SU chancellor warns of "substantial" workforce reduction, issues hiring freeze - WAFB 9 News Baton Rouge, Louisiana News, Weather, Sports

SU chancellor warns of "substantial" workforce reduction, issues hiring freeze

Dr. Kofi Lomotey Dr. Kofi Lomotey

BATON ROUGE, LA  (WAFB) - The chancellor of Southern University issues a hiring freeze on the Baton Rouge campus and warns of a "substantial reduction in the workforce" as the school attempts to meet mandated budget cuts.

BELOW IS A NEWS RELEASE ISSUED BY THE UNIVERSITY:

BATON ROUGE - Southern University Chancellor Dr. Kofi Lomotey issued a budget and hiring freeze today on the Baton Rouge campus and warned of "a substantial reduction in the workforce" as the school attempts to meet the budget cuts ordered by Gov. Bobby Jindal.

The Jindal administration has said that all of the state's higher education systems likely will face state general fund cuts of over $100 million to help deal with an anticipated $341 million shortfall in the state's current-year budget and a $2 billion shortfall for next year.

Calling these "hard times" in the nation and Louisiana, Lomotey said, "We are required to do our part to address this situation."

The budget reduction at Southern will amount to $3,995,423 or about 7.5 percent of the current fiscal year's budget. However, because this is the middle of the fiscal year, this amounts to a 15 percent cut, the chancellor said. The size of the cuts "necessitates our looking not only at personnel, but at non-personnel areas."

But to make the deep cuts necessary, "there will be a substantial reduction in the workforce at Southern University and A&M College," Lomotey said.

Here are some of the chancellor's other recommendations:

  • § Effective immediately, all expenditures on such things as travel, supplies, and equipment, must be approved by the provost or the vice chancellor for finance and administration
  • § Hiring of new employees will only be approved in extreme circumstances
  • § In only rare instances will overtime be approved.

"I am convinced that Southern will meet this challenge and emerge as strong as we are today - if not stronger," Lomotey said. "Moreover, I do not anticipate that we will alter our mission at all while we are involved in this necessary exercise."

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