Bargaining Update (Oct. 27, 2011)

Bargaining Update (Oct. 27, 2011)

October 27, 2011

In brief, the District bargaining team is preparing to seek guidance from the Board of Trustees in response to the union’s counter-proposal when the Board meets next Wednesday, November 2.

We won’t know whether or not the District will pick up the increase in health insurance premiums until then.

The District’s initial proposal was identical to the Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed by the District and by the CCFF last year – minus the paragraph in which the District agrees to gather information on health plans to see about making benefits available to part-time faculty.  This means the District would not pick up the increase in costs for health insurance.  (For those of you who don’t carry a copy of the MOU with you and are curious, I’ll offer some detail in a moment.)

The CCFF’s counter-proposal set forth, in essence, that the District absorb the additional costs, paid for with the money that faculty save the District by selecting less expensive health plans than those for which they are eligible.

Some details about last year’s MOU.

The District offers faculty health benefits in two tiers.  Those who were hired before October 1, 2003, have a cap of $2007.33 per month over 12 months.  Those who were hired on or after October 1, 2003, have a cap of $1176.27 per month over 12 months.

  • There are a total of 237 full-time faculty members at Cerritos College
  • 173 or 63% of us were hired before 10/01/03
  • 64 or 27% of us were hired after 10/01/03

There are about 50 managers.  The District’s cap for each is $2046 per month, regardless of hire date.

There are about 300 CSEA employees.  The District’s cap for each is $2007.33, regardless of hire date.

That’s right:  the 64 faculty hired since 2003 are the only ones subject to the $1176.27 cap.

Based on information provided by the District, the CCFF analysis found that the cost of health insurance to the District for all faculty is $3,348,063.24.  Were faculty inclined to spend the allocation for which each is eligible, the District would pay $4,888,481.

In effect, the faculty’s thrifty selection of insurance programs saves the District $1,540,417.80.

The CCFF proposal posited that the $181,218.96 projected increase in health plan costs for 2012 can be covered by the $1,540,417.80 in underutilized funds.

Also note that the District has in fact budgeted $3,502,923 to cover faculty health care costs for 2012.  The difference between what has been budgeted and what will be spent is $154,888 – which means, in order to cover the increase in health care benefit costs, the District would have to find $26,330.96.  This is about 0.03% (three hundredths of a percent) of the total Cerritos College budget.