The State System of Higher Education has rejected binding arbitration in its labor dispute with the union representing faculty and coaches at IUP and the thirteen other state-owned universities.
Chancellor John Cavanaugh sent a letter to APSCUF President Steve Hicks yesterday, saying the State System would not delegate its responsibilities to a third party arbitrator who has no duty to consider the financial implications of their decisions and no obligation toPennsylvaniataxpayers, the commonwealth itself, or the universities.
Cavanaugh says they have successfully negotiated with five other unions and he believes the best result will come at the bargaining table. Hicks said the union will go forward with plans to meet on Saturday, and while he said publicly that they will “discuss how else to reach a fair settlement,” the union news release says “the sole purpose of that meeting is to take a strike authorization vote.” Still, he pledged to return to the bargaining table, with the next session coming up on Monday and future negotiations planned into next month.
The two sides have reportedly agreed on salary terms, but there has been little progress on temporary faculty compensation and workload, distance education, and what the union calls “significant changes to both active and retiree health care.”