Bending to critics' concerns of runaway executive pay, California State University trustees voted Wednesday to limit salaries for new campus presidents and to consider economic realities before making salary offers.
The new policy, approved unanimously by the trustees in Long Beach, caps a president's base pay at 10 percent over what the prior president earned, with the money coming from the state's general fund. The salaries could be augmented with private money.
The trustees had expected to approve a plan with no cap. Presidential salary decisions would have been based automatically on the average salary of presidents at selected groups of other schools - almost all earning more than those at CSU.
But the idea of offering presidents lucrative salaries based on what other universities pay instead of what CSU could afford, angered some lawmakers at a time when the university has tried to bridge deep cuts in state funding by raising tuition and laying off instructors.