Dear Peralta Community,

Welcome to the first of two special summertime PFT roundups, with items from the June 22 meeting of the PCCD Board of Trustees and updates on other relevant district happenings. We’ll return to twice-a-month publication of both the e-Communiqué and PCCD Board Watch in the fall.

*The board lavished praise on Chancellor Elihu Harris, whose contract the trustees chose not to renew earlier this year. Trustees’ tributes came during Harris’s final meeting as chancellor, in which the board also approved well over $600,000 for continuing the services of consultants hired to sort out district finances and IT.

*The 2010-11 budget will undergo review at a special board workshop, Mon., July 19, at 5 p.m., in the district boardroom. District officials anticipate another reduction of 3-4% from the state, a likely $3-4 million in additional cuts to Peralta. Ten specific cost-saving ideas are being floated, including furloughs for all employees, across-the-board salary cuts, step-and-column freezes, and the restructuring of health benefits.

*As SEIU layoffs continued apace, contracts for nine interim administrators received unanimous board approval. During public comment, SEIU president Diana Lara announced her departure, saying she was forced to retire to preserve her benefits in the face of stalled negotiations between the staff union and the district. Her words seemed to hit home: SEIU and the district inked a tentative agreement the following day, a deal that includes six furlough days for all classified staff.

*College of Alameda DSPS Coordinator Helene Maxwell addressed the board, suggesting that trustees extend the medical benefits of all laid-off classified employees for half a year. Layoffs and load reductions have also pushed many part-time faculty out of the 50-50 health plan.

*At a sparsely attended June 7 special meeting, the board determined the composition of the chancellor search committee: three faculty (one of whom must be part-time), four community members, one student, two administrators, and one classified employee.

In unity,

Debby Weintraub, President
Matthew Goldstein, Communications Director
PFT, AFT Local 1603

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