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HB 2012, HD1 Relating to Collective Bargaining

The Senate Committee on Judiciary and Labor

Thursday, March 17, 2016

9:30 a.m.,  Room 016

RE: HB 2012, HD1, Relating to Collective Bargaining

Attention: Chair Gilbert Keith-Agaran, Vice Chair Maile Shimabukuro and Members of the Committee

The University of Hawaii Professional Assembly (UHPA) supports the purpose and intent of HB 2012, HD1, which will allow the unions the ability to negotiate not only the contributions to the Employer-Union Health Benefits Trust Fund (EUTF), but also the benefits provided through the health plans.  

We do respectfully request that HB 2012, HD1 revert back to its original form, allowing an arbitration panel to fully weigh employee’s’ salary and benefit package for dispute resolution purposes.

This Bill, in its original form, reinforces the union’s belief that benefits are an integral part of employee compensation and should be negotiated between unions and employers.  Negotiating both premiums and benefits provides unions the ability to identify benefit features that meet the needs of their members without the loss of key coverage.  The ability to negotiate will provide greater incentives which can assist in controlling health care costs over the long-term.

UHPA appreciates the opportunity to provide comments and urges the committee to support passing this measure in its original form.  

Respectfully submitted,

Kristeen Hanselman                                                                                                                                                          Executive Director