, where he met his wife, Joyce, while earning a PhD in public health at UCLA. They have two daughters, Amy and Sarah.
Cox represented Chapter 315 as a CSEA General Council delegate in 2009. His participation on campus-wide committees has included the President’s Cabinet (1998-99), 50th Anniversary Planning Committee (1998-99), the 2006 Provost Search Committee and the Campus Special Events Committee (2001-present). He was also elected to three terms on the Academic Senate (1998-2007), where he championed the passage of a smoke-free campus resolution and its resulting policy.
“I’m honored to receive this recognition, as I feel very fortunate to be working at Long Beach State,” said Cox, reflecting on the honor. “I thank my fellow employees for sustaining our campus as a dynamic and vibrant learning environment. As union members, we must continue to nurture the traditions of mutual respect and collegiality in the hope of supporting a better future for us all. So, get involved and know that we are making a difference. We are the university. This is our time.”
Statewide Officers to Be Elected This Weekend
The Board of Directors and chapter officers will meet this weekend in Millbrae to elect CSUEU’s statewide officers and bargaining unit council members. Up to 244 union representatives and leaders will have the opportunity to network and participate in governance of the union.
Each chapter is entitled to send its president, vice-president, treasurer, secretary, organizing chair, and one representative each from Bargaining Units 2, 5, 7, and 9.
The group will cast votes for the statewide president, VP for organizing, VP for finance, and VP for representation. The bargaining unit council heads, chairs and vice-chairs will be elected from and by the chapter bargaining unit representatives. Finally, the remaining six seats on each bargaining unit council will be elected. All officers are elected for three years.
Elections are combined with an abbreviated Board of Directors meeting, this being one of three annual meetings. The elections will take place this Sunday, July 1, with terms commencing immediately. Election officials will employ several new procedural guidelines this time in an effort to streamline the process.
Read a selection of candidate statements.
Sign Up to Receive the Member Benefits Newsletter
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Having your Member Benefits department’s newsletter delivered directly to your email inbox once a month is an easy way to save money. Subscribe at the Member Benefits web site.
This Day in History
Birthday of machinist Matthew Maguire, who many believe first suggested Labor Day. Also on this day in 1894, Congress passed and President Grover Cleveland signed a bill designating the first Monday in September as both national Labor Day and a national holiday.
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See back issues of CSUEU E-News, distributed every other Thursday.
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Categories: CSUEU E-News |
Posted: 6/28/2012 |