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December 15, 2015

FSU Executive Committee Meeting Tuesday, December 15, 2015

Members Present: Marlene Kim  John Hess  Andres Henao-Castro  Heike Schotten  Ursula Tafe   Doreen Drury   Peggy Walsh  Kathy Kogan   Karen Suyemoto


Others Present: Lorenzo Nencioli, FSU Membership Coordinator  Jon Millman  Al Leisinger, NTT Grievance Officer  


A. Announcements

  1. Organizing chairs update- It was reported that the FSU has collected a sufficient number of signed cards from chairs to certify union representation. Paperwork to be filed shortly.
  2. Letter to non-members- Agency fee payers and non-members were recently sent a letter written by FSU President Marlene Kim urging them to become members (about 190 unit members total). About 10 or so unit members responded and became members as a result.
  3. Newsletter has been out- Members were emailed a pdf of the Fall 15 FSU Newsletter. John Hess noted that he handed out hard copies to all faculty in English and said the response was great. The hard copies are an ‘effective tool for FSU’.
  4. Report on Board of Trustees Meeting- Marlene Kim reported that the BOT voted to divest from fossil fuels in principle (coal divestment would begin immediately; divestment from other fossil fuels would occur gradually). There was a report on tuition retention: the BOT says tuition retention will not result in any changes to the allocation of funds to UMass campuses (a fixed percentage of state allocations for UMass goes to each campus  and that that percentage will remain the same under the new tuition retention program). Marlene Kim also reported that nothing will change in regards to bargaining and raises as a result of tuition retention (state parameters still will come from the state and will not be bargained directly with each campus).
  5. MTA Annual meeting May 13, 14- All elected offices at the MTA will be contested elections.  The FSU needs delegates. Joh Hess, Peggy Walsh, Heike Schotten, Ellen Frank,  and Doreen Drury have offered to be delegates. Members who are interested or know of other interested members should contact the FSU.
  6. MTA Elections Forum for candidates- There was discussion of whether or not UMB unions should hold a forum and invite MTA candidates to speak. It was stated that the FSU should participate along with other unions.  John Hess and Peggy Walsh will help organize it along with the other unions. The forum will probably happen in late February.
  7. Update on NTT conversion and 2014-17 contract, including FSU update on this on Dec 8- John Hess reported that the 12/8/15 NTT conversion meeting went well and that many  questions concerning the process were cleared up (an update was emailed to members a few days later).  There will be another meeting again with Admin on Thursday to discuss conversion issues.
  8. Regional NTT/Adjunct meeting of MTA- There was a proposal made to MTA President Barbara Madeloni for the MTA to host an event for all NTT MTA union members. The event would be a forum to discuss issues of concern to NTT and adjunct faculty. The event would likely take place on  1/24 or 1/25. John Hess, Ursula Tafe, and Sandy Howland (all working with Dan Clawson from the MSP) will help organize the event.  Al Leisinger wondered if it would it be appropriate to ask non-MTA adjunct locals to be observers. John said he would be amenable to that idea but that that might occur at a second meeting.
  9. Composition of Faculty Council- There was discussion of the Faculty Council and issues of NTT representation on the FC. Current FC bylaws stipulate that only tenure stream faculty can be on FC. However, complaints have come up from CAPS, UMB NTT, and Honors College in regards to lack of representation. A subcommittee of FC members was formed to analyze the feasibility of allowing NTT on FC. However, there is lots of opposition to NTT being on council. Ursula Tafe, NTT In Poli Sci, will be ex officio member of committee (non-voting member).

B. Business

  1. FSU Elections Timeline and draft announcement- There was discussion of the revised timeline and draft email announcement (see text below). It was agreed that the 2 week timeframe should remain but that the nomination form should not be available until the nomination period begins. Motion to approve revised FSU Elections Timeline and draft announcement is made. Motion seconded. Motion approved.
  2. FSU Budget Discussion- The FSU will begin FY17 budget discussions with the JCC/FSU accountant sometime in January (the budget will have to be approved at the FSU Annual Meeting sometime in April). Ex Com members should study current FY16 FSU budget and make suggested changes/additions before then (Ex Com members were emailed FY16 budget on 12/14/15).
  3. Union membership and Recommitment campaign- Marlene reported on her meeting with the new MTA Higher Education Director, whose background is in organizing. There was discussion of the possibility of engaging in a membership campaign to get members to pledge to stay as members in light of upcoming Supreme Court decision in the  Friedrichs case. There was discussion of whether or not attention should be drawn to the case. Marlene asked if there was interest in getting training on how to get members to join/ and on how to increase member involvement.

