Council explains why CCRI has two presidents on payroll

PROVIDENCE, R.I. (WPRI) — The Community College of Rhode Island currently has two presidents on its payroll.

Our news partners at the Providence Journal were the first to break the story Wednesday night. They crunched the numbers and found the overlap is costing taxpayers nearly a quarter of a million dollars.

The fact that former CCRI President Ray DiPasquale is still on the payroll isn’t a surprise, but the fact that he continues to receive the same salary and benefits is. DiPasquale moved to an advisory role when new President Meghan Hughes took over Feb. 1.

DiPasquale’s contract expires June 30, meaning he’ll stay on the payroll until then unless he begins employment elsewhere.

According to the Providence Journal, Hughes stands to make nearly $122,000 as CCRI’s president from February through June while at the same time DiPasquale will take in nearly $124,000 as an advisor. That brings their total salaries for that five-month span to more than $245,000, which is roughly what CCRI’s president normally makes for an entire year.

Council for Postsecondary Education Chairman Chris Foulkes defended the move in a statement to Eyewitness News on Thursday.

“Having Ray as advisor has always been part of the transition plan, and since February, it has been valuable to have the benefit of his input and expertise on a host of system-wide matters.”

Foulkes also told the Providence Journal that the five-month overlap was necessary to ensure a smooth transition.

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