Home Forums Bargaining March 13, 2023 Bargaining Update


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    • #1447
      CAS Webmaster

      Here are the bargaining update documents for March 13, 2023



    • #1448
      Jill Coert

      Thank you, CAS bargaining team for all your hard work!!

    • #1469
      Gina Domenici

      I, and everyone else in my office, am pretty confused. So we proposed to reclass Field Services Specialist from E to G? And only FSS? This was not discussed at the GMM or on the call. Additionally, what is the reclass column?

    • #1474
      Jill Coert

      I just spoke with Gina Domenici and Teri Dulak in the Norco office about the Field Services Specialist proposal. We discussed that in negotiations, the parties start with initial proposals and work together to come to an agreement (usually somewhere in the middle) that both parties can live with. Please remember this about our entire proposal – just because it is what CAS proposed, it doesn’t mean that is what we will finally end up with. Another question was, why just the Field Services Specialists (FSS), and not everyone else? The bargaining team felt this was necessary because CTA had denied a reclass to the FSS through discussions over the past couple of years, even though they had been tasked with much more complicated work, and work outside their job description. CAS also
      nearly went to arbitration over the assignment of duties related to the grassroots lobbying program, because it meant that FSS were directly supporting department staff outside of their offices. We were able to get CTA to assign field staff (CSO) to that program, so that the duties fit within the FSS job description. These are just 2 examples of why the FSS need a revised job description and salary schedule. I do agree that there are many more job descriptions that need revisions – CAS has a lot of work ahead to make everything right, but we are a union of volunteers and have limits on what we can accomplish. If we manage to get the FSS revisions done, CAS can start working on reviewing other job descriptions for changes.

    • #1475
      Gina Domenici

      A reclass should not have been sought for one specific classification. If CAS’ goal was to address the AB119 issue then a reclass should have been sought on behalf of anyone that was tasked with working on AB119. Additionally, according to Article 12.B.7 a reclass can only happen from one position to another you can’t jump 2 higher.

      This definitely should have been discussed at the GMM and on the Zoom calls.

      Has a salary schedule cost analysis on what we are asking for been done? With reclassifications, compacting the schedule, and cost of living increases our compensation package has to be a ridiculous ask. And we seem to be losing focus.

    • #1478
      Celeste Frago

      Thank you CAS Bargaining Team for your hard work. I think it is important to remember that this is just a first proposal. Can’t wait to see where we end up. 🙂

    • #1480

      Thanks CAS Bargaining Team!

    • #1481
      Talia Benson

      As a FSS, I also have a few questions.

      1. The bargaining priorities were clearly explained many times, but this seems like a significant proposal to have slipped through the cracks in communicating and seeking input from the general membership. Why?

      2. The current and proposed FSS job descriptions still need to be narrower to encapsulate what each FSS does in their day-to-day job and does little to highlight those who are performing work over and above. I work in a regional office and support two different departments in addition to regional work. But if you threw me into a field office, I wouldn’t be aware of what the typical duties were and that just doesn’t make sense.

      3. Was this a proposal based on the AB119 issue or the grassroots lobbying grievance? If so, why wasn’t all FSS asked for input or even those under the original grievances?

      This is conflicting for me because this proposal is in my best interest financially, but it may not be fair to my colleagues with more specialized and advanced skills. I recognize the need to properly define our roles while understanding that we are sometimes asked to go above and beyond and we should be compensated appropriately in those instances. This proposed reclassification also poses many questions for individuals whose job titles perform more advanced tasks, so I am unsure if this is something that we should be using our energy on in bargaining, even for a first proposal. A much deeper dive into the intricacies of the FSS job description should be explored before we jump to suggesting this reclassification.

      Also, what does this mean for the rest of the reclassification column/structure?

      I know that this assumes that CTA would accept this proposal, but this discussion should be had now rather than when the dog catches the car.

