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Regents Approve Faculty Contract Modification

Atlanta — May 12, 2009

The Board of Regents approved a plan today that gives University System of Georgia (USG) presidents the authority to furlough any and all employees, including faculty, should the need arise.

University System officials noted that there are no plans to furlough contract employees in the current fiscal year, which ends on June 30, 2009. The regents’ action provides presidents another tool that could be used in meeting any future budget reductions.

“This gives our presidents the flexibility to make furlough decisions for their respective institutions, if the state revenue situation continues to worsen,” said USG Chancellor Erroll B. Davis Jr.

Davis noted that the board’s action changes a situation in which one fourth of the University System’s approximately 40,000 employees are excluded by contract from furloughs, but these employees account for approximately one-half of all personnel costs.

“Currently our faculty cannot be furloughed because of legal contracts we sign with them on an annual basis,” Davis said. “The board’s action allows us to insert language into all faculty contracts that clearly outlines that furloughs are a possibility and to which the signer of a contract agrees.”

The specific contract language approved by the regents is: “Notwithstanding any other provision of this contract, for Fiscal Year 2009-2010, the Board of Regents has authorized the president to implement a mandatory furlough program requiring employees to take not more than 10 days of unpaid annual leave. In the event it becomes necessary for the president to exercise this authority, employee furloughs will be implemented in accordance with guidelines promulgated by the Office of the Chancellor.”

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