Bargaining Conclusion – September 15, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

The BOT and the UFF bargaining teams concluded negotiations for the 2021-2022 year on Wednesday, September 15.  We agreed to change only one article in the CBA:  Article 23 – Salaries.The article specifies raises and bonuses as follows, and details can be found here:

  • Continuation of Promotion Increases of 12% for the second rank and 15% for the top rank.
  • 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.
  • A one-time non-recurring performance-based bonus in the amount of 3% or $3,000, whichever is higher, for faculty with an overall annual evaluation of at least “meets FSU’s high expectations” on the annual evaluation of their 2020 performance (conducted in Spring 2021).  The bonus will appear in November 19 paychecks.
  • Administrative Discretionary Increases for increased duties, extraordinary accomplishments, counteroffers, and certain other reasons specified in Sec. 23.9, totaling up to 0.8% of the faculty salary base.

This bargaining season was characterized by strong participation from you—faculty members—and your faithful presence at session after session increased the pressure and made the difference between the administration’s initial bonus offer of $1,200 and the final one (the greater of $3,000 or 3%).  Your presence was inspiring to us and noticed by the BOT team!

Faculty need to ratify this tentative agreement along with three Memoranda of Understanding—one covering Covid-related issues for Summer, another covering them for Fall, and a third expanding funding for the Tuition Scholarship for Spouses and Dependents.  We will send instructions for ratification voting shortly. 

Again, thank you for your support!  Next spring we face “full book” negotiations, which means all 31 CBA articles are open.  To reject bad ideas and to enact good ones (paid family leave, anyone?) we need high membership numbers.  If you are not a member, please join.

All best,

Irene Padavic and Scott Hannahs

Co-Chief Negotiators, UFF-FSU

Bargaining Update – September 9, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

The BOT and the UFF bargaining teams met Wednesday this week to discuss Article 23, Salaries. Faculty showed up in droves—just shy of 60 people.  Some sported signs:  “Who put FSU in the top 20%?  FACULTY!  Reward the hard work . . . or lose the workers and the ranking!” “No cost of living increase means faculty salaries are moving BACKWARDS.”

It was great to have so many of you there; indeed, it was inspiring!

Proposals flew back and forth, and caucus meetings burbled with statements of disbelief and discontent from the union member attendees.

Thefirst proposal was the BOT’s, offering a 3% bonus, with a floor of $2,000 and a ceiling of $4,000.

The UFF countered with a 1% across-the-board raise with a $900 floor, plus a 3% bonus with a $3,000 floor and a $4,000 ceiling. 


The BOT came back with the same offer as before but with a higher minimum: $2,500 instead of $2,000.

The UFF responded with our same offer, with one difference:  the amount for Administrative Discretionary Increases could be 0.8%, which was the amount the BOT had proposed.

The last proposal of the day was the BOT’s, which they presented as the best they could do this bargaining season:  No raise, but a bonus of 3% or $3,000, whichever is higher.  The lack of a raise is still a cause for concern, but their new version of the bonus strikes us as worth entertaining.  The UFF continues to believe that the University received a 3.2% increase in unrestricted funds that could be used towards salary increases, and we have requested details about how those funds have been allocated.  We hope this information will be available by next week and can inform our bargaining position.

We will again meet remotely to continue bargaining Salaries next Wednesday, Sept. 15, at 1:00.  Faculty presence makes a real difference, so we encourage you to come! Signs optional!


Bargaining Link (Wed, Sept 15 at 1:00):    https://fsu.zoom.us/j/99785368112

If you are a member of UFF, you are also welcome to our caucuses, which typically occur once or twice during bargaining and at its conclusion.

Caucus link:   https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83298989140

Regular updates can be found at our webpage: http://uff-fsu.org/

The key to a strong collective bargaining agreement is a strong membership base, so if you are not a member, please join! There has never been a more important time for us to stand together. http://uff-fsu.org/wp/join/

All best,

Irene Padavic and Scott Hannahs

Co-Chief Negotiators, UFF-FSU

Bargaining Update – September 2, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

The BOT and the UFF met Wednesday this week and spent the whole session on Article 23, Salaries. As was the case last week, over 40 faculty members were in attendance, one of whom displayed a poster instead of a picture: “Show the faculty how much you appreciate our hard work through this pandemic. . . SALARY INCREASE NOW!” 

