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FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Thursday, May 29, 2003
Paul Schwartz (510) 987-9924
paul.schwartz@ucop.edu

UC REACHES TENTATIVE CONTRACT AGREEMENTS WITH UNION REGARDING RESEARCH SUPPORT PROFESSIONALS AND TECHNICAL EMPLOYEES

The University of California announced today (May 29) that it has reached tentative agreement with the University Professional and Technical Employees union on two new labor contracts for UC research support professionals and technical employees.

"Our research support professionals and technical employees work very hard to help UC maintain its proud tradition of academic and research excellence, and we believe the agreements help to recognize the valuable contributions they make to the university," said Judith W. Boyette, associate vice president for human resources and benefits. "In light of the significant state funding constraints were experiencing, we believe they are fair and balanced agreements."

As is customary, UC and the union (UPTE) will now formalize the tentative agreements with their respective organizations, a process that is expected to be completed by the end of June. Once the agreements are approved, the university will move quickly to pay retroactive salary increases. Both contracts will run through Sept. 30, 2004.

The final key issue in the negotiations concerned a laid-off employee's options for severance pay and preferential status for being rehired. UC had been offering employees a choice between severance pay and preferential rehire/recall status; UPTE had been insisting on both. The tentative agreements allow employees to choose either a full severance package in lieu of preferential rehire/recall rights (similar to the policy currently being proposed to UC's non-unionized staff) or a "combination" package containing some (less-than-full) severance pay and limited preferential rehire/recall rights.

Wages were also a key issue throughout the talks, which began in spring 2002. Highlights of the agreement on wages include:

2002-03 wages

- Eligible step-based employees -- One-half step merit increase plus a 0.5 percent range adjustment

- Eligible open-range employees -- 1.5 percent salary increase (and range adjustment)

2003-04 wages:

- Research professionals -- Conversion of open-range employees to 2 percent steps, effective July 1, 2004

- Technical employees -- Conversion of open-range employees to existing step structure, effective July 1, 2004, plus select, campus-specific equity adjustments

The tentative agreements were reached last night (May 28).

A detailed summary of the agreements is available on the university's Web site at:
http://atyourservice.ucop.edu/employees/policies/labor_relations/bargaining_updates/rx/rxtxupdate20.pdf

The full text of the contracts will be available once they have been approved.

UC employs more than 4,400 research support professional employees and approximately 4,000 technical employees systemwide.

Additional information about these negotiations is available at:
http://atyourservice.ucop.edu/employees/policies/labor_relations/index.html

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