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The California State University system and California Faculty Association compromised on a pay deal last week, giving teachers a 10.5% general salary increase throughout the next three years.

The news has made campus leaders, such as California State University, Long Beach, president Jane Close Conoley, happy, she said — even though there could be a price to pay.

“We’re very excited about it,” Close Conoley said. “It’s all good. We found a way to value our faculty.”

She also said she was glad there would be no strike.

“We understood the need to get our faculty salaries more competitive… Attracting faculty and keeping them,” Close Conoley said.

However, the salary increase could mean cuts in other areas at CSULB, she said. She and other campus officials have begun looking at ways to come up with 1% of the increase by July 1, she added.

In the agreement, faculty will receive their first increase, 5%, on June 30, followed by a 2% hike on July 1 (the new fiscal year starts on July 1) and 3.5% on July 1, 2017. Two percent of the initial increase was already budgeted and not paid due to the salary negotiations. Another 2% was budgeted for next year. But that leaves 1%, which must come from the campuses as it stands now, Close Conoley said.

So Close Conoley said about $2.3 million of CSULB’s general funds must be redirected if no additional state money is received by July 1. The campus’s total general fund is about $350 million, she said, not including auxiliaries, such as housing and student fees.

“The biggest pain will be felt by the faculty and staff,” Close Conoley said.

Faculty who retire wouldn’t be replaced, she said.

And other programs, such as the Math Collaborative — meant to increase mathematic achievement and college-going rates of African American youth in Long Beach Unified School District — wouldn’t receive its requested additional staff member, she said.

An equity plan, which would enable CSULB to hire more faculty campus-wide, also would be off the table, she added.

But, it’s early, Terri Carbaugh, CSULB associate vice president of legislative and external relations, said.

“It’s too soon to know how the campus will come up with the money,” Carbaugh said. “But we do know the campus has to come up with 1%. We have to turn our focus on that now.”

Carbaugh added the state could provide additional revenue by the time the first checks are cut. In the agreement, the CSU and CFA agreed to ask the state for additional money, but when or how that will occur is unknown.

“We need some time to see what this will look like, but the process has been set into motion,” Carbaugh said.

Emily Thornton can be reached at ethornton@gazettes.com.

Editor's note: This story has been updated from its original version.


Emily is a staff writer covering higher education and other various topics for Gazette Newspapers. She has a background in weekly and daily newspapers and a bachelor’s in communication from La Sierra University.

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