    • #1482
      Roxane Schofield

      In response to the reclass issue, my first assumption was the bargaining team was asking for “G” in hopes of getting no less than “F”. Although, the jump of two higher concern leaves me wondering how this is any different then the last bargaining when columns A & B were moved to column C, which for column A jumped two grade levels higher. Also, I don’t recall that this was discussed with all CAS members, if so then I must’ve missed that meeting…please know I’m not saying this with sarcasm…I mean, I really must’ve missed the meeting. 🙂

      In my observation, CTA has always viewed the FSS position as a large pool of talented adaptable employees that they can (and always have) tap as a resource. After Janus, along with organizing, driving, tracking, and updating membership data has been a primary focus for CTA. The good news is CTA recognizes this is too big a task for our CAS CTA Membership colleagues to do alone. The bad news is FSS are spending a great deal of time sifting through membership data, updating member contact info, and providing reports to both CSO and management; this is in addition to all other tasks and multiple CSO that were previously assigned to us.

      It would seem to me that each CAS Bargaining Team is tasked with doing the impossible of finding the deepest disparities that have surfaced from one bargaining cycle to another, then trying to close the gap for the good of the whole…something they did the last time, and appears they are attempting to do now.

      I am also happy to hear that CTA management is entering into this bargaining with a much more collaborative approach. I hope for our bargaining team that CTA continues down this path as they move through the bargaining process. Like Celeste, I too can’t wait to see where we end up.

    • #1483
      Jill Coert

      To answer Talia’s questions:

      1. I think we did mention this briefly during our overview of the CAS Bargaining Priorities. I wish now we would have spent more time on it, but hindsight is 20/20.

      2. I’m pretty sure that you are currently a field services specialist, and you do currently work in a field office (the Natomas RRC), which is physically located in the Region 4 HQ, but it is still considered a field office. In your RRC, I think you have one C4OB CSO, and one IFT CSO, and a number of CSO are PCS (primary contact staff). It sounds like you support the C4OB and IFT CSO (departmental staff) as well as perhaps a PCS, which is all very similar to the work other Field Services Specialists are doing. If you feel you are being directed to work above and beyond your job description, please contact Elyse Dixon or Celeste Frago, your CAS reps.

      3. This proposal is not only based on the AB119 and grassroots lobbying duties – it also encompasses other duties and complexities that have become part of the FSS duties since this was last reviewed in 1999.

      There was a survey monkey sent out to all Field Services Specialists in March of 2022, asking for a description of their job duties, and how they differed from the current job description – so a deep dive was made into the job description. We also have spoken with a number of Field Services Specialists since that time to broaden our knowledge of the work across the state.

      4. I don’t think it means anything for the rest of the reclassification column/structure. We are just trying to make sure that the Field Services Specialists are paid appropriately for their work.

      • This reply was modified 1 week, 3 days ago by Jill Coert.
    • #1485
      Talia Benson

      1. I guess hindsight is indeed 20/20 but I can assure you that I took notes during the GMM and the second recap call, and this DEFINITELY would have been something I would have taken note of. Just want to make sure to point that out.

      2. I am a field services specialist. I support an IFT CSO – THE ONLY ONE ACTUALLY. I also support the Region’s Political Organizer, one of four in the organization. I don’t have an assigned PCS…which is why I know I don’t fully understand my colleagues’ experience supporting PCS or solo field offices. I do help with random Region 2 projects – AB119, Grassroots Lobbying, etc. for example. Yet, I’m still classified as a Field Services Specialist…..what a wonder.

      3. I answered the March 2022 survey with my job description and what I had done outside of that. I’m not too pressed about the extra I’ve done; I take great pride in doing quality and efficient work, but that doesn’t actually answer my question. If this is based on information from 1999 AND AB119/grassroots lobbying, why is it only being addressed now….and why didn’t the general membership know that this was a proposal/priority?
      4. I also think that FSS should be appropriately paid for their work but if the majority of our union is FSS, doesn’t that affect our reclassification structure? Are we suggesting a new classification above G to promote those with specialized skills?

