Kaler's Staff Recommendation: End Special Leaves At U of Minnesota

Wednesday, May 16, 2012

Paid leaves tailored for University of Minnesota executives would end under a recommendation made Monday by President Eric Kaler's staff.

So-called "administrative transitional leaves" ought to be eliminated, two of his lead staffers told a Board of Regents committee. Instead, administrators returning to the faculty could take traditional sabbaticals, less generous in pay and length.

A special regents committee will weigh that and other policy changes as it completes its work this month. The committee on executive compensation and leaves was formed after the Star Tribune reported that past U President Robert Bruininks regularly granted his departing executives lengthy paid leaves at their administrative salaries. The report also found that Bruininks repeatedly waived a university policy that executives repay their stipends if they leave the U.

Such exceptions would need regents' approval under proposals being considered by the regents committee. Amy Phenix, Kaler's chief of staff, told the committee that she believes such exceptions were a big reason behind the public outcry.

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