FAQ 2014
Your Questions Answered about the 2014-2017 Contract


Q1: What salary increases does the contract provide?

A: In the first year, the contract sets in place:

  • Salary Recovery Adjustments for faculty who are below the Service Salary Increase (SSI) maximum; this 3% increase applies to:
    • all tenure-track faculty (all probationary and tenured faculty) under the SSI max,
    • temporary faculty with 3-year appointments, and  
    • coaches with six or more years service in the same classification.
  • A CSU-wide equity pay program to address inversion and compression caused by hiring issues and lack of raises during the recession. It is based on a formula that considers both salary and hire dates.
  • Lecturer Salary Corrections to fix misclassification of Lecturers who have languished in extremely low-paid salary ranges. This solution eliminates the lowest pay category for Lecturers.
  • A 1.6% General Salary Increase (GSI) for all faculty members.

Q2: Will the salary increases be retroactive?

A: Yes, they will be retroactive to July 1, 2014. The way retroactive payments are paid is up to the state controller, but usually a separate check for a lump sum adjustment is issued to each faculty member. The new rate of pay will be in place from that point forward.

Q3: Why dID the CSU keep talking about 3% during the negotiating process?

A: In thinking about salary increases, faculty members tend to care about what specific programs have been negotiated and how these programs will affect one’s own salary. 

The administration thinks of salary increases in terms of what all the negotiated increases will cost the system. 

In the case of this year’s negotiations, 3% represents the increase to the entire compensation pool for faculty members that will result from implementing all the salary programs we negotiated.

Out of that 3% pool, the programs funded that are the ones described above in Question #1.

Q4: Why is the GSI 1.6%?

A: The 1.6% GSI is the base increase for everyone in the first year of the contract.

The specific GSI number represents what remains in the pool after providing for a variety of other programs.  

In this first year, CFA’s primary goal was to begin correcting the dysfunctional salary structure. That dysfunction left some faculty unable to progress upward on the salary scale because of a lack of SSIs or other salary increases in recent years. 

The specific programs that address this systemic problem are:

  • Salary Recovery Adjustments (to address lack of SSIs),
  • Equity increases (to address the inversion that has occurred because of lack of raises), and
  • Lecturer Salary Corrections (to address extremely low salaries due to misclassification).

In year two, CFA plans to address more in regard salary compression, a problem experienced by those at the upper end of their respective salary ranks or ranges.

Q5: How much can I expect my salary to increase?

A: It depends on how much you make now, your classification, how far below the SSI max you are, and how long you have worked in the CSU.

There is a base raise for everyone and other raises in addition, depending on how a person is affected by distortions such as misclassification and inversion/compression.

You can use the Salary Worksheet to help you calculate your approximate raise, but you will need to know your current salary, rank, and hire year.

Let’s look at a couple of hypothetical situations:  

Tenure track: Maria Gonzalez is an associate professor, hired in 2006, who currently make $63,624 per year. In the new contract, Maria will receive the 1.6% GSI, plus the 3% Salary Recovery Adjustment, bringing her annual salary to $66,581. Maria also would be eligible to receive an estimated $40 to $50 more per month under the system-wide equity program.

Lecturer: John Smith has a terminal degree, is currently ranked Lecturer A, and earns a salary at the bottom of his range—$42,456 per year (if he works full-time). In the new contract, John would be reclassified as Lecturer B (with a minimum 5% increase) and receive the 1.6% GSI. John would then be at the bottom pay of Lecturer B, with an annual salary after the 1.6% GSI of $51,486. If John also has a three-year contract, the increase is higher.

Q6: What is the order of implementation of salary proposals?

A: The general order of implementation of salary proposals is as follows:

  • Lecturer salary corrections (if applicable),
  • then the GSI,
  • then the SRA,
  • then equity increases.

Each faculty member’s salary adjustment will vary depending on his/her classification and eligibility.

Q7: What if I’m temporary faculty—do I qualify for the 3% SRA increase if I receive my first three-year appointment in fall 2014?

A: Yes. However, the adjustment begins on the date of your appointment, rather than July 1, 2014 (the date of retroactivity for other salary adjustments in the new contract).

Q8: How can I figure out what the SSI max is for my classification and rank?

A: Please see the chart located on page two of the salary worksheet.

Q9: Does the SSI Max go up as a result of the GSI?

A: Yes. The SSI Max, as well as all the minima and maxima within the entire salary schedule, adjusts upward as a result of the 1.6% GSI.

Q10: Why does the CONTRACT have a one-year salary deal with re-openers in years two and three?

A: Because the CSU Administration was unwilling to offer more than 2% compensation pools in years 2 and 3 of the contract, CFA decided to agree to 3% this year with re-openers in the next 2 years.

By accepting 3% for this year, CFA ensures that the faculty get some raises soon.

The re-opener clause provides that, if the parties cannot agree on a salary package next year, the CSU faculty retain our right to take job actions up to and including a strike. In the meantime, we can build our power for the re-opener contract campaign.

Q11: Is the Salary Recovery Adjustment (SRA) like a Service Salary Increase (SSI)?

A: It is similar in that the SRA funds progression through the range up to the SSI max.

It is different in that the SRA is simply based on a faculty member’s current base salary and whether it’s below the SSI max.

Also, the SRA is available only to tenure-track faculty and temporary faculty members with longevity in service. 

