Proposal presented to Board of Regents, State of Iowa for 10% budget cuts

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Download President Allen's Presentation  (PDF)

At the Board of Regents, State of Iowa meeting today, the state's public universities will present proposals to address an across-the-board 10-percent state appropriated budget cut for fiscal 2010.

This budget reduction has significant implications for our university. A 10-percent state appropriation reduction has a greater impact on UNI than it does to the state's other public universities, as UNI relies more heavily on state funding. To compound the reality of its impact, this cut, coupled with other recent decreases in state appropriations, represents a reduction in state funds for UNI of $23 million, or 23 percent, since July 2008. 

This budget cut required swift decision-making, in large part, because one-third of our fiscal year has already passed. For the last two weeks, UNI's leadership has met with students, faculty and staff to assist in this difficult process.  To guide strategic decision-making, we focused on both the fiscal 2010 10-percent state appropriation reduction while taking into consideration our anticipated fiscal 2011 budget scenario. With stimulus funds unavailable for fiscal 2011 and the economic outlook still challenging, our proposal employed both permanent and temporary strategies to minimize a potential financial "cliff" in the coming fiscal year.

UNI's proposed action plan to the Board of Regents will address the $8.8 million reduction by initiating the following strategies:

Reallocate unplanned tuition revenue as a result of higher-than-forecasted 2009-2010 enrollment ($2.7 million)

Make permanent budget reductions across the university through divisional cuts, which could include permanent layoffs ($1 million)

Conduct temporary layoffs (unpaid leave) among all employee groups in fiscal 2010 with a graduated plan based on salary ($1.8 million)

Redirect a portion of the ARRA (stimulus) funds ($1 million)

Temporarily reduce TIAA-CREF employer contributions from 10 percent to 8 percent of salary for the remainder of fiscal 2010 and fiscal 2011 ($1 million in savings in fiscal 2010)

Apply a tuition surcharge of $100 per fulltime student for spring 2010 semester with revenue going directly to instruction, financial aid and student-service support ($1 million)

Initiate an across-the-board 10-percent cut to special line-item units at UNI ($400,000)

This action plan is contingent on the Board of Regents approval. 

Thank you for your continued patience and dedication to our students and the state of Iowa.

Ben Allen