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Hastings Law School Scales Back Raises, Hiring
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Nell NewtonUniversity of California, Hastings College of the Law, a top tier law school in San Francisco, is forgoing some raises and scaling back on hiring, and has asked department heads to cut five percent from their current operating budgets.

Last fiscal year, the school received $10 million from the State of California — just over a quarter of its academic budget. Dean Nell Jessup Newton says that on her most recent trip to Sacramento, a legislator told her that she can expect more cuts this fiscal year.

When he gave $100,000 to the University of California to start the law school named after him, Justice Serranus Clinton Hastings imposed two conditions: the school must remain in San Francisco near the courts; and it could not be governed by the Regents of the University of California. Thus, the school’s head (who holds the dual titles of Chancellor and Dean) must directly obtain funds from the California Legislature, not the UC Regents, as other UC chancellors must do.

  
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Newton said she will try to avoid raising student fees for 2009-10 beyond the already planned 13 percent. The 5 percent cuts she’s asked for won’t affect salaries or financial aid. But Hastings faculty and staff won’t get the cost-of-living or general salary increases they expected in January. Newton turned down a board-approved 4 percent merit increase to her salary.

The school added nine new faculty members in the last two years. For 2009-10, only two will be added, instead of four; faculty hiring plans for the following year are on hold altogether.

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