|The state Board of Higher Education is laying the
groundwork for huge raises for public college presidents and their timing
couldn't be worse.
The board hired a consulting firm to study the salary structure for the heads of state colleges and community colleges - always a good way to provide political cover.
And would anyone be surprised when the consultants came back and insisted that the salaries of college presidents be increased from their current range of $140,000 to $170,000 to a range that starts at $165,000 and rises to $210,000? Community college presidents, currently paid $120,000 to $160,000 would be paid $135,000 to $198,000.
In addition, college presidents get a housing allowance and a variety of other perks. Meanwhile faculty, many of them part-time, are being offered raises in the 1 percent range, and the students they teach are struggling to pay ever higher ``fees'' to help fund these hideously inflated presidents' salaries.
Board Chair Steve Tocco can talk all he wants about the difficulty of recruiting ``talent,'' when the truth is this is a system top-heavy with mediocrity. Higher salaries won't change that, they will merely reward it. Students are attracted by good faculty and low tuition and fees. The board's focus on its presidents is grossly misplaced.