University of Oregon Law School professors will get their merit raises after the university struck down a proposal by some faculty members to divert the money to a post-graduate scholarship fund.

The decision to forgo raises, made during a faculty meeting last week, surprised and angered one law professor who wrote Law School Dean Michael Moffitt on Monday.

"I just learned – three days after the faculty meeting – that someone (you? the faculty?) is trying to take away my one-in-a-decade chance at a raise," UO law professor Rob Illig wrote.

Economics Professor Bill Harbaugh ran an account of the controversy on his blog, UO Matters.

Here's an email from Illig expressing his frustration:

“Voting on this important a decision without notice and

without serious consideration was a gross breach not only of procedure but of


What did the agenda say? “Discussion of Graduate

Fellowships.” Pardon my French, but this is absolute bullshit. Colleagues do not ambush one another like this.

How can I trust the administration or any of my faculty

colleagues? No wonder we’ve become a third-tier law school. Who’s going to want to come here to study or teach in this kind of poisonous atmosphere?

As soon as money got tight, we seem to have turned on one

another as if this was a zero-sum game. Well, it isn’t. And enough is enough.

I’ve watched as our culture has eroded now for almost

three years. Everyone is in everyone else’s business, instead of their own. Everyone is worried about what everyone else is getting, not what they can personally contribute. If some professor or professors want to donate their raise to the students – or to some other worthy charity – that’s their business. (Personally, i give to Food for Lane Country, Planned Parenthood, and the United Way. I feel that having given up the chance at a seven-figure annual income is charity enough for the students, and I am particularly saddened by hungry children. Maybe I should move that the recipients of summer stipends donate those funds to the poor and needy?)