Union files labor charge against school district | SierraSun.com

Union files labor charge against school district

Sun staff report

Local and state teachers organizations are charging the Tahoe Truckee Unified School District with unfair labor practices.

Jim Driscoll, president of the 270-member Tahoe-Truckee Education Association, claimed in a release Monday afternoon that during recent salary negotiations with the district, school officials were unwilling to provide the union with information they are legally obligated to provide.

That, Driscoll said, led the union, through the California Teachers Association’s Legal Department, to file an unfair labor practice charge against the district. The charge was filed with the Public Employees Relations Board.

The state board adjudicates labor disputes between public employers and public employee unions. District officials could not be reached for comment by deadline Monday.

Driscoll said the local union will hold a membership meeting at 4:30 p.m. today at Truckee High School to announce the decision to file the complaint against the district.

Teachers and the 4,000-plus student district have been at a bargaining impasse since early February. The union began the negotiations with a request for a 15 percent increase and are now asking for 12. The district initially offered a 2.5 percent increase and is now offering three.

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Because neither side can agree, a state mediator is set to move negotiations along.

Meanwhile, Tahoe Truckee Unified is a basic aid district, which means local property taxes stay in the district to fund education. Although property taxes are flattening or dropping all over the state, Tahoe Truckee is not among the hardest hit. And that, Driscoll said, is why teachers should get more than a 3 percent increase.

“During the past three years raises to teachers’ salaries have equaled the percent increase the district received the year prior,” he said. “Last year the district’s unrestricted revenue increased by 14.9 percent. Teachers are asking for a fair increase. Last month, the Tahoe-Truckee Unified School District pulled its offer of only 3 percent from the bargaining table. This is illegal.”