Report from the Executive Board, Sept 24 2011

On Saturday, September 24th, the Executive Board held its monthly meeting at UC San Diego. We were happy to be joined by a number of campus leadership and rank-and-file members from San Diego at that meeting. Following is a report, members are welcome to email for a copy of the full minutes.

Local Vision
Following on the “three year vision” discussion held at our July Joint Council Meeting, members of the board are reaching out to campus meetings to ask members about their long term vision for our local. We hope to use the ideas collected from September membership meetings to guide further discussion at the October Joint Council.

We are continuing to develop a more accessible presentation of the local’s financial reports and budget for use by the elected leadership and members of our local. Board members including the Financial Secretary will be reaching out to members through unit meetings and the Union Democracy and Transparency Committee of our local to develop a multi-year budget that meets the needs and the goals of our local including long term planning for future contract negotiations and campus unit budgets.

To increase transparency and provide accountability for our paid officers, members of the Executive Board who are on payroll will submit bi-weekly work reports to the rest of the board, and consolidate these reports to be shared with the Joint Council. The Executive Board will recommend that unit chairs on payroll share work reports with their fellow campus leadership. The goal of this structure is to make paid officers accountable to the membership. Additionally, we have raised the pay of the local’s administrative staff to the same rate as that for organizers and officers because we believe all members should be paid the same when working for the union.

We have begun a search for a part-time bookkeeper for the local who will be responsible for our ongoing accounting needs and participate in developing an accessible budgeting process. The Executive Board has committed to giving preference for hiring a member in this position and has begun interviews.

In a discussion about CAP and VCAP funds (Voluntary Community Action Program), the Board resolved to support requests for use of these funds based on decisions by our membership: in order to support a local political campaign, the members in the affected area should vote at a membership meeting and in order to support a statewide or national political campaign, the Joint Council or a Statewide Membership Meeting should resolve to endorse.

Orientations are a crucial time for new member recruitment for our local. As fall orientations finish, the board will ask campus leadership to reflect on the strengths and weaknesses of their orientations organizing. At the October Joint Council we will discuss tactics and strategies used at the different campuses to come up with improved practices statewide. Executive Board members are checking in with unit chairs about orientations and other issues as the fall quarter begins.

We discussed the ReFund California initiative, in which our local is an active participant. ReFund California is kicking off their campaign with actions in San Francisco and Los Angeles and building toward massive statewide actions in early November. The demands of the movement include new progressive revenue for state services, including higher education. Additionally we discussed supporting the research of the Progressive Tax Alliance for a ballot initiative in 2012; the board decided to poll the Joint Council to determine whether we should seek CAP/VCAP funds to support this research.

New Business
The local will hold several vacancy elections this October at San Diego, Berkeley, Irvine and Los Angeles. The board will support the Elections Committee in developing fair elections procedures for this and future elections.

We are working to schedule a quarterly healthcare meeting with the University to discuss policy changes under the new statewide student healthcare plan. Members with questions or concerns about healthcare should talk to campus leadership or contact the statewide office.

The International has contacted the Executive Board to schedule hearings on Oct 10-12th regarding two appeals filed around the local’s triennial elections last April/May.

The next meeting of the Executive Board will take place on Saturday, October 15th at 11:30am at UC Davis, immediately preceding the Joint Council meeting. All members are welcome to attend.