BRADENTON -- There should be no secrets at State College of Florida, says Dr. Craig A. Trigueiro, a recent appointee to the SCF Board of Trustees.
That includes posting the compensation package for President Lars Hafner on the college website, along with the salaries -- but not the names -- of all staff and faculty members making more than $100,000 a year, Trigueiro said.
Hafner’s annual compensation package, totaling $374,201.47, was recently extended five years. His base salary, $284,166.45, has increased 35 percent from $210,000 when he was hired in 2008.
“I am not trying to crucify anyone,” Trigueiro said at Wednesday’s trustees meeting.
Information that is public should be accessible to the public with just a few clicks of the mouse on the internet, he said.
Trigueiro brought a copy of Hafner’s compensation package to the meeting, noting that while he’s not trying to get rid of Hafner -- in fact he likes the college president -- a buyout would cost nearly $2 million.
“I am not trying to terminate you,” Trigueiro said t0 Hafner, making that clear to audience members and to the media.
Hafner’s annual salary is based on an average of pay for college presidents awarding bachelor’s degrees.
fter the meeting, Hafner said the board is asking a lot of relevant questions.
“We have always been a transparent organization,” he said.
Posting the agenda package on the SCF website is an easy thing to do and allows everyone to know what’s going on, Hafner said.
College salaries are already posted on the website, he said, and have been “for a while.”
Carlos Beruff, chairman of the board of trustees, said he supports transparency in SCF operations, noting that the documents referred to by Trigueiro are all public record.
But he urged trustees to continue their work on three committees formed this month to study the budget, capital projects, and compensation and staffing.
The issues should be addressed in a formal, collaborative way, with recommendations being brought back to the full board in January, rather than being tackled piecemeal, Beruff said.
Some of the push for more transparency has resulted in the full agenda being posted to the SCF website prior to the meeting, Trigueiro said.
Previously, the agenda packages were posted to the web, but only accessible to trustees who needed a password.
SCF’s annual financial statements have also been added to the website, Trigueiro said.
Trustee Jennifer Saslaw addressed concerns among some faculty members that the board may be trying to find a way to rescind this year’s 3 percent raise for faculty, as well as the 8 percent tuition hike. She pointed to the superior performance of SCF grads after they move on to upper university course work.
“We have an amazing faculty here. The proof is in the pudding,” Saslaw said. “To go back and rescind a raise given to the faculty in good faith would be devastating.”
Saslaw also said she did not think the 8 percent tuition hike would have a huge impact on students.
“I am not going to propose that the raise be taken away,” Trigueiro said. “That’s not going to happen.”
Neither would he propose taking away the tuition hike, he said.
In other business Wednesday:
n The three trustee subcommittees slated their next meeting dates. They include:
-- Staffing and compensation committee, 9:30 a.m. Nov. 17 at the Lakewood Ranch campus. Members include Charlene Neal, Lori Moran, and Joe Miller.
-- Capital improvement committee, 8 a.m. Nov. 22 at the Lakewood Ranch campus. Committee members include Ann Moore, Beruff and Ed Bailey.
-- Budget committee, meeting date to be determined at the Lakewood Ranch campus. Members include Trigueiro, Ed Bailey, Charles Fishman and Saslaw.
While the meetings are open to the public and staff, Beruff asked that staff members not be taken away from their jobs to attend the meetings.
At the Oct. 4 trustees meeting, Beruff announced the formation of the committees to divide the workload and allow the board to get more in-depth understanding of how SCF works.
The majority of SCF trustees are recent appointees by Gov. Rick Scott.
n Hafner reported that SCF recently had its exit audit on corrective action to deficiencies found in the handling of financial aid disbursements to students.
SCF had to reimburse $3,178,253 to the U.S. Department of Education. A federal audit found that SCF awarded federal financial aid to 1,948 ineligible students during the 2008-09 year.
“We have turned the corner like we said we would,” Hafner said.
During the shakeup after the federal audit, SCF replaced nine of 12 staff members, he said.
James A. Jones Jr., East Manatee editor, can be contacted at (941) 745-7021.