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UC seeks to cut costs by consolidating operations

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POSTED May 3, 2012 8:31 p.m.

RIVERSIDE  (AP) — In a move aimed at cutting costs, the University of California will open a new service center in Riverside that will handle administrative duties for its 10 campuses and five medical centers, school officials said Thursday.

The facility is expected to save as much as $100 million annually by creating a single payroll and human resources system for all UC institutions, administrators said.

The shared center is a key part of UC's "Working Smarter Initiative," which was launched to save money in response to steep reductions in state funding over the past few years.

UC President Mark Yudof said the university is "using the power of technology and of centralized services to streamline our costs and to give taxpayers the best possible return on investment."

The new facility will open in July 2013 with about 150 workers serving five locations. It's expected to employ as many as 600 workers when all UC institutions have switched to the new system in October 2014.

Some UC employees will lose their jobs, but campuses hope to minimize layoffs through attrition, retraining and altering job responsibilities, said UC Executive Vice President Nathan Brostrom. Officials are encouraging current employees to apply for jobs in Riverside.

UC Riverside was chosen from six campuses that applied to host the center. Land values, availability of local talent, proximity to transportation hubs and cost of living in the city of 300,000 played a role in the decision, officials said. The center's exact location has not been finalized.

Officials in the Southern California region known as the Inland Empire said they were delighted that UC plans to create hundreds of high-quality jobs in Riverside.

"This is the type of economic development that will have a broad and lasting positive impact on the Inland region," said Riverside County Supervisor Bob Buster.


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