PALMDALE – The California School Employees Association (CSEA) Local Chapter 296 voted last night to accept the Tentative Agreement for the 2012/2013 negotiations, according to an announcement by the Palmdale School District.
A total of 293 classified employees voted with the following results: 223 YES and 70 NO
The focus of the 2012-2013 negotiations has been to address the District’s multi-million dollar deficit created by state budget cuts. The District and CSEA were able to reach an agreement on salary reductions and furlough days for the 2013-14 and 2014-15 school years, along with the substantive restoration contingency language designed to restore first salary reductions and then furlough days to the full extent possible should, as both parties hope, there be funds available from unrestricted ending balances and/or unrestricted new monies over the next two years.
The passing of the tentative agreement allows the District to rescind the layoff of 20% of the classified employees.
The District has proposed that all employee groups accept the same cuts and a health benefits maximum contribution of $15,550 in order to maintain fiscal solvency. The District’s management team and CSEA have had the maximum contribution in place for several years now and have both agreed to the same salary reductions and furlough days over the next two years.
At this time, the Palmdale Elementary Teachers Association has not agreed to the same salary reductions, furlough days and maximum contribution and is currently in factfinding. Currently, the majority of teachers in the district have unlimited health benefits.
“With the passing of this agreement, the District and CSEA have truly demonstrated their joint commitment both to our students and the fiscal health of the District,” commented Roger Gallizzi, District Superintendent. “I want to thank CSEA and its leadership for working with us.”
CSEA President George Blackstone noted the following regarding the agreement: “CSEA has shown its commitment to Palmdale students and the long-term financial stability of the District. Now let’s hope that the State delivers on the anticipated promise of new funding, so that the agreed-to compensation reductions can be restored to the full extent possible.”
The Tentative Agreement will be presented to the Palmdale School District’s Board of Trustees for ratification at the next Board Meeting on June 18, 2013.
Sandy Corrales-Eneix, Palmdale School District Board President stated, “The passing of the TA is an excellent example of collaboration. As a result of the state’s on-going fiscal crisis, negotiations become more challenging. I am proud that we are able to work together to find solutions, though difficult, that remain focused on our students.”
(Information via press release from the Palmdale School District.)