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2-4-2019 Weekly Communications Update

Table of Contents


Early Separation Incentive

The college is offering an Early Separation Incentive to all 3 employee groups again this year.  College representatives are saying this will be the last time they offer this incentive. (Have we heard that before???)   

The deadline for handing in the paperwork is 3/1/2019, which is earlier in the year than it has been in the past.  We will post the official document as soon as we have it. HR will be sending out the “official notice” via Groupwise as well.  I would expect to see that no later than mid-week this week.


Weather Alerts

It’s that time of year again.  There have been a number of announcements about weather closures, but, just in case, here you go.

Lane Alert

Lane will always use Lane Alert to announce closures by 6:30am (for day shift) and 3:00pm (for evening shift).  LaneAlert notifications are sent via text and email, depending on your settings. Texting is the fastest way to be notified of an emergency. If you aren’t receiving LaneAlert texts or emails, login to myLane and click the Lane Alert Emergency Notification link in the Personal Information menu and update your contact information.

Flash Alert is another great way to be notified.  It is a free service and also sends out email or text alerts.  Flash Alert also works with many public school districts, so, if you have children you may want to subscribe to Flash Alert for those schools as well.  I have used Flash Alert for many years and have never received questionable messages. They do not share your information.


Food Services/CML/Titan Store

The next Board of Education meeting is on February 14th (Happy V-Day!).  We don’t know yet if the Board will be asked to make a decision about outsourcing at this meeting, or if that will be pushed to a later meeting.  We don’t even know if this will be on their agenda, but our guess is that it will.

Some restructuring of the Titan Bookstore has already taken place. Two contracted staff members have been reassigned to other areas of the college moving the IT Support and Finance support to more appropriate departments.  Centralized support departments is how the private sector increases profits. With 5 months left in the fiscal year, this will help.

Other changes, such as limiting hours of operation and a possible partnership/merging of Food Services and the Titan Bookstore, have also been discussed.  It looks like we may be moving in that direction but we are a long way from saving these services.

Please show up for the February 14th Board Meeting wearing your LCCEF t-shirts and/or buttons.   Even better, speak during the public comment section and continue to share your comments and ideas here.  The more support and information we provide the harder it is to make poor decisions.


Bargaining – Economic Re-opener

The college submitted their demand to bargain to LCCEF last Friday.  This was expected, but not for another month or so. They want to start the process earlier this year with the hopes that starting early will get the process finished on time.  We are not convinced since both HR and LCCEF Leadership have very heavy workloads, but it’s worth a shot.

This is an economic re-opener and is supposed to cover the next 2 years. Wages will be the biggest part of bargaining and our insurance contract expires October 1, 2019 so we will bargain the impact of that as well.  In addition to economics we plan to bargain the impact of the Janus decision fixing the language in our contract that refers to fair share employees. If you are interested in serving on the Bargaining Team or Bargaining Committee please reach out to us via our Interest Form.


Constitution Committee Update

The Constitution and By-Laws Committee next meets from noon to 1 pm Feb. 5 in 2-214. These meetings are open to any LCCEF member.

Ballots on the proposed amendment that would allow substantial revisions of the LCCEF Constitution and Bylaws as a whole instead of bits and pieces are due on Feb. 20. The revisions will be brought to the full membership in a separate vote at a later date (after the committee’s work is done. Here is the proposed amendment.

Want to know some of the constitutional changes that the committee has recommended so far? Visit our latest update here. Please note: these recommendations are not binding and the Feb. 20 vote is not related to the committee’s recommended changes. A vote on recommended changes will be held at a later date. The Feb. 20 vote would enable members to take a single vote (at a later date) on proposed constitutional and bylaws revisions.


Union Benefits – Discounts on almost everything

AFT Robert G. Porter Scholars Program

This program offers four 4-year, $8,000 post-secondary scholarships to students who are dependents of AFT members, as well as 10 one-time $1,000 grants to AFT members. Grants can be used for continuing education and also for implementing programs or introducing tools in the classroom, workplace and/or community.

The 2019 application is now open for submissions through March 31, 2019

Letters of recommendation and school transcripts/reports are due by April 14, 2019.

For more information about the Porter Scholars Program see the links below. Contact if you have additional questions.

LCC Foundation Scholarships deadline is also approaching.

Application deadline for the 2019/2020 academic year is March 4, 2019.  More info here.


Upcoming and Current Work.

Many hands make light work!  We could REALLY use your help! To participate in any of these opportunities, or to find out more, click here.

