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DAILY REPORTS and Documents | iPNB Houston meeting info
iPNB personell committee report

Distributed to the board at the iPNB meeting in Houston September 20 - 22, 2002

September 22, 2002 By Dave Fertig, interim personnel committee chair

On September 6, 2002 The iPNB Personnel Committee met in executive session to review specific matters of litigation, pending or threatened, as well as confidential personnel issues.

In meeting, we recognized that as interim board members our job was to stabilize and protect Pacifica, but not to perform broad policy changes or interpretations. That should be left to the elected board. However, we have to deal with the issues that face us presently. Among these are matters which are in litigation or otherwise involve confidential issues.

Initially, we faced claims for enforcement of alleged severance agreements totaling approximately eight hundred thousand ($800,000) dollars, but we have only paid out approximately two hundred thousand ($200,000), and we are solidly resisting the few remaining severance claims which appear to be without merit.

The pending litigation includes a lawsuit filed by former Executive Director Bessie Wash in Washington, D.C. courts. Pacifica has filed a counterclaim, and there are efforts underway to have Ms. Washs claims dismissed.

Former KPFK GM Mark Schubb has filed a claim before the California Department of Labor Standards Enforcement seeking compensation for various things, ranging from damage to his car to a claimed severance package offered by Bessie Wash as well as vacation beyond the cap for accruals. Some of the issues have been dropped, some resolved, but issues including the severance agreement remain to be resolved. We believe the severance agreement is without merit, and are in the process of reviewing documents relating to vacation accruals and have counsel working on it.

Three workers from WBAI filed an unfair labor practices charge with the NLRB. Most of the issues have been resolved favorably except that the NLRB is to investigate some of WBAIs past practices relating to programming changes.

Four other WBAI staffers are working with Pacifica to determine what amount of relief is appropriate in terms of back-pay, a central issue is whether they should get their whole back salary for the time they were not working at Pacifica, or should they get that amount minus what they earned at other jobs during that same time.

One claim of sexual harassment has been made. Steps have been taken to ensure that we have, and have had, an harassment free workplace. Our attorneys assure us that we are in compliance with the spirit and letter of the law in this regard.

Union negotiations are underway with CWA (KPFA) and AFTRA (WBAI, WPFW and soon KPFK). Even though I personally think UE is a great union . . .

We briefly discussed the need to develop resources and a hiring process for the CFO, Controller, Development Director, and Program Director, and to review the personnel policies and manual.

We anticipate a follow-up (and public) meeting to discuss how and whether to utilize LAB subcommittees to assist these efforts, and how to do so without creating further conflicts and confusion at the station. We need to engage the most skilled and experienced people available in the process of creating a work environment which Pacifica can be proud of.


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