Faculty Senate Debates Motions on Salary Issues

Posted: October 19, 2006 at 1:00 am, Last Updated: November 30, -0001 at 12:00 am

By Robin Herron

At its monthly meeting on Wednesday, the Faculty Senate debated various motions proposed by the Ad Hoc Task Force on Salary Issues, eventually voting in favor of six of them. In addition, Thomas Hennessey, chief of staff to President Alan Merten, gave a report on another taskforce examining how the university manages its public space.

The salary-related motions, which will be referred to the president, the rector of the Board of Visitors and the provost “for their consideration” included one urging that that the university make “significantly improving instructional faculty salaries in relationship to relevant benchmarks” the university’s highest budget priority over the next five years.

To that end, other motions dealt with developing plans to improve faculty salaries and reporting progress made back to the senate. A motion regarding salaries of academic administrators that already meet or surpass the benchmark was referred back to the task force for further consideration. The senate also authorized the task force to continue its work until it is completed.

Hennessey reported on the work of a task force established last fall to review existing policies relating to managing public spaces and identify new ones that are needed. The major finding of the task force was that “Some policies retain ambiguous wording that could result in misinterpretations and misapplications of these policies. In addition, there are inconsistencies between certain policies that could frustrate efforts to ensure that the associated monitoring and enforcement procedures are uniformly applied in fair and equitable ways.”

The complete report is available online. Comments and suggestions on the report or on policies that need to be revised or added should be directed to Hennessey at thenness@gmu.edu or Suzanne Slayden, chair of the Faculty Senate, at sslayden@gmu.edu for further consideration. The goal is to finalize revisions in policies by the spring 2007 semester, Hennessey said.

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