Budget gives faculty 2% raise

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March 18, 2008

3:05 PM

__Finance VP Jones says raise doesn’t meet inflation__

p. The new state-funded raises for all faculty and staff may not meet inflation, but, at 2 percent, they exceed the expectations of College officials.

p. Interim College President Taylor Reveley announced the raises in a campus-wide e-mail.

p. “I am delighted to report that the budget includes raises — albeit small ones — for faculty and staff,” Reveley said. “Original proposals included no raises this year.”

p. All public universities in Virginia received a 2 percent salary increase, Vice President for Finance Sam Jones told The Flat Hat.

p. The College may fund further salary raises on its own, Jones added. He pointed out that the College made permanent budget cuts totaling $2.7 million after the state budget crunch last year, and that restoring those would likely take priority over salary increases.

p. Jones said employee salaries may not keep up with inflation over the next two years, attributing it to economic slowdowns.

p. “In general, when there is a slowdown in the economy, higher education takes a big share of the cuts,” he said. “[The College has] a way to generate revenue — tuition — that these other programs often don’t have.”

p. Since 1980, state funding has fallen from 42.8 percent of the College’s budget to less than 20.

p. Despite extending its regular session by five days, the Virginia State Assembly could not reach a consensus on certain capital outlays at the College. Funding for construction of the new School of Education, the renovation of Tucker Hall and other utility infrastructure projects is yet to be approved because it was bundled with controversial measures.

p. Both the House and Senate versions of the budget included funding provisions for these projects. Deadlock only came because of other parts of the budget.

p. “I am cautiously optimistic that these will go through,” Jones said.

p. Reveley also indicated that he expected successful resolution of the issue April 23.

p. The current budget still provides funding for the continued construction of the Integrated Science Center and undergraduate financial aid and gives $75,000 for biomedical research.

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