MU OKs budget, salary increases

HUNTINGTON – The Board of Governors of Marshall University has approved the university’s operating budget for the fiscal year that begins July 1.

The $302 million budget includes a three percent across-the-board salary increase for faculty and staff, effective July 7.

Mark Robinson, senior vice president for finance/chief financial officer, presented the university’s proposed budget to the board, saying it includes projected state appropriations of $64 million and approximately $103 million from net tuition and fees.

Marshall University President Jerome A. Gilbert said the latest salary increases are necessary if the university is to continue to meet its obligations to provide excellent educational and support services to students.

He added, “Improving the pay at Marshall is one of my primary goals and a commitment I made when I came here two years ago. To recruit and retain the very best faculty and staff, we must pay competitive salaries. These latest increases are the first small step toward that goal.”

According to Michael McGuffey, senior vice president for institutional research, the State of West Virginia provided the university with enough funds—$1.473 million—for about a 1.46 percent raise. Marshall elected to add an additional 1.54 percent, or $1.537 million, to reach a total of three percent, including benefits.

The salary increase approved today is in addition to the two percent raise the board approved at its February meeting and that took effect March 3, bringing the total amount of across-the-board raises for university employees this year to five percent.

In other action today, the board approved an intent to plan for a master of medical science Physician Assistant program.

They also approved the results and recommendations of the annual review of the university’s academic programs, voting to continue 11 undergraduate degree programs, 12 graduate degree programs, one undergraduate certificate program and seven graduate certificate programs. They approved discontinuing two graduate certificate programs—the graduate certificates in Family Literacy and Superintendency—for lack of enrollment.

The board received the investment earnings update for the six months ending Feb. 28, 2018, and a report about the capital projects to be funded by EAST bonds provided through the West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission.

The East bond projects include installation of a second elevator in Old Main, as well as replacement of the building’s roof and repairs to gutters, eaves, dormers and the brick facade. The heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) system at the Marshall University Medical Center also will be replaced.