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Maricopa Community Colleges Board May Ditch Employee Bargaining Process

By Stina Sieg
Published: Wednesday, February 21, 2018 - 3:36pm

Maricopa Community Colleges building
Maricopa Community Colleges
Flags fly outside the district office of the Maricopa Community Colleges in Tempe.

Hundreds of people packed Tuesday night’s meeting of the Maricopa Community Colleges Governing Board. The board is pondering doing away with a negotiation process that allows faculty to help decide on employment policies.

From their reactions, the crowd seemed almost uniformly against getting rid of the 40-year-old process known as “meet and confer.”

"It’s the fear of the unknown that is the issue here. If you’re going to replace a policy, it sort of makes sense to have one in its place. Otherwise, you’re leaving people to speculate what’s coming next," said Mike Mitchell, president of the Maricopa Community Colleges Faculty Association.

But board President Laurin Hendrix, who put forth the resolution, said Mitchell and others are fear-mongering. He said abolishing "meet and confer" will let the district’s chancellor to make quicker policy decisions.

"You hire a CEO to function as a CEO and lead the district. If we didn’t want a CEO, we wouldn’t have one," said Hendrix.

The board will vote on the resolution Feb. 27.

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