More staff reductions are to come at the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences, including tenured or tenure-track faculty, several sources tell the Arkansas Times. The information from these sources has proved correct in the past, so there’s reason to believe in the accuracy of what they say.
The new reductions come on top of UAMS’ reduction in force of 600 positions and 258 employees on Monday.
According to one source, as many as 45 such faculty members face layoffs once UAMS lawyers work out the terms under which they may be let go. The notifications could come in two-to-four weeks and could be followed by a further reduction in force in the new fiscal year.
Another source said a faculty meeting at Arkansas Children’s Hospital reduced some staff to tears, and that police escorts out of the building added insult to injury. Reductions there are said to include pediatric biostatisticians, grants accountants, and laboratory technicians at the Arkansas Children’s Hospital Research Institute.
And as with Dean of the College of Medicine Pope Moseley, whose $600,000 contract allows him to spend months abroad in
Sweden Denmark, new questions have arisen about the arrangement that allows Dr. Gareth Morgan, director of the Myeloma Institute, and his wife colleague Dr. Faith Davies, to work abroad, in the U.K. Morgan is paid $878,886, according to online data from the state Department of Finance Administration, and Davies $410,000.
The newly hired chancellor, Dr. Cam Patterson, who will begin work in June, is being paid $1.2 million in salary and deferred compensation, or about $300,000 more than former Chancellor Dan Rahn. UAMS has not yet provided information on the salary breakdown nor how much of that sum comes from private donations, though it has said a portion is being paid with private dollars.
We’ve asked for comment from UAMS and confirmation on the salary figures.
UPDATE: UAMS spokeswoman Leslie Taylor said the UA System, and not UAMS, has the information on Patterson’s pay breakdown. UA System spokesman Nate Hinkel said the package is still being finalized.
Taylor also confirmed the pay of Drs. Morgan and Davies, but said there was no contractual arrangement with them for travel.
She also sent this response to the fears of future layoffs:
This is a very difficult, stressful time for everyone. We normally do not comment on rumors, however, I will tell you that Chancellor Gardner said when talking to employees following Monday’s announcement that she hopes we never have to go through another major reduction in force likes this again. As part of the process to address our financial challenges, senior leadership is continuing to look for other ways to increase revenue and create efficiencies. At a health sciences university like UAMS, changes happen all the time. Funding and grants run out, programs end and people leave for various reasons. I’m sure that will continue.
As far as your question regarding legal and tenured faculty. In discussions of our budget shortfalls and after the review began of all areas of UAMS, Dr. Gardner said repeatedly that “everything was on the table.” She said that to employees in presentations and a Town Hall meeting, and she said that in multiple interviews with you and other media. Consequently, our legal department was asked by some areas for advice on what to do if those cuts affected faculty. As you know, tenured and tenured track faculty have very different constraints with regard to their release under University of Arkansas Board policies, 405.1, 602.1 and 405.5. Legal has simply provided advice when asked.