At Least I Have a Job
March 9, 2011 12 Comments
We got news late last night from the President of the University about what changes will be in effect for the rest of the fiscal year (through June 30th).
I told you that in January they declared a state of financial emergency, suspended our matching retirement contributions, and fired 25 of my colleagues. Then a few weeks ago they told us that there WOULD be more changes. The implication was that more people would be fired.
Last night the extent of the new changes were made public:
- Complete suspension of retirement benefits. That’s right, no 3% base retirement on top of the 6% matching funds they cut in January. They plan to reinstate the 3% base retirement on July 1st. No word yet on when/if the matching retirements will be reinstated.
- Spending freeze in all departments. No one can spend any money on anything for any reason without approval from the Vice-President of Academics. So if you need lab chemicals or teaching resources, too bad. Make do. (Now I’m really wishing that I’d bought the stuff I needed earlier this week when I thought about it!)
- 2-week mandatory furlough. Every employee is REQUIRED to take two weeks of unpaid vacation over the next 4 months. For staff members this is easy, they just don’t go to work 10 days. For us faculty members who HAVE to teach classes, who HAVE to grade papers, who HAVE to prepare lecture notes, essentially it amounts to a pay decrease for the next 4 months. We’ll be receiving an ~15% reduction in our paycheck for the next four months to account for this “vacation time”. This results in an overall reduction in my yearly salary by 3.8%, or $1,964 (for me).
Believe it or not, most of the faculty see this as a GOOD thing. While no one wants their salary reduced, the flip side is that we all still have jobs. Personally, I would rather have a smaller salary and momentary suspension in benefits than to not have a job.
Apparently we should be receiving our contracts for the 2011-2012 school year in the next week. What do you think the chances are that I will be getting a raise? Yeah…. right…. I doubt it either.
So expect some posts in the next few days about a change in my budget to reflect the changes in my pay, as well as more ideas that I’ll have for compensating for this loss.