AGREEMENT CONCERNING PAYROLL DEDUCTIONS FOR CONTRIBUTIONS TO COMMITTEE ON POLITICAL EDUCATION (“COPE”) FOR EMPLOYEES REPRESENTED BY THE RUTGERS COUNCIL OF AAUP-AFT CHAPTERS, AMERICAN FEDERATION OF TEACHERS (“AAUP-AFT” OR “UNION”)
WHEREAS, AAUP-AFT (“Union”) has requested that RUTGERS, THE STATE UNIVERSITY OF NEW JERSEY (“Rutgers”) deduct from employees’ wages contributions to the COPE; and
WHEREAS, during contract negotiations the Union asked Rutgers to make such payroll deduction and Rutgers agreed, as described in Article V of the parties’ collective negotiations agreement, and as described in this Appendix C and in Appendix D,
WHEREAS, the Union and Rutgers acknowledge that Rutgers’ agreement to implement payroll deductions for employees who choose to make contributions to COPE is not in any way an endorsement of COPE by Rutgers; and
WHEREAS, the Union and Rutgers have entered into an Indemnification Agreement executed simultaneously with this Agreement (Appendix D to the parties’ collective negotiations agreement) for the purpose of indemnifying Rutgers against any liability arising from Rutgers’ implementation of this payroll deduction program;
NOW, THEREFORE, the parties enter into this Agreement in order to set forth the parameters for administration of the payroll deduction for employee contributions to COPE (“payroll deduction”) for employees represented by the Union and for the purpose of prescribing the obligations which Rutgers will undertake in regard to this payroll deduction and the obligations which the Union will undertake:
1. General: Responsibility for communicating to employees information about the payroll deduction resides with the Union and not with Rutgers. However, Union representatives may not conduct any business whatsoever concerning this payroll deduction on work time. Furthermore, no resources of Rutgers may be used with respect to the payroll deduction except as explicitly set forth in this Agreement.
2. Marketing and Enrollment:
a. Responsibility for communicating to employees information about the payroll deduction resides with the Union.
b. The Union acknowledges that the payroll deduction is not selected, sponsored, or endorsed by Rutgers or by the State of New Jersey and agrees not to make any representations to the contrary. The Union agrees that no materials which are distributed concerning the payroll deduction will identify Rutgers or the State of New Jersey in any way as a sponsor or endorser and further agrees that such materials will include the following statement approved by Rutgers disclaiming any responsibility on the part of Rutgers for the information contained therein:
The payroll deduction suggested by the Union is not sponsored or endorsed in any way by Rutgers, the State University or by anyone on its behalf, or by the State of New Jersey. Rutgers makes no promises or representations of any kind whatsoever concerning this payroll deduction.
Such materials will clearly identify the representatives of the Union who are responsible for administrative details of the payroll deduction such as inquiries and problem resolution.
The Union will (within seven (7) days of the effective date of this Agreement) submit to Rutgers draft materials (letters) for the University’s review and approval, which conform to the requirements as set forth herein. If additional materials for or about the payroll deduction are used to promote the payroll deduction or solicit applications that refer to Rutgers or the State of New Jersey they will be submitted to Rutgers’ Office of Labor Relations for review before distribution in order to ensure that such materials comply with the provisions of this Agreement.
c. In the event that the University receives a COPE authorization form directly from an employee, rather than the AAUP-AFT, the University shall provide the AAUP-AFT with a copy of the form at the time the next COPE deductions are sent to the AAUP-AFT, and the AAUP-AFT thereafter shall incorporate any changes on the next roster it provides pursuant to 4c. below.
3. Cancellations: An existing payroll deduction may be canceled with thirty (30) days notice to Rutgers from the employee. The Union will prepare a cancellation notice within seven (7) days of the effective date of this Agreement for Rutgers’ review and approval.
4. The Union Agrees:
a. To provide to Rutgers evidence that COPE is properly registered as required by applicable law, complies with reporting requirements imposed by law and makes contributions only in compliance with applicable legal standards.
b. To accept on a monthly basis whatever payroll deductions have been authorized by this Agreement and to make the contributions to COPE.
c. To provide Rutgers by the first of each month a roster in a format to be specified by Rutgers with the name, social security number and biweekly deduction amount for employees in the collective negotiations unit who have authorized payroll deductions for COPE.
d. To provide for the University’s review all authorizations signed by employees, all cancellations signed by employees and all documents related to adjustments or changes to the payroll deduction and to thereafter retain the documents.
e. To provide refunds to participants as necessary.
f. To be responsible for all administrative details such as inquiries, adjustments and problem resolution.
g. To make routine adjustments to recover previously remitted contributions to the Union when Rutgers subsequently determines that such contributions should not have been credited to COPE due to the participant’s having received unearned salary.
h. To implement new enrollments, adjustments, or cancellations prospectively only, with no retroactive adjustments, except as may be required by Paragraph 4g above and by Paragraph 5b below.
i. To notify Rutgers of the cancellation of payroll deductions by any participant by the first of the month prior to the month in which deductions are to be discontinued. To ensure that the amount that the employee deducts from each paycheck shall in no event exceed $5,000 per year, or such other amount as the law permits.
5. Payroll Deductions:
a. Rutgers will begin to take employee payroll deductions of fixed dollar amounts specified on the initial rosters to be supplied by the Union, in a format specified by Rutgers, on or about thirty (30) days after receipt in Payroll Services of the rosters. Such payroll deductions will begin on the first “benefits” payroll of each month and will be in the biweekly amount specified by the Union provided the participant has sufficient net pay to cover this deduction after all other mandatory and voluntary deductions are taken. There will be no retroactive deductions.
b. Any amounts over deducted will be refunded to the employee by the Union.
c. Payroll deduction will continue until such time as the participant moves out of a position represented by AAUP-AFT, terminates, requests to have the deductions cease, a new authorization is received from the Union specifying a different deduction amount or a term and condition of this Agreement fails.
d. Rutgers will submit deductions to the Union within fifteen (15) days after the end of the month in which such deductions are taken, along with a roster reflecting the detail of the deductions.
e. Rutgers will provide programming for these deductions at no cost to the Union. The Union will be liable for administrative, processing and other costs incurred by Rutgers in administering payroll deductions. Invoices will be submitted periodically to the Union by Rutgers. Payment is due within thirty (30) days after the date of invoice. Rutgers may suspend payroll deductions if payment is not made in timely fashion.
6. Grievances: The Union agrees not to file Article 9 grievances on their own behalf or on behalf of any collective negotiations unit member over the validity of this Agreement, or implementation of the specific provisions of this Agreement, or procedural matters related to the Agreement, or over any other matter arising from this Agreement. The Union may raise such matters only before the Committee on Professional Relations (Article XXVI of the parties’ collective negotiations agreement).
7. Sole and Entire Agreement: Article V.B of the parties’ collective negotiations agreement, this Agreement and the Indemnification Agreement executed simultaneously with this Agreement constitute the sole and entire agreements between Rutgers and the Union concerning payroll deductions for contributions to COPE for employees represented by AAUP-AFT. No other promises or agreements shall be binding on the parties unless they are in writing and signed by the parties to these agreements.
8. Effective Date: This Agreement is effective as soon as practical after the effective date of the parties’ July 1, 2011 – August 31, 2014 collective negotiations agreement to which this was an Appendix.