As you are well aware, we are in the last days of one of the most consequential election cycles in our history.  We have a choice to make in two weeks, and the options before us could not be more different.   Victory in the State of Florida is critical to both parties, and we have a responsibility to make our voices heard.  The results will affect our lives, our country, and our children.  We are not only choosing a President, but a Senator, Representatives, a Stage Legislature, and local officials.  We are also voting on the future of solar energy and other ballot initiatives.

Here are endorsements from our colleagues at the Florida Education Association and the AFL-CIO:

FEA Recommendations:   http://feaweb.org/_data/files/2016_Elections/FEA-candidate-list-state.pdf

Florida AFL-CIO:  http://www.flaflcio.org/

National AFL-CIO:         http://www.aflcio.org/Blog/Political-Action-Legislation

How you vote is of course a very private decision.  However, our colleagues have looked at the candidates and examined the issues closely.   We take these recommendations seriously because we believe they are in the interest of higher education, organized labor, and working families across our state.

Early voting begins TODAY, October 24 and runs through November 6.  Absentee ballots can still be ordered.  And, of course, Election Day is November 8.

For those who might be interested, there are plenty of opportunities to get involved in the process, whether phone banking, driving voters to the polls, leafleting, or other activity.

Please contact me if you’d like more information.

Really, this will be over soon.  It’s not been a very positive process.  But VOTE!  Do everything you can to encourage family and friends to do the same.   Florida is Ground Zero for this election.   Stand with our colleagues, both in and out of the Union.  Do what’s best for our University, our community, our state, and our country.  Every vote counts!

Matthew Lata

President, UFF-FSU Chapter







Ratification of contract

FSU faculty are invited to voting on the ratification of the new 2016-2019 contract
on Monday, May 23 and Tuesday, May 24.  All faculty are eligible to vote, regardless
of union affiliation. Voting must be in person.   Polling places and times are as follows:
9am-11am  UNIVERSITY CENTER C ROOM 3101 (Comm.)
10am-12noon  KEURSTEINER LOUNGE (Keursteiner Music Building)
10am-12noon CAROTHERS LOBBY (East end of building)
1pm-3pm  MAG LAB LOBBY
For a description of the changes negotiated to the existing contract, go to the UFF
webpage at uff-fsu.org and look under “news” on the homepage.  The full proposed contract may also be accessed through a link on the May 11 news item.
Please vote and make your views known!

Collective Bargaining Contract Negotiation Update 2016-05-10

The UFF and the FSU Administration have tentatively agreed upon a new 3 year contract.  This year the whole contract was open for renegotiation and changes were made to several articles.  This contract must be ratified by a vote of faculty and by the FSU Board of Trustees.  Look for details on the significant changes to your contract soon:

UFF-FSU Collective Bargaining Agreement 2016-2019

The individual articles tentatively agreed to by your negotiating team are

Article 1:   Recognition
Article 2:   Consultation
Article 5:   Academic Freedom
Article 6:   Nondiscrimination
Article 8:   Appointment
Article 9:   Assignment of Responsibilities
Article 12: Non-Reappointment
Article 17: Leaves
Article 20: Grievance
Article 22: Sabbaticals
Article 23: Salaries
Article 24: Benefits
Article 25: Payroll Deduction
Article 30: Amendment and Duration
Appendix B: Sample Dues Check-off Form
Appendix H: Dispute Resolution


Announcement of the conclusion of 2016-2019 contract negotiations

The UFF-FSU bargaining team is happy to announce that the UFF-FSU and the FSU Board of Trustees bargaining teams have reached agreement on all articles. This year was a “full book” negotiation, meaning that all 32 articles were open for renegotiation, although the teams agreed to limit negotiations to just 18 articles.


