Message from the President
August 11, 2017
I am pleased to share with the campus community more details about the raise plan announced at Convocation earlier today.
With the finalization of the campus budget planning process that unfolded over the last several weeks, it has been determined that approximately $3 million will be allocated to fund the raise plan which applies to all full-time faculty and staff employed as of June 30, 2017.
While the overarching goal of the raise plan is to be as fair and equitable as possible, attempting to compensate for multiple years of foregone merit raises is necessarily complicated and difficult, given finite resources. We have settled on the following raise plan after multiple conversations with division heads, deans, department heads and faculty leaders.
Faculty and Unclassified Staff
Since the last regular raise plan implemented was based on 2007-08 merit evaluations, the present raise plan is intended to allow supervisors to take into account up to nine years of merit evaluations back to the 2008-09 year.
Each department will receive a raise pool based on .75% of eligible employees' current salaries per year for up to nine years of each individual's employment.
Accordingly, departments that experienced low turnover, and as a result have salaries that generally reflect lower historical levels, will receive somewhat higher raise pools than departments that have experienced more turnover with resulting salaries that are more reflective of current market. Institutionally, the total raise pool will be approximately 5.25 % of the total salary base as of June 30, 2017.
Please keep in mind that individual employee raises may be more or less than this amount as recommended by the supervisor, and will vary based on the amount of the departmental pool, each employee's prior years' merit evaluations, and other relevant factors.
Please also keep in mind that all raise recommendations will be reviewed up the administrative line through the President prior to submission to the Board of Supervisors for final approval. Once approved by the Board, raises will be reflected in the next regular pay period, hopefully August 31for faculty and September 1 for staff, and will be effective retroactively to July 1.
Since it is unrealistic to fully address up to nine years of unrewarded merit with the amount of funds available for the current raise plan, the most recent four years of merit evaluations will continue to be carried forward for consideration in future raise plans.
Classified staff will receive raises in accordance with Louisiana Civil Service rules. In addition to the general increase for classified staff approved as part of the recent legislative session, we will elect to implement some of the merit step increases that were foregone as a result of prior layoff avoidance plans, such that the overall average pay raise rate for classified staff is approximately equivalent to the average pay raise rate for unclassified employees.
I wish the raise amounts for all of our faculty and staff were greater, given the long dry spell without pay raises, but I am very happy to be communicating with the campus community about pay raises rather than budget cuts as has so often been the case in recent years.
John L. Crain