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UHPA Seeks to Allow Legislature to Appropriate Salary Funds during a Special Legislative Session

UHPA filed a request that the Hawaii Labor Relations Board rule on whether the Legislature may appropriate funds for a collective bargaining agreement during a Special Legislative Session. Over the course of this month, it became clear that there were issues being raised by the Governor’s office and the Speaker of the House that the collective bargaining law, Chapter 89, might not allow an appropriation be made during a Special Legislative Session. To be clear neither the Governor’s Chief of Staff nor Speaker Saiki would reveal their specific concerns to UHPA Executive Director Hanselman. UHPA was informed that the Attorney General was being asked to comment on some technical issues. President Lassner was also not informed of these matters by the Governor’s office.

This lack of candor is antithetical to the practice of good faith negotiations.

UHPA believes that there is no prohibition to the funding of a collective bargaining agreement during a Special Legislative Session. UHPA seeks to have this issue resolved should a Special Session be conveyed this year. There are no decisions previously issued on this matter.

UHPA wants faculty members to receive their salary increases as quickly as possible. Delaying an appropriations until 2018 has a negative impact on the pocketbooks of faculty and retroactive lump payments can have tax consequences.

You will be informed of the outcome of this request for a ruling from the Hawaii Labor Relations Board. Time is critical with a Special Legislative Session tentatively scheduled to begin next week.