President’s Message

Where Does the Work Go?

Last month I reviewed the process the colleges and Central Services used to determine their position elimination choices. Those choices will be approved by the FHDA Board of Trustees at their March 4 meeting.  For ACE alone, it accounts for 41 FTE positions, approximately 10% of our unit. At first glance, it appears most are vacant, and technically they are, but half of them are vacant due to a combination of staff taking the Supplemental Retirement Plan (SRP) offer, positions being held vacant over the last year and the reassignment, layoff and reduction of a few others.  In other words, positions where work was actively getting done, which begs the age old question, where does the work go?

Article 11 of our Agreement is pretty clear on the rules surrounding the work and the elimination of positions (even vacant ones).

  • A classified employee may not be laid off if a short-term employee is retained to render a service that the classified employee is qualified to render.
  • No worker can be required a worker to do overtime to replace the work.
  • No one outside the unit can do the work after the position is eliminated.This includes temporary workers, students, faculty, administrator or outside contractors.
  • An employee cannot be given more work than they can complete in an 8-hour day.
    • If you feel that you are being assigned more work than you can possibly complete in one day, do not work more than the 8 hours without your supervisor first approving overtime.
    • If you do not have enough hours in the day to complete the extra work, request a meeting and have your supervisor prioritize your work. You may request an ACE steward be present at this meeting.

As the colleges begin their reorganization process, it’s clear there are more questions than answers. ACE has met with human resources and senior management regarding proposed reorganization, at this time mostly at Foothill, we have left our meetings with no definitive answers.  As I have said on numerous occasions, while the number of position cuts is pretty firm, a lot will change surrounding job duties and priorities between now and June 30, 2019.

Of service,

Chris White, ACE President
(650) 949-7789, office

“The fight is never about lettuce or grapes.  It is always about people”. – César Chávez

Classification Study Update

Summed up in two words, more delay.  At the end of January, the consults delivered their draft classification study report and compensation study analysis.  The Joint Labor Management Classification Committee (JLMCC) set a meeting for Feb. 28 – yes, it takes that long to find availability for six people – to discuss the results and start the negotiation process on potential approval by ACE members and the FHDA Board of Trustees as well what/wen implementation may happen.  And then the District canceled.  The meeting has been rescheduled for March 16.

As a precaution to extraneous delays on the part of the District, our attorney sent the them the following notice in late January.In the past you have indicated that the District would not implement the results of the classification study until July 2019. Recently, ACE has learned that the District is telling classified employees that the study will not be implemented until July 2019. ACE has never agreed to a July 2019 implementation date. ACE believes that the study, when completed needs to be bargained with ACE which would include classifications,  salary and implementation and that need to be ratified by its membership. This is meant to put you on notice that ACE expects the District to bargain these issues in “good faith”; however, with the public statements of a July 2019 implementation it appears the District is acting unilaterally and has predetermined the results of any negotiations”. If the District cancels the March meeting, we will have our attorney address it appropriately.

Negotiations Update

Cathleen Monsell, Chair of Negotiations

Reminder:  If you haven’t already done so, please take a moment to fill out our Annual Membership/Negotiations Survey.  Your input is very important and not only helps us decide the topics that we should negotiate on your behalf, but also how we can better serve our members and meet their needs. The survey closes this Friday, March 8, 2019.
The survey link was sent to you by email from the FHDA Association of Classified Employees email address on Feb. 20.

Yeti Spotting – Five-Percent Temporary Salary Adjustment

Can it be true?  Will the elusive five-percent temporary salary adjustment, plus retroactive pay, appear in our March paycheck?  Yes.  That is the confirmation I have received from District payroll.I know, you’ve heard it before. Here is what is different. The Memorandum of Understanding (MOU), ACE and the other bargaining units signed with the District in December regarding the salary adjustment was very specific in terms of notifying the units if the adjustment could not be implemented for the March paycheck. “If the District cannot implement the agreed upon five-percent increase for 2018-18 by March 1, 2019, including all associated pay retroactive to July 2018, the District shall notify all bargaining units of the additional delay by March 1, 2019 and shall propose additional monetary consideration to address the continuing delay”.  In other words, there is a fiscal penalty to the District if they delay again.

