Faculty Salaries

Questioner: Anonymous

Question posed to David Fenner, FA President

According to the National Education Association, faculty salaries at UNF are the lowest (or near lowest) in the Florida State University System which makes up 11 schools. Moreover, UNF salaries have been the lowest in the state for the past decade. What has the Faculty Association done to raise faculty salaries at UNF during this time? What is the Faculty Association doing to address the fact that UNF has the lowest faculty salaries in the state?

Answer from the Floor by David Fenner, FA President

Let me say a couple things about that. The first thing to say is that I am very, very clear on the dividing line between the Faculty Association and the Union, and the Union really takes care of matters of employment. So I’m careful not to sort of wade into those waters. To the degree to which Kally wants to talk to me about anything, I’m delighted. The second thing to say is that you probably know that the President of the Faculty Association is a member of the Board of Trustees, so I’m privy to information that’s coming to the BOT with regard to bargaining, and that kind of moves me on to, not exactly the management side, but I’m sitting there with the management side when I’m being briefed by the  attorney, so it would really be a conflict of interest for me to get into anything to do with salaries.  Having said all of that, I will say that last year we passed a resolution calling for a certain percentage of funds that might be realized from a performance funding model for the metrics to go to faculty bonuses.   And this summer I worked out—and I’m delighted to share this information with Kally or with anybody who would ask—numbers with regard to how that might look in terms of how much money we were talking about in general for faculty and staff bonuses, so forth and so on. Those numbers didn’t go anywhere but I’m keen to do whatever—I will follow Kally’s lead with regard to support for enhancing the salaries of the faculty.

UFF Officers

Questioner: Anonymous

Posted to: John White, President United Faculty of Florida

Given that the UFF bargains the contract for all faculty, not just those who are UFF members, will the UFF consider allowing all faculty to vote for UFF officers?

Response from John White, President of the United Faculty of Florida:

There are three answers to this question. The first is a common practice that is at the core of union activity. Officers of a chapter are responsible for setting the direction of that chapter, for creating and enforcing a collective bargaining agreement, and for providing its members with specific services. These duties necessitate that officers be nominated and selected by dues paying members; by definition, paying members have a greater stake (and investment) in the success of a chapter than do nonmembers.

Second, the United Faculty of Florida Constitution and the UNF-UFF Constitution specify that only members in good standing may vote for chapter officers.

Finally, and most importantly, all in-unit faculty have ample and equal opportunity to have a say in the governance of their UFF chapter and in the contract that governs our terms and conditions of employment (the CBA): they can join the union. Membership has its privileges.

United Faculty of Florida

Questioner: Anonymous

Posted to: John White, President United Faculty of Florida

Some 15 plus years ago money were available for compression/inversion (C/I/D). About 70% of it was given to adjust salary to the Professor rank. When others complained they were told to get promotion for raise. Some did just that. This time around even though some department Professors got big raises but in most departments Associate and Assistant Professors got bigger percent of raises. What was the rationale behind this year’s negotiation to keep Professors salary mostly across the board?
In addition, is it fair that the highest paid faculty member in COAS got a raise through compression and inversion?

Response from John White, President UFF-UNF:

I apologize for the delay in responding to the question; because it was not forwarded to me for a response, I did not see it until the June Faculty Association meeting.

The compression and inversion model was designed to address across-rank departmental compression (i.e., associate and full professors who made less than 112.5% of the departmental median of the next lower rank). The model did not account for the issue of within-rank compression that is at the heart of this question. The rationale behind the choice of this model is simple: the amount of funding provided to address compression and inversion ($1 million) was, though very welcome, far too low to address the problem in its entirety. To put the issue into perspective, addressing C & I for Coggin faculty would alone have consumed at least 40% of the total C & I funds. In addition, the model addressed one of the primary aims of President Delaney: to provide more money to the lowest paid associate and assistant professors.

In terms of percentages, because assistant professors and associate professors far outnumber full professors at UNF, a much larger percentage of the total raise pool (including the 4% across-the-board raises) went to these ranks. Nonetheless, full professors in departments in which their median salary was less than 112.5% of the median associate professor salary did receive C & I adjustments (excepting for those individuals making over $130,000 per year).

The questioner asks: “[I]s it fair that the highest paid faculty member in COAS got a raise through compression and inversion?” The salary model—applied consistently and per fair labor practices—required it. All raises were based on nine-month pay rates rather than total annual salary (the salary table reflects faculty members’ contracted annual salaries). The faculty member in question is contracted for 12 months of full time work; when adjusted for nine months, her salary is 33% less than shown in the table. In addition, because the model’s calculations were based upon department-rank groups and because several full professors in this person’s department were compressed—thus pulling down the median salary for that group—she received a C & I adjustment.

For more information on the C & I model and/or the contexts surrounding the funds for C & I, please visit UNF-UFF.org/contract or contact me (j.white@unf.edu), John Hatle (jhatle@unf.edu), or Susan Perez (sperez@unf.edu).