Faculty union, administration reach a tentative agreement

By Denise Dick



Youngstown State University has reached a tentative agreement with its faculty union, less than a week after settling with its classified employees union.

YSU administration and its chapter of the Ohio Education Association reached a tentative agreement after meeting Wednesday and resolving remaining contract provisions.

“The faculty union and the YSU Board of Trustees will schedule meetings to review and ratify the tentative agreement,” the union and administration said in a joint statement. “Details of the agreement will not be publicly released until after the votes.”

Ron Cole, university spokesman, declined additional comment.

Sherry Linkon, spokeswoman for the union, said YSU-OEA is working to schedule meetings for early next week.

Last week, the university reached a tentative agreement with the Association of Classified Employees. Union members are to vote on that pact Monday. No details have been released about the ACE agreement either.

Negotiations with the faculty began in February, and unresolved issues went through the fact-finder process.

Last month, the union accepted the fact-finder’s report, but YSU trustees rejected it.

Both sides then returned to the table before the university issued its last, best offer which called for no raises the first two years with a 2 percent raise the third and final year of the contract.

It also included increased health- care contributions of 10 percent, 12 percent and 15 percent in the first, second and third years, respectively, and a reduction in the pay faculty receive for summer school.

Union members rejected that offer Aug. 25 and initially announced they would strike.

A few hours later, though, they changed course, opting against a strike in favor of returning to talks.

One issue upon which the two sides disagreed was health care. Union members had wanted to know the amount of the premium in the second and third years of the agreement, something the university said it couldn’t predict.

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