PENDLETON - Contract negotiations haven't started between Blue Mountain Community College and its faculty, but the two sides already are disagreeing.

Jan Acsai, a BMCC biology instructor and president of the Blue Mountain Faculty Association, said no progress has been made during the summer. She claimed the BMCC administration's proposal was a "take it or leave it" offer and said BMFA members believe the administration is guilty of "bad-faith bargaining."

She said the BMFA was considering filing an unfair labor practice complaint.

John Turner, interim BMCC president, disagreed with Acsai's assessment of the situation, and so did directors Lea Mathieu and Joan Weaver, who are on the administration's negotiating team.

Acsai said the two negotiating teams met twice in June and exchanged proposals, but were unable to agree on summer meeting dates. She said her efforts to contact Sean Banks of the Oregon School Boards Association, head of BMCC's negotiating team, had been unsuccessful.

Mathieu told her fellow board members it appeared she and Acsai had been at different meetings. Weaver agreed, saying Banks did not say BMCC's proposal was a "final offer."

Turner added, "To my knowledge, the college has been open to negotiations all summer."

Board chair Steve Taylor told Turner at the BMCC board meeting last week the college should contact Banks and encourage him to move the negotiations ahead.

In other business, the board accepted the resignation of Betty Higginbottom, an instructor at the Eastern Oregon Correctional Institution.

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