Following a tense four-and-a-half hour closed session, the Southwestern College Governing Board announced it would not send March 15 layoff notices to the college faculty. This elicited subdued reactions of relief from the faculty present at 11 p.m. and anger from Bruce MacNintch, the head of SWC’s classified employee union.
The decision to not send the notices came just 11 days before the district’s March 15 deadline required by the state to lay off faculty.
|Corina Soto / Photo: Kristina Saunders|
“The damage layoffs would cause the community would far outweigh any assistance it would provide to balancing the budget,” Peraza said.
MacNintch, president of the SWC chapter of the California State Employees’ Association (CSEA), reacted angrily to the decision.
“We negotiated, being told layoffs would occur if we didn’t agree to this deal, and now they won’t happen anyway,” MacNintch said.
CSEA had accepted a 5 percent pay cut under the threat of district layoffs.
SWC administration has been locked in budget negotiations with the three main constituency groups – SCEA, CSEA and the Southwestern Community College District Administrators’ Association (SCCDAA) – for several months. At the February board meeting Albert Roman, SWC’s vice president of human resources, outlined the process by which layoffs could take place.