Unions Take Legislative Action in House & Senate to Change Health Fund for Public Employees

In summary the bills;

  • Establish the right of each bargaining unit to negotiate not only the employers payments to EUTF but the coverage
  • The Trustees would have “fiduciary responsibilities” to the beneficiaries of the EUTF, i.e., the public employees and retirees
  • Would permit the EUTF to hire its own legal counsel, and removes the Attorney General, who is appointed  by the Governor, from that role
  • Expand the number of Trustees from 10 to 12 to allow each union a representative, appointed by the unions not the Governor
  • Transfers administrative authority of the EUTF from the Department of Budget & Finance to the Department of Human Resources
  • Exempt the EUTF from state procurement law in the selection of consultants and carriers

You can read the bills on-line:






We will be notifying faculty members when hearing dates and times are set for these bills.  This is the most extensive joint legislative undertaking ever initiated by the public sector unions, and one of the most important issues facing public employees’ health and welfare.

News Release – January 26, 2010

Contact:         Kristeen Hanselman, Associate Executive Director, (808) 593-2157


UHPA Members Vote in Favor of Ratifying Tentative Agreement

Final Results: 83.23% Yes Votes, 16.77% No Votes

Faculty members in bargaining unit 7 have ratified a new six-year collective bargaining agreement that substantially improves on the UH administration’s previous offer, rejected by the faculty last October.  An electronic vote began Thursday, January 21, at noon, and concluded today at 12:01 p.m.

The new agreement will replace the previous agreement, retroactive to July 1, 2009.

UHPA plans to withdraw its motion in the Circuit Court for a temporary restraining order and to compel arbitration of its claim to a continuing contract, and will also withdraw prohibited practice charges at the Hawaii Labor Relations Board related to health fund contributions.

“While this certainly addresses the short term crisis that has resulted from a severe restriction of previously appropriated state general funds, the long term future of the university remains uncertain.  Faculty have ongoing concerns about the health of the UH and want to make sure that higher education remains a priority for our state, even during these fiscally challenging times,” said J.N. Musto, UHPA executive director and chief negotiator, who led a series of ratification meetings describing the tentative agreement last week and has been answering questions from faculty.  “Faculty members want to see the plan of the UH administration that carries the institution forward, and the response it receives from the legislature and our future governor.  We will be weighing in on every action with respect to the University of Hawaii over the course of the next six years..”

Musto added that UHPA will be asking legislators to restore funding that has been allocated for the UH system, and that yesterday, UHPA launched a new TV advertising campaign to showcase the value of faculty in supporting the state and the importance of funding for UH programs.  The TV commercials are available on the UHPA Web site at www.uhpa.org.

Tentative Agreement Highlights:

Salary Reductions, Snap Back and Salary Pay Backs
According to the tentative agreement, faculty salaries would be temporarily reduced by 6.667 percent for 18 months, beginning January 1, 2010, after being raised to the new salary minimum for the various faculty ranks (i.e., instructor, assistant professor, associate professor, professor).  After June 30, 2011, faculty salaries would snap back to the salaries they were paid on December 31, 2009, and account for any increases as a result of promotions over the 18-month period. 

In addition, the reductions would be paid back to faculty who continue in employment with UH or retire during the term of the contract.  The repayments will be made in increments: 25 percent of the salary reduction amount in 2012; another 25 percent in 2013 and the final 50 percent in 2014.  There would also be a 3 percent across-the-board salary increase in years 2013 and 2014.  By contrast, the UH administration had previously offered a salary snap back provision with no restoration of the amount of the salary reduction in future years under the terms of only a two year contract.

The provisions relating to layoffs are another significant difference between the previous September LBFO and the tentative agreement.  In the previous offer, retrenchments could begin at any time and be effective July 1, 2010.  With the new contract, there can be no retrenchments before June 30, 2011.

The salary reductions do not apply to faculty positions that are covered by federal or extramural funds (research and training grants) and for those faculty members who plan to retire before December 31, 2010. In the UH administration’s last, best, final offer, this provision was previously limited to faculty who planned to retire by June 30, 2010.

Payroll Lag
The tentative agreement would allow a delay of five days in receipt of the monthly paychecks beginning June 30, 2010, eventually moving the dates to 5th and 20th of each month.  This would result in the loss of one paycheck in 2010 that would be re-paid to faculty upon retirement or when they leave university employment.

Health Insurance Premium Contributions

Under the new contract, employer contributions for health insurance premiums for faculty members will not be less than that paid to other public employees under the terms of collective bargaining agreements reached after July 1, 2009.  Unfortunately, the employer’s contributions did not increase in July 2009 when health insurance premiums went up on average of 23%.

UHPA and UH Administration Reach Tentative Agreement

UHPA Members can download the PDF of the comparison of the UH Administration’s LBFO vs. the TA.  You will be asked to log in first.

