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The Chronicle of Higher Education Reports No Strike at PSU

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No strike in Pennsylvania as professors and system reach tentative agreement. Faculty accept general salary increases of 3% & 4%.

Negotiators for the union representing the 5,500 professors at Pennsylvania’s 14 state-owned universities and for the state-university system reached a tentative agreement late Monday, averting a strike that would have affected 25,000 summer students. The agreement must be ratified by the union and the system’s governing board before it can take effect.

In statements on their Web sites, the Pennsylvania State System of Higher Education and the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties said the pact would provide a one-time cash payment of $1,750 to each full-time faculty member, plus general pay increases of 3 percent each in the 2008-9 and 2009-10 academic years, and 4 percent in 2010-11. In addition to the general pay increases, faculty members not at the top of the salary schedule will receive annual service increments of 2.5 percent or 5 percent each year.

The union had threatened last week to call a strike as early as Monday morning if no agreement had been reached by midnight Saturday, when the faculty members’ previous contract expired. But the two sides returned to the bargaining table on Sunday, then met again for a 12-hour bargaining session on Monday. —Charles Huckabee

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