A key union leader for Montana state and university employees says he will not bargain another salary freeze with the governor — drawing a line in the sand amid what is expected to be a very tight budget process.
A Seattle Times investigation has found that at least 40 university or community college employees in Washington retired and then were rehired within weeks so they are now getting both a pension and a paycheck.
Door to door, Harper College President Kenneth Ender’s commute to work from his Inverness home is only 2.75 miles. But Ender’s monthly car allowance — $1,000 — is enough to make a round trip to Harvard University in Cambridge, Mass., once a month, based on federal employees’ mileage reimbursement rate of 50 cents per mile. The $12,000 annual car allowance is one part of Ender’s roughly $350,000 total compensation package.
Additional budget cuts proposed for state agencies have some college and universities freezing hiring, deferring equipment purchases, scaling back travel and worrying whether financial aid for students will be affected.
A pending decision could make it harder for students to get into public colleges in Tennessee by increasing tuition. The vote, expected in June, could also make it more difficult to finish school, by limiting needed classes.
Kentucky House leaders will try to spare higher education from spending cuts as they plug away at erasing a shortfall looming over the next state budget, Speaker Greg Stumbo said after meeting with university presidents.
In the last year, the nation’s private colleges have laid off staff, shelved construction projects, slashed sports teams and turned down thermostats to cut costs. But student financial aid has kept flowing.
North Idaho College President Priscilla Bell told lawmakers that state funding for higher education is shrinking at a time when enrollment on her campus has swelled with an influx of unemployed workers going back to school.
Instructors lectured to classrooms peppered with empty seats at an Ohio technical college where graffiti had warned that black students would die, as the school president sought to reassure students by camping out in the dorm where the threat was scrawled.
A panel controlled by the governor has hand-picked contenders in the latest round of bidding for a pair of high-tech Third Frontier venture funds, breaking with past practice that based awards solely on merit.
Candidates for governor have agreed that a funding crisis looms for public education and offered a range of solutions, including a tax on gambling, a change in drawing up budgets and financial belt-tightening.