We will be having our next bargaining session tomorrow Wednesday January 19 at 1:30pm. You can come to the session virtual at https://events.ucf.edu/event/2317411/faculty-collective-bargaining/
At the last session we agreed on a couple of articles and came close to some language on others. We plan to present a new Article 23 Salaries which I will update you after the session. We have not heard any updates to our rejection to Article 16 with a back door end to tenure by giving UCF the ability to ignore progressive discipline.
Many of you have joined us at these bargaining sessions and we on the bargaining team want to thank you for showing us and UCF your support of the team.
Many of you picked up N-95 masks in the past week. We still have more, we will distribute them until they run out. If you would like more masks I will leave them outside my office in a container on Tuesdays and Wednesdays from 9-5pm until they are gone. My office is in Trevor Colbourn Hall Room 348K. [https://map.ucf.edu/?show=123] My office is inside the Women and Gender Studies Suite which is 348.
The Florida Legislature convened for this session and the draft bills we tracked in November and December are now at various committees. Currently there is no draft bill abolishing or reforming tenure so far in this session. Below are some of the legislation that we are following and directly impact higher education in Florida which may be of interest to you.
SB 520: Public Records and Public Meetings-this bill would allow president searches for public colleges and universities to be exempt from public records legislation. It would move presidential searches into the dark until the end of the process. https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/520 this is the House version: HB 703: Pub. Rec. and Meetings/Postsecondary Education Executive Search https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/703 Both bills will be heard in their first committees in their respective bodies this week.
HB 6077: Postsecondary Intellectual Freedom and Viewpoint Diversity & SB 810: Education This bill will repeal the legislation from last year which included the “intellectual diversity” survey, the student right to record lectures etc. https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/6077 and https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/810 The House Bill has been read and referred to various education committees and in the Senate the bill have been introduced to the Judiciary, Education and Rules committees.
SB 242 & HB 57: Racial and Sexual Discrimination and Governor DeSantis introduced Stop the Wrongs to Our Kids and Employees (W.O.K.E.) Act. These draft bills are similar and will probably be combined later. SB 242 and HB 57 has been read in the Senate and the House respectively. These bills will ban various kinds of workshops and trainings around “divisive concepts” such as race, sex and gender. Governor DeSantis’ proposed legislation would go further and ban these ideas, theories and concepts from the classroom (K-12) and give parents the right to sue a school system if there is a violation of this proposed legislation.
SB 666: State University Student Fee Waivers This bill would reduce student fees for graduate students at public universities who are also employed with the university. This bill has been read in the Senate. https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/666 There are similar bills in the Senate and House so should this continue these various bills might get combined.
SB 1458: Employee Organizations & HB 1197: Employee Organizations Representing Public Employees Both these bills were introduced at the beginning of this current legislative session in January 2022. They are the same draft legislation that went through the last legislative session in 2021 and failed at the 11th hour. This would require public unions (except law enforcement and firefighters) to maintain 50% membership density or decertify. The Senate bill has been referred to the Judiciary, Governmental Oversight and Accountability & Appropriations committees and the House bill has been read into the session.
SB 1458: https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/1458
HB 1197: https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/1197
HB 6007– Licenses to Carry Concealed Weapons or Firearms (Guns on Campus) Is now in Criminal Justice & Public Safety Subcommittee, referred to Post-Secondary Education & Lifelong Learning Subcommittee, and Judiciary Committees. https://www.flsenate.gov/Session/Bill/2022/6007
As this and other legislation makes its way through the process I will update you.