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April 18, 2003

Geoffroy: Salary increases probably will be self-funded

by Linda Charles
President Gregory Geoffroy wants to give faculty and staff a salary increase next fiscal year, even if the Legislature does not provide the funds.

Speaking to the Faculty Senate April 8, Geoffroy said, It is very likely, based on everything we know, that the salary bill will not contain any allocation or appropriation for Iowa State or any of the regent universities.

But we do want to give a salary increase to our faculty and staff, and well work to put that salary increase package together using revenues from new tuition, Geoffroy said. Hopefully, well be able to put together a pretty good, reasonable salary increase package this year.

However, he warned that as the Legislature winds up the budget process, its quite possible the state budget might not balance.

If thats the case, Geoffroy said, what they will do is balance it by applying an across-the-board budget reduction to all components of state government. Weve heard that there is a possibility that may occur and it could be as large as 3 percent.

If we do take that budget cut, Geoffroy added, thats going to have an impact. It will make it more difficult to give the same level of salary increase, but well still hope that we can do one. It may mean that we will have to do some budget reductions selectively in the university, although I dont think they will be of a very large magnitude.

Life sciences reorganization
The senate also approved the first phase of a reorganization of the biological sciences, clearing the way for the proposal to be sent to the Board of Regents, State of Iowa, for final approval.

Under the plan, the biological sciences would be regrouped around biological complexities: organisms and populations, cells, and molecules. The new departments would be co-administered by the colleges of Agriculture and Liberal Arts and Sciences.

Phase 1 required senate approval of the names and mission statements of two new departments: genetics, development and cell biology (GDCB) and ecology, evolution and organismic biology (EEOB).

Two other departments that fall under the reorganization need no approval because they already exist. They are the departments of biochemistry, biophysics and molecular biology (BBMB) and natural resources and environmental management (NREM).

The senate also approved the elimination of six departments that will be absorbed by the new departments. If the regents give their approval, the new names would go into effect July 1.

Before the senate approved the new departmental names and mission statements, it sought and received assurances from the provost and college deans that there would be a cooperative, integrated approach to research and curriculum under the reorganization.

The second phase of the reorganization will include curricular reform, development of department structure (such as promotion and tenure documents, and grievance procedures), space reorganization and development of new research interest areas. These areas have yet to be acted on by the affected faculty, and in many cases, will require senate and regents approval.

The senates next meeting begins at 7:30 p.m. Tuesday, May 6, at The Hotel at Gateway Center.

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