(Members present, FYI – Tom, Sullivan, Priest, Kowalkowski, Hyde, Chow, Bergeson, Grimm, Jarrett, Hunter, Dolan, Hartmann, Anderson)
Discussion of proposals, continued
- Collective bargaining: deferred
Question from WSIPP staff – In the new salary allocation model, are salaries required to be not less or not more than allocated models?
>>Chair Grimm reviewed concerns over and questions about collective bargaining expressed by TF members last week. Dr. Dolan shared concerns about cost and implementation. Sen. Tom thought the TF would tighten up TRI pay and address some other issues, and provide an option for bargaining but not including it in the final recommendation. Sup. Kowalkowski said he would like to bargain pay locally for additional responsibilities/time (for club advisors, etc.) because he doesn’t want to pay hourly wages and would rather pay a stipend. Rep. Hunter asked Sup. Kowalkowski if he would like some districts to pay significantly more for the same additional responsibilities/time. Chair Grimm clarified that in his proposal, the governor could delegate bargaining responsibility for some or all items (meaning the governor could delegate the bargaining for advisor stipends to local districts).
>>Sen. Tom said as he understands it, the state is not the employer and therefore does not have the right to bargain; he asked if this was true. Chair Grimm said while he is not a lawyer, he views districts as agents of the state. He is not aware of any constitutional language barring the state from being named the employer of teachers. Rep. Sullivan asked about staff hired with levy dollars and who would bargain those salaries. Chair Grimm thought if districts are considered state agencies, then it just has to be put into law; he was happy to have someone look into the matter. Rep. Anderson mentioned federal labor laws.
>>Rep. Sullivan asked again about employees funded with local dollars, and what role the state would play in hiring and firing. Chair Grimm said the situation would be similar to other state agencies and departments. Dr. Dolan suggested the remaining responsibilities be delegated to local school boards. Dr. Hyde said she would like benefits be negotiated at the state level, as well. Rep. Priest shared his impression of the original idea: that the state didn’t want to dictate how much districts might pay club advisors, but does want to determine values in the SAM (and include regional adjustments) to ensure uniformity/equity. Chair Grimm said his rationale matched Rep. Priest’s understanding. Dr. Bergeson orated on bargaining.<<
(Members present, FYI – Tom, Sullivan, Priest, Kowalkowski, Hyde, Chow, Bergeson, Grimm, Jarrett, Dolan, Hartmann, Anderson)
- Supplemental pay: Model Schools (limit to Time); impose limitation on hourly rate
Question from WSIPP staff – To establish a per diem rate calculation in legislation, more explicit decision is necessary; does the TF assume a 40 hour work week for 10, 11 or 12 months?
>>Sen. Tom suggested a maximum be set. Sup. Kowalkowski said he is hesitant about that idea, as he values flexibility in determining stipend amounts. Sen. Tom said that is why they could set maximums instead, which would let districts retain flexibility. Rep. Jarrett said the next question is then what length of year do they want to use. Rep. Sullivan asked about the fairness in setting a cap. Dr. Bergeson then advocated for regional bargaining. Chair Grimm pointed out that state pensions can’t be bargained. Randy Parr, WEA, countered that certain items can be bargained, additional compensation and the like. Rep. Anderson advocated for increased transparency in any future system, to aid community understanding of funding realities.
>>Chair Grimm brought it back to the question at hand. Sen. Tom recommended that the number of months used match the number of months used in salary surveys. Dr. Dolan worried about the use of a 40 hour work week, thinking it may cause confusion among educators (since most work more than 40 hours a week). Rep. Sullivan brought up the issue of setting the ceiling without setting the floor. Chair Grimm asked if they should determine a set rate instead. Dr. Dolan offered that the rate could be set by taking an annual salary and dividing it by 180 days and 6 periods per day. Sen. Tom asked Sup. Kowalkowski if he wants a limit or not, because there are implications to both. Sup. Kowalkowski said he would take the limit.<<
(Members present, FYI – Tom, Sullivan, Priest, Kowalkowski, Hyde, Bergeson, Grimm, Jarrett, Dolan, Hartmann)
>>Back to collective bargaining – Sen. Tom asked if this supplemental pay decision is tied to statewide bargaining only. Chair Grimm said the TF would make the recommendation regardless of any collective bargaining decision, unless members changed their minds. Rep. Sullivan asked how classified staff would be treated. Chair Grimm said that in his plan, classified staff would be treated as state employees (like in higher education), but the issue hasn’t been addressed by the TF.
>>Rep. Priest wondered why Chair Grimm separated classified staff from certificated staff. Chair Grimm answered that he did so because classified roles are more similar within the category than to certificated staff. He added that classified staff probably closely match roles already used by the state for other personnel systems (and cited the battle with higher education 30+ years ago).<<
>>Back to classified staffing ratios – Dr. Bergeson wondered why the TF should recommend different staffing ratios (one for certificated and one for classified). Sen. Tom said they did so because districts hire enough classified staff to get the job done, not because they have to spend specified dollars.<<