Magazine Article

Equity program to provide much-needed salary relief for 3,000 CSU faculty

In mid-February, CFA received notice from the CSU Chancellor’s Office that new Chancellor Timothy White intends to fully implement year two of the Equity Salary Program provided in the faculty contract.

This act will provide much-needed salary relief to nearly 3,000 CSU faculty members who were affected by inversion and compression.

Inversion refers to newly hired faculty getting jobs at higher pay than faculty who had been in the CSU for years. Compression is the term for long-time faculty being trapped at the top of a salary ladder that squeezed down on them more and more over time.

The decision to implement this contract provision—which was announced via a letter to CFA from Gail Brooks, CSU Vice Chancellor for Human Resources—indicated that the CSU administration intends to fund $5 million in equity raises negotiated in our previous contract but not funded in 2008/09.

Implementation of this program is contingent upon the legislature’s approval of the $125 million CSU funding increase proposed by the governor in January.

“We appreciate the chancellor taking this step to address a long-standing problem and look forward to working with him on solving the other pressing issues confronting the faculty who have made considerable personal sacrifices to bring the university through tough times,” said CFA President Lillian Taiz.

She continued, “While the salary relief provided to this small group of faculty is much needed, there are still tens of thousands of faculty and staff who have not received across-the-board increases (GSI) and step increments (SSI) for many years.”

Background

In the faculty contract that was ratified in 2007, the CFA Bargaining Team took up the growing problems of inversion and compression in the faculty salary structure.

In that contract, CFA won a two-year Equity Pay Program, which was an attempt to address these flaws in the pay scale. The first year of the program was implemented and it helped thousands of faculty members.

But, then-Chancellor Charles Reed refused to fund the second year citing the requirement to meet and confer if the contract wasn’t fully funded. He took this action despite a recommendation by a neutral fact-finder who said the university could and should fund the program.

The new collective bargaining agreement between CFA and CSU management (ratified last summer) brought back the second year of the Equity Pay Program on a campus-by-campus basis and at the discretion of each campus president.

In recognition of the fact that new salary inversion problems have surfaced over these many years without salary increases, the current contract also provides that, once Equity Year 2 is fulfilled, at the president’s discretion, campuses may develop a third equity program to address these new problems.

The design of such new equity programs would involve the participation of the CFA chapter on campus.

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