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YSU chief asks colleagues to take voluntary furloughs

Published: Fri, October 21, 2011 @ 12:08 a.m.

By Denise Dick



Youngstown State University President Cynthia E. Anderson and her cabinet have agreed to take six unpaid furlough days this year and want other supervisory employees to do the same.

“We are now asking all 220 professional/administrative exempt employees to follow our lead and to voluntarily make a similar sacrifice,” Anderson wrote in a memo to the employees.

Adherence to the request is voluntary, said Ron Cole, university spokesman, because the affected employees have contracts that began July 1, 2011.

The request is being made as the university faces a projected $7 million deficit. The university negotiated contracts with the unions representing faculty and classified employees that include concessions.

“We plan to ask for similar concessions from the other unionized employees on campus,” Anderson’s memo says. “The sacrifices needed to meet these budgetary challenges will be shared across the university.”

Cole said the supervisors may choose to take unpaid furlough days, forfeit vacation, make a monetary contribution to the university or some combination.

“If you do not think you can sacrifice the minimum six days at this time, please consider a lesser number that may be more suitable to your situation,” Anderson’s memo says. “On the other hand, if you feel you can give more, I encourage you to do so. Let me reiterate that this is completely voluntary.”

Those willing to take the measures have until today to complete a form and submit it to their supervisors. Cole expects to know how many people will give back a portion of their pay by early next month.

Though the furloughs are voluntary this fiscal year, Anderson’s memo says it’s possible mandatory furloughs will be implemented next year.

“These are difficult measures that reflect difficult times,” she wrote.


1db(280 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

So YSU's $7,000,000 (million) in the hole and the boss is begging union workers to take a few unpaid days off. Can't simply do what is necessary for survival because of the union contract. Another example of the union killing the company??

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2gfpalmer(16 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

Read the article. The voluntary austerity program is only for exempt administrative staff, i.e., nonunion. Faculty and staff already made huge concessions in contracts. Personally, I find it the YSU leadership mostly laughable and sometimes unconscionable. At any rate, read the article before you comment.

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3Spiderlegs(153 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

Other academic institutions using furloughs have made them mandatory, so I think the board should get tough on administrators given the willingness of faculty and staff to make concessions. However, it is good to see that Anderson is willing to lead by example.

It would be good to keep things in perspective. We are probably overstating the extent of the financial crisis at YSU. The $7 million is a projected deficit, not an actual one--the money has not been spent yet so there is no "hole." As many schools have discovered, a few relatively small changes or delay of major projects could substantially alleviate the crisis. There are many public universities across the country that have it worse right now. YSU takes pride in the fact that its tuition costs are lower than most public universities in Ohio, and the efforts of the university community to keep costs down seem unappreciated here.

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4charms(228 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

Cynthia Anderson is a good president. I commend her!

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5howardinyoungstown(591 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

It would have been more commendable and made the contract negotiations easier if she and her cabinet had done this before forcing the union to walk out!

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6doubled(210 comments)posted 3 years, 10 months ago

So Anderson and her non-union aministrative staff take a few unpaid days during the year and a lot of people here say that they should be commended....The faculty union takes major concessions in their contract, as well as thousands of other public employees taking unpaid days over the last three years, saving the state and counnties a billion dollars, but you still want blood from them...you're so messed up in the head that you can't even acknowledge that for someone making 15 an hour, losing 10 paid days per year actually matters to them and their family. So, is that how it works for you people? The same people on here that can't get enough blood from middle class public employees never mention a word about kasich giving 25% raises to HIMSELF and a couple other hundred state administrators...You never mention ONE WORD about the fact that SB5 doesn't apply to our elected "leaders"-- just the people that do all the work... So to you, I can only say that you are cowards and hypocrites....what's wrong with you is wrong all the way through and obviously nothing will change (or fix) that character defect. Good luck -- let's hope you get what you deserve.

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