Washburn University Board of Regents

SUBJECT: Voluntary Phased Retirement


At the February 18, 1998 meeting, the Board of Regents approved the voluntary phased retirement plan under which employees meeting applicable criteria could apply for, and receive if deemed in the "best interests of the University," voluntary phased retirement from the University. Under the program approved by the Regents, the applicant would receive a reduced workload for the term of the agreement but continue receiving employee benefits as though he or she were a full-time employee of the University. This program is applicable to all University employees.

Arthur (Art) L. Johnson, Director of the Physical Plant, has requested to begin phased retirement July 1, 1999 or the first day of employment of a successor Director of the Physical Plant. The specifics of Art's request are as follows:

Art would resign from his current position as Director of Physical Plant and move to a special phased retirement position as Special Project Manager effective July1, 1999 (or earlier if new Director appointed prior to July 1, 1999).

The Special Project Manager would be a .50 FTE position with the primary responsibility of serving as the University's project manager for the living/learning center project. Initial funding would come from the Extra Labor and Overtime line in the Physical Plant budget with the expectation that the living/learning center project budget would include funds for project management.

In addition to serving as the living/learning center project manager, Art, as the Special Project Manager would provide other benefits to the University:

Pursue energy conservation projects that have been deferred due to other priorities. Art would either work with a performance contractor (e.g., Johnson Controls, Siemens, etc.) or develop "in house" projects.

With over 35 years of institutional history and experience, having Art on board as our Special Project Manager would help make a smooth transition for a new Director of the Physical Plant.

The University has many special projects requiring the efforts of the 2 architects we currently have. With his architectural background, Art could help in getting these special projects accomplished in a more timely manner. We currently use outside firms to help with these special projects, and the availability of Art for these special projects could reduce the costs we incur with these outside firms.

This proposal would be effective upon the appointment of a new Director of the Physical Plant, but no later than July 1, 1999. The proposed length of the phased retirement agreement would be until December 31, 2000 or the completion of the residential life project, whichever is longer.

The Vice President for Administration and Treasurer is recommending that this request for voluntary phased retirement be approved. Such an arrangement will serve the needs of the University as the University will maintain Art's knowledge and experience during the design and construction of the living/learning center project while providing a transition to a new Director of the Physical Plant. Upon approval by the Regents, a national search for a new Director will be initiated.


No additional general fund dollars are needed; a nominal increase in employee benefit contribution funds to provide fringe benefits for the new position.


President Farley recommends Board of Regents approval of the attached retirement agreement for Art Johnson.

Date Signature __________________________

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