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Beginning in FY11, a portion of all faculty AY salary released through grant funding of salaries, net of actual instructional replacement costs, will be returned to departments. Actual replacement costs will be determined in consultation between the department and the Dean’s Office to ensure effective and efficient coverage of students’ curricular needs. Departments and programs will continue to be able to use the returned funds to advance appropriate academic and research objectives.
The returned fraction will increase in three discrete steps, with each step defined in terms of the amount of salary released. Departments will receive 20% of the first step of released salary; 35% of the second step; and 50% of released funds in excess of two steps.
The number of dollars that constitute a step will be defined differently for departments in which faculty normally have access to relatively large amounts of salary release through grants compared with the others. For FY11 the step amounts will be $200,000 for the Departments of Biology, Physics, and Psychology and $50,000 for all other departments. If we apply these amounts to actual FY10 data they would result in roughly the same returns to each department provided under previous policy. The step amounts may be adjusted in advance of an FY in response to the changing funding environment.
An example: The Department of Ontology faculty release $124,000 of their AY salary during FY11 by obtaining grant-funded salary funding; replacement lecturer costs are $10,000; the net release is $114,000. The department’s step amount is $50,000. The department will receive a return of 20% of the first $50,000 plus 35% of the next $50,000 plus 50% of the remaining $14,000, for a total of $34,500.
At this time, this policy covers salary released through grant funding of salary only. We are exploring the implications of applying this policy to release of salary commitments from the operational budget based in coverage of the salary by any source outside of Boston University, for example, fellowships or visiting positions at other institutions. (Note that this policy does not apply to sabbaticals or other situations in which the source of funding is internal to BU, because those cases offer no budget relief.) If and when we conclude that expanding the coverage of this policy is appropriate, we will do so.
The College policy for grant-funded reduction of teaching can be found in the CAS Faculty Expectations statement under “Leaves, Buyouts, and Course Releases”.
For further information, contact Assistant Dean Richard Wright, Office of Faculty Actions, firstname.lastname@example.org .