- Associated Press - Saturday, June 27, 2015

LINCOLN, Neb. (AP) - Nearly 90 faculty members at three of the University of Nebraska’s four campuses have taken a buyout offered last fall, freeing up $9.2 million to be reallocated into hiring new faculty and staff members for the 2016-17 school year, according to the university system.

Eighty-nine faculty members took the voluntary buyout, the Lincoln Journal Star reported (http://bit.ly/1CANiJ4 ) Saturday. The buyout provided a one-time payout equal to 90 percent of the base salary for tenure-track faculty 62 years old or older and with at least 10 years of experience at NU.

Most of the buyout volunteers - 63 - came from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, NU spokeswoman Melissa Lee said. Twenty-two faculty members at the University of Nebraska at Omaha accepted a buyout, while only four at the University of Nebraska at Kearney did.

The university system’s medical school in Omaha did not participate.

UNL’s share freed up about $7 million which will be used to hire new tenure-track faculty, said Ronnie Green, interim senior vice chancellor for academic affairs.

“The deans made proposals for what faculty they prioritized as being most important in their respective colleges,” Green said. “Those proposals were evaluated and released back to them for hiring tenure-track faculty in the upcoming year.”

UNL’s buyouts were nearly proportional among colleges across the campus, Green said. Twenty-two of the 63 faculty members who took the buyout were employed at the Institute of Agriculture and Natural Resources. Many of those IANR employees had been expected to retire, Green said, and a hiring plan was already in place to replace them.

During the last round of buyouts in 2010, 100 faculty members walked away with a one-time payout equal to a full year’s salary, saving the system nearly $11 million in 2010-11.

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Information from: Lincoln Journal Star, http://www.journalstar.com

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