Budget related layoffs begin

Chancellor Dennis Shields has not yet finalized the 2016-2017 budget, but the impact on university personnel is already being felt across campus as a result of layoffs and contract non-renewal notices.

Shields is expected to finalize budget decisions by the end of January, according to the budget timeline available on the University of Wisconsin-Platteville website. The four senates and the university community submitted recommendations and feedback to Shields in November.

Vice Chancellor for Administrative Services Rob Cramer said that the final budget decisions will likely be made public within the next two weeks, but as of now the process is still ongoing. Details about the positions being cut will also be made public at that time. Cramer said that the human resources department is communicating with the affected individuals, but that he did not wish to comment further. He additionally said that the chancellor wants the process to be as “humane as possible” and that it respects the governance process and the individuals involved.

Layoff notices were given out the second week of January, director of UW-Platteville human resources Janelle Crowley said. Notifications of contract non-renewals began this past week.

Crowley said the layoffs and contract non-renewals will take effect at the end of the semester and several more will take effect by June 30, the end of the fiscal year.

Crowley also said that human resources is trying to increase awareness about support available through the Employee Assistance Program, including scheduled events such as Stress Management Training, Programs and Benefits for Dislocated Workers and Human Resources and Workplace Updates.

“Life Matters” is an employee assistance program that also provides employment counseling and is available free to everyone in the UW-System.

Human Resources is acting as the chancellor’s designee in communicating with those who have received notices, Crowley said.

Shields may consider holding open forums for questions once the budget has been finalized, Cramer said. The proposed UW-Platteville 2016-2017 Annual Budget will be submitted to the UW-System in April 2016.

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