Acting on the recommendation of the PSC Elections Committee, the union’s Executive Council took action to minimize the risk to PSC staff of exposure to the COVID-19 virus by passing a resolution on the conduct of scheduled chapter elections during April. Members in the chapters that have uncontested elections scheduled in April will not be receiving ballots in the mail as they normally would. Elections in all but two chapters are not contested. Therefore, the Elections Committee – when it convenes remotely in early May – will certify as elected the candidates for office in the uncontested chapter elections. Ten business days after that, the candidates will take office.
The Elections Committee’s certification will be reported to the union’s Delegate Assembly when it meets remotely in May. Normally, for uncontested chapter elections, the practice is that union staff print the ballots and other voting materials, place them in envelopes and mail them. Voting members return their ballots to the union office, where they are opened and counted on the designated day at the end of April. The PSC office is closed for the duration of the current crisis period. The PSC does not consider staff going to the office to count ballots in an uncontested election as “essential.”
For the two chapters where positions are contested, the American Arbitration Association (AAA) is conducting the mail ballot, as is the union’s practice in the case of contested chapter elections. For Bronx Community College and York College, ballots were mailed out on April 1 by AAA, and members are instructed to return their votes by mail in the business reply envelopes included in the mailing. AAA reports that they are not sure when they will be able to pick up the ballots at the post office, so counting those ballots will probably be delayed past the designated vote count day at the end of April.
Candidates will be notified when the votes are to be counted at AAA, so observers can participate. Anyone at BCC or York who believes they are eligible to vote and who does not receive a ballot should contact the PSC immediately.