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By Gus Bode

Three people charged with deciding whether the university was wrong to fire former Chancellor Fernando Trevi’ntilde;o are expected to reach a conclusion by early spring, university spokesman Dave Gross said Thursday.

The three-person panel is hearing depositions from both sides while it decides whether Trevi’ntilde;o should be paid $290,000 annually until his contract with the university expires in 2010.

SIUC spokesman Rod Sievers said the panel is still in the discovery phase.

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Gross said there is no specific timetable for a conclusion but expects the panel to find a resolution by early spring.

What HAPPENED

Former Chancellor Fernando Trevi’ntilde;o was hired July 1 after the university spent $150,000 on a seven-month search for a new chancellor to replace interim Chancellor John Dunn.

SIU President Glenn Poshard placed Trevi’ntilde;o on administrative leave March 12 after Poshard said ‘serious concerns’ had been expressed relating to Trevi’ntilde;o’s assigned duties.

Poshard fired Trevi’ntilde;o April 11, saying the he failed to perform basic job duties.

Trevi’ntilde;o argued he should be paid his $290,000 salary until his contract expires June 30, 2010. The contract stipulates Trevi’ntilde;o be paid his salary in full if terminated without just cause.

In May, Trevi’ntilde;o was appointed dean of the Robert Stempel School of Public Health at Florida International University.

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What’s NEW

A three-person panel of arbitrators is hearing depositions to decide if Trevi’ntilde;o should receive his full salary from SIU.

SIU spokesman Dave Gross said the panel is expected to rule by early spring.

Gross said if the arbitration panel rules in favor of Trevi’ntilde;o, SIU would be required to fulfill its end of his contract, which would pay Trevi’ntilde;o $290,000 a year until his contract expires.

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