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Possible layoffs in future

Seton Hall employees face possible layoffs as the university makes "painful cost-saving decisions," University President Msgr. Robert Sheeran said in a letter to the university community.

Citing the sluggish economy, increased costs and a decline in philanthropy, Sheeran said it was essential that the university cut costs. His remarks came in a broadcast e-mail sent on Feb. 11.

"Last year, I was clear in stating that layoffs would be considered only as a last resort," he said. "We are beyond that point now."

He indicated that any layoffs would be done in accordance with university policy and collective bargaining agreements.

Sheeran's office said he had no additional comment on the university's financial straits at this time.

An "operational and workforce analysis" will be conducted in the coming months as the university looks for ways to cut spending, reduce overtime and stipends and restrict hiring, he said. This study will examine ways the university can streamline and restructure its operations, as well as suggesting how to bring in more revenue.

In addition, Sheeran said he has instructed his executive cabinet to review their budgets.

In his letter, the president invited members of the university community to offer their comments and suggestions.

"I will be communicating with you soon to apprise you of decisions that will surely affect all of us," Sheeran said. The 2010-2011 budget is scheduled to be presented to the Board of Regents in March.

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