      …..just questions. 😉 😀

    • #1488
      Teri Dulak

      This reclass issue that you proposed to CTA was NOT discussed at the GMM nor was it discussed in the calls after the GMM. Letting us in on this AFTER the fact is underhanded and sneaky….and NOT UNION behavior. One person on the bargaining team swears we talked about it at the GMM, one says maybe we did, another states “I don’t why we didn’t talk about it at the GMM”. It wasn’t discussed because it would have been shot down by the general membership in the room.

      Please stop this nonsense of believing that CAS has any control over changing any job description. CTA holds that right and always has. This non-union behavior by our bargaining team of promoting FSS over F&G’s is horrific. Nice way to divide the union.

    • #1489
      Erika Owen

      A raise consisting of one specific dollar amount across all schedules is not very fair to those of us who have been here since the dawn of time. I think this should be put to a vote at the very least. The logic escapes me.

    • #1490
      Jill Coert

      In June of 2000, in bargaining, all Regional Resource Secretaries (80 of them) were reclassed from “D” to “E”, and renamed Field Services Specialists. So all the people who have ever been Field Services Specialists since that time have benefitted from that reclass. This includes you, Teri, and Gina, as well as myself. There were a couple of other reclasses during that bargain, so to say that CAS has no control in changing any job description is false. Yolanda and I have spent time working with CTA over the wording of a new job description, and negotiating reclassifications so that they are done within the language of our contract. In addition, our last bargaining team negotiated an increase for the “A” and “B” job descriptions to the “C” column. CAS members also get reclassed because of our contract language that was fought for at the bargaining table. Should CAS give up that language? Should we stop fighting for our members to be paid appropriately? I say no – we need to keep pushing forward.

    • #1491
      Gina Domenici

      We have all benefited from changes that were made before us so don’t single me out, Jill. I wasn’t even a FSS when that happened and you know that because I told you that. And for those that don’t know…it was just as much drama back then and probably why it hasn’t been done in the 23 years since.

      Maybe the bargaining team needs to be reminded that they represent all CAS Members. What happens when those of us who now go for a reclass because our jobs have changed drastically too are told “then I guess your bargaining team should have bargained for your reclass too”?

      CAS submitting bargaining language on behalf of one classification and excluding everyone else who has had significant changes to our position is inequitable. Not submitting a reclass for everyone affected by AB119 is inequitable. This is all bordering on a duty of fair representation.

      A union owes a duty of fair representation to all of the workers it represents. This duty
      requires that the union act fairly, impartially, and without ill will or discrimination
      when pursuing a worker’s grievance or when negotiating a new contract with the employer.

      And believe me, this has nothing to do with me being reclassed. My position hasn’t been upgraded since it only supported 1 Finance Specialist. I now support a finance specialist and 2 other CSO, in addition to being responsible for CTASearch, a Canvas Admin, and a whole lot more. I will have no problem being reclassed but what about the RAAs, Legal Secretaries, and everyone else who has had to do more due to attrition?

      The fact is CAS already filed a demand to bargain AB119 with CTA, and already bargained, and filed a DFR and got nowhere, so don’t use that as an excuse to do something underhanded that benefits 5 out of the 7 current bargaining team members. CTA dropped the uploading of the spreadsheets into Falcon and now all that AB119 requires is comparing 2 excel spreadsheets and doesn’t qualify for reclassification.

      You represent all of us and you better start acting like it before you are forced to.

    • #1492
      Diane Gallert

      Bottom line, the proposal should have been shared with all of us, then discussed at last week’s Zoom meeting to confirm/vote that this is what we all uniformly agree on. It is very apparent the reclass of just the FSS was already planned to be put into motion by the bargaining team, so there was no reason not to have shared it with us prior to the March 13th CTA/CAS bargaining.

      I understand bargaining is not a simple matter and I appreciate those who are willing to take on this responsibility. It’s a huge responsibility… all members are entrusting and relying on the team to bargain on behalf of all of us, to fight for us as a whole with honesty and transparency. Take just one part of that away, trust and credibility is gone and there can be no solidarity.

