Understanding the “Time Served” Credit and “Range Push”

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When the contract was wrapped up at the end of bargaining there were still a couple of finishing touches that needed to be put on it with a Letter of Agreement. One of the outstanding issues was the “time-served” credit that is to be applied to employees who are at the top step of the pay range at the time the “range push” goes into effect.  It took about three weeks after bargaining concluded to wrap up the LOA and get it signed by all parties.

What is this and how will it work?

  • Effective the first full pay period in January, all bargaining unit employees enrolled in UPP will receive a 6% increase.
  • At the same time, OHSU will stop making the 6% retirement pick up contribution for UPP.
  • Employees enrolled in UPP will be able to immediately place their 6% raise back into a pre-tax retirement instrument or keep it as a wage increase.

OK so far? If you need more information about the pre-tax retirement option, you may contact the OHSU Benefits office. Part of our agreement is that OHSU will have financial counseling available for members during the transition.

  • At the same time that the retirement changes are happening, all pay ranges will be increased 5% at the bottom and 6% at the top — this is the “range push.”
  • Only the pay range will move. Everyone’s wages will remain the same, with one exception. Employees enrolled in UPP will have received the 6% increase to offset their retirement changes; however, PERS employees may still find themselves within 5% of the bottom of the pay range.
    • If you are within 5% of the bottom of the pay range, you will get whatever raise it takes to keep you within the range after the push.
      • For example, if you are at the very bottom of the range, you will get a 5% increase.
      • If you are 4% above the bottom of the range, you will get a 1% increase.
      • If you are 5% or more above the bottom of the range your wage will not change.
  • The top of the pay range will increase by 6%.
    • Everyone will have a potential additional 6% to grow when they top out.
    • If you are at the top of the range, you will have been earning time toward the day when you will jump to the longevity step (which happens after you have been topped out for five years).
      • After the push, you will find yourself 6% below the top of the range, with four years of increases before you get back to the top.
      • When you get back to top of the range, the “time-served” LOA provides that whatever time you earned toward moving to the longevity step will be restored to you. For example, if you were topped out for four years before the “range push,” you will be considered to have four years at top step when you get back to the top of the range.
    • If you are at the longevity step, you will find yourself back within the pay range, with two anniversary increases coming in the next two years to get back to the top of the range. You will then begin the five-year count to move to the longevity step again, although you be making 3% more at top of the new range than you would have made at longevity before the “range push.”
  • When the dust settles, members at the bottom of the range, the top of the range and the longevity step will all get pay increases larger and more frequently than they would have gotten before the push. Everyone else will see no change, but will have 6% more wage growth available to them.

Remember: these changes will go into effect the first full pay period in January 2016. We urge UPP-enrolled members to learn about their pre-tax retirement-contribution options and to take advantage of them if they want to be held harmless when the time comes to retire.

18 thoughts on “Understanding the “Time Served” Credit and “Range Push””

  1. Thank you so much for screwing all of us at longevity. Your gonna give someone credit for four years at the top but if you were already at the top you get no credit. You guys are idiots. Thank you so much for lying to us during bargaining process. No mention whatsoever about this little gem. Frank and Diane you should be ashamed of yourself. You’ve made a living off our dues and then you are so shitty that you knowingly withhold that little bit of information from us during bargaining. I know now why Diane has left our local. Frank you should think of leaving also. You guys are pathetic.

    1. You are going to get two pay raises in two years that you wouldn’t have gotten without the range push. You are going to end up at top step making 3% more than you made when you were longevity step. We bargained the best deal we could get, it wasn’t a perfect deal, but it is a 3% increase over two years.

  2. Why doesn’t the “time served” clause give credit to those who were already at the longevity step. Its absolutely absurd this agreement forces long time employees to endure ANOTHER FIVE YEAR waiting period to get to a longevity step he/she was already at prior to the contract. How is this possible? Please explain.

    It appears to me that, in the near future, super senior employees already at the longevity step (for years!!) are going to be “Leap-frogged” by those who were at the top of scale for 3 years or more prior to this LOA.

    Those top of pay scale employees (after the push) will have 4 steps to move to, then applying the time served clause, remain at top of scale for ONLY 2 more years, (or 1 year) making the total time to longevity step 6 years (or 5 years).

    On the flip side those already currently at the longevity step (super senior employees) will, after the push have 2 years to get back to top of scale. (It all makes sense up to this point.) Then (this is where it gets insane) have a second five year waiting period at top of scale, (for a total of 7 YEARS) before moving to a longevity step which they already were at before this LOA!

    So in the end, employees with >25 years of service are going to be making less wages than employees working here for 17 years or less. Why would the union agree to something like this? Please help me understand. Or brighten my day and say I have misunderstood something. Thanks!

    – Feeling VERY slighted!

    1. We bargained the best deal we could get. I think that next bargaining session we need to start thinking seriously about our ability to strike if we are going to stop the divide and conquer tactics we’ve been subjected to.

      1. The problem was, Frank, we didn’t have the LOA details at the time we had to vote to ratify the contract. We are just now getting to fully understand how the “rate push” applies. That, probably is the most frustrating part to this entire thing. If we had know how it was going to play out then, maybe we would have felt differently.

        1. The details were in the the summary of the UPP plan as explained in the final agreement summary. The LOA was for the purpose of creating the language to reflect what was in the summary that we sent to the members. There is nothing new here, it just puts in binding language what the agreement summary reported.

          1. I’m not a UPP member, I’m PERS. Just wondering why I would have the forsight to need to read something which didn’t pertain to me? The UPP settlement shouldn’t have affected PERS members.

