It would seem that the University was not prepared for the extension of the Social Security tax cut just approved by Congress. As a result, January paychecks will reflect the old, higher payroll tax rate of 6.2% instead of the 4.2% that's been in place throughout 2011. The extra amount withheld will appear instead on the next paycheck, on Feb 1 for most employees.
our Jan 1 paychecks will be 2% lower than our Dec 1 paychecks. Happy 2012 to all!