Skip to Navigation
University of Pittsburgh
Print This Page Print this pages

July 26, 2012

Trustees approve 3% salary pool increase

Pitt’s Board of Trustees has included a 3 percent salary increase pool as part of $1.94 billion fiscal year 2013 operating budget approved July 13 by the board’s executive committee.

In a University Update issued the same day, Chancellor Mark A. Nordenberg stated, “We expect that salary pool to be competitive with the levels of increase provided by other universities, though it obviously is not large enough to make up for increases forgone in recent years.”

The chancellor announced the salary pool distribution: 1.5 percent for salary maintenance for employees whose work has been assessed as satisfactory; 1 percent for merit, market and equity adjustments at the unit level, and 0.5 percent to be distributed by senior officers to address imbalances that exist between the various units that report to them.

Nordenberg stated, “It is particularly important that this year’s salary pool include the measure of flexibility provided by that last distribution component because we know that both the Voluntary Early Retirement Program and recent limitations on salary increases have created differential impacts across the units of the University.”

He added, “The faculty and staff of the University obviously have played a major role in crafting Pitt’s remarkable record of progress. They have made significant salary sacrifices in recent years and will be moving forward with substantially reduced numbers in the year ahead. This year’s salary-increase pool, while not overly generous, does at least reflect the fact that, at Pitt, our people are a high priority.”

As is typical, the salary increases will appear in September paychecks, and will be retroactive to July 1, confirmed John Fedele, associate director of News.

Faculty and staff reactions

John J. Baker, chair of the University Senate budget policies committee, expressed appreciation that the Pitt administration, despite budget limitations, made it a priority to provide modest pay increases for faculty and staff.

“Faculty and staff greatly appreciate the 3 percent salary pool increase this year, given the difficult funding choices Pitt’s administration had to make due to flat funding from the state, the limited tuition increase that could be imposed, and the hostile attitude of some state legislators to giving pay raises for faculty,” Baker said. “Faculty pay at research universities is widely misunderstood by the public and state legislators, especially in Pennsylvania. The public only looks at the salaries of the highest paid faculty and assumes all faculty are highly paid. Most faculty at Pitt are not highly paid, especially faculty in the lowest ranks. In fact, we are near the bottom of the pay scale for AAU universities at the lower faculty ranks.”

Baker added: “To stay competitive with other AAU universities, Pitt needs to bring its faculty salaries up at all levels. To its credit, Pitt’s administration understands this and is trying to do it, but it is a difficult goal given the low level of support Pitt has received from the state in recent years.”

Thomas Smitherman, University Senate president, expressed his agreement with Baker’s reaction and offered no additional comments.

J.P. Matychak, Staff Association Council vice president of steering, told the University Times that SAC officers were pleased to see the salary pool increase in the FY13 budget. “While the increase is not at the level that many would have liked to see it, including the chancellor in his statement, we were encouraged by the continued support of and commitment to the staff of the University of Pittsburgh. The salary increase was a recognition of the hard work of the staff over the past year and an acknowledgement of the challenges that we all face with an unsettled economic climate and reduced staff levels from the Voluntary Early Retirement Program. We will continue to work with the administration and our colleagues to meet those challenges.”

—Kimberly K. Barlow

Leave a Reply