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Wright State faculty contract negotiations stalled

Published: Thursday, October 19, 2017 @ 12:35 PM


            Wright State University.
Wright State University.

Contract negotiations between Wright State University and its faculty have stalled and union leaders said they are being asked to make big concessions for talks to continue.

Wright State president Cheryl Schrader has declined to comment on ongoing talks between the administration and the WSU chapter of American Association of University professors. But, recently the chairman of Wright State’s board of trustees provided some insight into what might have stalled negotiations.

“The board is unanimous in its belief that the negotiations are about flexibility,” board chairman Doug Fecher said during a recent trustees meeting. “We truly hope that we can find a way to move forward…We do want to get this thing done.”

RELATED: Graffiti targeting minorities, women, Muslims, Jews found at Wright State

That “flexibility” is what Wright State’s AAUP leaders are most concerned about, said Martin Kich, president of the chapter and a professor at the school’s Lake Campus. Due to Wright State’s recent financial problems, Kich and others worry that the administration want to make it easier to lay off faculty and eliminate academic programs.

In June, Wright State’s board of trustees slashed more than $30.8 million from the university’s budget. Italian, Japanese and Russian language courses were the only academic programs that were to be scrapped by budget cuts.

The administration has asked the faculty union to consider having a “global discussion” about contract details, Kich said, which he interprets as the administration wanting to “change the ground rules” of negotiations.

“That language is there to ensure they don’t do anything impulsively,” Kich said. “It ensures that people don’t just start cutting programs because in the short term that saves them some kind of money without thinking of the long term implications.”

RELATED: Wright State again planning to cut swimming and diving teams after this season

Pay, which is often one of the more contentious factors for entities negotiating contracts, has not been a big one for Wright State’s faculty this time around, Kich said. With the university’s financial issues, Kich said faculty have no grand expectation of raises.

Although the faculty contracts expired in June, an agreement with the administration means the expired contracts will remain in place until a new one is reached, Kich said. Talks began in January and Kich said it first appeared that the administration and union would reach an agreement relatively easily.

“Most of it wasn’t that big of a deal,” Kich said. “There’s always some stuff each side puts down that is wish list stuff but from my perspective it was not particularly contentious in any way.”

Then in March, former Wright State president David Hopkins abruptly resigned and Curitis McCray was hired as interim president. The change in leadership briefly halted talks and then the administration brought in an attorney to handle the remainder of negotiations, Kich said.

RELATED: Ohio State to decide on white supremacist’s speaking request this week

At this point, Kich said he doesn’t expect a deal to be reached until next year. While Kich wouldn’t rule out a faculty strike, he said he’s not even sure how the union would handle one since it has never had to.

“We’ve never gotten to a point where this was a real possibility,” Kich said. “It would seem kind of stupid if we got to that point. But, we’ll see what happens.”

All lanes of I-75 North open after multiple crashes near Tipp City

Published: Friday, January 19, 2018 @ 12:35 AM
Updated: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 7:10 AM

SCENE: Multiple crashes on NB I-75 in Tipp City

Traffic issues can be reported by calling our newsroom at 937-259-2237 or tweeting @WHIOTraffic .

Traffic conditions are updated every six minutes on AM 1290 and News 95.7 FM.

Major Highway Incidents

  • On southbound Ohio 4 at Harshman Road in Riverside, a crash was reported around 7:05 a.m. 
  • On northbound I-75 in Tipp City north of SR 571, four separate crashes reported around 5:30 a.m. All lanes reopened around 7 a.m. 

Surface Street Incidents

  • No incidents to report. 

>> RELATED: WHIO App-Winter

>> RELATED: Check for delays or cancellations before heading to the airport

>> RELATED: Track the latest conditions in your neighborhood on our live WHIO Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

Ongoing Construction & Other Closures 

Live look at highways on our traffic cameras here.

Latest traffic conditions are also available on our traffic map. 

MONTGOMERY COUNTY

  • Keowee Street north of Stanley Avenue, bridge closed until 2019. The official detour is: Keowee Street to Stanley Avenue to I-75 to Wagner Ford Road and back to Dixie. More information is available here.
  • Stewart Street Ramp to US 35 East, RAMP CLOSURE March 28 - Sept 30, 2018. The official detour is: Stewart Street to Edwin C. Moses Boulevard to I-75 north to US 35 west to James H. McGee Blvd. to US 35 east.
  • I-75 north Ramp to US 35 west and east, Lane width restriction until Apr. 1, 2018. One lane will remain open on the ramp with a width of 11 feet.
  • I-70 between Upper Lewisburg Salem Road and Brooksville-Phillipsburg Road, Lane closure Jan. 22 - 29. One lane will remain open in each direction at all times. Shoulder closures Jan. 22 - Sept. 30. Both the inside and outside shoulders of I-70 will be closed during construction. 

Tsunami warning issued after 7.9 magnitude earthquake off coast of Alaska

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 5:02 AM
Updated: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 6:55 AM

A tsunami warning is in effect after a preliminary 7.9 magnitude earthquake struck  173 miles southeast of Kodiak, Alaska.

