Baton Rouge, La (NBC33) — The vote was overwhelming. Every member of the Southern Board of Supervisors voting in favor of Chancellor James Llorens' proposal to declare a financial emergency. "It is something that in the end we realize that was necessary for us to move forward and develop this institution into a model twenty-first century institution."
The move allows the university to force ten percent furloughs on all professors making $30,000 or more. "These people have actually set the university back twenty years. They have made an imprudent decision. They have wasted taxpayer money on the one hand and then now they want to butcher the faculty," says Faculty Senate President Sudhir Trivedi.
But Llorens scoffs at the idea that this move is in any way negative, "[It] creates a university here at Southern that's going to be there to respond to the changing financial conditions of the state and allows us to move forward."
And he has a message for all the students at Southern, "We can assure the students of Southern that their education is going to be better by all this. We are going to provide a better education for them. A better model for delivering courses and so we can assure them that Southern University will be stronger."
But Trivedi has a message of his own for Llorens and the rest of the Southern University Board of Supervisors, "There is no substantive or procedural argument to declaring a financial exigency and it's almost certain that we are going to challenge it in a court of law."