And to that we say “Amen!”

Thefirst proposal was the BOT’s, and as before, it offered only a bonus, this time 3%, with a maximum of $3,000.  It turns out that for the 15% of faculty who earn below $67,000 a year, this offer is worse than their last week’s offer of $2,000 for everyone

The UFF presented its proposal, which retained a raise component—1% across-the-board—and proposed a $5,000 bonus. 

If we have any hope of keeping up with the cost of living, we need a permanent increase, and 1% is certainly affordable according to everything we know about the University’s unrestricted funds. But, while actual raises are normally calculated as a percentage increase to salary, we don’t see any reason why we should differentiate among faculty receiving a one-time payment. We all endured the pandemic together, and the administration should recognize the dedication we all showed and that allowed the university to function during the pandemic. The lowest-paid among us deserve no less than the highest-paid.

Our arguments had minimal effect, as the BOT’s next offer proposed a weird hybrid:  a 3% bonus, this time with a floor of $2,000 and a ceiling of $3,000.  What proportion of faculty actually would receive 3%?  About 45%; the rest would get either $2,000 or $3,000.  It would be hard to design a more complicated plan. And we don’t understand their goal in trying to establish uneven rewards for faculty.

The UFF countered with the day’s last proposal: an across-the-board raise of 0.75% with a floor of $1,000 and a bonus of $4,500. 

Next week we will meet remotely on Wednesday, September 8 at 1:00 (note the early start time).  The topic will again be salaries.


We encourage you to attend and we encourage you to create a sign to post in lieu of your picture!  These are attention-grabbing and underscore that extent to which faculty are angry about the meager salary package we’re being offered!

Bargaining Link (Wed, Sept 8, 1:00):    https://fsu.zoom.us/j/97444713178

If you are a member of UFF, you are also welcome to our caucuses, which typically occur once or twice during bargaining and at its conclusion.

Caucus link:   https://us02web.zoom.us/j/83924119052

Regular updates can be found at our webpage: http://uff-fsu.org/

The key to a strong collective bargaining agreement is a strong membership base, so if you are not a member, please join! There has never been a more important time for us to stand together. http://uff-fsu.org/wp/join/

All best,

Irene Padavic and Scott Hannahs

Co-Chief Negotiators, UFF-FSU

Bargaining Update – August 27, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

The BOT and the UFF met Wednesday this week and agreed to sign a Memorandum of Understanding on the Covid situation, and we also exchanged proposals on Article 23 (Salaries) and Article 19 (Outside Activity and Conflict of Interest).  We had a little over 40 faculty members in attendance.

The teams exchanged MOU proposals over email for a few days before bargaining. The first one since our last session wasfrom UFF, and it backed off most of our previous demands, as we realized that after weeks of back-and-forth we were getting nowhere on the key issues of remote work and mask mandates.  We believe that there is nevertheless value in reaching an agreement. The BOT countered, the UFF responded, theBOT countered, and we arrived at a final agreement.

We then turned to regular bargaining.  The BOT presented a revision of its earlier proposal on Article 19 (Outside Activity and Conflict of Interest) that added language defining financial interest.  The UFF team countered by offering status quo, meaning that we preferred existing language to the proposed changes.

The BOT then presented its Salaries proposal, which now offers a $2,000 bonus.  In the dialog that followed, it seemed to us that the BOT implied that raises for merit, market equity, and cost-of-living would not be possible this year, and that if we dropped those elements of our proposal, the BOT bonus offer might be more generous.  So the UFF counterproposal eliminated raises (other than the already agreed-upon ones for promotions and Sustained Performance) and proposed a $10,000 bonus.  Of course we reserve the right to return to demanding raises if the bonus tree doesn’t start bearing some tasty fruit.    

Next week we will meet remotely on Wednesday, September 1 at 2:00.  The topic will be salaries.

