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Washington State University
Faculty Senate Voluntary Salary Reduction

Voluntary Salary Reduction – Background and Impact

Faculty Senate Guiding Principles for Voluntary and Temporary Salary Reductions

The Faculty Senate of Washington State University recognizes that we are facing a severe financial crisis with proportional impacts to our research and teaching missions, particularly disproportionate job loss among our career-track faculty and AP staff. The Faculty Manual offers very limited policy concerning faculty employment during a crisis such as the one we currently face. No flexibility is given beyond language concerning financial exigency in Section III.E.3.a, and this only considers the termination of tenured faculty during a financial crisis. Amending the Faculty Manual to address such shortcomings using a fair, established, and open process through the Faculty Senate is a longer-term goal, but the acute nature of this crisis requires a more immediate and flexible initiative from the faculty at large.

In the spirit of Cougs helping Cougs, we support allowing faculty to participate in a voluntary and temporary salary reduction program designed to help preserve jobs. This initiative would allow faculty to help share the burden with all other WSU community members. Because such a program requires a trust relationship between faculty and administration, we have outlined several guiding principles that will serve as the cornerstone of this effort.

Voluntary and Temporary Salary Reductions Would Follow these Principles:

  • Faculty members earning less than $63,000/academic year will not be asked to participate.
  • Temporary salary reductions will be for a maximum of one year; after this point, the full salary would be restored unless participating faculty members elect to continue the reduction.
  • Funds saved from these temporary reductions will be returned to the faculty member’s college or campus to be used to directly support jobs associated with the academic mission in their college or at their campus.
  • Some faculty receive Additional Duties and Responsibility (ADR) salary. Temporary ADR return can be used in place of or in addition to a temporary salary reduction.
  • We encourage faculty to not disclose their decision to participate.
  • Voluntary and temporary salary reductions will not change a faculty member’s position, FTE, or duties.

Transparency underpins this plan. Therefore, we will work with the budget office to map monies saved through faculty members’ temporary salary reductions to the overall budget. In addition, we will create a public-facing dashboard that details aggregated contributions from these reductions.

The following dashboard provides an impact analysis based on participation at four salary bands and a proposed minimum % decrease. These bands and percentages are the same as those used for mandatory AP staff furlough calculations. Voluntary faculty salary reductions can be at any amount. The sliders show percentage participation within a band and the impact on overall savings.

Impact Analysis

The following dashboard considers all faculty regardless of track. The column labeled “Salary Base (GF-State)” is based on all academic appointments (9, 10, 11, and 12 months).

Salary Calculator

Participation Form

[coming from MyWSU]

Link to draft letter