WSU layoffs, budget cuts details coming next week

Wright State University employees will find out next week how many of their fellow staff members will be laid off next week, the school’s interim president said in a campus email Friday.

Layoff notices won’t be given to specific employees until the week of June 12, Interim WSU president Curtis McCray said. Details about operational changes also will become available next Friday when McCray gives his budget proposal to the board of trustees.

The university may also change a policy for how WSU reduces its workforce of classified employees who are not part of a union, according to the email. The school has said it could lay off between 80 and 120 people to save between $6 million and $8 million.

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If a non-union classified staff member is laid off, he or she would no longer be able to bump someone with less seniority from a job at WSU. Instead, the laid of staff would have three options, according to the proposal.

Laid off staff would be able to choose an involuntary separation option of one week per completed year of service to a maximum of 24 weeks, according to the proposal. Laid off staff would also be able to accept a vacant position in the same job classification or accept being laid off and be placed on a recall list for jobs for one year, according to the proposal.

The policy change would have to be approved by Wright State’s board of trustees before it could be implemented. Around 253 classified staff, also known as hourly staff, would be impacted by a change in policy, said spokesman Seth Bauguess.

The potential changes for non-union hourly staff come as WSU shortened the notice period for laid off unclassified staff from being a maximum of one year down to a max of 24 weeks. The notice period change came in March and could affect around 1,000 as layoffs loom.

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Wright State must slash $25 million from its next budget in order to regain its financial footing. The university is also aiming to boost its reserves by $5 million as most of the reserve fund has been depleted by years of overspending.

McCray said he’s confident they will meet the targeted amount of money for budget cuts, he said in the email.

“Getting there has taken serious reductions in the ongoing activities of the university, with direct changes to personnel and operations, McCray said in the email.

The total budget cuts the university needs to make amounts to less than 10 percent of its total operation, McCray said in the email.

“While this has been a tough and traumatic time for the university, and persons have been hurt, these current reductions in the budget amount to less than 10 percent of our operation,” McCray said in the email. “Our mission and our commitment to it remains.”

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