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The Daily Wildcat

The Daily Wildcat

 

    April pay raise on tap at UA

    PHOENIX – UA employees will have to wait another month before seeing a bump in their paychecks, more than six weeks after Gov. Janet Napolitano approved a pay raise for state employees, a top UA administrator said.

    Distribution of the pay raise stalled at the UA as top officials scrambled to develop a system to evaluate which of its employees would be eligible for the merit-based portion of the raise. The pay raise is divided into two parts: a $1,650 raise for all UA full-time employees and a secondary raise for employees depending on merit.

    Provost George Davis said the decision was made to delay distributing the pay raises until annual performance reviews had been completed and were available to review.

    The pay raise was intended to begin on March 11, but Davis said it was impossible to review all employees in six weeks, especially without an up-to-date performance review.

    He said the performance reviews were the most effective way to decide which employees were eligible for pay raises, and the raise would be distributed in April.

    Davis said the raises would also include retroactive pay raises from the March 11 date.

    The merit-based portion of the bill initially caught UA officials by surprise, said Greg Fahey, UA vice president for government relations.

    The Republican-controlled Legislature had attached an emergency clause to the bill, allowing the increase to go into effect March 11 rather than going into effect 90 days after the end of the legislative session.

    Fahey said the emergency clause meant the UA had weeks rather than months to decide how to implement the bill.

    Republican leaders have threatened to bring the matter to court, as Napolitano used line-item veto to remove five lines of the bill. They said her veto to negate portions of the bill, which removed protection from newly hired state employees, violated the Arizona Constitution.

    State Sen. Dean Martin, R-Phoenix, said Republicans still intend to sue over the matter but that the nature of the argument would not delay any pay raises.

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