Employees should see the adjustments Sept. 1.
By Wally Perez
Alamo Colleges trustees unanimously approved a pay raise for full-time and adjunct faculty, full-time and part-time staff, and administrators during a regular board meeting Tuesday in Killen.
The last compensation increase occurred Jan. 1, 2015. The new one will take effect Sept. 1.
Linda Boyer-Owens, associate vice chancellor of human resources, said during a presentation that a 7.1 percent compensation adjustment (an average annual increase of $4,303) is needed for full-time regular faculty, which is about 752 employees, and a 2.3 percent increase (an average annual increase of $356) is needed for adjunct faculty, an estimated 1,500 employees.
An estimated 1,789 full-time staff will see a 4.9 percent salary adjustment (an average annual increase of $2,131); 689 part-time staff will receive a 2.6 percent adjustment (an average annual increase of $350); 50 senior technology professionals and managers will see a 10 percent adjustment (an average annual increase of $7,137) and 51 administrators will see a 4.8 percent adjustment (an average annual increase of $6,684).
Boyer-Owens said the percentages of the increases will differ depending on where employees fall within the pay range for their position.
“If they are very low in the pay range, they may be issued a 6 percent adjustment; if they are above the midpoint they would receive a 4 percent adjustment,” Boyer-Owens said. “Employees who are over the max would receive a 1 percent, one-time bonus payment in recognition of their contributions.”
There are about 60 employees who would meet the one-time bonus criteria, she said.
Full-time staff are employees who are not faculty, such as advisers, clerical support staff, facilities, groundskeepers, Boyer-Owens said.
According to the minute order the board approved, “the adjustments are designed to maintain faculty compensation at the adopted ‘threeness’ target-level among our large college peer group.”
It also is meant to keep staff and administrator compensation competitive.
“Threeness” is a market position target trustees approved in the 2013 fiscal year, which aims for faculty compensation to equal the third highest salary among the Alamo College’ eight Texas community college peers.
These peers are Austin, Dallas County, Tarrant County, Lone Star, Houston, San Jacinto and El Paso community colleges or districts.
There was no compensation adjustment for the 2015-16 fiscal year, but slight adjustments were made for some staff, Boyer-Owens said.
“Last year, we did a tiny adjustment to about 443 employees to bring them up to the minimum of the current year salary ranges,” Boyer-Owens said.
This included 131 full-time staff and 312 temporary part-time staff, she said.
Although there was no compensation increase, $2.5 million was set aside for the compensation adjustment for the 2017 fiscal year.
There was a 2.12 percent increase for the 2014-15 fiscal year.
Last year, the recommendation for adjustments was $5.21 million to stay competitive in the market. An additional $5.7 million has been calculated on top of the $5.21 million, due to another year of market movement, which brings up the total adjustment to almost $11 million, Boyer-Owens said.
“Fortunately, we reserved $2.5 million to offset some of that cost for the coming year,” she said.
Regarding the 10 percent adjustment for senior technology professionals and managers, District 3 trustee Anna Bustamante asked why it was so high compared to the other positions.
“The technology market is moving so fast that it’s difficult to keep the IT staff that we have,” Boyer-Owens said. “It’s difficult to retain them, it’s a competitive market, and salaries have not kept pace with it.”
Dr. Thomas Cleary, interim president of Northeast Lakeview College and vice chancellor for planning, performance, accreditation and information systems, said there were about 13-14 vacancies at district alone.
Clearly said the IT manager at district had resigned Monday, who got paid a little under $100,000.
“At his new job he’s starting at about $140,000,” Cleary said.
“It’s not just technology; for example, in terms of internal auditing, the board has had a vacant position for some time because we’re not competitive in the marketplace,” District 5 trustee Roberto Zárate said.
Cleary said there have been positives with former compensation adjustments to attract employees and there were about 20 vacancies this time last year, which have been almost cut in half.
Bustamante is hopeful that the increase will help retain current and future employees.