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Post-Mediation Bargaining Update-May 20, 2021

Thank you for taking a minute to review this bargaining update. 

The Tahoe Truckee Unified School District and the Tahoe Truckee Education Association met today for the second time with a mediator from State Mediation and Conciliation. (As you may recall, in April TTEA declared a bargaining impasse, which resulted in mediation.) The District participated in confidential mediation in the hopes of reaching an agreement on 2020-2021 compensation. Although the District engaged in mediation in good faith, the parties were unable to reach an agreement. After the completion of confidential mediation, the District shared with TTEA a formal last best and final offer of a 2% ongoing salary increase on schedule retroactive to July 1, 2020, and a one-time off schedule payment of $2,500 (prorated for part-time employees). 

As a reminder, the District’s previous offer for the 2020-2021 school year was a 2% ongoing salary increase retroactive to July 1, 2020, and a 1% one-time. Today’s new offer of a one-time $2,500 is almost triple the value of the previous proposal of 1% off schedule. The District is able to increase the one-time payment because of additional one-time revenues received this year. 

The District encourages TTEA to consider today’s proposal. If not, the parties will move to the next phase of the bargaining impasse process and participate in a fact-finding hearing likely late this summer. The District hopes to avoid the delay inherent in the impasse process. 


Joint Negotiations Update-May 11, 2021
TTEA and TTUSD met today for a day of mediation facilitated by a mediator provided by the California Public Employment Relations Board. No agreement was reached and the parties agreed to meet again for another day of mediation on May 20, 2021.


Update from TTUSD-April 23, 2021

TTEA and the District were scheduled to negotiate today, April 23, 2021. When we last met in early April, the District was hopeful that if the parties met again today, we could reach consensus. However, in the interim TTEA filed its request for impasse with the State’s Public Employment Relations Board (PERB) on Monday, April 19, 2021, which means that TTEA legally declared that further negotiations would be futile and the parties need the assistance of a third-party mediator. 

PERB will determine whether the parties are at an impasse and could benefit from the assistance of a neutral third party mediator. In this case, if PERB determines the parties are at an impasse, a mediator will be assigned to confidentially work with both the District and TTEA to resolve salary negotiations. If the parties are unable to reach an agreement during confidential mediation, they may proceed to a process called “fact-finding.” During the fact-finding hearing each party presents evidence in support of their position to a panel, who may issue an advisory opinion regarding the merit of both proposals. Throughout the impasse process, the goal is for the parties to reach a negotiated agreement. The District remains optimistic that with the assistance of a mediator, TTUSD and TTEA can resolve salary negotiations for 2020-2021. As such, the parties are waiting to hear from PERB with regard to next steps in the impasse process.


Update from TTUSD-April 9, 2021

Today the District and the Tahoe Truckee Education Association met for the seventh time for 2020-2021 salary negotiations. During today’s negotiations, each party reiterated their proposals from March 25, 2021. Furthermore, TTEA unilaterally declared impasse. (“Impasse” is a legal term found in the Educational Employment Act and is defined as the point in bargaining where future negotiations are futile.) The District disagreed with TTEA’s assertion of impasse. The District and TTEA have a pre-scheduled negotiation session for April 23, 2021, and the District welcomes the opportunity to try again to reach consensus. 

As a reminder, for the 2020-2021 school year, the District proposed a 2% ongoing salary increase retroactive to July 1, 2020, and a 1% one-time payment for a total of 3% for this school year. For the 2021-2022 school year, the District offered additional, ongoing increases tied to the receipt of property taxes as follows: 

Ongoing              2021-2022                         Additional Property
Salary                 Estimated Property            Tax % over
Increase          Tax Increase Required        Current Projections (3.25%)

1%                  4.25%                                   1%
2%                  5.25%                                   2%
3%                  6.25%                                   3%


There is one key unacceptable difference between the District’s offer and TTEA’s current proposal. TTEA proposes that the property taxes received in 2021-2022 pay for raises for 2020-2021 while still requiring the parties to return to the table next fiscal year to bargain salaries for 2021-2022 after already encumbering the 2021-2022 additional property taxes over projections. The District cannot in good faith agree to this proposal. The District’s proposal would close salary negotiations for this year and next with teachers receiving up to a 5% ongoing increase over the two years. 

The District’s proposal of 2% ongoing and 1% off schedule for a total of 3% for this school year and a salary increase for next school year based on the then-known revenue can be responsibly provided while maintaining a solvent District budget moving forward. This allows the District to continue to provide an excellent education to our students now and into the future.

The District remains committed to resolving these negotiations and moving forward successfully with all of TTUSD into next school year. 

Thank you for taking a minute to review this bargaining update. The Tahoe Truckee Unified School District has a free speech right and ethical obligation to communicate directly with the community regarding the status of negotiations. (See Rio Hondo Community College District (1980) PERB Decision No. 128). The District takes its responsibility to accurately inform employees and the community of what happens during negotiations very seriously. 


