In-demand UW-Madison professors will get raisesWisconsin News
UW-Madison says it has found money in its current budget to give pay raises to professors who are being targeted by other schools. About 30 percent of Madison’s top staffers will get one-time raises of 5 percent.
UW-Madison says it has found money in its current budget to give pay raises to professors who are being targeted by other schools.
The state’s flagship campus said Tuesday that it formed what it calls a “Critical Compensation Fund.” Provost Paul DeLuca said most UW faculty and staff members have not had raises since 2008 and it’s made the campus a “target of opportunity” for raids by other institutions.
About 30 percent of Madison’s top staffers will get one-time raises of 5 percent. Deans, program directors and department heads will decide who gets the increases.
They’ll generally be based on the employees’ sustained achievement over the past five years. DeLuca admits he’s concerned about a backlash from those who don’t get raises. But he says it would be a bigger problem if the UW loses more of its top faculty members because of pay issues.
Volunteer firefighter numbers hold steady in Wisconsin
The number of volunteer firefighters in Wisconsin has held steady, while the numbers nationally have fallen to their lowest levels in over 20 years.
Nationwide, there were about 768,000 volunteer firefighters in 2010, the lowest number since 1991.
La Farge Fire Chief Philip Stittleburg, president of the National Volunteer Fire Council, says the economy is partially to blame for the low national numbers. He tells Wisconsin Public Radio that more people are taking second jobs and working overtime, and there are more households where both spouses work, leaving less time for volunteering.
Stittleburg says that in Wisconsin geography is one reason the number of volunteer firefighters has not dropped. He says Wisconsin’s rural nature contributes more to volunteerism. Rural areas have traditionally relied on a volunteer component to provide the service.
Also, a state-sponsored retirement program has proved to be a good recruiting tool.
Stittleburg says the fire service needs to do a better job of reaching out to young adults through social media. He also believes fire departments should transfer responsibilities like education from fire-fighters to other volunteers.
Kraft to close Waupaca cheese factory
Kraft Foods says it will close a cheese plant in Waupaca in the second quarter of next year. Up to 120 employees will lose their jobs. Spokeswoman Joyce Hodel says the plant does not produce enough cheese to support its overhead costs. It was built in 1954 and Kraft acquired it in 1987.
The plant makes specialty cheeses and spreads under the Kraft, Athenos and Hoffman’s brands.
The Waupaca plant has 84,000 square feet. Hodel says it’s one of Kraft’s smallest facilities. She says the firm will create over 20 new jobs at a plant in Wausau. Waupaca employees will get preference for the Wausau jobs.