People at La Trobe U were expecting the only issue at this week’s enterprise bargaining meeting to be the vintage of the celebratory champagne used to toast a deal done. But alas, while negotiators heads are exploding corks aren’t popping. Although every substantive is settled a deal-delaying issue remains – the expiry date of the new agreement. The National Tertiary Education Union wants it to be June 30 2021. Management says it should be December 31 that year.
The union’s date would mean La Trobe is in line with other universities, which might be why management does not want it. All LT U is saying is that “this is not a position that the university can accept and is not the basis on which the university’s package of benefits, salary increases and conditions was put forward.” An agreement on terms is still possible this year, but only CMM suspects, if the union budges. Management is said to think it has conceded plenty already.