University of Maine Payroll and Spending Data Updated on MaineOpenGov.org

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Today, MaineOpenGov.org has been updated and expanded to show eight years of salary, benefits, overtime, and stipend data for employees of the University of Maine, as well as five years of checkbook spending information. Prior UMaine payroll data on MaineOpenGov.org did not contain overtime and stipend data, and included just three years of spending information. The data shows that in eight years, total payroll and benefits costs of UMaine employees grew by 29%, from $258,433,559 in 2003 to $333,108,621 in 2010.

“Giving Mainers a chance to see how government is spending their hard-earned tax dollars is the number one objective of MaineOpenGov.org,” said Sam Adolphsen, Director of Open Government at the Maine Heritage Policy Center (MHPC). “The University of Maine is a major recipient of tax dollars and tuition dollars and a key public institution in our state. It’s important that the operations of the University are transparent and their finances are available for everyone to see.”

Other key findings from the updated UMaine data include:

  • The number of employees earning more than $100,000 in total compensation increased from 399  employees in 2003, to 1,018 in 2010.

  • Fringe Benefits as a percentage of total payroll increased from 34.6% in 2003 to 48.4% in 2010.
  • UMaine paid out $11.3 million in “stipends” in 2010.
  • Former UMaine President Robert Kennedy earned $188,043 in total compensation in 2004, which climbed to $308,368 by 2010.
  • $2,840,993 was spent on expense category “Travel” in 2010.

This updated data release comes after MHPC recently released a separate report regarding the University of Maine, and one of the findings was that the University struggled in the area of Cost and Effectiveness. The report noted that “from 2004 to 2009, in-state tuition and fees at UMS institutions increased by an average of 35 percent.” The tuition hikes during the same time period that the new data on MaineOpenGov.org shows an increase in payroll of nearly 30%.

“This data is important because it raises, and can answer, key questions that parents, students and taxpayers might have about UMaine operations,” said Adolphsen. “I think students will be interested to see where their 35% increase in tuition is being spent. Taxpayers and tuition payers deserve to know where their money is going.”