Dear NMC Community,

This is an update to let you know that we will no longer be investigating a partnership with EDUStaff.

Last week on May 20, the Michigan House of Representatives passed House Bill 4052 which if fully adopted could significantly change the relationship NMC would have with adjunct faculty or supplemental staff employed through EDUStaff. I am not interested in pursuing an approach where NMC could not set wages, conditions of employment, evaluation, and provide professional development resources as it currently does. It appears this legislation could prohibit this.

We first began investigating this option because we thought it had the potential to:

  • Save some employees money by offering alternative retirement and health care options.
  • Save the college money by reducing the payroll covered by MPSERS. As a reminder, each dollar of covered payroll requires a college payment to the state of between 20 and 26 cents. The current covered payroll requires close to a $600,000 MPSERS payment each year.
  • Increase pay rates to those opting for this approach by sharing college savings with them.

This was to be optional for current employees and we had yet to determine whether it would be optional in the future.

Throughout this process we believed it was critical that we keep the high level of service offered here at NMC and that all employees feel part of the campus community. In order to accomplish this, we needed to retain important hiring, wage, supervision and evaluation decisions with our employees. But under the new legislation NMC could lose the ability to decide those issues, and the relationship with those employees would have turned into complete outsourcing. This is not acceptable. It is critically important that NMC continues to have the best team of employees possible to ensure our learners continue to get an exceptional education. It’s also important for everyone to feel valued and heard as we strive toward our common goal of providing lifelong learning opportunities.

We must also ensure that our learners are not unduly burdened by the cost of higher education. As the funding structure for higher education continues to change, we must all keep looking for ways to ensure we are fiscally healthy for years to come. This will cause us to examine alternatives that on their face are uncomfortable. However, it does not remove our responsibility to do so.

I thank those who participated in forums, spoke at the Board meeting and shared perspectives in unit meetings. Thank you for all you do.

Timothy J. Nelson, President
1701 E. Front Street Traverse City, MI
Phone: (231) 995-1010