Bargaining Link (Wed, Sept 1, 2:00):    https://fsu.zoom.us/j/99537506397

If you are a member of UFF, you are also welcome to our caucuses, which typically occur once or twice during bargaining and at its conclusion.

Caucus link:   https://us02web.zoom.us/j/81858114630

We encourage you to show up. It makes a difference.   

Regular updates can be found at our webpage: http://uff-fsu.org/

The key to a strong collective bargaining agreement is a strong membership base, so if you are not a member, please join! There has never been a more important time for us to stand together. http://uff-fsu.org/wp/join/

All best,

Irene Padavic and Scott Hannahs

Co-Chief Negotiators, UFF-FSU

Bargaining Update – August 14, 2021

Dear Colleagues,

This week’s Wednesday meeting between the UFF and Board of Trustees (BOT) teams was an “Impact Bargaining” session around the University’s Covid-related policies. To its credit, the FSU BOT is the only SUS institution willing to engage in Impact Bargaining so far.  The good news stops there, unfortunately.

The UFF had sent its proposal for an MOU earlier in the week, and we went over it at the beginning of the meeting.  Here’s the crux of it:

Individual faculty members teaching face-to-face may require a Covid-19 risk mitigation plan, which may include masks, social distancing, or vaccinations for students in their classes or office hours.  If a student chooses to not honor this request, the faculty member may elect to teach the course remotely. 

It also refers to an existing section of the CBA (5.4 d) specifying that faculty can cancel a class if a disruptive student poses a risk to personal safety or the safety of others.

The BOT’s response boils down to proposing no mitigation other than already-announced policy informing students they are expected to mask. It offers no help to the majority of instructional faculty who face real danger in packed classrooms and even office hours, which the BOT team breezily advised us can be offered in alternative locations, including outdoors.  As for classrooms, they offer no relief from worry. When pressed about their nonchalant orientation to faculty safety, the BOT team explained that they were following through on the Board of Governors’ months’-old policy of returning to pre-pandemic normal, with full classrooms meeting in face-to-face settings. Our pointing out the absurdity of acting as though the Delta variant hadn’t made earlier plans obsolete gained no traction.  

The University clearly has discretion over some policies—namely, the treatment of faculty with high-risk concerns.  One possible response is compassion, since it is within their power to permit remote work for faculty caring for high-risk family members, as the University permitted last year, or even to expand the options to include co-residence with an at-risk person. That is not how they see it.  Instead, the BOT team—made up mostly of HR employees—points to chairs and deans as the group to turn to, as though it is they, not HR, who decides who does and does not merit accommodations. Such deflection of responsibility is disingenuous. The BOT’s only other acknowledgment that high-risk faculty might need a hand is to point to the Americans with Disabilities Act, which merely provides a framework for accommodating employee health conditions but does not cover concerns related to caregiving.

Their offer adds no options that aren’t already available without a Memorandum of Understanding.

We spent a few minutes going over the UFF’s latest Salaries offer, which (along with raises), proposes a $5,000 bonus, as the BOT can use non-recurring funding for this purpose.

Next week we will meet remotely for Impact Bargaining on Tuesday, August17, at 3:00—note the atypical day and atypical start time.  We will turn to regular bargaining later in the session.  Forty-nine faculty members attended the last session, and we hope for a strong turnout the next time around, as well.

Bargaining Link (Tues, Aug. 17, 3:00):    https://fsu.zoom.us/j/93387209867

If you are a member of UFF, you are also welcome to our caucuses, which typically occur once or twice during bargaining and at its conclusion.

Caucus link (Tues., Aug 17, 3:00):  https://us02web.zoom.us/j/87805365154

We encourage you to show up. It makes a difference.   

Regular updates can be found at our webpage: http://uff-fsu.org/

The key to a strong collective bargaining agreement is a strong membership base, so if you are not a member, please join! There has never been a more important time for us to stand together. http://uff-fsu.org/wp/join/

All best,

Irene Padavic and Scott Hannahs

Co-Chief Negotiators, UFF-FSU