      I agree that the changing times, along with leadership and management, has definitely increased the challenges of our assignments, but that is happening across the board, not just FSS. That said, what may have happened/bargained years in the past, cannot be compared to current times. We all have to adapt and bargain within our current times. But the one thing that does not change and should never change as a Union, is solidarity.

    • #1493
      Jill Coert

      Per Gina: “The fact is CAS already filed a demand to bargain AB119 with CTA, and already bargained, and filed a DFR and got nowhere, so don’t use that as an excuse to do something underhanded that benefits 5 out of the 7 current bargaining team members. CTA dropped the uploading of the spreadsheets into Falcon and now all that AB119 requires is comparing 2 excel spreadsheets and doesn’t qualify for reclassification.”

      Just to clarify – CAS has never bargained this with CTA. CAS did not file a DFR – CTA has no duty of fair representation (DFR) to CAS. CAS did file an unfair labor practice charge (ULP) based on the fact that when CAS issued a demand to bargain a change in working conditions, CTA DECLINED TO BARGAIN. CAS contacted NSO regarding the demand to bargain, and was given advice that did not help our cause, which ended up with the ULP being denied due to it being filed too late. It is significant that the ULP was not denied based on it’s merits (the NSO VP for Legal Defense Mike Boyer agreed on that point). In addition, the Field Services Specialists have more duties supporting AB119 and the membership organizing that has occurred recently than merely comparing two spreadsheets. For example, we are entering non-members into Falcon, updating chapter leadership data, downloading reports for our PCS to follow up on, updating ID numbers for existing members, updating regional databases, creating lists per school site of members & non-members – the list goes on & on. In addition, the AB119 spreadsheets don’t always come to the Field Services Specialists in Excel format, and sometimes have other employees listed, so that has to be cleared up before any comparison can be done.

      I think I have said all there is to be said on this issue, but I did want to make sure everyone had an accurate version of the history of this issue.

      I agree that the this part of the proposal should have been shared with everyone, and I, for one, sincerely apologize for that oversight. It was ABSOLUTELY NOT a conspiracy by the CAS bargaining team to deceive anyone.

      CAS has been fighting for recognition of the the extra work that has been placed on Field Services Specialists for years, and will not give up that fight. Other CAS have received reclasses because of the language that our last bargaining team won, and I applaud that team, and those members that have received reclasses. I hope CAS continues to be successful in getting our members recognized for the work they do.

    • #1494
      Rachel Quiles

      In 2017 the Legal Assistants in HQ and SFS sought a reclass after we were assigned new duties and a new hire was hired with a new job description. Our reclass request was denied. We were told by CAS to submit a request to the bargaining team for the matter to be brought up at that year’s negotiations. Our request for review of our job description and for reclass of our positions in bargaining was denied by the bargaining team. Like the FSS our request for a reclass was denied. Also like the FSS we were concerned because we had received more complex job duties. What is the criteria for approving one group of employees over another? It is very concerning that out of the seven bargaining team members five of the seven are FSS’s and the request to move up two salary steps would greatly benefit them. A request to reclass one group of employees over all other employees is unequitable. Equitable treatment would be for CAS to ask for a step up for all employees, i.e. E’s to F’s, F’s to G’s. I spoke to a bargaining team member and expressed my concern of unequitable treatment. I was informed that the FSS reclass was brought up at the GMM. When I expressed that I did not recall hearing about it I was told I should have been paying attention at the meeting and to the CAS website. I asked another member attending the GMM if she recalled the FSS reclass being mentioned. She was told by a union leader maybe they forgot to mention it. So did I not hear it or was the information not mentioned? I checked the CAS website for information about the FSS reclass and could not find any mention of it prior to this posting on March 13th. Could you please point out where on the CAS website I could find any information prior to the March 13th bargaining update regarding the matter? The Legal Assistants request a Zoom meeting with the bargaining team so we can better understand why our 2017 request to review our new job description with added duties was denied to take to bargaining and how it differs from the FSS job description with new duties that has been proposed in this round of bargaining. We would also like to know why the bargaining team would propose anything to CTA that does not demonstrate equitable treatment of all CAS employees who have also had job duties added as CAS positions are unfilled and removed from the CTA budget.

