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University system may have to pay nearly $600K to UMA president who withdrew

Michael Laliberte won’t become president of the University of Maine at Augusta after his Sunday withdrawal from the post he was to assume Aug. 1. But the University of Maine System will still be on the hook for nearly three years to ensure he earns at least $205,000 annually — the amount he was to have been paid as UMA’s president.

That means the University of Maine System could have to pay nearly $600,000 to a man who will never work for the system.

Laliberte on Sunday voluntarily withdrew from his appointment to lead the university system’s third largest institution after neither he nor top system officials disclosed to the committee leading the search that faculty and staff at Laliberte’s current institution in New York cast a vote of no confidence in his leadership last year. The lack of that disclosure has since spurred no-confidence votes in the leadership of university system Chancellor Dannel Malloy from faculty at three Maine campuses, with faculty on other campuses registering their support for those votes. 

University system may have to pay nearly $600K to UMA president who withdrew