Rutgers University and the university's faculty have reached a tentative contract.
The four-year deal announced Thursday would offer two across-the-board pay increases and two years when raises would be based on merit.
The deal would also make it harder for the university to deny raises to professors when state funding is cut. That was a major issue in negotiations because the clause was invoked for the first and only time in 2010.
The contract applies to 4,700 members of the Rutgers American Association of University Professors-American Federation of Teachers, which includes professors, graduate assistants and teaching assistants. It is subject to a vote of the members.
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Several unions for other staff members at New Jersey's flagship state university are still negotiating new contracts.