9/12/2011: The local 503 has just released a whitepaper here. Some of the data is from the excellent Bunsis report on UO, here. They repeat the UO admin raise data, have some data on 2009-2010 raises at PSU, but nothing on OSU or OUS central. My read on this is that UO is getting punished for being the most transparent, thanks to Brad Shelton’s efforts back in 2009, after the furlough debacle. Not very fair! I certainly agree with their points about too many bosses and no enough workers though. Lots of new students, lots of new administrators, almost no new professors.
Administrative bloat. Job #1 for our new interim provost should be to drastically slow the hiring of new administrators.
And the summary (thanks Star)
Among its core findings are:
• There is one administrator for each 2.4 direct-service employees on the faculty and front-line staff across the university system, more than four times a ratio of one for every 11 front-line state agency workers targeted by the legislature.
• Staffing has shifted from instruction and support to administration. At Oregon State, for example, the ratio of administrators to students increased 11% from 1993 to 2007 while instruction, service and research dropped by 28% and clerical support dropped by 53%. On average in 2009-10, these administrators were paid 23% more than faculty and 90% more than front-line workers.
• While front-line workers endured pay freezes and furlough days in the past biennium, the University of Oregon and Portland State (the only campuses where data is readily available) handed highly paid administrators significant raises. These included 19 at PSU who were already earning over $130,000 a year and 35 at UO who were already earning over $100,000 a year.
• The university system made $457 million in capital improvements in FY 2010, a 25% increase in capital assets. Thus, $77 million that could have funded operations went instead to a growing debt service, exacerbating a disturbing trend. From 2004-2010, total revenue coming from student tuition and fees increased by 29%. Tuition alone has increased by more than double since 2001.
• As their workloads soar with increased enrollment, compensation for faculty and support workers stagnates or declines. Classified employees, for example, saw total compensation drop from 98.2% of market in 2008 to 92.6% in 2010.
• The OUS’ financial picture is not as bleak as OUS paints it. Total operating revenues rose by 11.9% in 2010, while operating expenses increased by only 2.4%, resulting in a savings of $189 million relative to budget. System-wide enrollment increased by 6% in 2010 and is expected to increase by over 3% in 2011. Also for FY 2010, OUS had a total of $252 million in unrestricted net assets.
• At a time when accountability takes on new urgency with the passage in laws giving Oregon’s public universities more autonomy and less oversight, OUS fails to make information readily and sufficiently accessible to allow for public oversight and scrutiny.