>> THE LATEST: Officials tell residents to seek higher ground amid tsunami warning

UPDATE @ 6:55 a.m. 

The Kodiak Police Department reports water has started to recede from their harbor, and are urging residents to move to higher ground and wait for updates, according to a Facebook post. 

 Police also posted a video about 5:40 a.m. Eastern Time, warning residents a tsunami could be on the way. 

The tsunami watch, issued for parts of the Hawaii has been cancelled, but remains in effect Oregon, California, and Washington.  

FIRST REPORT

The earthquake was at a depth of 15 miles. There have been nine aftershocks, from 3.1 to 5.0 magnitude.

The Oregon, California and Washington coasts are under a tsunami watch.

>> WHIO Doppler 7 Interactive Radar

According to the National Weather Service, the first waves should arrive around 2 a.m. local time (6 a.m. Eastern Time). Residents are being told to seek higher ground.

The National Weather Service tweeted that a buoy just northeast of the epicenter recorded a water displacement of 32 feet.

This story will be updated as we learn additional details.

Migos and their fans want the group cast as hyenas in ‘Lion King’ remake

Published: Monday, November 06, 2017 @ 11:20 PM

Quavo (middle) of rap trio Migos (pictured) wants Disney to cast the group as the hyenas in the remake of
Quavo (middle) of rap trio Migos (pictured) wants Disney to cast the group as the hyenas in the remake of "The Lion King."(Bennett Raglin/Getty Images for BET/Getty Images for BET)

The rap trio Migos wants to put its stamp on the highly-anticipated remake of “The Lion King.”

On Sunday, Migos member Quavo posted his plea for the trio to make their Hollywood debut in the upcoming live-action remake, which already has an all-star cast including Beyoncé, Donald Glover, Alfree Woodard and Keegan-Michael Key.

Related: Disney confirms Beyonce, Donald Glover, more for ‘The Lion King’ in 2019

“Call us,” Quavo tweeted to Disney about the group playing the three hyenas.

>> Read more trending news

One problem, though. Key, comedian Eric Andre and actress Florence Kasumba have already been cast as hyenas in the new film, slated to premiere July 19, 2019.

The group’s fans were on board.

Twitter users offered numerous examples of how the group’s signature phraseology would fit right into the “Lion King” script.

As with many social media campaigns, Migos didn’t quite have everyone on board for the possibility of the group members playing the hyenas, partially because the parts were already cast to begin with.

Migos producer arrested, accused of driving 125 mph on Georgia freeway

Published: Tuesday, January 23, 2018 @ 5:51 AM

Pierre “Pee” Thomas, a producer credited for starting the careers of Migos, Lil Yachty and others, was arrested for reckless driving by Alpharetta police. (Credit: Alpharetta DPS via WSBTV.com)
Alpharetta DPS via WSBTV.com
Pierre “Pee” Thomas, a producer credited for starting the careers of Migos, Lil Yachty and others, was arrested for reckless driving by Alpharetta police. (Credit: Alpharetta DPS via WSBTV.com)(Alpharetta DPS via WSBTV.com)

A record label co-owner and producer credited with the speedy success of Atlanta-based Migos is facing charges after his alleged speed behind the wheel caught the attention of Alpharetta, Georgia, police.

>> Watch the news report here

Dashcam video obtained by WSB-TV’s Mike Petchenik shows officers pulling over Pierre “Pee” Thomas last Sunday. Thomas, the chief executive of record label Quality Control, has produced records for rappers such as Migos, Lil Yachty, Lil Baby and Rich the Kid.

The officer "observed a red SUV traveling at a high rate of speed,” said Officer Jason Muenzer. “He noticed the vehicle was going about 100 mph.”

Muenzer said the officer got on Ga. 400 near Old Milton Parkway and began following Thomas north.

“That officer tried to catch up to the vehicle, but he himself got up to about 120, 125 (mph) and even then, the officer noticed the vehicle was pulling away from him.”

Eventually, video shows Thomas pull over off McFarland Parkway in Forsyth County.

He told officers he was heading home from the studio.

>> Read more trending news 

“When the officer approached the vehicle, the driver acted as though he didn’t see the officer,” Muenzer said. “The only excuse he had was he didn’t see the officer and he wanted to get home.”

On the dashcam video, the officer questioned Thomas and his speed.

“What were you doing going that fast, man?” he can be heard asking. “You were pulling away from me. I was doing 120 (mph) just trying to catch up to you. You were pulling away from me.”

Officers would later handcuff Thomas and take him to the North Fulton Jail annex on reckless driving charges.

Police told Petchenik this arrest was just one of a series recently on the busy highway.

“It’s getting old,” Muenzer said. “Those speeds, the slightest crack, the slightest item in the roadway, road debris, you can lose control of your vehicle.”

Thomas’ attorney, Drew Findling, told Petchenik that his client was not impaired and complied with officers.

“We will go to court in the city of Alpharetta and look forward to putting this matter behind him,” Findling said. “We will resolve it in court.”

– The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this report.