SB 328 Proposing an Amendment to Article VI, Section 3, of the Constitution of Hawaii

The Senate Committee on Judiciary and Labor
Wednesday, February 8, 2017
9:00 am, Room 016

RE: SB 328 Proposing an Amendment to Article VI, Section 3, of the Constitution of Hawaii to Amend the Timeframe to Renew the Term of Office of a Justice or Judge and Require Consent of the Senate for a Justice or Judge to Renew a Term of Office.

 

Attention: Chair Gilbert Keith-Agaran, Vice Chair Karl Rhoads and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly opposes SB 328 as an overreach on judicial review by the Senate. The reappointment of a justice or judge is best effectuated through the judicial selection commission established to assess the performance and fitness to maintain office free from legislative influence and pressures that could be brought to bear on an independent judiciary.

UHPA respectfully requests that the Committee oppose SB 328.

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

SB 981, Relating to the Hawaii Labor Relations Board

The Senate Committee on Judiciary and Labor
Tuesday, February 7, 2017
9:00 AM, Conference Room 016

 

RE: SB 981, Relating to the Hawaii Labor Relations Board

 

Attention: Chair Gilbert Keith-Agaran, Vice Chair Karl Rhoads and
Members of the Committee

 

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support passage of SB 981 that amends Chapter 396, Hawaii Revised Statutes, providing the HLRB the same authority already allowed under Chapter 89 regarding service of pleadings.  UHPA supports efforts to streamline processes and procedures for the HLRB that will result in administrative efficiencies.

UHPA supports passage of SB 981.

Respectfully submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

 

SB 1114, Relating to the Hawaii Labor Relations Board

The Senate Committee on Judiciary and Labor
Tuesday, February 7, 2017
9:00 AM, Conference Room 016

RE: SB 1114, Relating to the Hawaii Labor Relations Board

 

Attention: Chair Gilbert Keith-Agaran, Vice Chair Karl Rhoads and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support passage of SB 1114 that amends Chapter 89, Hawaii Revised Statutes, as well as other statutes that assign work to the Hawaii Labor Relations Board (HLRB), to request the parties that appear before them to draft decisions and orders, enabling a process to resolve cases in a more expedited fashion.  UHPA supports efforts to streamline processes and procedures for the HLRB that will result in administrative efficiencies.

UHPA supports passage of SB 1114.

Respectfully submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

SB 1047, Relating to the Employeesʻ Retirement System

The Senate Committee on Judiciary and Labor
Tuesday, February 7, 2017
9:00 AM, Conference Room 016

RE: SB 1047, Relating to the Employeesʻ Retirement System

Attention: Chair Gilbert Keith-Agaran, Vice Chair Karl Rhoads and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support passage of SB 1047, requiring the Employeeesʻ Retirement System (ERS) actuary to perform annual stress tests of the system and the ERS Board to submit annual reports of the tests to the legislature.

The recent decision by the ERS Board to reduce the assumed rate of return from 7.5% to 7.0% all at once immediately increased the unfunded liability by $1.7 Billion, and has forced the legislature to review the required contributions.  Requiring the ERS actuary to perform an annual stress test and report its findings to the legislature will provide a level of transparency that is currently not in place and ensure that the decisions of the ERS Board are not made in a vacuum since the decision to reduce the assumed rate has statewide implications.  

UHPA supports passage of SB 1047.

Respectfully submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

SB 134, RELATING TO THE UNIVERSITY OF HAWAIʻI

The Committee on Higher Education and the Arts
Tuesday, February 7, 2017
2:00 pm, Room 224

 

RE: SB 134, RELATING TO THE UNIVERSITY OF HAWAIʻI

 

Attention: Chair Kai Kahele, Vice Chair Michelle Kidani and
Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) opposes SB 134 relating to a statutory prohibition on smoking, tobacco use and the use of electronic smoking devices by any person on the premises of the University of Hawaiʻi.  The University already has the authority and the ability to prohibit smoking and the use of tobacco and electronic smoking devices as noted in Section 1 paragraph 3 of SB 134.

The University has worked with UHPA in the past and continues to work with UHPA to ensure a healthy working conditions for the faculty and subsequently the students.  It continues to be the right of UHPA to work with the University to ensure that any policy that impacts faculty work environment promotes “positive health practices.”

We appreciate the opportunity to continue retaining the determination of best practices in the workplace; in the workplace rather than in statute.

UHPA opposes the passage of SB 134.

