Countywide : Union Criticizes Contract Offer

A union representative for about 200 employees of the Ventura County Community College District, who have been working without a contract since July 1, said Monday that union leaders are unhappy with the district's latest contract offer.

Gregory Cross, field representative for the local chapter of the Service Employees International Union, said the union is dissatisfied with salary increases and benefits offered by the district.

The union represents secretaries, librarians, laboratory technicians, maintenance workers and other classified employees. The three-year contract currently under negotiation would affect more than 400 employees at Moorpark, Oxnard and Ventura colleges, although only half of those workers are dues-paying union members.

Jerry Pauley, the district's associate vice chancellor for personnel and one of the district's chief negotiators, declined to comment Monday on details of the offer.

But Cross said the offer includes a 3% raise, effective immediately, another 3% raise next January, and a 4% salary increase next July. However, he said, the union is seeking a 4% raise immediately, a 3% increase next February and a negotiable increase in July, 1991.

Another sticking point is a district proposal to put a $445.70-a-month cap on health insurance premiums, Cross said. If premiums increase beyond that amount, employees would have to pay the difference. "People are not happy about that," he said.

Two other college district employee groups, the 390-member teachers group and a supervisors group, have also been working without contracts since July 1, Pauley said. The district is also negotiating with those groups.

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