By Lillian Bowe
The Eastern New Mexico University’s Board of Regents renewed the contract of university President Steven Gamble, giving him a 2 percent raise on Saturday.
Gamble’s annual salary will now be $211,039 and his contract will last until June 30, 2018. The contract will go into effect on July 1, 2014.
“Yes, we renewed his contract and gave him some incentive to stay,” said Regent President Jane Christensen.
Gamble expressed his appreciation with the board and said he is ready to continue his work at the university.
“I am grateful to the board that they extended my contract,” Gamble said.
Gamble has served as president since 2001. The contract also includes an amendment saying when Gamble decides to retire or voluntarily resign from the office of president, he will be given employment as a professor for a minimum of three years.
Christensen said board members have been pleased with Gamble and want him to continue his work at the university.
Other action taken during the Board of Regents meeting Saturday included the following:
• Board members were given a presentation on changing the university’s degree requirements to 120 hours. The minimum requirements for many degrees are currently 127 hours.
Vice President of Academic Affairs Jamie Laurenz told the board that many degrees could be brought down to 120 hours but some, like education degrees, cannot be.
“If we want to bring education down to 120, we will have to take out some essential classes,” Laurenz said.
Laurenz said some of the classes the students start are state mandated, so they cannot be taken out, but the classes only the university requires for graduating can be taken out if deemed not important.
Laurenz said he is still looking at possibilities for taking down the hours to 120.
“I believe that taking out our institutional classes will work or lessening the electives,” Christensen said.
• The board also approved submitting a form to the New Mexico Higher Education Department for the new football stadium.
The form is to inform the NMHED about the costs of the stadium and where the funds will be coming from.
• The board approved a five-year capital projects plan for the Ruidoso, Roswell and Portales campuses.