Letter to the NYU Faculty Updating the Status of the Negotiations Between the UAW and the University
April 5, 2003
On March 5, 2003, the UAW proposed an economic package for part-time faculty who are part of its bargaining group (those who teach at least 40 classroom instruction hours or 75 individualized instruction hours in an academic year). In support of their proposal, on March 26th the UAW also provided an in depth briefing on their proposed defined benefit pension plan.
We have studied the UAW’s proposal carefully. At its fullest extent (using eligible part-time faculty information from the 2001-02 academic year), the UAW’s proposal would cost the university in excess of $200 million and necessitate at minimum a 27% increase in tuition, assuming no cuts or diminution in current programs, salaries and services.
While it is not uncommon in negotiations for parties to put forward inflated (or deflated) proposals from which to negotiate, the UAW’s current proposal significantly exceeds every union agreement in New York City region, which has some of the highest salary minimums in the country. With respect to minimum salary rates, for example, the UAW’s proposed rates are 400% higher than prevailing rates in the area.
The key provisions of the UAW’s economic proposal on behalf of its part-time faculty members - which as proposed are retroactive to 2002 - are:
— Salaries and Other Compensation Related to Instruction —
* A minimum salary of $150 per classroom instruction hour, with an additional hour of compensation for preparation for every three classroom hours taught, for an effective classroom instruction rate of $200 per classroom hour;
* In terms of course costs, starting part-time faculty members would receive a minimum of $8,400 for teaching a three-hour course; the prevailing New York City region minimum unionized three-hour classroom instruction rate is approximately $2,100.
* A minimum salary of $100 per hour for individualized instruction (e.g., music lesson, voice lesson), with an additional hour of compensation for every five hours of instruction, for an effective rate of $120 per hour of instruction;
* In terms of individualized instruction costs, starting part-time faculty members would receive a minimum of $1,680 for a one-hour lesson per week for the semester.
* An annual salary increase for all part-time faculty, applied to the new minimum salary or current salary for those whose salaries exceed the minimum, of:
o 3.5% in 2003;
o 4% in 2004.
Longevity Salary Bonus:
* A longevity pay increase of 10% - applied after annual increases - for every five years of service that a part-time faculty member has taught at the university since their first date of employment (teaching one course in any prior semester in any given year counts as a year of service);
* The minimum three-hour classroom instruction rate for part-time faculty members who have taught at least one course in any prior five or ten years since their first date of employment:
o Five year minimum course rate: $ 9,240 (10% increase);
o Ten year minimum course rate: $10,164 (20% increase).
* An increase of 15% of the total course cost for every student enrolled over a negotiated course maximum;
* For every seven students over a negotiated maximum, the course compensation paid to the part-time faculty member would double.
Sick Leave Pay:
* Accrual of sick leave at a rate that permits a part-time faculty member to miss one of every five classes with pay;
* Payment to a substitute instructor for those classes missed by the part-time faculty member.
* Payment, at the hourly rate paid to the instructor of record, to part-time faculty members who teach as a substitute in another course in the university.
Course Development Pay:
* Payment of $2,500 for any classroom course developed by a part-time faculty member to which he or she retains the right to teach that course each time it is offered;
* Payment of $5,000 for any classroom course developed by the part-time faculty member to which he or she waives the right to teach that course.
Course Cancellation Pay:
* Payment of a cancellation fee of 25% of the cost of the course for any course cancelled without notice 60 days prior to the first day;
* A prohibition on canceling classes that exceed negotiated departmental minimum class enrollments.
— Other Duties Pay (Non-Instructional) —
* Payment of 65% of the minimum instructional rate ($97.50 per hour) to part-time faculty members who participate in departmental meetings, orientation/open houses, portfolio review, senior colloquium, and other non-instructional duties;
* Payment of $200 per student, per semester for academic advising (except at the School of Social Work);
* Payment of $2,000 per semester for advising a student club.
— Benefits —
* For every credit and non-credit course taught by a part-time faculty, he or she accrues 4 credits of free tuition for use by the part-time faculty member, his or her spouse or domestic partner, and children.
* Payment for sabbatical leave at the rate of 75% of prior three year’s salaries for every 7 years of teaching. Any teaching in an academic year counts as a full year for sabbatical purposes.
Professional Development Fund:
* Annual payment of $100,000 into a fund for part-time faculty members to cover professional development costs of eligible members.
Day Care Fund:
* Annual payment of $150,000 into a fund for part-time faculty members to cover day care expenses of eligible members.
Union Education Fund:
* Annual payment of $75,000 into a fund for part-time faculty members to cover attendance at union conferences and meetings by eligible members.
Health Care/Dental Care:
* Payment by NYU, at the same percentage and for the same health care options as available to full-time faculty, of the costs for health care coverage for all part-time faculty teaching one course per year, with 50% payment by NYU of their dependant health care costs;
* Payment by NYU, at the same percentage and for the same health care options as available to full-time faculty, of the costs for health care coverage for all part-time faculty teaching two courses per year, with 100% payment by NYU of their dependant health care costs;
* Payment of $50 per month to part-time faculty members who provide proof of health insurance under another policy during semesters in which they are teaching.
Union Release and Leave:
* Annual payment by NYU in excess of $250,000 to provide paid leave, with full benefits, to four UAW part-time faculty members at the rate of $4,800 per week for their work in support of the UAW’s implementation of the contract (32 hours of work per week by four part-time faculty members at $150 per hour).
Defined Benefit Pension Plan:
* Participation in a prescribed defined benefit pension plan, fully funded by NYU, with vesting based upon teaching one course in an academic year for five years (which need not be continuous years of service).
* Payment for life and accident insurance on the same basis as for full-time faculty members with no cost to the part-time faculty member.
Long-Term Disability Insurance:
* Payment for disability insurance on the same basis and at the same cost as for full-time faculty members.
— Policy —
* Schools and departments may not place a limit on the number of courses taught by part-time faculty members.
While the UAW’s initial proposal far exceeds what the university could responsibly bear, we remain committed to reaching an agreement in good faith. Our part-time faculty members are important members of the University community. As the negotiations progress, we have every expectation that we will reach an agreement that benefits the entire university community and reflects the many contributions that part-time faculty make.
We will continue to provide periodic updates as negotiations proceed and again, please feel free to contact us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
As a reminder, faculty members who are on the Faculty Bargaining Committee are:
Marisa Carrasco FAS
Alma Carten Social Work
Ned Elton Stern
Larry Ferrara Steinhardt
Phil Furmanski FAS
Marjorie Kalter SCPS
Carl Lebowitz SCPS*
Robert Nickson Tisch
Kathy O’Regan Wagner
James Ramsey FAS
Kathleen Ross FAS
Jalal Shatah Courant
Sue Turk SCPS
* Denotes new member
We hope this update is helpful.