UH DISAPPOINTED WITH RESPONSE TO COLLECTIVE BARGAINING OFFER

September 17, 2009, 3:46 PM HST · Updated September 18, 7:30 AM
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The University of Hawaii presented what they are calling their best and final offer to the UH Professional Assembly.  The deal calls for a 5% pay cut as well as other concessions-a proposal that was not received well by the UHPA.

UH Vice President for Community Colleges John Morton, who serves as the univeristy’s chief negotiator under the collective bargaining process said, “We are disappointed that UHPA leaders are recommending that its members reject the university’s best and final offer.”

Morton also noted the challenges faced with reductions in budget at a time of increased enrollment.

“We are experiencing a record increase in enrollment. At the same time, we face at least a $154 million shortfall in our budgets over the next two years. We believe that our offer is reasonable and look forward to a resolution of our bargaining efforts that best serves our students and the mission of our university,” said Morton.

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The UHPA website posted an opinion on the negotiations last month saying, “As we have made clear during collective bargaining sessions, Hawaii’s public sector workers are ready and willing to do our part to help our state in these difficult times.  But we cannot bear this burden disproportionately.  We need a more prudent and forward-looking approach to solving the state’s budget crisis that doesn’t jeopardize essential services Hawaii residents’ need.”

The UHPA will give its members the opportunity to weigh in on the issue in a vote next month.

(Posted by Wendy Osher)

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