UT Chief Financial Officer Dr. Scott Scarborough outlined the University’s budget amendment process in his Budget Exchange Journal Monday morning, identifying a three-stage process following state budget cuts that have left the institution with an $8 million academic enterprise budget gap and a $1 million hole at the hospital.
The stages Scarborough identified are:
1. UT will closely examine all non-revenue producing programs, non-essential support services, and all cost-saving and revenue-enhancing ideas offered by the University’s internal Finance and Strategy Committee;
2. UT will have informal conversations with the unions about voluntarily rescinding negotiated salary increases; and
3. If steps one and two are insufficient, the University will work with deans and vice presidents to reduce the work force.
The University also will look to a spring 2010 tuition increase, structured to help UT recapture about $2 million in state funding, he wrote.
“To offset a portion of this lost funding, the state of Ohio has authorized public universities to raise undergraduate tuition by 3.5 percent for both years of the biennium,” Scarborough wrote. “At UT, we will likely raise tuition this fall, but scholarship every dollar back to students. Beginning in the spring, however, we will not scholarship the tuition increase back to students.”
Scarborough said he would discuss the budget further when he hosts a town hall meeting Tuesday, July 28, at 11 a.m. The meeting will be Webcast at video.utoledo.edu, and questions can be submitted to firstname.lastname@example.org both prior to and during the forum.
Also included in Scarborough’s post was a list of five principles that will guide the budget amendment process. Highlighting transparency, strategic focus and respect for those adversely affected by budget decisions, he also emphasized that UT’s new reality was not temporary.
“We will recognize the current economic challenges for what they are — an ongoing challenge to make the University of the future a leaner and more narrowly focused organization that continues to deliver academic quality in a dynamically changing world,” Scarborough wrote. “This is our new reality, and it isn’t a short-term challenge — it is here to stay.”
Read Scarborough’s journal post here.