The University of Oregon will cut off pay to 282 staff members in response to a projected loss of $25 million in net revenue due to coronavirus closures, UO President Michael Schill said Monday in an email addressed to the “University of Oregon Community.”
Some employees in housing and dining, the EMU, athletics, PE and Rec and the access shuttle program have already begun receiving 30-day notices of their changing status, according to the email. The cuts impact both classified staff and officers of administration employee groups, according to UO spokesperson Kay Jarvis.
Individuals included in this leave-without-pay status will not be traditionally laid-off, but will instead remain employees of UO. They will maintain health benefits while also being eligible to apply for unemployment insurance until Aug. 31, according to the UO Extended Benefits Program page. According to the email, UO intends to bring all employees back as soon as it reopens for full operations.
Schill’s email laid out in some detail the dire situation of UO’s financials. The possible $25 million loss in net auxiliary revenue comes from the number of students living on campus dropping from 4,500 to 225 and $3.4 million in student fees being refunded.
“This is not our first challenge, nor will it be our last. We are discussing with each of our employee groups and unions contingencies for responding to the COVID-19 crisis that would further allow the university to reduce operating expenses and protect as many jobs as possible should that become necessary,“ Schill said in the email.
He added that there is a significant chance that UO will see a drop in enrollment and/or state funding in the fall, which would force the university into an even more challenging financial position.
The COVID-19 pandemic and the university’s response is a developing situation. Follow the Emerald’s coverage for the latest.
This story was updated midday Monday to clarify that the the cuts impact both classified staff and OAs.