Dear MUNACA/AMURE/PSAC members,
RE: Payroll frequency changes.
The following change to pay frequency at McGill only affects “regular” employees. It does not affect casuals.
You should have received an e-mail from HR entitled “Change to bi-weekly pay frequency as of January 1, 2014 / Changement à la fréquence de paie aux deux semaines le 1er janvier 2014”.
You should read the pay frequency change that McGill is implementing as it will result in a significant reduction in your pay for nearly a year.
On January 1st, 2014 McGill will change their pay frequency from twice a month to every two weeks.
More importantly, they will also introduce a “delay” in the payroll. Currently, we are paid with no delay. For example, if we are paid on the last day of the month, it is for work we did up to and including that day. The new system will introduce a 2-week delay. For example, if we were paid on Thursday September 26, it would be for work that was done between September 2nd and 13th.
The introduction of the delay causes a major problem. The first paycheck in the new system on January 16th will be for work done between December 23 and January 3. However, the work done in December will already have been paid on December 31st, the last paycheck of the year. Thus, our first paycheck in January will be for only 3 days pay instead of 10. Our first full paycheck is on January 30th. Thus, there will be almost a month between full paychecks.
Due to the small paycheck on January 16th, McGill decided to issue an “advance”. This will be between 600$ and 1000$ depending on your salary. They will then recollect this advance through payroll deductions from April to December 2014 (20 paychecks). This will amount to a deduction of between 30$ and 50$ a paycheck after taxes.
You should know that McGill has decided that only MUNACA and AMURE members will have this delay. Professors, managers and professionals (M’s) will not have this delay in their system and thus will not need an advance or be affected by any payroll deductions.
The reason given for this delay is that McGill payroll needs time to process overtime and changes in hours worked. For example, if you work overtime just prior to a payday, it is currently impossible for McGill to include that overtime on this pay and it will have to wait for the next pay. However, very few of our members have ever received any overtime. To ask all of us to lose $60 to $100 a month for 9 months to fix such a minor problem is disconcerting.
McGill met with us and other unions prior to this announcement. We gave our feedback about this change. We did not agree with the delay and we suggested several alternatives. The first was that they simply not introduce a delay, similar to the plan for professors and M’s. The second was that only new employees have a delay. Another alternative was that the salary advance be repaid from the employee’s last paycheck at McGill, rather than repaid within a year. The last alternative would result in almost a seamless transition for employees. However, McGill rejected all of our feedback and they have unilaterally decided to implement this new system without our approval.
In addition, the pay that you receive January 16th will be under taxed. McGill’s payroll system automatically scales the taxes based on that amount that you received that pay. Since the first pay is only for 3 days, the system will think that your annual salary is much lower than it actually is. The system will thus deduct far fewer taxes than it should have. When you submit your taxes at the end of the year, you will probably owe a hundred dollars of taxes.
If you wish to comment or ask further questions, please contact [Lynne Gervais, Associate Vice-Principal Human Resources](mailto:Lynne.Gervais@mcgill.ca).
We will keep you updated with further information as we receive it.
Sean Cory – AMURE President
Kevin Whittaker – MUNACA/PSAC