NTT Contract Conversion Update

7/19/16

(See here for more on the NTT contract conversion, including prior updates).

We have continued to meet with the Administration over the summer and believe we are near agreement on all pending conversion issues. Below is a list of pending issues (this includes some issues that have arisen since the last update was sent) and where things stand. We also have a number of pending policy grievances that will have an impact on NTT and Article 21 language (see here for more):

Incorrect Titles, Post-Conversion

The Administration presented the FSU with a master document outlining all the conversion actions taken to date (i.e. new titles given under the 14-17 contract). The FSU notified the Administration of cases where we believed the conversion was incorrect. The Administration has fixed many of these, but we believe there are approximately 25 cases left (down from over 100) where the conversion was done improperly or where there are still questions about a particular conversion. We raised this issue at our latest meeting with the Administration and were told they would look into it shortly.

Calendar versus FTE Year for Promotions

The FSU has asserted all prior service under previous agreements must be calculated according to the language in the respective contract.  The administration has denied this interpretation and the FSU filed a grievance on this issue.  We initially anticipated that this grievance would be decided by an arbitrator near the end of the summer. However, we agreed to meet with the Administration and a mutually agreed upon neutral third party in an attempt to mediate the issue. We concluded one day of mediation without an agreement and with little prospect for an agreement. Our initial plan, should mediation not succeed, was to take the case to arbitration and let a neutral third party rule on the issue. However, after conferring with the MTA lawyer who had been assigned to the case, we came to believe that arbitration would not result in a favorable ruling. Therefore, we decided to continue to press for a settlement with the Administration that would help certain Lecturers who faced economic disadvantage from the switch to FTE year calculation for promotion. We believe we are close to agreement on a settlement.

Salary Floors

Salary floors under the new Agreement were effective as of July 1, 2014. The Administration indicated that there are still approximately 35 NTT whose salaries need to be changed retroactively to July 1, 2014 to reflect their new titles. They will provide us with more information on the remaining salary changes shortly. 

Just Cause Rights

As previously reported, the Administration has acknowledged that the Agreement provides just cause rights to all unit members who acquired those rights under the previous Agreement up to and including the beginning of Spring 2015 semester.  We have been working with the Administration to clarify how just cause rights will be applied to NTT who do not have continuing appointments.

Continuing Appointments

The Administration has claimed that any time served at 25% will not be counted in the FTE total for a continuing appointment (Lecturers must be minimum 50% at time of eligibility). The FSU contested this interpretation and engaged with the Administration to resolve the dispute. We believe we are close to a settlement that would allow some time served at 25% to count for a continuing appointment while setting limits on how much time served at 25% could be counted.

Appointment, Reappointment, and Notification Schedules

The FSU has asserted that the Red Book language on appointments, reappointments, and notification of non-reappointment deadlines applies to all NTT regardless of title or percentage of time. The Administration has asserted that only those lecturers (not Associate Lecturers) who are 50% or greater are subject to any appointment, reappointment, and notification deadline language. We believe we are close to agreement on a settlement that would require the Red Book language on this to apply to certain NTT who are less than 50% as well as certain Associate Lecturers. 

Course Cancellations

The FSU and the Administration have been discussing whether or not notification of reappointment excludes or includes the possibility of course cancellations (NOTE: this does not apply to NTT with continuing appointments who are subject to the lay-off language  in Article 21.9.4 even in the event of a course cancellation). That is, when a member is notified of reappointment as required by Article 21.9.1 and then subsequently has a course cancelled, is there a requirement on the part of the Administration to provide that member with work in place of the cancelled course. The Administration asserted that reappointments at a particular percentage of time are provisional to classes not being cancelled. The FSU initially asserted that reappointments must be at a particular percentage of time even if courses are cancelled but we came to believe that such an assertion was not warranted by the contract language and past practice and we would therefore not be successful in asserting this in arbitration. The FSU has been working with the Administration on a settlement for this issue that would give preference to Lecturers over Associate Lecturers for possible course reassignment in the event of a cancellation.