C. Reports

NTT Caucus- Jon Millman: Discussion of the 12/8/15 FSU NTT contract conversion meeting occurred at the last NTT Caucus meeting. Response of Caucus members was generally positive but there was one area of concern: the Associate Lecturers grievance settlement. ‘I would like to urge FSU to reject any possible deal’. There was discussion of the settlement offer from Admin, of the Associate Lecturer grievance, etc.  

Ursula Tafe reported that Caucus Party committee is planning to have a party, on the 1st or 2nd week of school, then party last week of school).

Bargaining- Tuition and fees for dependents: with tuition retention in place at UMass, the unions will need to re-bargain the terms of the tuition and fee benefit for spouses and dependents. There will be a cross-union coalition to bargain around issue in January. Our initial position will be a return to the benefit as it existed when first implemented (zero tuition and  fees for spouses and dependents). There will also likely be a request to include greater Continuing Ed coverage in the benefit. Admin would not likely agree to this proposal.  Rachel Rubin has volunteered to be on this committee.


The FSU will need to think about bargaining issues for the next contract as early as Spring 15. There was discussion of ongoing JCC issues and how that might impact bargaining.

D. New Business

Online Student Evaluations­- An Admin proposal  has been made to evals  online but concern was expressed over the lack of participation from students that would result from not physically handing them out in class. The issue was raised of the requirement of Admin to negotiate changes to student eval forms with the FSU in advance. Marlene will raise this issue with Admin.

CLA 2/2- Issue of reversion to 3/3 for TT who are not ‘sufficient’ in research was discussed (see CLA 2/2 agreement; the FSU and CLA Admin were supposed to determine a process for deciding on evaluative mechanisms for TT faculty who might be ‘insufficient’ in research and thus reverted back to 3/3 from 2/2 per the agreement).  The CLA Dean is stating that each dept needs to come up with an evaluation process on their own. Marlene noted that the FSU has not agreed to that. Some argued that on principle it is wrong for the FSU  to participate in any evaluation mechanism that could result in reversion of TT members to 3/3. But if the FSU does not agree to participate in this discussion, admin will be within its rights to create its own mechanism without FSU input. Marlene will ask the CLA Dean to engage in process of creating a 3/3 reversion mechanism.



 FSU Executive Committee Election Schedule for Spring 2016 Activity


Proposed Dates

FSU Executive Committee Members

 Inform those members whose term expires Spring 2016.


Monday, December 14th

Election Announcement

 Email to membership with Election Overview document

 Include Nomination Form.

 Include the actual election activity dates.


Thursday, December 17th

Nomination Announcement1

 Email to membership with election schedule and general election information.


Week of January 11th to 15th

Nomination Period

 The Nomination form is made available.

 Email sent to all members no later than 9AM Feb 1st announcing nominations now open.


Two weeks

Monday, Feb 1st 9AM EST to

Friday, Feb 12th 5PM EST

Nominating Committee Review

One week

Tuesday, Feb 16th to

Friday, Feb 19th

Slate of Candidates Distributed

 Email to membership announcing those running for office.


Friday, Feb 19th 9AM EST


Two Weeks

Friday, Feb 19th 9AM EST to

Friday, March 4th 9AM EST


One Week, include a weekend

Friday, March 4th 9AM EST to

Friday, March 11th 9AM EST

Election Committee

 Count the ballots


One day

Friday, March 11th between 11AM and 3PM

Election Results Announced

Friday, March 11th 3PM to 5PM EST



Ex Com Nomination Email- Spring 16

Language such as the following will be sent to members:

The Faculty Staff Union (FSU) holds an election every spring semester for positions on the FSU  Executive Committee.  The following positions are up for relection or election:  NAME THEM HERE.  The attached document contains information on the nominating and election process including the dates of nominating and election related activities.  Also provided is the Nomination Form at LINK HERE that you can submit to the FSU office by DATE HERE.

The purpose of sending you this information is to make you aware of the upcoming election and the steps necessary for a member to be elected to office . You will receive additional information mid-January and at the beginning of the Spring 2016 semester. 

FSU Elections Committee