The University of Hawaii has reached an agreement with leadership of its faculty union over the terms of a new contract.
The new, tentative two-year contract includes annual across-the-board four-percent increases for all university faculty and lecturers and would succeed the current contract on July 1, 2015.
“The salary and benefits provisions in the tentative agreement are consistent with those in the settlements of other public unions, including HGEA, UPW and HSTA, for the same two-year period,” Lassner said.
“The new UHPA/BOR agreement will make budgeting more predictable, create stability for faculty employment, and relieve downward pressure on tuitions by using general fund support for the salary increases,” said J.N. Musto, UHPA executive director and chief negotiator.
The agreement — which involves Gov. Neil Abercrombie, University of Hawaii interim/incoming president David Lassner, the UH Board of Regents and the University of Hawaii Professional Assembly’s Board of Directors — marks the first time a public sector successor contract has been reached a year in advance of the expiration date of a current contract.
UHPA’s Board of Directors unanimously voted to ratify the tentative agreement, however the contract has yet to be ratified by faculty members. An electronic vote is being conducted among the nearly 4,000 members across 10 campuses statewide over a two-month period.
The contract also addresses minimum salaries and increased employer contributions to the health insurance premiums provided through the Employer-Union Health Benefits Trust Fund.
The contract will not go into effect if the legislature fails to appropriate general funds for faculty salary increases before July 1, 2015, Musto said.
Contract negotiations have been contentious in the past, however, UHPA says, this year all parties were motivated to reach an agreement prior to the expiration of the current contract.