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Cal State trustees approve pay increases for incoming presidents

July 17, 2012 |  1:01 pm

This post has been corrected. See note at the bottom for details.

 A committee of the California State University Board of Trustees on Tuesday approved pay raises for several incoming campus presidents despite criticism from some students and faculty that the money would be better spent on academic programs.

The salary packages for four incoming and three interim executives were the first under a new policy that freezes state-funded pay but allows individual campus foundations to supplement compensation up to 10%.

New Cal State Northridge President Dianne F. Harrison will receive $324,500, including $29,000 from the campus foundation; incoming Cal State San Bernardino President Tomas D. Morales will receive $319,000, including $29,000 from the campus foundation; Leslie D. Wong, incoming president of San Francisco State, will receive $325,000 including $26,251 from the campus foundation. Retired Admiral Thomas A. Cropper, the new president of the California Maritime Academy, will receive $250,000 with no extra foundation support.
 
Chancellor Charles B. Reed said that funds would be raised specifically for the salary supplements and that no foundation funds would be diverted from student scholarships.

Only student trustee Jillian Ruddell opposed the action of the Committee on University and Faculty Personnel.

Outside of the meeting in Long Beach, students and members of the California Faculty Assn. gathered with picket signs that read "Presidential Perks -- Misplaced Priorities."

"The raises are not justified," said Matthew Delgado, 20, a photo journalism and English major at Cal State Northridge.

Budget cuts have made it almost impossible to find classes needed for his major, Delgado said. "All of the money for presidential perks should go towards classes and better teacher pay."

The action on the salary packages came as trustees were also set to discuss possible tuition hikes, enrollment reductions and other severe budget options should voters fail to pass Gov. Jerry Brown's tax measure on the November ballot.

Failure of the initiative would trigger a $250-million mid-year funding cut for CSU.

[For the Record, 7:19 p.m. July 17: An earlier version of this post said that the California State University Board of Trustees approved pay raises for several incoming campus presidents. The post should have said that the board's Committee on University and Faculty Personnel approved the pay raises.]

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--Carla Rivera

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