April 16 2014, updated 11:00pm

Massey Uni chiefs axed to save costs

BY LEE MATTHEWS
Last updated 12:00 22/01/2010

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Masssey University is axing its regional chief executive roles in Palmerston North, Wellington and Albany, but will not say how much money the move will save.

The positions and backup office structures are being replaced by a national shared management model, details of which are still being worked out. It will most likely be based at Palmerston North, but final decisions have not been made.

Palmerston North's regional chief executive is Professor Ian Warrington. He said yesterday that he had no comment to make on his position being disestablished.

"I'm still working through my options with the university," Prof Warrington said.

Prof Warrington's job has been to manage the Palmerston North campus.

Assistant Vice-Chancellor and University Registrar Stuart Morriss will lead work on details of how to transfer the tasks of the regional chief executives to the national arrangement.

Massey, like other New Zealand universities, is facing a funding shortfall. The Government chopped $10 million from the tertiary education budget in last year's Budget, meaning the university gets less funding for students and infrastructure.

Vice-Chancellor Steve Maharey began warning of tighter enrolment restrictions and fewer places for students late last year. And the College of Sciences was told in November it had to cut $5.5m from its budget by chopping staff and courses.

Mr Maharey also spent much of last year working on ways to streamline the university, cut out duplication and save money. He called it The Road to 2020 and the One University principle.

The One University principle relates to improving the relationships between the three Massey campuses.

Mr Maharey could not be reached yesterday for comment on the latest cuts.

Massey communications director James Gardiner said he couldn't put a figure on what might be saved in axing the three chief executive roles, nor what might be spent setting up the new national management system.

"Obviously everything we do is with the university's financial wellbeing in mind, particularly at this time, in this uncertain funding environment," Mr Gardiner said.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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