House Bill 289 (HB 289) relating to higher education sets a minimum wage for non-tenure-track faculty at colleges and universities. HB 289 extends eligibility for unemployment benefits for non-tenure-track faculty at colleges and universities.
SECTION 1. A new section of Chapter 21, Article 1 NMSA 1978 is enacted to read: " NON-TENURE-TRACK FACULTY STANDARDS-- MINIMUM WAGE.—
A. Whenever possible, all non-tenure-track faculty members of any public post-secondary educational institution in the state shall be:
(1) informed of course assignments at least ten weeks before the course begins;
(2) paid in full for an assignment when a class is canceled less than two weeks before the beginning of a semester or anytime thereafter; and
(3) considered to be an integral part of their departments and given all of the rights normally afforded to tenure-track faculty by the institution in the areas of book selection, participation in department activities and the use of college resources, including telephones, copy machines, supplies, office space, mail boxes, clerical staff, libraries and professional development.
B. All public post-secondary educational institutions in the state shall pay all non-tenure-track faculty members a minimum wage of $5,000 per course assignment credit hour.
C. Rules adopted pursuant to this section shall meet federal requirements that are necessary for the state to receive federal funds or for employers in New Mexico to be granted federal unemployment tax credits.
SECTION 2. Amends Unemployment Compensation Section 51-1-5 NMSA 1978 (being Laws 2003, Chapter 47, Section 9, as amended) BENEFIT ELIGIBILITY CONDITIONS Subsection C(5) to delete the current conditions of “reasonable assurance” and insert more specific conditions as follows:
C. Benefits based on service in employment defined in Paragraph (8) of Subsection F of Section 51-1-42 and Section 51-1-43 NMSA 1978 are to be paid in the same amount, on the same terms and subject to the same conditions as compensation payable on the basis of other services subject to the Unemployment Compensation Law; except that:
(5) for the purpose of this subsection, to the extent permitted by federal law, "reasonable assurance" means a reasonable expectation of employment in a similar capacity in the second of such academic years or terms based upon a consideration of all relevant factors. A "reasonable assurance" requires that all of the following are met:
(a) the educational institution has made an offer of employment in the following academic year or term that is written, oral or implied;
(b) the offer of employment in the following academic year or term was made by an individual with actual authority to offer employment;
(c) the employment offered in the following academic year or term is in the same employment position as the previous employment;
(d) the consideration for the employment offered is not less than 90 percent of the amount that the non-tenure-track faculty member claimant earned in the then current academic year or term; and
(e) the offer of employment in the following academic year or term is not contingent upon a factor or factors that are within the educational institution's control, including course programming, decisions on how to allocate available funding, final course offerings, program changes and facility availability.