The Times West Virginian

Headline News

January 13, 2014

W.Va. higher ed panel says salary survey unusable

WHEELING — A consultant’s survey of higher education employees’ salaries in West Virginia that was to be used to set new pay schedules is incomplete and unusable, a West Virginia Higher Education Policy Commission spokeswoman said.

The commission hired Minneapolis-based Fox Lawson & Associates to conduct the survey of salaries for college and university classified and non-classified employees and faculty. A 2011 state law, Senate Bill 330, requires the commission to update the salary structure, which has not been updated since 2001.

Fox Lawson provided salary surveys for 98 classified positions and also two- and four-year faculty that “are not usable because Fox Lawson did not create unique peer groups for each of our institutions as required by SB 330,” Tice told the Sunday News-Register (http://bit.ly/1cSpgOQ ).

“The faculty salary data Fox Lawson has produced does not differentiate between, for example, (West Virginia University’s) peers and any other West Virginia school’s peers,” Tice told the newspaper. “The need to create unique peer groups for each of our institutions was an explicit element of the contract. Without the ability to distinguish between the faculty and non-classified salaries paid to the statutory peers for each of West Virginia’s separate higher education institutions — as opposed to salaries paid by an amalgam of all of the public higher education institutions in West Virginia — the information Fox Lawson provided simply does not satisfy the requirements of SB 330.”

An after-hours call to Fox Lawson’s Minneapolis office wasn’t immediately returned Sunday.

“Other elements of the report are incomplete as well,” Tice said. “As a result, (human resources) staff at the commission are working with the classified portion of the survey results provided to determine whether the 98 ... positions selected by Fox Lawson are appropriate to establish a new classified salary schedule.”

The commission has hired another consultant, Mercer Consulting, to assist in revising Fox Lawson’s classified data.

“... We are working with Mercer Consulting in an effort to have them review and to assess the results of Fox Lawson’s work to determine whether it meets established professional standards and methodologies. In addition, we are hoping Mercer will be able ... to update the classified salary survey numbers to 2013 figures since Fox Lawson’s work is based on 2012 data,” she said. “With updated, validated classified salary data, we will be in a position to revise the classified salary schedule.”

Fox Lawson has been paid almost $200,000 for the salary survey to date, she said.

“There are three primary components to SB 330: compensation, HR studies and reporting,” she said. “The compensation elements of SB 330 are likely to take the longest to implement because they require that we engage an outside consultant to conduct the market studies. The HR studies element of SB 330 is ongoing. Some studies required by the law, such as how to treat grant-funded employees, may require legislative action before any recommendations can be implemented. Finally, the reporting requirements of SB 330 are recurring in nature and will be a permanent part of the HR duties of the commission.”

Roy Nutter, a professor at West Virginia University, opposes the law and its implementation. He said employees from all three classifications, along with human resources representatives, have been working hard to shed light on the matter.

“It appears we are making some progress in raising the caution flags here,” he said in reference to the report.

1
Text Only
Headline News
  • Solemn tributes mark Boston Marathon bombing anniversary

    Survivors, first responders and relatives of those killed in the Boston Marathon bombing marked the anniversary Tuesday with tributes that combined sorrow over the loss of innocent victims with pride over the city’s resilience in the face of a terror attack.

    April 16, 2014

  • Questions linger year after Boston Marathon bombs

    A surveillance video shows a man prosecutors say is Dzhokhar Tsarnaev placing a bomb near the finish line of the Boston Marathon, just yards from where an 8-year-old boy was killed when it exploded.

    April 15, 2014

  • Little sign of progress as Obama, Putin speak

    Speaking for the first time in more than two weeks, President Barack Obama and Russian President Vladimir Putin showed little sign of agreement Monday, with the U.S. leader urging pro-Russian forces to de-escalate the situation in eastern Ukraine and Putin denying that Moscow was interfering in the region.

    April 15, 2014

  • 3 dead after suburban Kansas City shooting

    A man opened fire outside a Jewish community center on Sunday, killing two people before driving over to a retirement community a few blocks away and killing someone else, authorities said.

    April 14, 2014

  • Couple: Truck was on fire before deadly bus crash

    A couple said a FedEx tractor-trailer was already on fire when it careened across a median, sideswiped their car and slammed into a bus carrying high school students, adding a new twist to the investigation of a crash that killed 10 people.
    Initial reports by police indicated the truck swerved to avoid a sedan that was traveling in the same direction in this town about 100 miles north of Sacramento, then went across the median. There was no mention of the truck being on fire.

    April 13, 2014

  • ‘Obamacare’ under attack as conservatives eye 2016

    Republicans eyeing the 2016 White House race battered President Barack Obama’s health care law and nicked each other Saturday, auditioning before a high-profile gathering of conservatives that some political veterans said marked the campaign’s unofficial start.

    April 13, 2014

  • Finance officials: Global economy turns the corner

    The world’s top finance officials expressed confidence Saturday that the global economy finally has turned the corner to stronger growth. This time, they may be right.
    Despite challenges that include market jitters about the Federal Reserve’s bond-buying slowdown and global tensions over Ukraine, policymakers said they believe there is a foundation for sustained growth that can provide jobs for the millions of people still looking for work five years after the worst recession since the Great Depression of the 1930s.

    April 13, 2014

  • There’s a new ‘face,’ but old problems for health care law

    Abruptly on the spot as the new face of “Obamacare,” Sylvia Mathews Burwell faces steep challenges, both logistical and political.
    Burwell, until now White House budget director, was named by President Barack Obama on Friday to replace Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, who oversaw the messy rollout of the health care overhaul.

    April 12, 2014

  • Australia leader confident sounds are from Flight 370

    With the Malaysian jetliner mystery now five weeks old, officials have narrowed the search zone for the missing plane and are “very confident” the underwater signals they have heard are from its black box, Australia’s prime minister said Friday.
    At the same time, however, those electronic signals are fading, Tony Abbott added.

    April 12, 2014

  • Dreams dashed in fatal bus crash

    It was a busload of opportunity: young, low-income, motivated students, destined to become the first in their families to go to college, journeying from the concrete sprawl of Los Angeles to a remote redwood campus 650 miles north.
    Those dreams shattered for some Thursday in an explosive freeway collision that left 10 dead — students, chaperones and both drivers — and dozens hospitalized.

    April 12, 2014

House Ads
Featured Ads