Budget Message from President Ruud

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

Dear UNI Family,

Gov. Terry Branstad delivered his annual Condition of the State address yesterday before the Iowa General Assembly. The governor invited a dozen University of Northern Iowa students to be his guests in the house gallery where he publicly recognized UNI for our success in reducing student indebtedness.

The governor’s budget proposal also provides good news for UNI.  It includes:

  • $3.3 million increase in general state aid (a 4 percent increase)

  • $4.4 million special appropriation to address UNI’s reliance on state funding (FY2015)

  • $4 million special appropriation (FY2016)

We are grateful to the governor for recognizing the unique funding challenges at UNI resulting from our historic focus on educating Iowa residents. Under this proposal, FY2015 funding for UNI would be $90.9 million, an increase of nearly $2 million over the current budget year. This is enough to allow the Board of Regents to once again freeze tuition for resident undergraduate students, which make up more than 90 percent of our student body.

Other funding includes:

  • $5.2 million for STEM (no increase)

  • $175,256 for the Recycling and Reuse Center (no increase)

  • $125,302 for the Real Estate Education program (no increase)

  • $1,066,419 for Economic Development at UNI (no increase)

    • The Institute for Decision Making     

    • Metal Casting Center

    • MyEntre.Net

    • Economic Gardening

  • $900,000 from the Regents Innovation Fund to support

    • Entrepreneurship

    • Business Expansion

    • Regional Development

  • $2 million for planning money for the renovation of the Schindler Education Center

This is a very positive start to the legislative session and we are thankful for Gov. Branstad’s continued commitment to the public universities.  Our focus now turns to the house and senate, as leaders in each chamber will release their own budget proposals later this month.

Purple for life!

Bill Ruud, President