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March 26, 2010
As many of you know by now, on Thursday, March 25, the Faculty Senate voted 130 to 26 in favor of a temporary, one-year reduction in faculty salary of 1.15 percent for fiscal year 2011 (July 2010 through June 2011). This was the essential first step toward implementing the compensation plan
for all employees outlined in my March 16 budget message and one of many critical pieces of the plan balancing the University's budget for the coming year.
Additional details about the plan and implementation can be found on the Office of Human Resources frequently asked questions
page. I appreciate the willingness of University faculty to accept a reduction in their pay as part of the solution to our short-term budget challenges, and while I understand that clear differences of opinion exist on how best to administer such a reduction, I am grateful that the Faculty Senate acted now in favor of this plan, which balances our immediate budget needs with the short- and long-term impacts on our workforce.
I also want to assure the University community that our long-term planning efforts continue unabated, even when immediate pressures draw our attention to the details of our short-term plans. Both long-term planning and short-term planning happen simultaneously, in real time and in response to internal, state and federal circumstances that change almost daily. I know that many of you are impatient for details on the plan for the next biennium. I will share more about our long-term planning in the State of the University Address
next Thursday, but it is important to be clear that no single solution will address all of our future financial concerns. The future will demand reductions, reinvestments, reform, and redesign--and although central administration must change, as well, our efforts must begin to take place within local units, colleges, and campuses. To be sustainable, these local transformations must occur organically, as responsible faculty, staff, and administrators set priorities about their work together, with a long view of the challenges they, and the University, will likely face in coming years.
To this end, I invite you to join me for the State of the University Address
and to follow the progress of our planning discussions on this site, through the minutes of the various employee leadership groups on our campuses, and through the meetings and minutes of the University's Board of Regents. Stay informed and stay engaged--we need you!
Robert H. Bruininks