Arbitrator gives advisory ruling in contract negotiations

The arbitrator assigned to help settle the bargaining impasse between the Fairbanks North Star Borough School District and the Fairbanks Education Association presented his advisory recommendations to both parties on Tuesday.

Richard Humphreys called on both sides to hear his advisory ruling late yesterday afternoon after hearing presentations from the School District and FEA in a marathon session on Monday.

Arbitration focused on five key issues:  salary, personal leave, "just cause" language, grade determination and special education meetings.

In his ruling, Humphreys recommended the association's position on "Just Cause" language and special education meetings.

Additionally, the arbitrator recommended the school district's position on personal leave, grade determination and salary.

The salary does include a 1.25 percent increase and a $1,500 longevity stipend for teacher's who are topped out on their salary schedule.

The arbitrator's rulings are not binding, but rather advisory, meaning yet another round of bargaining for the parties.

FNSBSD Labor Relations and Board Spokesperson, Gayle Pierce said, "We have scheduled a bargaining session for Monday.  We expect to be there for as long as we can to achieve progress by talking.  We have invited the mediator, the person who served as the mediator to join us again, to assist us.  So that we'll be our effort to reach agreement."