Respectfully submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

 

SB 406, Relating to Collective Bargaining

The Senate Committee on Judiciary and Labor
and
The Senate Committee on Higher Education and the Arts
Thursday, February 2, 2017
1:15 PM, Conference Room 224

RE: SB 406, Relating to Collective Bargaining

Attention: Chairs Gilbert S.C. Keith-Agaran and Kai Kahele, Vice Chairs Karl Rhoads and
Michelle Kidani and Members of the Respective Committees

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the joint Senate committee to support passage of SB 406 that amends Section 89-6 of the Hawai‘i Revised Statute to create bargaining unit 15, allowing full-time graduate students employed at the University of Hawai‘i to collectively bargain.  

Graduate students are essential to instruction, research and mentoring undergraduate students that contributes to the overall success of the University of Hawai‘i. They are in the full sense of the term, employees, with continuing access to positions based on job and academic performance.

When representing faculty, UHPA has worked with graduates students, and on occasion, have provided guidance.  The current University of Hawai‘i policy governing Graduate Students does not provide the proper protections of this group of employees.  Collective Bargaining would allow this group the following:

  • Negotiation of grievance procedures with access to arbitration
  • Protection from arbitrary and capricious behavior
  • Negotiation of salary, wages and benefits

While UHPA is unable to represent Graduate Students, our experience indicates this group of student employees needs the ability to advance its interests in establishing appropriate conditions of employment and treatment in the workplace.

UHPA supports the passage of SB 406.

Respectfully submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

HB 232, RELATING TO COLLECTIVE BARGAINING

The House Committee on Labor & Public Employment
Thursday, February 9, 2017
8:30 am, Room 309

 

RE: HB 232, RELATING TO COLLECTIVE BARGAINING

Attention:    Chair Aaron Ling Johanson, Vice Chair Daniel Holt and
                    Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to

support HB 232, which encourages the parties to a collective bargaining agreement to negotiate in a manner that effectuates the purpose of Chapter 89. Such purpose includes recognizing that public employees have a voice in determining their working conditions. This proposed measure advances the cooperative relations between employers and employees that establishes a healthy collective bargaining environment.

UHPA encourages the Committee to support HB 232.

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

HB 810, Relating to Collective Bargaining

The House Committee on Labor & Public Employment
Tuesday, February 7, 2017
10:00 am, Room 309

RE: HB 810, Relating to Collective Bargaining

Attention:    Chair Aaron Ling Johanson, Vice Chair Daniel Holt and
                    Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support passage of HB 810.

Chapter 89-9, Hawaii Revised Statutes, outlines the scope of negotiations and consultation and Chapter 89-11, Hawaii Revised Statutes, outlines the resolution of disputes and impasse procedures between the exclusive representative and the employer.  The amendments to these respective sections outlined in HB 810 will provide the appropriate pathway for resolving disputes between the exclusive representative and the employer regarding contributions to the Hawaii Employer-Union Health Benefits Trust Fund (EUTF).   

UHPA urges the committee to support HB 810.

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

HB 756, Making Appropriations for Collective Bargaining Cost Items

The House Committee on Labor & Public Employment
Tuesday, February 7, 2017
10:00 am, Room 309

RE: HB 756, Making Appropriations for Collective Bargaining Cost Items

Attention:    Chair Aaron Ling Johanson, Vice Chair Daniel Holt and
                    Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support passage of HB 756 which is a measure to appropriate funds for fiscal biennium 2017-2019 for salary costs for public employees in collective bargaining unit (7) and for certain employees excluded from collective bargaining.

UHPA urges the committee to support HB 756.

Respectfully Submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director

HB 1157, Relating to Technology Transfer at the University of Hawaiʻi Research

The House Committee on Economic Development & Business
and
The House Committee on Labor & Public Employment
Wednesday, February 1, 2017
9:00 am, Conf. Rm. 309

RE: HB 1157, Relating to Technology Transfer at the University of Hawaiʻi

Research

Attention:    Chairs  Mark Nakashima and Aaron Johanson, Vice Chairs
                      Jarrett Keohokalole and Daniel Holt, and members of the
                     Respective Committees

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) urges the committee to support the passage of HB 1157.  This proposed bill clarifies sections of Hawaii Revised  Statute 84, Standards of Conduct pertaining to the Code of Ethics.  Such a waiver allows faculty members to advance technology transfer activities at the University of Hawai‘i without penalties for commercializing their work which financially benefits the University.

The ability of faculty to work closely with students provides unique opportunities for mentoring, guiding and developing innovative and creative property that have the potential for commercialization. Revisions to the Code of Ethics enhances this potential.

HB 1157 would support the long-standing ethical research principles and technology transfer regulations currently used by the federal government.  This also supports the ability of the University to be competitive for external research funding and attracting and retaining innovative faculty.

This benefits both the State and the University by removing current roadblocks and creating an effective and efficient transfer of the results of research in a collaborative manner.

UHPA supports the passage of HB 1157.

Respectfully submitted

Kristeen Hanselman
Executive Director