Friday, Feb. 24, Scott Huber (NFA past president and professor at Truckee Meadows Community College) and I met at the Nevada System of Higher Education office to count the collective bargaining interest cards and present the application to Chancellor Dan Klaich. Christine Casey, director of human resources, attended the official count as the chancellor's representative. The results are as follows:
- 43 cards signed out of 51 eligible faculty.
- This represents 84.3 percent of the eligible faculty.
Jeff Downs and I met with Chancellor Klaich for a few minutes, summarizing the results. The chancellor said he would follow the NSHE Code, and that he had no problem with Western Nevada College joining the bargaining unit. He said he has seen no problems in working with TMCC compared to any other institution; thus, he does not view collective bargaining as any kind of impediment to our mission. He also acknowledged it is our right to collectively bargain and reiterated that he would follow the process as laid out in the code.
The next step is for the chancellor to present the results to the board of regents. The March board meeting agenda is set, so our application will be presented either at the April special meeting or at the regular May meeting. We will do what we can to get it done sooner rather than later. Then the board will set up an official, anonymous vote, administered by the American Arbitration Association. I will, of course, keep you up to date on the progress of events.
In the coming weeks I will be addressing some of your issues and concerns about collective bargaining. You are asking me good questions and have expressed to me some valid concerns about the collective bargaining process. I will do my best to answer them clearly and thoughtfully.
I want to thank all of you, both those who signed cards and those who did not, for your support and hard work at WNC.
James Strange is president of the WNC chapter of NFA.