Regarding salary, your UFF-FSU faculty team won improvements in several areas. The tentative agreement specifies one-half a percent in performance-based increases for faculty with an overall annual evaluation of at least “meets FSU’s high expectations” on their latest annual performance evaluation, departmental merit raises of 1.25% based on their most recent (2016) merit evaluation, and 0.25% for deans to distribute according to merit. The teams agreed to a total of $1,000,000 in Market Equity Increases, which for the first time will include Specialized Faculty. The amount of $800,000 will go to address market equity for Tenure-and-tenure-earning Faculty (with a cap of $4,500 per person) and $200,000 will go to address market equity for Specialized Faculty in the Librarian, Teaching Faculty, and Research Faculty categories (with a cap of $3,500 per person). Specialized Faculty in other categories (which are difficult to compare to national data) will receive a performance-based raise of 0.25%.

The teams agreed to increase the number of full-pay, half-year sabbaticals from one per every 40 eligible faculty members to one per every 30 eligible faculty members, representing a 33% increase in the number of such sabbaticals.

The Academic Freedom article has new language specifying that the role of the University is not to shield individuals from expressions of ideas and opinions that may differ from their own and that it is committed to encouraging debate and deliberation of diverse ideas.

Summary and Links for All Changes

Article 1 – Recognition has been amended so that references to “rules” have been replaced with “regulations,” and references to the no-longer-existing Administrative Procedure Act have been removed.  http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-1-Recognition.pdf

Article 2 – Consultation has been changed to remove the limit on the number of University and UFF representatives who may attend Consultations.

Article 5 Academic Freedom now has language designed to offer greater protection to faculty exercising their academic freedom rights, and it also now specifies that faculty members, and not an external entity, reserve the right to select instructional materials, define course content, and determine grades. http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-5-Academic-Freedom-TA-2016-04-27.pdf

Article 6 – Nondiscrimination has added explicit references to Title IX, the Violence against Women Act, and the Cleary Act, and it has changed the protected category “religious creed” to “religious status” and added the category “genetic information” to the grounds upon which the university may not discriminate. http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-6-Nondiscrimination-TA-2016-04-27.pdf

Article 8 – Appointment has been amended so that it specifies that the University must provide UFF information on the ratio of tenure-and-tenure-track faculty to specialized faculty by the end of the fall semester instead of two weeks from the first day of classes. http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-8-Appointment-TA-2016-04-27.pdf

Article 9 – Assignment of Responsibilities references to the no-longer-existing Salary Plan for Professors have been stricken, and the article now specifies that the duty assignment for faculty revising distance-learning courses will be commensurate with the time required (not to exceed the equivalent of a 3-credit hour course) and that any disputes will be resolved according to Appendix H (which has been modified to indicate that it covers all aspects of Article 9).

Art. 9:  http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-9-Assignment-of-Responsibilities-TA-2016-04-27.pdf
Appendix H:  http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/App-H-Dispute-Resolution-TA-2016-04-27.pdf

Article 12 – Nonreappointment has been changed to specify that nonreappointed faculty members are to check the University’s vacancy listings and notify Human Resources of vacancies they are interested in. http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-12-Non-Reappointment.pdf

Article 17 – Leaves has been changed so that the date at which 12-month faculty members’ accrued annual leave (in excess of the year-end maximum) rolls over into sick leave is the last full pay period of the current year (rather than December 31). http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-17-Leaves-TA-2016-04-27.pdf

Article 20 Grievance Procedure and Arbitration removes a reference to a Chapter in the Florida Statues that is no longer relevant.  http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-20-Grievance-TA-2016-04-27-1.pdf

Article 22 Sabbatical and Professional Development Leave has been changed to increase the number of half-year, full-pay sabbaticals to 1 per every 30 faculty members (rather than 1 per every 40). http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-22-Sabbaticals-TA-2016-04-27.pdf

Article 23 – Salaries specifies raises as follows:

  • Promotion Increase continues promotion increases of 12% for the second rank and 15% for the top rank, appearing in August 19th paychecks.
  • Continuation of Sustained Performance Increases of 3% for eligible full professors, eminent scholars, and the top rank of Specialized Faculty working for seven years or more after their promotion to the top rank. The increase will appear in August 19th paychecks.
  • Performance-based increases of 0.5% for faculty with an overall annual evaluation of at least “meets FSU’s high expectations” on their 2016 performance evaluations. These increases will appear in September 16th paychecks.
  • Departmental merit raises averaging 1.25% to be distributed based on Spring 2016 Merit Evaluations. These increases will appear in paychecks on October 14.
  • Deans’ merit of 0.25% of the in-unit salary base, with distributions based on merit and with distribution plans to be reviewed by the Provost, appearing in October 14th paychecks.
  • Market Equity adjustments totaling $1,000,000, with $800,000 (capped at $4,500 for any one individual) distributed to General Faculty; $200,000 (capped at $3,500 for any one individual) distributed to faculty in the Librarian ranks, the Teaching Faculty ranks, and the Research Faculty ranks; and raises amounting to 0.25% of their base salary distributed to Instructional Specialists I,II, and III; Assistant Curators/Associate Curators/Curators; Program Directors; Computer Research Specialists; Music Specialists; Scholar Scientist Engineers; Assistants In/Associates In Teaching; Assistants In Research/Associates in Research; and Research Associates/Senior Research Associates. These raises will appear in paychecks on September 30.

For General Faculty (Assistant Professors, Associate Professors, Professors and Eminent Scholars), varying amounts will be distributed based on current salary, Oklahoma State University’s annual national survey of average faculty salaries at public universities in the “Very High Research Universities,” and years in rank, taking into account adjustments for recent merit increases, overload pay, and payments from Direct Service Organizations.

For Teaching Faculty I, II, and III and Research Faculty I, II, and III, varying amounts will be distributed based on current salary, Oklahoma State University’s annual national survey of average faculty salaries at public universities in the “Very High Research Universities” category, and years in rank, taking into account adjustments for recent merit increases, overload pay, and payments from Direct Service Organizations.

For University Librarians, Associate University Librarians, and Assistant University Librarians, varying amounts based on current salary, ARL Annual Salary Survey data for FY 2013-2014 (specifically, Table 6 [b]), and years in rank, taking into account adjustments for recent merit increases, overload pay, and payments from Direct Service Organizations.

  • Administrative Discretionary Increases for increased duties, extraordinary accomplishments, counteroffers, and certain other reasons specified in Sec. 23.9, totaling up to 1% of the faculty salary base.


Article 24 – Benefits includes changed wording about the employers’ contribution to the Optional Retirement Program and the Phased Retirement Program so that it aligns with changes enacted by the Legislature. http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-24-Benefits-TA-2016-04-27.pdf

Article 25 – Payroll Deduction and Appendix B clarify the procedures and forms for faculty who either join the UFF-FSU or terminate their membership, and it also clarifies the procedures and forms for making and ceasing Political Action Committee deductions.

Art 25:  http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Art-25-Payroll-Deduction-TA-2016-04-27.pdf

Appendix B: http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/App-B-Sample-Dues-Check-off-Form-TA-2016-04-27.pdf

Article 30 – Amendment and Duration updates the timetable for renegotiations for the next two years and for the next “full book” contract. http://uff-fsu.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/05/Corrected-TA-Article-30-Amendment-and-Duration.pdf

By mutual agreement, no changes were made to opened articles 16 (Disciplinary Action), 29 (Severability), and 32 (Definitions).

These 2016-2019 changes to the contract will be ready for a ratification vote in May. An announcement of polling dates and times is forthcoming.

The bargaining team comprised Scott Hannahs and Irene Padavic, co-chief negotiators, and Michael Buchler, Jack Fiorito, Robin Goodman, Nancy Kellett, and Tom Wazlavek.

Our ability to bargain a strong contract depends on YOU! The more members we can point to, the greater our strength at the bargaining table.  Raises and the preservation of faculty rights are not gifts from the administration but rather are the result of good-faith and persistent bargaining.

Your union team is an effective voice for you; if you are not a member, please join us and help bolster our bargaining power. You can fill out the form below and mail it to the listed address or e-mail it to jfiorito@fsu.edu.