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UFF Biweekly
United Faculty of Florida -- USF System Chapter
4 August 2022
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Where We Are Now

In the previous Biweekly, we described some reactions to troubling legislation emerging from the spring session. But the attitude of some Tallahassee politicians was, "damn the reactions; full speed ahead." And instead of targeting education, they seem to be targeting Wall Street.

For example, House Speaker-Designate Paul Renner warned against the threat of Environmental, Social, and Corporate Governance (ESG) - which involves stockholder efforts to induce corporations to take environmental and social considerations into account - saying that "Woke elites use ESG investing to prop up far left policies, undermining our national security and raising prices for Americans." He was referring to "woke" environmental concerns, which, he warned (USF login required) inspired "woke billionaires" to try to create "a politically induced energy crisis" as part of their "woke agenda."

While genuine leftists might be amused by the governor's recent discovery that "the corporate elite use their economic power to impose policies on the country that they could not achieve at the ballot box," this is a sign that the anti-Woke movement has a lot of steam. Which brings us to the question of how this movement - and the pandemic, and the economy - are affecting educators.

  • Retention. Retention during covid has become an issue for many industries, including education. For more, including a look at USF, see below or click here.
Last week, the $2,000 bonus bargained last spring and mandated by Subsection 23.1A of the new Collective Bargaining Agreement was distributed, and most of you may have noticed that less than $2,000 actually appeared in your bank account. It may be time to look at your pay stub.
  • Checking Your Pay Stub. A substantial amount of your pay doesn't make it to your bank account. Do you know where your money is going? To find out, see below or click here.
Meanwhile, an interesting juxtaposition. The Tampa Bay Times reports (USF login required) that the Tampa City Council has approved contracts with unions representing police officers, firefighters, and transit workers that mandate 18.5% in raises over the next three years, for a net increase in 19.6%. Meanwhile, in Hillsborough County, bargaining between the Florida Education Association (our state affiliate) and the School Board appear gridlocked (USF login required). The School District has financial issues and is also short about 700 teachers. Well, the state puts resources into what the politicians value - something to remember in November.

Chapter Meeting Tomorrow at 12 Noon on Zoom

The USF Chapter of the United Faculty of Florida will meet tomorrow Friday at 12 noon on Zoom. On the agenda: preparing for fall, latest reports on dealing with recent legislation, socials, and more. And here are the minutes for the previous meeting.

Any employee in the Bargaining Unit may attend, but to Zoom in you must have an invitation: contact the Chapter Secretary to get one.

Meetings and events are posted on the Events Calendar of the UFF USF Website. The first chapter meeting of the fall semester will be on August 26, the Friday of the first week of classes. Come and check us out.

Join UFF Today!

Benefits of membership include the right to run and vote in UFF chapter and statewide elections; representation in grievances (UFF cannot represent a non-member in a grievance or litigation); special deals in insurance, travel, legal advice, and other packages provided by our affiliates; free insurance coverage for job-related liability; and the knowledge you are supporting education in Florida. Here is the membership form. Come and join the movement.

Get Rowdie About the Contract

Celebrate the new contract this Saturday at 7:30 pm at Al Lang Stadium, when the Rowdies take on Detroit. UFF will have a pre-game tailgate with food and fun. We will be in the Dugout Suite, so RSVP now to UFF USF President Lang or to the UFF USF mailbox as we need a headcount. Members and families welcome - and if you are not a member, join today.

Join UFF Today!

Benefits of membership include the right to run and vote in UFF chapter and statewide elections; representation in grievances (UFF cannot represent a non-member in a grievance or litigation); special deals in insurance, travel, legal advice, and other packages provided by our affiliates; free insurance coverage for job-related liability; and the knowledge you are supporting education in Florida. Here is the membership form. Come and join the movement.


If you have been the victim of a violation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement or the recent Memorandum of Understanding, you have thirty days from the time you knew or should have known of the violation to file a grievance. If you are, and at the time of the violation were, a dues-paying member of the United Faculty of Florida, you have the right to union representation. To contact the UFF USF Grievance Committee, go to the Grievances Page.

USF United Support Fund for Food Pantries

Many of our students are struggling during this crisis, and the USF Foundation is supporting the USF Food Pantries to help out. They are accepting non-perishable donations, but one can also make monetary donations for the pantries at St. Petersburg, Sarasota / Manatee, and Tampa.

We are on Social Media

Yes, we are on social media.

  • We have a Facebook group: see United Faculty of Florida at USF. This page is a place where UFF members can exchange thoughts and ideas. The page is "public", but only dues-paying UFF members are eligible to post items on the page. If you are a UFF member, ask to join on the page, and the moderator will invite every UFF member that asks to join. Non-members are welcome to look (but you need a Facebook account to do that). So check us out.
  • We have a blog: see The USF Faculty Blog. This has news items as they come up.
  • We are twitter-pated: follow us on Twitter via @UffUsf.
  • We even have a You-Tube channel: check out our videos
If you want to help with media matters, contact the Communications Committee chair.


