CSUEU E-News: July 23, 2009
Biweekly news digest from the California State University Employees Union
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CSU BOARD OF TRUSTEES RESOLUTIONS
CHAPTER 308 PRESIDENT QUOTED ABOUT FOOD STAMPS
REPORT FROM THE CSU BOARD OF TRUSTEES MEETING
CSUEU STATEWIDE ORGANIZING COMMITTEE GEARING UP
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CSU Board of Trustees Resolutions from July 21 Meeting
The resolutions passed by the CSU Board of Trustees at Tuesday’s meeting include:
- Title 5 amendments to permit furloughs, salary reductions, and unpaid holidays for non-represented University personnel, including Management Personnel Plan (MPP) and Executive employees
- Title 5 amendments to prevent students from enrolling in additional courses after meeting degree requirements
- Increase in student fees for 2009-2010 academic year for residents
- Increase in tuition for 2009-2010 academic year for nonresidents
Modesto Bee Quotes Chapter 308 President about Food Stamps
CSU Stanislaus Chapter 308 President Frank Borrelli was quoted in a Modesto Bee article yesterday on the impact of furloughs on the union’s lowest-paid represented employees, whose families may now be eligible for food stamps. The article begins:
As staff members at California State University, Stanislaus, prepare to take two furlough days a month, many supporting their families are coming dangerously close to qualifying for public aid.
Others have salaries low enough to qualify for food stamps despite working full time on campus.
“That’s criminal,” said Frank Borrelli, president of the local CSU Employees Union chapter, which represents about 400 employees. “People see state workers (as having) huge pensions and huge salaries. That’s not the group we represent.”
Later in the story, Borrelli mentions that some employees have told him they won’t be able to afford utilities and that others will need to take a second or third job.
July 21: Report from the CSU Board of Trustees Meeting
Several CSUEU leaders were featured speakers at the start of the public session of Tuesday’s Board of Trustees meeting at the Office of the Chancellor in Long Beach, led by CSUEU President Pat Gantt.
He spoke passionately about the difficult decision that members were forced to make in ratifying the furloughs agreement, and he demanded that the CSU live up to its part of the bargain by avoiding layoffs, managing workload issues, making prudent cuts wherever possible, and making certain that managers are furloughed.
VP for Representation Russell Kilday-Hicks described his visits to chapters across the state, where he met with employees who were upset at being asked to ratify the agreement on faith that the CSU would understand the sacrifice they were making. He described the rise in spending on prisons at the same time that the CSU budget is being unrelentingly slashed by the governor and legislature. He ended his comments with, “CSUEU members have taken this on trust. Please don’t let us down.”
Also speaking were the four BU chairs, including Tessy Reese (BU2), Annel Martin (BU7), and Rich McGee (BU9). Closing out the union’s speakers was Sharon Cunningham (BU9), who got everyone’s attention by asking that all presidents stop reading email and listen up! She went on to urge campus closures as the only effective way to deal with the utilities and maintenance issues that will inevitably arise if campuses fail to shut down on furlough days.
Outside, a noisy student protest highlighted the personal toll that incessant fee increases are taking on the very population whose education is the CSU’s mission. The demonstration began on Sunday night with a 48-hour vigil on the steps of CSU headquarters, led by a hardy group of some 30 CSU students from the Southern California campuses.
Chancellor Charles Reed’s office had refused permission for the protesters to camp out on the grounds. They made that an asset by staging a somber ceremony through the nights and days—reciting rally chants and taking turns reading aloud the text of the California Master Plan for Higher Education and quotes from educators on the crucial role of public higher education.
By mid-morning Tuesday, at least 300 protesters had gathered, including staff and faculty supporters. Regional labor and community groups also had a strong presence.
Adding to the drama of the moment was the announcement on Monday evening that a state budget deal had been tentatively reached, subject to legislative approval, a deal based primarily on wide programmatic cuts to bridge an estimated $26 billion state budget deficit.
At the Board of Trustees meeting, it was reported that the budget deal contains the $584 million cut to the CSU that has been projected by the Chancellor’s office for weeks.
The budget includes these cuts for other social services:
• K-12 education and community colleges: $4.3 billion
• Medi-Cal: $1.3 billion
• CalWorks/welfare: $528 million
• Home health aides: $226 million
• Healthy Families (children’s insurance): $124 million
• Local transportation: $1 billion
• Redevelopment agencies: $1.7 billion
“Many doomsayers at the Board of Trustees meeting decried the decimation of the CSU as we know it,” says Pat. “In the best of worlds, we will one day be able to look back on our ratification as a responsible move that went a long way to turn things around and help save the CSU from that fate.”
Richard Duarte, Toni Kukreja and Peggy O'Neil-Rosales of the Long Beach chapter participated in the protest outside Tuesday's Board of Trustees meeting.
CSUEU STATEWIDE ORGANIZING COMMITTEE GEARING UP
Vice President for Organizing Ronnie Grant reports that the Statewide Organizing Committee, charged with developing strategic planning for CSUEU’s organizing campaigns, is shifting into high gear with the ratification of the furlough agreement.
“With these budget cuts and furloughs upon us, CSUEU needs to build a true strategic plan to leverage our member’s political strength to fight for proper funding for the CSU,” said Grant.
Following the election of officers for another two-year term in late June, Ronnie must appoint another committee for 2009-2011. He hopes to complete appointments by Monday; interested members can contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org. The committee meets three or four times a year in person and holds periodic conference calls and other activities.
A special meeting of the committee is tentatively scheduled for Saturday, August 1, via telephone conference call. Details will be posted on the Inside CSUEU blog.
An updated version of the agreement on furloughs is now available on the Bargaining page. It includes clarifications agreed upon in a meeting with the CSU on July 21. Also available on the Bargaining page is the original agreement.
RSS feeds have been added to the home page and the Budget Central page. This feature allows you to receive summaries of new articles added to either page.
You can now follow CSUEU on Twitter. From your Twitter account, sign up to follow us in order to learn of new articles within moments of posting.
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Saturday, August 8, 10 a.m.-5 p.m.
Board of Directors Retreat
Holiday Inn Capitol Plaza
Friday-Monday, September 4-7
CSEA 65th General Council
Tuesday-Wednesday, September 22-23
CSU Board of Trustees Meeting
Monday, October 12
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See back issues of CSUEU E-News, distributed every other Thursday.
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Categories: CSUEU E-News |
Posted: 7/23/2009 |