It is also different from an SSI in that there is no limitation on the number of SSIs already received and no complicated discounting for other increases. (For instance, there will be no subtraction of the old Faculty Merit Increases in determining whether someone is at the SSI Max.)

Q12: Does A chair stipend count toward your SSI max when determining whether you are eligible for the Salary Recovery Adjustment?

A: No, it does not count. In order to calculate your salary in relation to the SSI max, you need to deduct your chair stipend first.

Q13: Does this contract have any “takeaways”? 

A: No. Unlike other public sector contracts in recent years, this contract does not include takeaways.

For example, other contracts may grant a salary increase but also include adjustments to health benefits resulting in higher employee medical contributions. We defended against changes to health benefit and pension contributions or other takeaways.

Q14: Will FERP-ers qualify for the salary increase? How does it impact their salary?

A: Yes current FERPers will receive the 1.6% GSI but it will not affect their retirement income.

Q15: If you are 12-month faculty, do you have a different SSI max?

A: Yes. It is proportionally higher than the regular SSI. 


Q16: What is the statewide equity program?

A: It is a system-wide program funded with $2 million intended to give eligible probationary and tenured faculty members who have been severely affected by the lack of raises in recent years a small bump in their salaries.

Q17: Who is eligible for the statewide equity program?

A: All tenure-track faculty (probationary and tenured faculty) who have a base salary that is below the SSI max in their rank after the Salary Recovery Adjustment (SRA).

The following groups of faculty are eligible for the statewide equity program:

  • Assistant professors and equivalents hired between 2006-2013
  • Associate professors and equivalents hired between 2000-2013
  • Full professors and equivalents hired between 2000-2013

Q18: Describe the campus-based equity program, which is in addition to the system-wide program.

There is language in the contract that also gives campus presidents the discretion to enact separate, campus-based equity programs to continue the necessary repairs to the salary structure. 

These campus-based salary increases would come out of campus budgets.

Q19: What role does CFA play if a campus president enacts a campus-based equity program?

A: These programs must address campus equity issues such as inversion and compression.

Before implementation, the campus President MUST consult with local CFA representatives in developing procedures and criteria for the awards; those criteria must be based on a campus- wide review of salary issues.

This is a ONE-YEAR PROGRAM. It will provide several benefits to our effort to improve faculty salaries:

1) It is a one-year TEST of the commitment of the campus presidents to address long-term equity problems on the campuses;

2) The more presidents who commit campus funding to these raises, the less money will be needed at a system-wide level and the more money there will be available for GSIs and SSIs.

3) If too many campuses fail the test, we will have ample evidence in re-opener bargaining that more system-wide resources will be required.

Q20: Does my campus have money in its budget to pay for a campus-based equity program?

A: Likely so. Even if this program is not yet a line item in your campus budget, consider what else your campus is spending money on. It’s all about priorities.


Q21: What did CFA secure to help improve working conditions?

A: The contract provides for a pool of funds to aid in several improvements to faculty workload, including:

  • All probationary faculty who teach will have, at minimum, a reduction in course load duties of one course per term during their first two years of employment. Some campuses already implement this policy for new probationary faculty, while others don’t. The program will be implemented at campuses that do not already follow this protocol.
  • During each year of the contract, faculty who have exceptional service commitments or excessive student contact hours will be eligible to apply for assigned time relief from a pool of $1.3 million per year system-wide.
  • Protection of coaches performing off-season work.
  • Improvement in work schedules for librarians and counselors.

Q22: Are there changes in the contract for librarians?

A: Librarians have wanted the term “faculty” used in describing them and their work for years. Now, we have that. 

We also have new language clarifying the work and planning process in terms of where and when librarians work. Librarian faculty members may be assigned any number of activities that need not be performed in an on-campus location.

Q23: Are there changes in the contract for counselors?

A: Yes. We have new language clarifying the work and planning process in terms of where and when counselors work. 

Like librarians and other tenure track faculty, counselors are assigned any number of activities that need not be performed in an on-campus location.

Q24: Are there changes in the contract for coaches?

A: Yes. One of the most important is that 10-month or academic year coaching faculty can no longer be required to perform duties outside of his/her work year.

The contract also includes progression within range for coaches with six or more years of experience on the same campus, within the same classification.

Q25: What else is in the contract that I should be aware of?

A: This agreement attempts to rectify issues of cultural taxation and workload disparities.

It also includes:

  • Protections to FERP,
  • No increase in faculty contributions for healthcare or pensions,
  • A one-year freeze on parking,
  • Increased protections from intrusive use of metrics in evaluation of online courses, and
  • Clarity and expansions on non-discrimination and worker safety.


Q26: Who benefits the most from this contract?

A: We all do. While it is true that the first year of this contract gets at correcting some of the worst salary problems, and they fall primarily on the lowest paid in a particular rank or range, all of our members benefit. 

If we don’t address salary inequities now, we will exacerbate compression and inversion.

The CSU will continue to hire new faculty, and our current members will fall further behind without progression in their ranks to catch up.

This contract is a first installment on much-needed salary increases, and on workload improvements.

Among other things, it also provides important new protections of intellectual property and improvements for faculty teaching in Extended Education.

Q27: Can we strike in years two and three if we don’t get the salary increases we need?

A: Yes. Our right to strike is protected.

Q28: Who can I talk to if I have a question about the Contract?

A: You can call or email your local chapter president or CFA field staff.