HOUSE BILL REPORT
This analysis was prepared by non-partisan legislative staff for the use of legislative members in their deliberations. This analysis is not a part of the legislation nor does it constitute a statement of legislative intent.
As Reported by House Committee On:
Title: An act relating to modifying collective bargaining law related to providing additional compensation for academic employees at community and technical colleges.
Brief Description: Modifying collective bargaining law related to providing additional compensation for academic employees at community and technical colleges.
Sponsors: Representatives Reykdal, Muri, Bergquist, S. Hunt, Fey, Gregory, Haler, Sells, Pollet, Tarleton, Springer, Moscoso, Wylie, Stanford, Ryu, Appleton, Walkinshaw, Fitzgibbon and Goodman.
Labor: 2/10/15, 2/17/15 [DP].
HOUSE COMMITTEE ON LABOR
Majority Report: Do pass. Signed by 4 members: Representatives Sells, Chair; Gregerson, Vice Chair; Moeller and Ormsby.
Minority Report: Do not pass. Signed by 3 members: Representatives Manweller, Ranking Minority Member; G. Hunt, Assistant Ranking Minority Member; McCabe.
Staff: Trudes Tango (786-7384).
Several collective bargaining laws apply to public institutions of higher education. For faculty at four-year institutions and certain student employees at the University of Washington and Washington State University, a collective bargaining agreement may not include compensation that exceeds the amount or percentage established by the Legislature in the appropriations act. However, the employer may provide additional compensation to faculty and certain student employees that exceeds that provided by the Legislature.
For academic employees at community and technical colleges, an agreement may not include salary increases that exceed the amount or percentage established by the Legislature in the appropriations act and allocated by the State Board for Community and Technical Colleges. Any provisions pertaining to salary increases in an agreement are not binding upon future actions of the Legislature. There is no provision for the employer to provide additional compensation. Other laws provide that boards of trustees of community and technical colleges (college boards) are authorized to fix the salaries of faculty members and other administrative officers and employees.
Summary of Bill:
College boards must award full-time and part-time academic employees step increases based on local agreements collectively bargained. Step increases may exceed any compensation provided to academic employees by the Legislature. However, total amounts provided to academic employees may not exceed 1.2 percent of the full-time and part-time faculty salary base for each college. Nothing prohibits the Legislature from allocating funding for step increases, which may be used in combination with turnover savings to award step increases.
"Step increase" means an incremental increase in salary based on a salary schedule. It may be based on time, specific requirements, or a combination of time and requirements.
Fiscal Note: Available.
Effective Date: The bill takes effect 90 days after adjournment of the session in which the bill is passed.
Staff Summary of Public Testimony:
(In support) Step increases are bargained for locally and should be paid for locally. It is difficult to hire and retain skilled faculty because of the inability to get increases in salaries. Other higher education institutions do not face the same problem. The colleges use turnover savings but that is not enough, and it should be a shared responsibility between the state and the local jurisdiction. It does not make sense for parties to bargain for step increases when there is no way to fund the increases. Step increases are a small portion of the overall compensation issue.
(With concerns) There is a need for certainty regarding funding. This year's bill is different because it caps the local expenditures.
(Opposed) This bill will put pressure on community and technical colleges to cannibalize their funds to pay for faculty salaries. The trend is to shift away from services to compensation. The K-12 system is seeing the impact of requiring the state to assume the responsibility of wages.
Persons Testifying: (In support) Representative Reykdal, prime sponsor; Wendy Rader, Kam Todd, and Carla Waccarato-Sinclair, Washington Education Association; Bernal Baca, Erica Dixon and Amy Kinsel, American Federation of Teachers; and Paul Bell, Office of Student Legislative Affairs at Bellevue College.
(With concerns) Marty Brown, State Board for Community and Technical Colleges.
(Opposed) Jami Lund, Freedom Foundation.
Persons Signed In To Testify But Not Testifying: None.