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URBANA — Faculty and staff at the University of Illinois are in line for a 2 percent pay raise come Aug. 16.

In a mass email Friday, President Tim Killeen announced the merit-based salary program for the 2021-22 school year.

“This program was a top priority in our budget planning to enable much-deserved recognition for employees who received no increases this year due to the financial fallout of the COVID-19 pandemic,” he wrote.

Killeen also encouraged each of the three campuses to establish their own programs “to address compression, market, equity and retention issues.”

Pay raises for faculty and staff in unions will need to be negotiated, Killeen said.

Killeen last authorized a 2 percent salary program for the 2019-20 school year, and faculty have been asking administrators at recent academic Senate meetings for a raise.

Killeen had said he wanted to raise salaries, but that the size of the increase this year was still being determined and could depend in part on the amount of state funding the UI receives.

That’s not yet finalized, but Gov. J.B. Pritzker proposed keeping higher-education funding flat.

While that would be less than the $51 million increase the UI had been seeking from the state, Killeen said earlier this year that he had feared there would be cuts.

“We are grateful for his support during these historically difficult times and hope you will join us in urging legislators to approve a spending plan that holds higher education harmless and perhaps increases funding for important programs such as (Monetary Award Program grants),” Killeen said at a meeting earlier this year. “With state revenues strained by an ongoing pandemic, we had feared that the number would have been less favorable.”

Reporter

Ben Zigterman is a reporter covering business at The News-Gazette. His email is bzigterman@news-gazette.com, and you can follow him on Twitter (@bzigterman).

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