California State University trustees will take up two hot-button issues when they meet in Long Beach tomorrow: increasing student tuition by 12 percent and setting pay for the new president of San Diego State -- proposed to be $100,000 higher than his predecessor.
Stephen Weber, the outgoing president of San Diego State, earned an annual salary of $299,435 at the end of his 14-year tenure at the helm of the campus. CSU Chancellor Charles Reed has proposed paying his replacement, Elliot Hirshman, $350,000 plus an additional $50,000 to be paid by the San Diego State University Foundation. Hirshman also would receive housing provided by the university and a car allowance of $1,000 a month, according to the compensation package Reed is presenting to the board.
The California Faculty Association, the union that represents professors at Cal State's 23 campuses, is raising questions about the pay increase. It comes as trustees are being asked to approve a second tuition increase for the 2011-12 school year that comes on top of a 10 percent increase for the fall they approved last year. Combined, the two increases would bring undergraduate tuition at CSU to $5,178 this fall -- or $948 more than it was in fall 2010.
"Tone deaf?" the union asks on its Facebook page, where comments from faculty are flying. Sacramento State professor Michael Fitzgerald posts: "It is just wrong. What are the CSU trustees smoking?"