State offers UH faculty
2-year deal with raises

The offer is still less than what the
union seeks for its members

The state has put a new contract offer on the table as negotiations continue to avert a threatened faculty strike at the University of Hawaii's 10 campuses next month.

The state's offer is for a two-year contract with raises of 1 percent in the first year, retroactive to Aug. 1, and 3 percent in the second year.

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly is seeking a raise of 6 percent beginning July 1 and an 8 percent increase this year with an additional 4 percent raise for full professors.

UHPA filed a notice of intent to strike with the Hawaii Labor Relations Board on Feb. 23. Strike votes are scheduled March 30-31, and faculty could walk off the job as early as April 5.

The state filed its latest offer on March 5. The last positions of both the union and the state were made public yesterday by the Hawaii Labor Relations Board.

The previous informal state offer was for a six-year contract with no raise in the first year and a 2 percent raise in the second year. The offer would have raised salaries 20 percent over the six years, but most of the increases would have come in the last three years of the contract.

UHPA has said its goal is to bring faculty salaries to the 50 percent median of salaries at comparable universities.

The state, university and union are scheduled to meet with a federal mediator on March 22 to resume bargaining. The last negotiation session was in January.

"They've put forth their position. We've put forth ours, and that's a starting point for further discussion," said Ed Yuen, UH director of collective bargaining.

UHPA Executive Director J.N. Musto is out of town and has not seen the state's offer, said Associate Executive Director John Radcliffe.

Radcliffe said the union has not yet taken an official position on the offer, but he is ready to resume bargaining March 22.

"I certainly hope they work something out, because if they don't, I think members are convinced that they don't have much choice" but to go out on strike, Radcliffe said.

The average faculty salary for all ranks is $68,665 at Manoa and $52,322 at community colleges. A full professor at UH-Manoa makes an average of $86,553, while a community college professor makes an average salary of $62,097.

UH faculty last went out on strike in April 2001 for 13 days.


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