    • #1495
      Gina Domenici

      “CAS has been fighting for recognition of the the extra work that has been placed on Field Services Specialists for years, and will not give up that fight.”

      YES and this is the problem, Jill. You should be fighting for all of us that have had extra work placed on us.

      You should be fighting for anyone who is working outside of their current job description and fighting for a reclass for those that are. Instead, your fight is selective and SELF-SERVING.

      This fight is about job descriptions and not about AB119 because if it was about AB119 it wouldn’t be selective to FSS. It would be inclusive of everyone whose work is affected by AB119.

      I understand mistakes happen and I appreciate you owning up to yours but now CAS needs to make it right.

      The union has a duty to represent us all equally and fairly and that is not what is happening here.

    • #1496
      Mary Gutierrez

      I too attended the GMM and Zoom Meetings, there was no mention of Reclass for FSS to be proposed at bargaining. We were also told many times we would be receiving a copy of the proposals before bargaining started.

      This leadership campaigned that they would be “TRANSPARENT”, how was this transparent!!!

      You do have an opportunity to correct this!!!

      The Union has a duty to represent us all equally and fairly.

    • #1497
      Chelsea Lin

      If the AB119s were as easy as comparing two excel sheets, this discussion wouldn’t be happening. The amount of work that goes into them (especially the colleges) is significant, not to mention the ridiculous time frame given to us. Please don’t belittle the work we do without knowledge of how we do it.

      Side note, what are the other positions outside of FSS that have been doing AB119s? Honestly curious.

    • #1498
      Jill Coert

      Your CAS Bargaining team never stated that the proposal would be shared BEFORE it was given to CTA. That is not something any bargaining team does. The CAS bargaining team debated, after sharing the proposal with CTA, about whether to give detailed updates only (as was done during the last round of bargaining) or to share the actual proposal and give updates. They decided to do the latter.

      As far as the Field Services Specialist reclass proposal goes, the CAS Rep Council approved to demand to bargain this. Your CAS Bargaining team is following through on that demand to bargain. It was not decided solely by the bargaining team.

      In 2017, your CAS Bargaining team met with CTA to bargain on March 29. On March 20 & on March 29, they received an email from the Legal Assistants, with a proposal to reclass them. They stated in their email that they knew their proposal may be too late to be usable. The bargaining team had been meeting for months to prepare their initial proposal, and did not have time to research and prepare a new proposal. In the 2020 bargain, there was actually a legal assistant on the CAS Bargaining team, but the reclass for legal assistants was not brought forward at that time either. No proposal was presented to the current bargaining team.

      • #1506
        Rachel Quiles

        Thanks Jill for your response. The issue is a large number of CAS members feel slighted by not being told about the large reclass included in the proposal. Additionally, the onus was put on me as member for not paying attention, when the matter was not even brought up prior to members reading about it in an update. A few years ago, you were very adamant about CAS transparency. This matter was not very transparent in how it was handled. Please remember your passion at the time you were asking for transparency because it still applies for many of us now.

        Thank you for clarification on the Legal Assistants reclass request. As that member of the 2020 Bargaining Team and a Legal Assistant it would have been very self-serving for me as a Legal Assistant to seek reclass, while I was in a position representing all CAS members.

    • #1499
      Debra Broock


      Is there a schedule for all bargaining dates and locations to share with CAS members?

      Thank you!

    • #1500
      Jill Coert

      Here are the bargaining dates and locations:

      March 13 (Burlingame) – Done!
      March 21 (Monrovia) – Done!
      April 24 and 25 (Monrovia)
      May 16 (end by 3p) and 17 (Monrovia)
      June 1 (Burlingame)

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