CSU Chancellor requests pay cut

by Ana Ceballos

Courtesy UC Riverside Office of Strategic Communications

Incoming California State University Chancellor Timothy P. White recently requested to have part of his state-funded salary reduced by 10 percent, which would add $41,500 to the CSU budget.

Amid budget constraints in the California educational sys- tem, CSU presidents and chancellors have been criticized for compensation policies, which increased executive pay while raising tuition and rejecting eli- gible students into universities. San Diego State President Elliot Hirshman is currently the highest paid president in the system. His salary is 2.4 percent less than White’s newly adjusted salary.

“By changing the dialogue on my compensation, I hope to send a clear signal to the public at large, elected officials, the business community and families: Public higher education matters to all of us, and that we each must play a part in the rebuilding effort,” White wrote in a letter to the CSU Board of Trustees.

White was supposed to receive the same annual salary as his predecessor Charles Reed: $421,500 plus a $30,000 supplement from CSU Foundation sources. White will still receive the $30,000, in addition to a $1,000 monthly vehicle allowance and free housing at a presidential estate, accord- ing to The Associated Press.

“I join the faculty, staff and students who have experienced cuts, salary freezes and increased fees, I too must do my part,” White said. “This is the basis of my request to reduce my own compensation to contribute to the rebuilding of this great university.”

According to CSU Media Relations Specialist Erik Fallis, the Board of Trustees does not have sole power to decrease executive pay for CSU presidents.

“Chancellor White acted on his own desire to show good leadership and recognition of the financial issues that the CSU is currently dealing with,” Fallis said. “Although the gesture is important, we shouldn’t over- play the importance of $41,500 in our state budget’s deficit, that money doesn’t change the chal- lenge.”

While White’s request was honored by the board, a few mem- bers disputed the request saying, “the chancellor is sufficiently underpaid when compared to people doing this kind of work throughout the country.”

White, who also took a pay cut as chancellor of University of California, Riverside, will as- sume his role as chancellor of the 23-university system on Dec. 31