Contrary to much punditry, the current economic woes are not like the stagflation of the late 1970s. Back then, pundits added the inflation and unemployment rates to get a misery index in the upper teens; nowadays, inflation may be rampant, but unemployment is low. In fact, in a lot of economic sectors, retention and recruitment have become difficult.

Retention and recruiting woes have hit higher education, with multiple surveys reporting faculty dissatisfaction (and even burnout) leading to resignations and retirement. And not just faculty: a recent survey conducted by the College and University Professional Association for Human Resources (CUPA-HR) found that about 35% of the 3,815 staff surveyed said they were likely or very likely to seek a new job next year while another survey (USF login required) of hiring managers and other administrators by the Chronicle of Higher Education found that 84% of the respondents said that finding good candidates was more difficult.

What about USF? We took five snapshots of the UFF USF Bargaining Unit, on 30 June 2018, 1 July 2019, 31 May 2020, 28 June 2021, and 25 June 2022, all in mid-summer after those departing USF have departed, to see how many from each cohort remained at USF each summer. Here are the results; for example, in 2018, there were 1,517 employees in the bargaining unit, of whom 1,397 remained in 2019, 1,298 remained in 2020, 1,216 remained in 2021, and 1,092 remained in 2022, for a 28% decline in four years. Here is the entire picture:

retention during covid

As observed in our 2016 Glance at Retention, the problem seems to affect all ranks. Meanwhile, USF's recruiting problems have hit the pages of the Tampa Bay Times (USF login required). It may be a good time to find out why people are leaving.

Checking Your Pay Stub

Once upon a time, you collected your pay as an actual check, and attached to it was a "pay stub" listing all the deductions from that check. You could see where your money was going. Then came electronic deposit. Every other week, money appears in your bank account - and an electronic stub sits in your GEMS page for you to look up. But as nudge theorists observe, while the old default behavior was to glance at the stub attached to a check that (of course) you would pick up, the default behavior is to look up your pay stub … eventually … in the fullness of time …

Let's take a look.

First of all, you have to access your paystub. It's behind the MyUSF wall, which you enter via the usual 2-factor ("duo") authentication system. Click the down arrow by Business Systems to get the scroll-down menu, and click GEMS. You should get a green page with Employee Self Service at the top, and a number of white boxes. One of these boxes is Payroll, with the date of the latest paycheck. Click it and you get another green page called Payroll, with more white boxes, one entitled Paychecks. Click that one and you should see the most recent paychecks. (If you want to see more paycheck stubs, click the button at upper left with the gray icon that looks like a cone with a drop of water at the bottom; it is called the Filter and it will let you choose the dates of paychecks to look at.) Notice that each check is associated with a pay period (from a Pay Begin Date to a Pay End Date) and that the check date is about a week later. To look at a particular pay stub, click the check you want to look at.

You are now looking at a pdf file (that you could download if you wanted). You can compare your pay stub with the generic one posted by the USF Controller (Word docx file). If you downloaded the one with your $2,000 bonus, your Hours and Earnings box (the green box labeled "4" in the controller's example), you should see the description "Bonus-Coll Bargain Agrmt-9002" and the earning "2,000.00". To the right is the Taxes box (the purple one labeled "5" in the controller's example), you should see the income, Medicare, and Social Security taxes withheld. Below the Hours and Earnings box is a pair of tax deductions boxes (the purple box "6" in the controller's example), with a list of before-tax and after-tax deductions. For example, most health insurance plans will be paid via a before-tax deduction while UFF members will pay their union dues as an after tax deduction (notice, ahem, that many deductions were not made from the bonus.) For a final reality check, notice the Employer Paid Benefits box (orange box "7" in the controller's example): those are payments that the university paid for employee benefits. The final check amount is at bottom right in the Net Pay Distribution (gray box "10" in the controller's example).

It is usually a good idea to keep an eye on one's pay stub to make sure that there are no unwanted deductions, and no deductions are missing. For more information about how your pay is handled, see the USF Controller's About Your Paycheck page.


The next chapter meeting will be tomorrow Friday, August 5, at 12:00, on Zoom. All UFF USF members are welcome: for the Zoom link, contact the Chapter Secretary.

All UFF members are invited to attend. Non-members are also invited to come and check us out. To get the link to Zoom, contact the Chapter Secretary. Come and join the movement.

Membership: Everyone in the UFF USF System Bargaining unit is eligible for UFF membership: to join, simply fill out and send in the membership form.

NOTE: The USF-UFF Chapter website is http://www.uff.ourusf.org, and our e-mail address is uff@ourusf.org.

About this broadcast: This Newsletter was broadcast from uff.ourusf.org, hosted at ICDsoft.com, and is intended for all members of the UFF USF Bargaining unit (USF faculty and professionals at most departments). A (usually identical) version will be broadcast to USF-News and USF-Talk from mccolm@usf.edu.

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