June 14, 2010

To:  All UMB Faculty and Staff

Dear Colleagues:

As you are aware from my earlier message to you, all State agencies, including the University of Maryland, Baltimore, are required to institute temporary salary reductions or furlough plans for FY 2011. As we did last year, we have chosen to use temporary salary reductions with paid administrative leave rather than furloughs in order to enhance flexibility and facilitate application and operation of the process.  In approving our plan, Chancellor Kirwan asked me to convey his appreciation to you for your understanding and cooperation during these continuing difficult economic times. I join him in his appreciation and I am deeply grateful for your support in what has certainly been a very difficult experience for all of us.

Our plan, which will begin on July 4, 2010, is similar to the plan we used in FY 2010; however, there are some important differences that benefit most of our employees.  These are described below. 

We will again use a tiered plan, based on salary level, where those earning lower salaries will take proportionately less temporary salary reductions than those whose salaries are higher.  We will also continue to exempt certain employee categories as specifically identified in the plan.  The plan is described in detail in the attachment.

The differences are as follows:

  1. Last year, employees whose sponsored grants covered at least 90% of their salaries were exempt.  This year, that exemption is extended to anyone whose salary, as of June 5, 2010, is covered 80% or more from sponsored research.

  2. Last year, all employees included in the plan were required to take at least two days of administrative leave, those days were December 23 and 24.  This year, included employees will be required to take at least one administrative leave day -- December 23 -- when the campus will be closed.

  3. Last year, deductions were taken over 20 pay periods; this year we plan to take these deductions over 26 pay periods, so most employees will see a net increase in take-home pay, compared to the prior year.

  4. Last year, the maximum salary reduction of 3.8% began at a salary level of $120,000.  This year, the plan has included a new category of employees earning $200,000 or more.  These employees will see temporary salary reductions of 5%.  This new category allows us to mitigate the effects of the reduction.  Thus, employees earning less than $120,000 will see a decrease in their percentage of salary reduction; those between $120,000 and $199,999 will see no change from the prior year.

Our detailed UMB FY 2011 Temporary Salary Reduction Plan together with a set of Frequently Asked Questions can be found at http://www.umaryland.edu/president/TSR

I recognize that our employees have had no merit increases or COLA for the past two years, and will now experience temporary salary reductions for the third year in a row.  The national and state economies have been hurt by the recession and are only now beginning to recover. We look forward to a better prognosis in the future.

As I have stated in the past, we must remain positive and consider ourselves fortunate when compared with the experience of other institutions or the general public.  I urge us all to continue to do what we can to keep our collective spirits up and remain positive and relentless in our mission-driven pursuit of excellence, despite these difficult times.  Our university is strong and expanding; working together we will persevere and indeed prevail.

Sincerely yours,  

E. Albert Reece, MD, PhD, MBA
Acting President, University of Maryland, Baltimore
John Z. and Akiko K. Bowers Distinguished Professor and
Dean, University of Maryland School of Medicine