UHPA Membership to Hold Ratification Vote of Tentative Agreement



Date:               January 16, 2010

Contact:         Nathan Hokama

                        (808) 226-7470




UHPA and UH Administration Reach Tentative Agreement

UHPA Membership to Hold Ratification Vote
of Tentative Agreement

Electronic Voting Period: Jan. 21 – Jan. 26

In a special board meeting held today, the UHPA Board of Directors voted to seek approval of a tentative agreement with the UH administration through a ratification vote by its members.  The tentative agreement between UHPA’s collective bargaining committee and the UH administration was reached this week.

The ratification vote will be open to all bargaining unit members and will be conducted electronically. The voting period is scheduled to begin on Thursday, January 21, at noon, and end on Tuesday, January 26, at 12:01 p.m. 

As a courtesy to UHPA faculty members, terms of the tentative agreement will not be publicly disclosed to allow members to have the opportunity to review them first.  UHPA bargaining unit members will be receiving information on the tentative agreement this weekend.

If it is ratified, the agreement would replace the existing contract now in effect.

UHPA Members can downloadcomparison of the UH Administration’s LBFO vs. the TA. via the private, members only site.

Tentative Agreement Informational Meetings

Informational meetings have been scheduled.

UHPA Ratification Voting – If You Haven’t Voted Already, Please Vote Now

You should have received an email with your eballot information on Thursday, January 21st, and again on Monday, January 25th.  Provided in the email is the eballot site address, your UHPA Member Code and UHPA Member Password.  Please contact the UHPA office if you have not received your ballot.

The voting process is estimated to take less than two minutes of your time.  The results of the election will be reported at 3:00 p.m. HST on Tuesday, January 26th.

A screen by screen tutorial of the Electronic Voting Process is provided for your review.

NEA Haiti Earthquake Recovery

NEA is participating in the Education International Solidarity Fund, which channels support directly to CNEH members in Haiti who have been hit hard by this earthquake.  The funds are managed by Education International; disbursements will be made first to secure lives and second to support the resumption of education.  This is a safe way to ensure that relief funds go directly to teachers and positively support children.

We invite you to financially support the EI Solidarity Fund for Haiti; directing the funds to the recovery efforts of teachers there.  Checks can be made out to the National Education Association; which will be forwarded directly to EI for humanitarian assistance to CNEH.  These can be sent to:

                        Haiti Earthquake Recovery
                        National Education Association
                        1201 16th Street NW, Suite 614
                        Washington DC 20036

There are challenging times that we face in public education and in our families just now in the United States.  Yet, the Haitian’s deep level of need and the intrinsic reward of giving calls on us all to do what we can.

We thank you, in advance, for your generosity.

Press Release Regarding TRO – January 15, 2010

UHPA filed the motion of January 6th immediately upon the announcement from UH President M.R.C Greenwood that she would breach the bargaining unit 7 continuing contract by imposing salary reductions.  We believe playing by the rules and honoring your word is important in collective bargaining.  We turned to the courts for relief.  Although we have not yet received a court hearing date, we have faith in the justice system. Judge Derrick Chan is an experienced jurist and we have no doubt that he will act responsibly.  We will continue to pursue redress from courts for this action by the UH administration.

COME MARCH WITH UHPA! Monday, January 18, 2010, Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. Parade & Rally

Free UHPA shirts to the first 20 who sign in!
Free UHPA caps to all participants!

TIME: Meet at 8:30 a.m. The parade begins at 9:00 a.m.

LOCATION: Look for the UHPA banner in the Ulumau parking lot next to the canoe storage area at the Magic Island end of Ala Moana Park.

PARADE ROUTE: From Magic Island, Ala Moana Park to Kapiolani Park via Ala Moana Blvd. and Kalakaua Ave. The route is about 1.7 miles and will take about 90 minutes to walk.

WEAR: UHPA shirt and/or hat, comfortable shoes, and sunscreen and bring water.

AFTER THE PARADE: Stay for the unity rally, entertainment, food booths, community booths, and children’s playground at Kapiolani Park Bandstand.

Celebrate Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.’s legacy linking labor, civil and human rights. This is an important day for union members, especially government employees, because Dr. King was assassinated in Memphis while supporting municipal garbage workers on strike.  His legacy of civil rights and human dignity (the Memphis garbage workers carried signs, “I am a Man”) is an important message for contemporary struggles linking labor, civil and human rights.

The Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Coalition-Hawai`i (MLK) is again honored to extend our invitation to the community and its many organizations and individuals to participate in the 22nd Annual MLK Celebration Parade & Rally on Monday, January 18, 2010. All are invited to participate in the numerous other related events on and about this date. Our 2010 theme is another of Dr. King’s profound statements:   “We may have all come on different ships, but we’re in the same boat now.”

Click here for more details.