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UFF Biweekly
United Faculty of Florida -- USF System Chapter
27 July 2023
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What the Contract Says About Assignments

The contract is about more than just pay and keeping your job. It's also about the terms and conditions of employment. That includes your assignment. Most of us get a teaching assignment - which cannot be made capriciously and must conform to the restrictions in the contract. That goes for non-teaching duties as well. And moreover, employees are evaluated on their performance of their assigned duties, said duties having been made in advance, in writing.

  • What Are You Supposed To Do? USF employees have to be informed, in writing, what they are expected to do, and that assignment must be consistent with the contract. For details, see below or click here.
And for Game of Thrones fans - and for those of us interested in what the chancellor has in mind for Florida Atlantic - here is an update on New College.
  • Fall is Coming. New College is hemorrhaging faculty, shoe-horning in students, and asking for money ... for a new mediagenic institute. For details, see below or click here.
And for Game of Thrones fans - and for those of us interested in what the governor has in mind for Florida Atlantic - .
  • The Latest from New College. Enrollment is up and the Administration is barreling ahead towards … is the bridge out ahead? For details, see below or click here.
About the raise next month… Returning to the contract, August 7 is when the mean 2% merit raise kicks in for all UFF USF employees who were rated at least satisfactory in their last evaluation and are not on any active "performance plans." With last year's raise, that's 5.5% over 2022 - 2024. UFF won this raise in bargaining when about a third of the employees in the Bargaining Unit were union members. Meanwhile, at Hillsborough Community College, UFF got a mean 16.6% raise over 2022 - 2024, when about three fourths of HCC employees in their Bargaining Unit are UFF members. As one old union hand told me, there is a strong correlation between union membership and the resulting contract. Just sayin'.

Reminder. Effective Saturday, July 1, UFF members no longer pay dues by dues deduction. But in order to remain in the union, you must pay dues - which are 1% of salary. If you are a union member and have shifted to eDues, thank you. If you are a union member and you have not shifted to eDues, please get the "I'm sticking with my union" eDues email and shift today.

The law says that being a union member means being a dues-paying member, so get on eDues today.

For more information, click here. If you are having difficulties, please contact the chapter secretary.

And if you are not a union member, please join today (the form connects automatically to the eDues form, so you will want to have your banking info or checkbook information handy). We are stronger standing together.

Chapter Meeting Tomorrow Friday at 12 noon on USF Tampa in EDU 161 - and on Zoom

The USF Chapter of the United Faculty of Florida will meet tomorrow Friday at 12 pm on USF Tampa in EDU 161 - and on Zoom. On the agenda: post tenure review update, the membership and eDues campaigns, the upcoming UFF USF Senate meeting, 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. 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 (which links to the eDues form, so you will want your banking info or checkbook information handy). Come and join the movement.


If you have been the victim of a violation of the Collective Bargaining Agreement, 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.

UFF will only represent dues-paying UFF members in grievances, so if you are a UFF member, get on eDues today. If you are not a UFF member, join today: UFF will not represent an employee in a grievance if that employee was not a member at the time of the contract violation.

At the moment, there are three outstanding grievances and three pending arbitrations; always a busy day at the Grievance Committee.

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.

What Are You Supposed To Do?

Job assignments are governed by Article 8 on Appointments and Article 9 on Assignment of Responsibilities in the contract. First of all, Section 9.3A says that, "Employees shall be apprised in writing…" of their assignments "in teaching, research and other creative activities, public service, and of any other specific duties…" This is important because Section 10.4 on Criteria (for the annual Employee Performance Evaluations) says, "The annual performance evaluation shall be based upon assigned duties..."

Here are several other points about assignments:
  • From Section 9.2E: "No employee's assignment shall be imposed arbitrarily or unreasonably."
  • From Section 9.3D: "Each employee shall be given assignments which provide equitable opportunities, in relation to other employees in the same department/unit, to meet the required criteria for promotion, tenure, successive fixed multi-year appointments, and merit salary increases."
In addition, Section 8.3 lists 13 items that must appear in offer letters (like principal place of employment, academic unit, percent of FTE assigned, salary, and an advisory that, "discrimination against any employee based upon race, color, sex, gender identity and expression, sexual orientation, religion, national origin, age, military status, veteran status, disability, political affiliation, marital status, or employee rights related to union" is prohibited. Then Section 8.4 says that, "No such proposed changes shall become effective and binding on the employee, except an increase in salary rate or promotion to a higher rank, unless and until agreed to and accepted in writing by the employee."

So, for example, an employee's principal place of employment cannot be changed unilaterally.

But this contract depends on there being a certified union representing UFF USF employees, and under new legislation, 60% of all UFF USF employees must be dues-paying members of UFF in order for UFF to retain certification. So join today.

The Latest From New College

Despite New College's high US News ranking - just a smidgeon south of Hillsdale College, the apparent aspirational peer of the New College board - New College is one of many small colleges suffering a decline in enrollment. Although New College was not really in trouble, the decline provided an excuse for interim President Richard Corcoran to remold it into a sort of Hillsdale South.

Here are some recent developments as the new board and administration try to sell New College's new look to the community.

New College is asking for money to open a Freedom Institute (pp. 35 - 40), which President Corcoran announced [USF ID required] was to combat "cancel culture"; despite Corcoran's problematic track record - and his hint that the intent of the Institute was to battle all things Woke - the Tampa Bay Times noted the lofty language of the proposal [USF ID required] and suggested that critics hold their fire - for now. Meanwhile, if New College gets the money, all politically acceptable candidates are invited to apply.

Meanwhile, New College is the landlord of the Sarasota Classic Car Museum, and Corcoran is evicting the museum to make room for a gym as part of his plan to drive enrollment with athletics.

And of course, the new Board wants to make sure that the next president is adequately paid to the tune of about $1 million.

And it may be working: New College enrollment is surging. Of course, a number of faculty are leaving, but surely there are enough worthy graduates of The Federalist Society to fill any empty spots. Indeed, one alumnus wrote that Ron DeSantis saved New College from mediocrity {USF ID required].

But there is the small question of how much parchment from the Newly Improved New College will be worth. This is Florida, after all, and in The Cocoanuts, Floridian real estate dealer Groucho Marx announces that, " You can even get stucco -- Oh, how you can get stuck-o! ... If these lots don't double in value in a year, I don't know what you can do about it." And there are signs of trouble already.

  • About a third of the faculty are not teaching this fall for one reason or another. So far, the Administration has found replacements for about half of them.
  • Longstanding problems with the dorms are aggravated by the sudden influx of more students [USF ID required], so some students will be housed in "dorms with rampant mold and concerning structural problems" and others in nearby hotels.
  • [Added July 27 after the Biweekly was broadcast] The Sarasota Herald-Tribune reports that many incoming students are student-athletes admitted under relaxed admissions standards and receiving a disproportionate amount of financial aid. The Tribune also reports that New College may have been misrepresented to prospective students.
This should be a very interesting year.


The next chapter meeting will be tomorrow Friday, July 28, at 12 noon on USF Tampa campus in EDU 161 and on Zoom; for the Zoom link, contact the Chapter Secretary. All UFF USF employees are welcome.

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.

If you do not want to receive the UFF Biweekly, you can unsubscribe below or contacting the Chapter Secretary. If you do not receive the Biweekly, but want to, contact the Chapter Secretary.