UPDATE: University, Morning Sun clash over Wilbur's statements on continuing senior officer salary freeze

The Morning Sun published a story last Sunday which stated there would be a salary freeze on senior officers and other non-unionized workers.

Central Michigan University sent out an email clarification Friday to faculty and staff in response to that article, which said no decision had been made in reference to senior officer and non-unionized worker pay for the 2011-12 fiscal year.

In an interview Tuesday with Central Michigan Life,  Kathy Wilbur, vice president of Development and External Relations, said to verify with Barrie Wilkes, associate vice president of Financial Services and Reporting and university controller, but the salary freeze was indeed likely.

“I think it’s going to be the case, I’m not the one who makes the decision, (but there has) certainly been discussion about it,” Wilbur said.

Calls to Wilkes since Tuesday have not been returned.

The clarification sent by the university said the Morning Sun misquoted Wilbur in the Sunday article. The Morning Sun responded by publishing an audio clip in which Wilbur was recorded as saying senior officers and other non-union employees would see the freeze.

“You’re going to see no salary increases for senior officers, and some of those other groups that aren’t represented in a union,” she said in the clip.

Senior officers and several other employee groups did have their salaries frozen in the current fiscal year.

Renee Walker, associate vice president of University Communications, said in an email to the Morning Sun Wilbur was only referring to information presented at a university forum in April, and that the clarification was still appropriate.

In an email, Steve Smith, director of public relations, said Wilbur said the potential freezes were under consideration but no decision has been made.

"Once a decision is made we will communicate directly with our employees," Smith said.

Tim Connors, president of the Faculty Association and Communication and Dramatic Arts faculty member, was also quoted in the Morning Sun's original story and said the university had taken on debts due to the university's self-funded insurance program, which was also refuted in the Friday email, calling the statement "erroneous."

"CMU's self insurance program is very successful," the email said.

Connors said he had no comment on the university's message.





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