January 1, 2011

Republicans, Democrat Frerichs,
Go to Bat for APs in State Senate

State Senator Mike Frerichs halted legislation that would have transferred power to designate jobs Academic Professional from UIC to the State Universities Civil Service System.

LEGISLATION SPONSORED by Illinois State Senator John Sullivan (D-Rushville) and supported by all other Democrats on the Senate Higher Education Committee except for Senator Mike Frerichs (D-Champaign) that would have taken the power to classify jobs at UIC as Academic Professional out of the hands of UIC and other public universities in the State and placed it in the State Universities Civil Service System (SUCSS) was blocked in that committee.

ALL REPUBLICAN Senators on the committee voted against the legislation, all other Democrats voted for it, but Democrat Frerichs voted “present,” a parliamentary move that kept the bill from moving forward to the full Senate for consideration.

VARIOUS VERSIONS of the proposed legislation focused on two significant issues: first, the potential to remove the exemptions authority from UIC and remand it back to the Merit Board, and second, a change in the composition of the Merit Board.

THE NET result of the two changes is that SUCSS would be responsible for reviewing and approving all new AP positions at UIC, and the State University SUCSS that governs the process would no longer be fully composed of officials appointed by the State Universities.

SPOKESPERSONS FOR the University of Illinois and a number of other public universities testified against the bill.

WITH A new legislative session having started in January, the bill can be brought up again if Senators decide to do so.

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