Update from Chancellor Telfer regarding furloughs
Please see the long description for an update regarding furloughs
TO: UW-Whitewater Faculty and Staff
FROM: Richard Telfer, Chancellor
Bill Widen, Director, Human Resources and Diversity
DATE: July 6, 2009
On Friday, July 3rd, a message from UW System President Kevin Reilly was forwarded to you. That message indicated that the UW System furlough plan had been approved. That message contained important information about requirements and procedures for furloughs. President Reilly’s message and other related information may be found at Furloughs. We would like to update you on the implementation of furloughs at UW-Whitewater.
First, the approved UW System plan requires that each campus be closed the day after Thanksgiving (November 27, 2009 and November 26, 2010). Our campus will be closed that day. The UW System plan also requires that we designate three additional campus-wide furlough days each year. On Wednesday, July 1st, I invited division heads, deans, representatives from the Faculty Senate, representatives from the Academic Staff Assembly, and representatives from the classified unions to attend a meeting to discuss possible campus-wide furlough days. Those who were able to attend discussed possible dates for 2009-2010 and for 2010-2011. The following dates were identified for 2009-2010: August 21, 2009, December 23, 2009, and April 2, 2010. The following dates were identified for 2010-2011: August 20, 2010, December 23, 2010, and April 22, 2011. A request has been sent to UW System for approval of these dates. If approved, these dates would include four all-campus days for 12-month employees, only three of which will apply to 9-month employees (August 21, 2009 and August 20, 2010 would apply to 12-month employees only. Please note: for each of these days we recognize that there will need to be exceptions.
Second, each full time 12-month employee will select four additional days with the approval of his/her supervisor. Each full time 9-month employee will select three additional days with the approval of her/his supervisor.
Third, in general, employees have been divided into two groups: Those who have 3.065% of their pay taken out of each paycheck and those who have pay deducted as furlough days are taken. Human Resources and Diversity will be sending you information indicating the group to which you have been assigned. Then, HR&D will be holding information sessions for each group, to go over procedures for that group.
Fourth, the approved UW System plan does not allow faculty and instructional academic staff to take furloughs that conflict with direct instructional duties. Furloughs may be taken on days with no direct instructional duties, or, since they may be taken in 4-hour units, taken as half days during the non-instructional portions of days on which there are instructional duties.
Fifth, the Office of State Employee Relations (OSER) is in dialog with the various unions that represent employees throughout UW System. Once agreements are concluded between the unions and OSER, represented employees will be informed of the specifics in terms of how the furlough plan will be addressed and implemented for them.
Sixth, we have not been given an official start date when furlough days may be taken. We hope to have that shortly. We have also not been given specifics as to how furlough days that are taken will be recorded.
We appreciate your patience in this difficult time. As additional implementation details are released, we will communicate these details to you.