  • Bargaining in Spring 2019
  • The Constitution and ByLaws rewrite
  • LCCEF Contract Committee (educate members and managers)
  • Member Organizer Institute
  • Officers in Training
  • Worksite Leaders
  • Grievance council

Our union by the numbers

  • Membership: 345 full members
  • Officers: 8 officer positions filled  / 1 position vacant (COPE Chair)
  • Labor Management: 36 active cases including 5 multiple member/group issues. 61 resolved since Jan 1, 2018
  • Currently 1 grievance
  • Helped place 15 members in new positions.


Contract Information in Plain English

11.7 Requests for Reclassification Review

(For employees hired into budgeted positions of .500 FTE or greater), Appendix F and Appendix G Incorporated

There is a fairly easy to follow COPPS Procedure that covers this, but here’s the plain English version…

If you believe your job’s duties and responsibilities have changed on a permanent basis or there is reason to question the appropriateness of your current job classification, you can request a classification review. (For more information about job classifications, see Employee Class Descriptions.)

To initiate a classification review, you must complete Part I of the Classification Review Form and fill out a new Classified Job Description Questionnaire (JDQ) for your position. You are allowed to do this once every 12 months on either April 1st, or October 1st.

Once the completed packet is received in Human Resources, a team of classification specialists will review it and conduct desk audit interviews, with the employee and management supervisor. A desk audit is a meeting with the HR team and not held at your desk.

If you do not agree with the findings, you may appeal the results of the classification review to the Joint Review Committee (JRC). This written appeal (forms available in Human Resources) must be submitted to Human Resources on a Classification Appeal Form within 10 days of receipt of the findings. The JRC consists of a standing committee of 6 employees, 3 classified and 3 managers.

Salary Guidelines: If a change to a job classification with a higher maximum salary rate is approved, the employee will move to the next higher dollar amount on the new pay level, plus one step.


  • You are a Level 9 Step 16 making $21.98/hour
  • Your position is re-classed and it is found that you should be at a Level 11
  • Your new pay level will be Level 11 Step 13 making $23.35/hour
  • This is calculated by looking at the next highest wage from your current wage on the new level ($22.38) and then jumping up one full step.
    • Remember that the pay scale is broken into ½ steps so moving 1 full steps means 2 jumps up on the scale.


Fitness & Happiness

Wendy Simmons, Lane’s Wellness Program Director, has agreed to allow the LCCEF to include her Happiness messages in our weekly updates.  Thank you Wendy!

This week we will be learning ways to manage and cope with stress. Did you know that stress has been called the nation’s number one health problem? It is estimated that 75-90% of all visits to physicians are due to stress-related problems (BACCHUS Network, 2011).

Challenge #1

Try one of the following short-term techniques to help with your stress:

  1. Get away from it for a while-take a short break if you are feeling overwhelmed with the task or situation. This way you will come back relaxed, refreshed, and ready to attack the problem. Do whatever works best for you. Examples: take a short walk, listen to your favorite song, call a friend.
  2. Make a plan or list- usually when we feel overwhelmed it is because there seems to be so many things to do. So write them all down. Make a list of the tasks that have to be completed. From this list, make a realistic plan and prioritize your tasks.
  3. Ask for help- sometimes it helps to just talk to someone about feeling stressed. Remember, it is okay to ask for help and others are more than likely to want to help out.
  4. Practice relaxation techniques- slow, deep breathing will help you to relax by bringing your heart rates back to normal. You can try meditating or counting backwards or even visualize yourself accomplishing the task at hand. There’s a sample video below.
  5. Breathe deep- taking a deep breath has been shown to lower cortisol levels, which can help reduce stress and anxiety. Studies suggest deep breathing can also cause a temporary drop in blood pressure. See below for ideas.
  6. Exercise- a post-exercise endorphin rush is one way to sharply cut stress.
  7. Choose another way that works for you and/or you can get more ideas from (5 minute video on 17 ways to relieve stress)

OR Challenge #2

Figure out your relationship between sleep and stress. How much sleep does the average person need? The answer is enough to feel rested. The true average is seven to nine hours.

Try to incorporate one of the following sleeping tips and see if it helps you manage your stress.

If possible, only use the bedroom for activities such as sleep, meditation, and sex. Avoid other activities, such as studying or eating in bed.

  1. If you tend to worry a lot, write your concerns on paper. Such a list can help prevent you from thinking about your problems again and again at night.
  2. Try waking up at roughly the same time each morning and going to bed at the same time each night. This helps your body establish a consistent sleep/wake cycle.
  3. Don’t try too hard to go to sleep! If you have been trying to sleep for 30 minutes or more and are still wide awake, do something else until you get tired. (e.g. reading a boring book)

Supplemental videos to explore:

If you would like to report in that you completed last week’s challenge, feel free to do so. I will check in at the end of the challenge so you are welcome to do it then instead. If you had any revelations or stories you would like to share, I would love to hear about those. Also know that you don’t need to share, do what works for you.

Thank you and have a low stress week,



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