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Salary for next UW President: $600,000

MADISON (WSAU-Wheeler News)   The next U-W System president could make almost $600,000 a year, under new salary ranges endorsed yesterday by the Board of Regents' business committee. The full board will consider new pay scales for a number of top officials today in a meeting at U-W Parkside near Kenosha.

The panel also recommended the first pay raises in five years for 10-of-the-14 campus chancellors. They average 3.3-percent a year, and are applied under existing salary ranges.

La Crosse Chancellor Joe Gow would get the highest raise, with $10,500. That would raise his salary to $210,000. Republican lawmakers swallowed hard, still feeling stung after learning that the U-W sat on $650-million in reserves.

G-O-P Assembly Speaker Robin Vos said $600,000 for a new university president is a lot of money. However, both Vos and Senate Finance Chair Alberta Darling said the university needs to be competitive.

Regent Gerald Whitburn says Wisconsin is getting a bargain compared to Ohio State and Penn State, where the top leaders make $2-to-3-million a year.

Outgoing U-W President Kevin Reilly makes $418,000. The proposed new pay scale for his post would rise to between $399-and-$598,000. Newly-hired chancellors at Madison and Eau Claire will not get raises, and neither will the Stevens Point and Colleges-and-Extension chancellors. Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank, a former Obama White House official, makes $495,000.