Tuesday, April 22, 2003

Career stepping 

The faculty member in this story which ran on local news recently is unhappy with the coverage. Faculty members got career step increases (as mentioned in previous post, it's in Article 11, section K) which are sizeable, and the video on the link shows that a large number of faculty received increases over $10,000. It's odd that Rep. Stang says he didn't read the contract closely enough -- it was negotiated a year before ratification.

What I think the investigation misses is that, according to proceedings in our Faculty Senate last month, the union was offered three packages, one of which included these career steps to deal with salary compression, the other two providing larger across-the-board increases. All of them cost roughly the same -- from what I am told, in fact, the one with the career steps was a million or so less. According to that discussion, it was the union's choice which of these packages to take; MnSCU was willing to settle on any of the three. The union elected to take the one with career steps (to the consternation of some younger faculty). So these steps did not cost the state any more than the contract proposals that were made without the step increases.

The last paragraph of the KSTP story is rank. There is not a single student interviewed on the video clip, nor has there been any article in the student-run University Chronicle that links tuition increases to faculty pay.