Saturday, July 25, 2015

July Board of Trustees Statement

Yesterday, July 27th, on behalf of you, I addressed the Board of Trustees at their regularly scheduled business meeting. It is the July meeting when the Board approves tuition, fee and residence hall rates for the next year. This year they raised Fall and Spring tuition 2.0%, reduced summer and winter sessions tuition, as well as raising existing fees and instituted some new ones. July also is when the Board approves a new budget, which now is approaching 381 million dollars. 

July is also when the Board typically approves President Coles compensation package for the upcoming year. Last year Dr. Cole received a 3.5% raise to a base salary of $403,650. On top of that she received a $60,547 (15%) performance bonus and a $25,000 retention bonus for a total package of $489,197. There was no mention of any actions concerning Dr. Coles compensation on yesterday's published agenda, but that was also the case last year when the agenda was amended after I completed my remarks.

At yesterday's meeting I was informed just before speaking that Dr. Cole will not be receiving any increase to her base pay and that no administrators on campus will be getting an increase either.  And that her $25,000 retention bonus does not require Board action as it is automatic as per the 2013 Board resolution creating it. What is not clear is whether Dr. Cole will be receiving a performance bonus as provided by that same 2013 Board resolution allowing for a 10-20% bonus. No mention was made about it at the meeting and I cannot confirm if it was or was not granted. Which means that for the upcoming year President Cole will either be taking a $60,547 reduction in pay if she is not receiving the performance bonus or can be making as much as $509,380 if she is getting the full 20% as provided by the 2013 resolution. Again, I simply don't know.

What is clear that none of you will be receiving any bonuses or cost of living increases and the university has additionally suspended our increments (Step Increases) until a successor contract is negotiated which may be more than two years away in this political climate. Of course I will keep you informed as more information is available.

I really appreciate your taking the time to read this and stay informed. You can read the entire text of my board statement here and I appreciate that too. 

The next meeting of the Board of Trustees is scheduled for Thursday, September 10th and they will post the agenda here a week before. Unfortunately the agenda for this past meeting is no longer available on the Board website

In solidarity-
Rich Wolfson, President-AFT Local 1904