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Furloughs and pay cuts: Not just for school districts

For public universities, too.

Francisco Cigarroa, chancellor of the University of Texas System, asked state senators on Wednesday for flexibility to cut pay for faculty and staff and mandate furloughs to cope with budget cuts topping 20 percent.

[…]

Kicking off several days of testimony by Texas public universities, Cigarroa asked for the ability to reduce pay and use furloughs, which are prohibited by state law, and for lawmakers to jettison data-reporting requirements that are duplicative and unnecessary.

If the cuts stand, they will make higher education less accessible and affordable for students and chip away at the overall quality of institutions, he said. In a weak position to recruit and hang on to great faculty, the state’s seven emerging research universities — including the University of Texas at San Antonio and – will lose steam in their quest for Tier One research status, he said.

As before, I’d say furloughs and pay cuts are a slightly less unpalatable alternative to firing a bunch of people. They’re not going to make our universities any better, they’re not going to help them attract and retain talent, and they’re not going to do the students who will be at these schools over the next two years any favors. I don’t see much evidence that the Republicans particularly care about any of that.

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6 Comments

  1. John says:

    Out of curiosity how much does a year at UT/A&M cost? How does that compare to Ohio St/Michigan/Cal/UVA/Washington etc. I would think this is a good time to do the revenue side and charge more for tuition if UT is still fairly inexpensive relative to other state schools

  2. jerden says:

    I have NO problem with a state wide, two week furlough of ALL state and school district employees to be imposed during each of the coming two years in the biennium under study. By ALL, I mean just that, including the heads and upper level staff of state agencies and school districts. The only folks I wouldn’t furlough would be the actual building custodians. It could be structured in such a way as to have its enacting legislation lose effectiveness at the end of the biennium with the previous law prohibiting furlougs once again becoming effective. If the economy was still in the toilet, the Legislature could once again pass it, but only that once. Very conservative estimates tend to show it would save at least $4.2 Billion per year, with the likelihood that it would be half again as much as the $4.2. As for cutting/lowering salaries – not even anwhere near fair to the folks who have worked hard over the years to get their salary up – it also is not morally or ethically defendable. Furloughs – YES! Salary reductions – NO!

  3. […] would be in addition to whatever furloughs and pay cuts UH might need to impose as well. Though the story doesn’t suggest an amount, State Rep. Mike […]

  4. […] a previous post, John left the following comment: Out of curiosity how much does a year at UT/A&M cost? How […]