Message from Your President
If you were at this year’s “Kick Off” at the Oxnard PAC, then you heard me talk about the most important issue facing our members this year, Prop 55. Prop 55 is the extension of Proposition 30, which was the tax measure, passed in 2012. It has played a signifi-cant role in returning resources to our District and fueled wage growth for our members over the last four years. Sadly, Prop 30 is expiring in 2016. Prop 55 will extend current tax rates under Prop 30 until 2030. This continued revenue will keep California and public schools on more solid financial footing for the foreseeable future.
Prop 55 is a priority and a must pass initiative this fall for our members. If Prop 55 does not pass, we will most likely see massive cuts to our District and the return to pay cuts, furlough days and loss of programs for our students. All of us have a responsibility to make sure we pass Prop 55 in November. We are asking all of our members to commit to voting for Prop 55 and asking their family and friends to do the same. Teachers and school employees are the best spokes-people for our schools and students. Your friends and neighbors respect the work you do on behalf of the students we serve and want to hear from you about the issues that matter regarding schools.
To make sure Prop 55 wins, your Union’s Executive Board has implemented a strategic plan for success. First, Kassi Hawkins, our Executive Director, and I will be out everyday at our schools talking to folks and asking them to sign our Prop 55 pledge sheet and will be attending your staff meetings to talk about the importance of Prop 55 with you in person. Also, OFTSE received funding to hire a part-time organizer to work on this campaign. Jasmine Tuazon will be out talking to members at the site as well as will be running our daily Prop 55 phone Bank from 4-6:00 pm at the OFTSE office. Finally, working with our Labor Council partners, we will be holding labor walks every Saturday and Sunday until Election Day. We are asking all of our members to do their part and either commit to one labor walk or phone bank with us. See below for the Labor Walk schedule . If you would like to help, please email our E.D. Kassi Hawkins or myself.
New Leadership on the OFTSE Executive Board
Each year can bring changes to one’s career. This year, OFTSE’s executive board has seen a couple of big changes. Longtime Treasurer Joe Carroll of Camarillo High School has retired and left really big shoes to fill. Currently, Joe is completing a nearly 500-mile hike across the mountains of Spain. Last year, Joe began training Lauren Humphrey from RMHS, to take over the important time consuming work of keep the books for OFTSE. Lauren also attended CFT treasurers training last summer to prepare for this work. Also, during the summer, our Classified VP, Susan Currasco had the opportunity to take a new job at Oxnard College in the Counseling office. This created another opening on our board. As per the OFTSE Constitution and Bylaws, it is the responsibility of the Executive board to fill the positions vacated during a term of office. Luckily, OFTSE had a great choice when filling the Classified VP position. Ariana Pike of ACHS, who had been serving as OFTSE Secretary and had previously served as Classified VP and did an incredible job in that role, agreed to step back in as Classified VP which opened up the Secretary position. The Executive Board appointed Carri McDevitt counselor and Site Rep at RMHS as OFTSE Secretary. Carri had previously worked at CIHS and was on the Certificated Negotiations Team for our last successful contract. OFTSE is in good hands with these new and emerging leaders who volunteer their time to make a difference for their fellow members. Please congratulate Carri, Lauren and Ariana when you see them.
Because of Cost to Get Prop 55 on the Ballot and the Fight to Keep Teacher Tenure and Seniority Rights in California CFT Raises Dues on all Local Unions.
Since the stakes are so high to make sure we continue the gains we’ve made since the passage of Prop 30, CFT knew they had to take the lead in making sure California voters extend Prop 30 even though it would cost millions and millions of dollars to get Prop 55 on the ballot. Ballot initiative are very expensive to get on the ballot and even more expensive to pay for the campaign. In 2012, CFT expended nearly all of its monetary resources to get Prop 30 on the ballot and to make sure it passed. Again this year, CFT is doing the same to make sure Prop 55 follows the same success as Prop 30. This cannot be done without a multimillion-dollar campaign from the CFT and its coalition partners. Prop 30 and now Prop 55 is a direct example of the power of our statewide Union CFT, which positively impacts our members and the students we serve.
As you also know, CFT was a lead defendant in the landmark Vergara vs. California case that went before the courts last year. In Vergara, billionaires with a Union busting agenda, went after tenure, seniority and dues process rights for California teachers. CFT was forced to take a stand against these high dollar lawyers and their billionaire backers who wanted to go around our state legislature using the courts to undermine teachers hard fought labor protections. In the first case CFT lost in the courts but was successful in the appeals process. Just recently, the California Supreme Court refused to take up the appeal of the Vergara Plaintiffs for lack of merit reaffirming the lowers courts decision thus protecting teacher tenure. Though CFT was successful, these cases will not go away and Vergara will not be the last attack on Teachers we will see. The folks backing these attacks have limitless resources and a strong desire to destroy teachers unions in this country. For that reason, CFT has raised dues on all local Unions to recoup the money spent fighting this case in the courts and the ones that will surely follow.
New Dues Structure: Based on a 10-month payroll schedule
|32 hrs. +
|12 to 31 hrs.
|Part Time N.S.
|4 to 11 hrs.
Make Our Voices Heard
Prop 55 Precinct Walk Schedule
Date Time Location
10/1 9am-1pm IAFF 3251 Corte Malpaso, Ste 501, Camarillo
10/2 9am-1pm IBEW 3994 E. Main St., Ventura
10/8-9 9am-1pm OFTSE 2775 N. Ventura Rd, Ste 202, Oxnard
10/15-16 9am-1pm IAFF 3251 Corte Malpaso, Ste 501, Camarillo 10/22-23 9am-1pm IBEW 3994 E. Main St., Ventura
10/29-30 9am-1pm OFTSE 2775 N. Ventura Rd, Ste 202, Oxnard
11/5-8 All Day IAFF 3251 Corte Malpaso, Ste 501, Camarillo & IBEW 3994 E. Main St., Ventura