GCFA Executive Board to Gavilan Board of Trustees

November 2011

Since the Board awarded a substantial 18% salary increase to Dr. Kinsella, I have been approached by community members, college employees, and students struggling to remain in school who expressed feelings including surprise, concern, dismay, betrayal, and anger at the increase, its timing, and the circumstances under which it was awarded. The GCFA Executive Board has asked me to say three things apropos of the decision:

 

First, the GCFA is working internally and at the college to create more responsive, transparent, and democratic processes and practices.  While we understand the Board’s intention to do its very best for the college, we do not feel this work was furthered by last week’s process.

 

Second, we are confused by the budget messages we have received in the past several months: first, we were reassured and offered across the board 2% increases; then notified that the state may change the way it figures base funding to our considerable detriment; then told we must consider cutting the CDC because un-reimbursed expenses; then told of the increase for Dr. Kinsella, a reprieve for the CDC, and a sudden decision that a budget reduction task force is not needed at this time. If the public is confused about where Gavilan College stands, we confess we join in that confusion. The public has the right to timely and clear information on the college budget, which is especially important during this economic downturn. As a union we will be more pro-active in obtaining and analyzing such information.

 

Finally, the GCFA leadership would like to take the initiative in encouraging additional communication between our Trustees and college faculty, staff, and students. We will be setting up an Advocacy Committee whose spring tasks will include a series of Meet and Greets for Trustees to speak to and hear from many members of the college community about our visions for the college. We all love and care about Gavilan, even as we see it from our various angles. We’ll be contacting you to set those up and looking forward to a fruitful dialogue.