            Can you provide a link to that information?

          2. You cited it in your other comment “Employees at the top step or the longevity step will have an extra 6% to grow their wages, and any time spent at top step counting toward their longevity increase before this range movement will be kept on the books and credited to them.”

          3. This is what I read prior to ratifying ….

            “Pay-Range “Push”: Upon plan implementation, all pay ranges will move up 5% at the bottom of the range and up 6% at the top of the range. (OHSU’s original proposal was for the top of the range to move 5%.) This means that all employees within 5% of the bottom of the range will see an immediate increase in pay in addition to the across-the board increases also occurring that year. Only people within the bottom 5% of the range will get an immediate increase, but those paid above the bottom 5% the range will have an extra 6% of wage growth available to them. PERS employees will be able to use this wage growth to project higher average salaries toward retirement. Employees at the top step or the longevity step will have an extra 6% to grow their wages, and any time spent at top step counting toward their longevity increase before this range movement will be kept on the books and credited to them.”

            This information was unclear about how I would attain my “additional 6% wage growth”. The process was not laid out.

            In my mind I never would have dreamed that it would take me 8 years!!! I imagined that it would have at least happened over the life of the current contract? There in lies my frustration!

          4. See my response to your other comment. We also mentioned it in the comprehensive review of the contract that is still on the web page. I understand your frustration. We were trying to convey a lot of information and yet keep it concise enough that folks could take it all in and in retrospect it could have been clearer, but we weren’t trying to deceive anyone.

  3. Maybe there would have been more support to strike had you given us all the facts or at least laid it out clearly prior to voting. You had the choice of how to present this and chose to paint a rosary picture. I just wonder at which private discussions you and Diane have with management did you guys hatch this plan. I can’t believe you would truly leave important financial details unanswered until weeks after you paint a rosy picture of their proposals to us. But if you did then I think you need to look in the mirror and admitt your incompetence.

    1. The terms of the range push were explained in the summary we provided prior to ratification. Nothing was concealed. The LOA was for the purpose of putting those terms in writing, nothing more. That said, Scott, I will speak for myself and say that every time I bargain a contract I do look back and wonder what I could have done differently or better, did we push hard enough, did we make the right trade offs? I learn something every time. At the end of the day every contract is a compromise and you always wonder if you could have done things differently. Overall this is a good agreement that benefits a lot of people. It’s not a perfect agreement, but every phase of bargaining was above board and reported. I’m proud of the team that worked on this agreement.

      Can we do better? Sure, We can always do better if we keep working at it together.

      1. Frank, I found the exact language which led me to believe I would be getting credit for previous time spent at the top step….

        “Employees at the top step OR the LONGEVITY STEP will have an extra 6% to grow their wages, AND any time spent at top step counting word their longevity increase BEFORE the range movement will be kept on the books and credited to them!!!!”

        After processing the above information my impression was, since I’m currently at longevity and couldn’t get there without spending 5 years at the top step, my 5 years spent at the top would be credited to me. So therefore I expected, upon reaching the top step, my previous time of 5 years is credited to me and I’d then move to the longevity step.

        This is what I voted on, this is what I agreed on. Its hard not to understand my frustration when after the “REAL” contract language gets drafted in an LOA, the longevity folks and the top step folks are no longer in the same sentence.

        1. I’m reading that and it says people at top step and longevity step get an extra 6% to grow their wages, which is true and people at top step get time served credit, which is also true. It doesn’t say that people on the longevity step will get previous credit for time served at top step.

  4. I just have a question about the 5% pay push. I am at the bottom 5% in Q1. I am also on the UPP. In January, will the UPP 6% “retirement offset” be calculated in what my wage is?

    If so,
    1) Will the UPP 6% be calculated first? Or will the 5% pay push be calculated first?

    2) If the UPP 6% is calculated first, will ANYONE in the BOTTOM 5% of Q1 ACTUALLY be in the bottom 5%.

    To sum up my question; will I be seeing a 5% (or up to) raise in ADDITION to the 6% UPP “offset”? Or did OHSU just pull a fast one on us?

    Thanks!

    1. The 6% is applied first, and then the push. UPP people will not see a raise in addition to the 6%. The only people who will get an immediate raise because of the push are PERS people within 5% of the bottom of the range. Thank you for asking this question. I can see that was a bit unclear in the explanation. It wasn’t a “fast one” it was never the intent for UPP people to get two raises as a result of the retirement plan transition. The main reason for the range push is so that UPP employees near the top of the range would not be over the range and therefore red lined.

      1. Here is another example of ambiguous language…

        “Only people within the bottom 5% of the range will get an immediate increase, but those paid above the bottom 5% the range will have an extra 6% of wage growth available to them.”

        My impression, Ok, if I’m within the bottom 5% of the range, yippee I’m gonna get a nice salary boost. Then, BAM, the real contract language comes out and wow, if I’m a UPP member, the 6% that is added back to my wages to keep me whole (for the retirement contribution take away) happens BEFORE the 5% “range push”. How convenient for OHSU. That pseudo increase just bumped me above the bottom 5% – well SOB I don’t really get any raise at all. It was all a facade!

        1. I guess what I’m really trying to say is when there are distinct delineation between groups like UPP and PERS people or Top of Scale people and Longevity Step folks please don’t lump us all together prior to ratification. Give us ALL the information, divided up, so we can make an informed vote. I feel like I voted for something completely different than the reality. It was frustrating, too trying to find out the logistics because no one, not even bargaining members understood how it was going to play out. Even yesterday, when I sat down at the Afscme table on the 3rd floor Cafe, the reps there didn’t know the correct answers – STILL!

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