March 1 has passed and no such notice for an additional delay has been issued. Is that a Yeti I see?

Pre-Retirement Reduction in Contract

The Pre-Retirement Reduction in Contract allows classified staff who are eligible for service retirement too phase into actual retirement through a contract reduction (not less than 50% of their full-time contract) while maintaining full retirement credit and other benefits for a maximum of five years. Under any other type of reduction in contract, the portion the District pays a pro-rated to the percentage of the full-time contract you work. In other words, you pay more out of your pocket to maintain the same benefits and earn less service credit.

Pre-retirement reductions in contract are entirely voluntary, and while generally encouraged by the District, they are not an entitlement. To ensure the needs of a department are met, any reduction in contract is at the discretion of the department manager. The best place to start?  Have a conversation with your supervisor. Don’t wait! The deadline to submit your request is May 1.

ACE Article 17B: The Details

17B.1 Eligibility

Each full-time 12-month, 11-month, 10-month, or academic-day classified worker who meets the requirements of this article may reduce his/her contract from full-time to part-time while maintaining his/her retirement benefits pursuant to Education Code Section 88038 and Government Code Section 20905.

To be eligible for a pre-retirement reduction in contract the worker must:

17B.1.1  Have reached the age of 55 prior to the reduction in contract;

17B.1.2  Have been employed full-time for at least ten years in a classified position requiring membership in an appropriate California state retirement system; and

17B.1.3  Have served full-time without a break in service during the preceding five years.

This article shall be applicable only to classified workers who request a reduction in contract, who meet the criteria established in this section.

17B.2 Period of Reduced Contract

The maximum period during which a classified worker’s contract may be reduced under this article shall be five years. At the conclusion of the period during which a classified worker’s contract is reduced under this article, the worker shall retire.

17B.3  Rights and Benefits

A classified worker whose contract has been reduced under this article shall retain all paid benefits afforded full-time classified workers and shall receive the pro rata share of the salary he/she would have earned had he/she continued full-time. In addition, the worker shall retain on a pro rata basis, all other rights and benefits of permanent classified workers.

17B.4  Duties

A classified worker whose contract has been reduced under this article shall fulfill the appropriate pro rata share of the hours and classified duties that would have been required had the worker continued as a full-time worker.

17B.5  Contributions to the Retirement System

In compliance with Education Code Section 88038 and Government Code Section 20905, a classified worker whose contract has been reduced under this article shall contribute to the appropriate retirement system by payroll deduction the amount he/she would have contributed had he/she continued full-time. The District shall contribute to the appropriate retirement system the amount required by law.

17B.6  Request for Reduction in Contract

To implement the provisions of this article, a classified worker shall file a written request for a reduced contract specifying:

17B.6.1  That the request is pursuant to this article;

17B.6.2  The reduced contract the worker desires under this article, provided it is not less than one -half of a full contract; and

17B.6.3  The number of years during which the classified worker wishes his/her contract to be reduced under this article, provided the number of years does not exceed five.

The request shall be filed no later than May 1 preceding the college year during which the worker wishes the reduced contract to become effective. College year means July 1 to June 30. The request shall be filed with the appropriate supervisor with a copy to the Director of Human Resources. If the worker’s request is granted, it shall take effect at the beginning of the next college year and, unless during the first year of reduction in contract under this article the worker submits a written request to return to full-time employment at the beginning of the next college year, may be revoked only with the mutual consent of the worker and the District.

17B.7  Other Reductions in Contract

Nothing in this article shall prohibit a classified worker from requesting a reduction in contract outside of the provisions of this article nor shall it prohibit the District from granting such a request.