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Negotiated Salary Plan Trial Program (NSTP)

Frequently Asked Questions


1. What is a “Negotiated Salary Plan (NSP)?”

The NSP allows ladder and in-residence faculty with at least half-time appointments at participating UCLA schools and divisions to voluntarily contribute external funding resources toward their “total UC salary.” The “total UC salary” consists of the faculty member’s scale-based salary (including off-scale) plus a negotiated salary component that may not exceed 30% of the scale-based salary.

2. Which schools and divisions at UCLA will be participating in the Negotiated Salary Trial Program (NSTP)?

The Fielding School of Public Health and the Division of Life Sciences will be the initial participating campus units at UCLA, effective July 1, 2013. Other schools and divisions may participate if they submit a request by January 31, 2014, and the Executive Vice Chancellor approves the proposal.

3. How long is the trial program, and how will it be evaluated?

The trial program will last for five years. There will be a full review in year four. The Office of the President is working with participating campuses (San Diego and Irvine as well as UCLA) to refine the metrics, reporting, and assessment methods that will be used to evaluate the NSTP trial program, and participating campuses will be directed to collect specific categories of information needed for the evaluation.

4. What types of external funding resources may be contributed to faculty salary through the NSTP?

External resources are any funds that are not State-appropriated general funds or student tuition funds, and could include extramural grant funds, endowment or gift income, professional degree fees, self-supporting degree fees, royalties, licensing fees, and contract and grant support. Funds must be in hand prior to June 30 of the current fiscal year, must be stable, and must be sufficient to include related benefit costs.

5. If adequate funding sources exist at the time the negotiated salary is established, may there be subsequent changes to the mix of fund sources if the total Negotiated Salary Component (NSC) remains the same?

So long as program requirements are met at the outset, and the Negotiated Salary Component remains constant, it will be possible to alter the mix of fund sources. Thus, for example, if new extramural funds are received during the period of a negotiated salary, these new funds can be used to cover the NSC during the year if the total NSC percentage remains the same. Similarly, the mix of effort on multiple grantscontributing to the total NSC for the year may be altered, so long as the total NSC percentage remains the same.

6. Are any faculty members excluded from participation?

Yes – full-time deans and administrators, Senior Management Group members, and faculty participating in a Health Sciences Compensation Plan may not participate in the NSTP. Lecturers (SOE) and Acting Professors are also excluded. Faculty must be in“good standing” to participate, which means they must have had a satisfactory advancement at their last review, fulfill their approved teaching load, fulfill obligationsto provide research support (including to graduate students), fulfill appropriate University service, have research contracts and grants that are in good standing, andcomply with all reporting and training requirements (including laboratory safety).

7. Will participating faculty be relieved of teaching or service responsibilities?

No, participating faculty must be in “good standing,” which means they must be fulfilling their normal teaching and service responsibilities. They must also demonstrate that their grants are being used to provide designated graduate student support.

8. Will participating departments be allowed to add criteria (e.g., participation in specific departmental activities) that must be met in order for a faculty member to participate in the NSTP?

No, departments may neither increase or decrease service responsibilities for faculty participating in the NSTP.

9. How does the NSTP differ from a Health Sciences Compensation Plan?

Major differences are that faculty participate voluntarily in the NSTP, and are not required to contribute all outside income (e.g., consulting) to the NSTP. In many other ways the two are similar. A faculty member choosing to participate in the NSTP (e.g., a faculty member with a split appointment in the School of Medicine or School of Dentistry) may not also participate in a Health Sciences Compensation Plan.

10. Does the NSTP comply with OMB Circular A-21, Cost Principles for Educational Institutions, which governs award of federal contracts and grants?

The NSTP was designed to achieve compliance with OMB A-21. In order to ensure such compliance, effort for salaries charged to sponsored projects funded by federal sources must be accurately and appropriately calculated and certified, and may not exceed 100%.

11. Will the NSTP affect scale-based salaries (including off-scales) for participating faculty?

No, scale-based salaries will not change as a result of the NSTP.

12. Will the NSTP affect participation in the UC Retirement Program (UCRP)?

For participating faculty, the negotiated salary component will not be considered “covered compensation” for purposes of UCRP. Only the scale-based portion of the faculty member’s salary will be considered “covered compensation” for purposes of UCRP, and figure into calculation of retirement benefits.

13. Will faculty participating in the NSTP be able to obtain summer salary?

Yes, participating faculty will be able to earn up to three-ninths additional summer compensation for research, teaching, and/or administrative service, as allowable under any applicable federal policies, and must maximize summer ninth opportunities before utilizing the NSTP. Summer ninths are paid as a percentage of the total negotiated salary.

14. Will faculty participating in the NSTP be able to obtain administrative stipends?

Yes, participating faculty may receive administrative stipends, but those stipends may not be used to support the negotiated salary component.

15. What happens to a negotiated salary if there is a range adjustment, retroactive merit increase, salary adjustment, or any other change to the faculty member’s scale-based salary during the ensuing academic year?

No changes to the negotiated salary may occur during the academic year for which the salary was negotiated. All such changes must take effect for the next academic year.

16. Do campus rules regarding conflict of interest and conflict of commitment apply differently to faculty participating in the NSTP?

No, those rules continue to apply in exactly the same way. If, for example, part of the negotiated salary is based on overload teaching in a self-supporting program, the appropriate number of consulting days must be forfeited in accordance with APM 025.

17. How does a faculty member gain access to the NSTP?

An eligible faculty member in one of the participating campus units must submit a proposal that is first reviewed by the appropriate fund manager or business officer to confirm that the funding source is allowable and will remain in place for the entire fiscal year. The proposal is then reviewed by the department Chair and Dean to ensure that the requesting faculty member is in good standing (see Question 5), the proposed negotiated salary is consistent with campus rules, and sufficient resources are available to support all elements of the proposal, including graduate student support. The Vice Chancellor, Academic Personnel, has final authority over approval or disapproval of all proposals.

18. What is the procedure if a faculty member’s proposal is disapproved?

If the Chair and Dean do not recommend a faculty member’s proposal because the faculty member does not meet the good standing requirement (see Question 5), the Council on Academic Personnel (CAP) will review that determination and make a recommendation to the Vice Chancellor, Academic Personnel, who will issue a final resolution within 7 days of CAP review.

19. What happens if the participating faculty member unexpectedly loses funding during the academic year of a negotiated salary or the participating faculty member becomes ill and cannot carry out the expected activity?

The Dean is responsible for managing funding of the NSTP, and must cover the negotiated salary. Deans are permitted (but not required) to establish a contingency fund at a designated percentage rate to ensure coverage of such obligations. If only limited funds are “in hand” for a multi-year grant, the Dean may authorize the Chair to guarantee availability of the funds, allowing the faculty member to participate in the NSTP.

20. If the Dean establishes a contingency fund and there is a surplus, what happens to the surplus?

The Dean will discuss any such use with the relevant Faculty Executive Committee. The Executive Vice Chancellor must approve use of any contingency fund surplus.


Revised January 10, 2014