Citing the uncertain economy, University of Connecticut trustees are preparing to freeze pay for managerial personnel in the next budget.
The UConn Board of Trustees unanimously voted Tuesday [Aug. 10] to suspend its policy on the treatment of managerial personnel.
The policy, adopted by the board in 1977, calls for the “consistent and fair treatment of our managers and confidential staff,” a resolution from trustee Chairman Lawrence McHugh.
By voting to suspend the policy, it allows UConn trustees to freeze pay.
McHugh told trustees the state is facing a “major fiscal deficit” and urged the board to vote to suspend the policy next fiscal year, which starts July 1, 2011.
“Budget projections continue to indicate a substantial deficit for the fiscal year 2012 for the state of Connecticut and it is acknowledged that it will have a potential effect on the university’s operating budget,” the resolution states.
McHugh also said he is confident UConn will get through the “tough times,” but said the school needs to take this step to do so.
“I hope all of you understand the difficult times we are facing,” he said.
UConn spokesman Richard Veilleux said the decision affects 436 employees between the university’s Storrs-based programs and the UConn Health Center in Farmington.
The group includes high-ranking officials like the president, vice president and deans, as well as employees who handle “sensitive information,” he added.
Officials have not yet begun putting together a budget proposal for the next fiscal year and Veilleux said he does not know what kind of raise the employees would have received or how much money the school saved.
The move covers all of the universities’ non-union employees, but Veilleux said any talks of concessions from the unions would need to take place with the next governor.
Both union and non-union employees received raises in the current fiscal year as part of UConn’s $1.03-billion budget, but Veilleux said employees have seen pay freezes in recent years.
“There’s been a handful of years [with pay freezes] since 2000 reared its ugly head,” he said, referring to both the current recession and the struggling economy during the last decade.
The move is intended to help the school save money during the “rocky ride” so it can maintain funding levels for education programs and other services offered to students, he said.
Veilleux said the goal is to “give the students who come here the academic experience they expect.”
Posted Aug. 11, 2010