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Sunday, December 9 , 2018, 3:06 pm | Fair 67º


UCSB Employees Facing Furloughs, Salary Cuts

UC System weighs its options for closing a nearly $800 million funding shortfall

Employees at UCSB and throughout the rest of the UC System may be forced to undergo salary reductions, furloughs or both in the near future.

According to a letter sent to employees Wednesday, UC President Mark Yudof outlined how the university system would try to close a funding shortfall of nearly $800 million, the result of combined and actual cuts from the state.

An increase in student fees of $211 million already has been approved and will cover about a quarter of the shortfall. Pay cuts and/or furloughs would produce an estimated $195 million in savings, and the remainder would be determined by the individual campuses and could affect course availability, class sizes and services offered to students, according to the memo.

One option the regents will be considering would involve all faculty and staff members taking an 8 percent reduction in pay. Employees making lass than $46,000 per year would take a 4 percent cut.

A second option would require employees to take 21 days of unpaid holidays and furloughs, which would reduce salaries 8 percent, and a third option would have employees taking unpaid holidays and furloughs totaling 12 days while also taking a 3.4 percent salary reduction. Under the last option, faculty and staff members earning less than $46,000 a year would take 66 days of holiday and furlough and an additional 1.7 percent salary reduction. All three options would save about the same amount of money.

Wednesday’s announcement came just three weeks after Yudof announced that senior UC leaders would be taking a 5 percent pay cut. He acknowledged those cuts would have little impact on the budget deficit, with very few employees occupying those positions.

“Nonetheless, I believe a reduction in pay is only right, especially as we continue to consider possible furloughs and/or pay cuts for faculty and staff systemwide,” he said.

Other cost-cutting measures are already in place, and campuses have begun eliminating positions and placed hiring restrictions on vacant ones.

An option will be selected and presented at the July regents meeting.

Noozhawk staff writer Lara Cooper can be reached at .(JavaScript must be enabled to view this email address).

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