Update from TTUSD-March 25, 2021
Today the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District and the Tahoe Truckee Education Association met for the sixth time for the 5-Day, In-person learning MOU and the 2020-2021 salary negotiations.

TTUSD and TTEA signed the MOU for 5-Day, In-person learning.

Regarding Compensation:

Between the last meeting on March 18 and today, the District received notice of additional one-time funding resources allowing the District to modify its initial fiscally responsible offer. Because the additional funding is not ongoing year to year, the District will not utilize this additional one-time funding for an ongoing salary increase. Even though the District cannot offer more than 2% ongoing this year, if the property tax increase exceeds expectations, the District can provide additional compensation for 2021-2022. Keeping this in mind and being creative, the District updated its proposal to cover this and next school year as follows:
1.  Salary 2020-2021: 
         a.  2% ongoing salary increase on schedule retroactive to July 1, 2020
         b.  1% one-time off the salary schedule payment
2.  Salary 2021-2022:

Contingent on-going salary increases based upon property taxes effective July 1, 2021 per the following table:

 Salary Increase  2021-2022 Estimated Property Tax Increase Required Additional Property tax% Over Current Projections (3.25%) 
 1%  4.25%  1%
 2%  5.25%  2%
 3%  6.25%  3%

TTEA rejected the District’s offer and proposed a contingent un-capped offer that would utilize tax increases received in 2021-2022 for 2020-2021 negotiation year. This would still require both TTEA and TTUSD to return to the table to negotiate 2021-2022 compensation. 

The District cannot in good faith obligate unknown future revenues for ongoing costs. 

The District offered to meet with TTEA again on April 1.   


Update from TTUSD-March 18, 2021
Today the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District and the Tahoe Truckee Education Association met for the fifth time regarding 2020-2021 salary negotiations. The discussion regarding a salary increase was short. The District reiterated its fiscally responsible offer of a 2% raise retroactive to July 1, 2020. TTEA, however, repeated its proposal of a 3% salary increase. The District asked whether the parties were at an impasse in salary negotiations, and TTEA responded that the union still needed to meet with its members to determine if they would modify TTEA’s proposal. For the remainder of the day, the parties negotiated the impacts of the District’s decision to return to 5-day in-person instruction on March 29, 2021. The parties are close to a final agreement on this topic. Salary negotiations will not alter the date for the 5-day return. The parties are meeting again on Thursday, March 25.


Update from TTUSD-March 16, 2021
Today the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District and the Tahoe Truckee Education Association met for a fourth bargaining session for 2020-2021 salary negotiations. The parties did not reach an agreement. Instead, the District reiterated a proposed 2% increase to salary retroactive to July 1, 2020. TTEA repeated its 3% increase proposal.

The District is standing by its offer and during today’s negotiations shared its multi-year projections and explained how savings from this year were one-time and must be reinstated as expenditures in the 2021-2022 budget. The District shared the cost of the statutory step and column salary increase to teachers for the 2020-2021 school year is 1.89%.  The District further explained that due to the uncertainty caused by the pandemic including the unknown cost of potential additional staff moving into next year, the District and TTEA should complete negotiations for 2020-2021 now and return to the table in November 2021 to negotiate for the 2021-2022 school year once tax revenues are verified and the impacts of the pandemic on next year’s budget are fully known. The District’s proposal of 2% reflects an increase that can be provided to all District employees while maintaining a responsible budget moving into the next fiscal year. TTEA’s request of 3%, would move the District into deficit spending moving forward, which the District has a fiduciary duty to avoid.

Please see the chart below for a description of a 2% increase retroactive to July 1, 2020, for teachers with various years of experience.

 chart of salary increases by range

 

 

 

After salary negotiations ended today, the parties discussed the return to 5-day in-person instruction which is scheduled to begin on March 29, 2021. The District is prepared to move to 5-day in-person instruction in part because 90% of our staff have received the COVID vaccine through the District’s coordination with Tahoe Forest Hospital, Placer County, and Nevada County Department of Public Health. The salary negotiations will not change the date for the 5-day return.

The parties are meeting again on Thursday, March 18, 2021. 


Update from TTUSD- March 4, 2021
Today the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District and the Tahoe Truckee Education Association met for a third bargaining session for 2020-2021 negotiations. Last week the
District presented a financial update to both teams.

● On Tuesday, March 2, the parties met and TTEA submitted a 5% salary increase proposal retroactive to July 1, 2020. In response, the District provided a 2% salary
increase counter-proposal retroactive to July 1, 2020. The District explained that its proposal was made in good faith and based upon its current budget estimates.

● Today, TTEA submitted a proposal for a 3% salary increase. In response, the District reiterated its 2% increase to the salary schedule retroactive to July 1, 2020.

● The parties are scheduled to return to bargaining on March 16, 2021.