Admins don’t need a raise

Kaler’s idea to give employees a raise should exclude top administrators.

Daily Editorial Board

University of Minnesota President Eric Kaler plans to give a pay raise of 2.5 percent to all University employees in his next budget. Kaler justifies the pay increase because employees haven’t had one for three years, but those at the top don’t need a raise.

During a time of consistently rising tuition, pricey textbooks and high costs of living, the trade-offs of giving top administrators a pay raise are too great. Administrators are already making too much money — a better move would be to reduce their outrageously high salaries in order to lower or keep our tuition level. Rank-and-file employees are the only ones who need the raise.

Kaler should be working as hard as he can to keep tuition from increasing. Students across the nation are feeling the stresses of student loan debt, which has now topped $1 trillion in the U.S., with Minnesotan graduates having the fourth-highest debt in the nation.

Employees with frozen wages have watched administrative salaries climb by leaps and bounds. The new provost got a 14 percent bump over her predecessor. Kaler’s own salary is 25 percent higher than former President Bob Bruininks’. Though the faces change, those positions’ salaries are increasing while other salaries are frozen, so the money systematically trickles up.

And yesterday’s letter to the editor “U denies democratic reform” shows how the Student Unions & Activities board and the All-Campus Elections Committee have been blocking Students for a Democratic Society’s referenda that would allow students to have more of a say in tuition and administrative expenses.

Rank-and-file employees should get a raise. Kaler and other high-level administrators don’t need one.

 

[Editor’s note: You can read a follow-up blog post here.]