State system completes negotiations, ratifies faculty contracts

The Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education (PASSHE) has approved the state universities’ faculty contract agreements, thus ending a more than year-long stalemate between PASSHE and the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties (APSCUF).

In addition to approving agreements within the faculty unions, PASSHE approved a “wage opener” for campus police and security officers, and a two-year merit pool for non-represented employees.

The new agreements also included revisions to previously established healthcare plans that are designed to provide financial savings for the state system.

“Each of the new agreements balances the Board’s desire to provide increases in compensation to our employees with the necessity to achieve cost savings for the universities and the system,” state system board chair Cynthia D. Shapira said in a press release issued by PASSHE.

Similar healthcare changes had been made in January 2016 that provide students with on-campus health center nurses and campus police officers.

Each union’s agreements were made several months ago and include salary increases for nearly every faculty member. APSCUF had previously ratified its agreement during its Dec. 5-8 voting period, with 94 percent of union members who voted, voting in favor of the new agreement.

“We are pleased to have reached a successful conclusion to this process and look forward to working together to ensure our more than 100,000 students have continued access to educational opportunities that are of the highest quality at the best value for their investment,” state system chancellor Frank Brogan said in PASSHE’s press release.

The new agreement between PASSHE and APSCUF will last until June 2018; the agreements with the coaches and campus nurses will expire a year later.

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