HARRISBURG, Pa., March 22 (UPI) -- Facing perhaps the biggest cut in state aid for a U.S. state university system, the union representing Pennsylvania faculty says it would consider a pay freeze.
Ken Mash, vice president of the Association of Pennsylvania State College and University Faculties, said the union and the State System of Higher Education have not begun to talk about salaries in contract talks, the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported. But the union announced Monday it is willing "in principle" to accept a freeze in the new contract to show its members are willing to share the pain.
"We didn't want to be perceived in any way as being part of the problem," he said. "We didn't want to be asking for an increase when we're trying to maintain the status quo."
Gov. Tom Corbett released a budget proposal March 8 that would cut state aid to the 14 universities and the state colleges by 50 percent. If the governor's plan goes through unchanged, the system -- which gets about 30 percent of its budget from the state -- would be receiving about the same subsidy, not adjusting for inflation, that it did in the 1983-1984 school year.