Students and faculty protest pay hike
By Charles Innis/The Guardsman
A proposed 19.3 percent salary raise for top administrators sparked an impromptu protest Jan. 24 in front of Conlan Hall where 40 students, faculty and members of the American Federation of Teachers Local 2121 union gathered to express their dissent.
The proposed salary increase was posted Jan. 24 on the Board of Trustee’s City College webpage as a “Special January Agenda” item, requesting a modification to the salary range for the associate vice chancellor, chief information technology officer and vice chancellor.
It included a 12-step plan that would increase their salaries to over $200,000.
“[We want to] redirect that money to where it’s needed,” AFT 2121 Executive Director Chris Hanzo said. “That is to restore faculty pay and to stop the class closures and fund education.”
Students and faculty members assembled with large banners and signs to show their frustration.
Some of the signs read, “No to admin pay hike, yes to restoring classes,” and “Serve the people not your wallets.”
AFT 2121 organizer Ona Keller said the resolution was withdrawn shortly before the protest took place after several faculty members texted, emailed and called Special Trustee Robert Agrella.
Agrella and Chancellor Arthur Tyler said in an email to the City College community that a pay increase for administrators was not what was intended.
“We will certainly take responsibility for any errors we may have made for failing to catch this incorrect matter before it reached a public agenda,” the email read.
Although the proposal has been withdrawn, protesters remain wary.
“We had our voices out here now and we won, but temporarily,” Keller said.