Champlain Valley Educational Service’s Employer/Employee Relations Service has been in existence since 1978 and has continued to offer the following services to its component districts.
Negotiations CoSer 620
Preparations for Negotiations
The research assistance provided to participating districts, though the use of computers, has included:
Comparative analysis of the requesting District’s salary structure (regardless of bargaining unit) to that of other component districts;
Comparison of benefit structures (sick leave, personal leave, maternity leave, retirement benefits, etc.) of components districts;
Analysis of negotiated settlements (teacher, non-instructional, and administrative);
Compilation and analysis of trends in the Consumer Price Index (CPI) of the four most often used indices. (Available data is from 1913 to present)
Preparation of Demands
This part of the negotiations process is tailored to each individual district.
Selection of Negotiating Team
This office is prepared to assist districts in the selection of the Districts representatives who will be participating in the process.
Analysis of Data and Development of Counter Proposals
This research has enabled districts going into negotiations to assess their relative position to other districts in their area. In addition, when massaged such information has proved invaluable in the preparation of, and rebuttal to, fact-finding briefs. Prior to the use of computers, the ability to analyze such information was limited. The capability to format information both in chart and graphic form has greatly enhanced a district’s ability to convince both unions and outside neutrals as to the merits of its case. By having advance information, districts have been able to avoid or circumvent those areas which could provide to be deleterious.
In addition to preparing for negotiations, the Employer/Employee service has the ability, through the use of portable computers, to immediately cost out, at the bargaining table, any financial proposal given or received. This ability has offset the possibility for misunderstanding or error between the parties, and has permitted a district to test and/or apply some creative solutions to problem areas. The results have been that the parties have been able to conclude negotiations with a clear understanding of the financial impact of a settlement. This resulting understanding appears to have helped in the improvement of labor relations, in that neither party feels that there is some hidden agenda or some misunderstanding(s) that will surface at as later date.
Drafting the Contract
Historically, the Office of Employer/Employee Relations has been involved in reducing the contract language all agreed upon changes to the Collective Bargaining Agreement that resulted from negotiations.
After a tentative agreement has been reached, this Office is generally involved with the presentation to and approval by the Board of Education.
Grievance / Arbitration and Contract Management CoSer 620
Since July 1982, this office has often been called upon by Superintendents to discuss informal stage grievances with the goal of reaching resolution at as early a level as possible.
At that point, the resources of the CVES Employer/Employee Relations Service are called upon to determine the legitimacy and possible arguments or alternatives available to the District. These resources include:
Taylor Law Assistance CoSer 620
Since July 1982, there have been several requests for this office to aid in the preparation and filing of requests to have positions labeled as Management or Confidential. To date all such requests have been unchallenged.
In addition this office has been called upon to represent two (2) Districts in hearings to determine the makeup and placement of an employee group.
Improper Practice Charge
Unions have the ability to file improper practice charges before the New York State Public Employment Relations Board (PERB), alleging that the District has violated certain provisions of the Taylor Law. The process culminates in a quasi-judicial formal hearing before a PERB administrative law judge. This office has represented several Districts throughout the entire improper practice charge process, not only at the formal hearing.
Teacher Certification CoSer 607
Employment CoSer 606
Human Resource Director
NYS Regional Certification Officer
Labor Relations Specialist
Labor Relations Specialist