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June 3, 2011
Over the past 15 months, I have asked the Efficiencies and Budget Reduction Task Force to find ways in which the University can become more efficient, grow enrollments and increase revenues, while at the same time reduce the budget. I also requested that they provide the University community with information and ideas to further refine our budget processes.
Last year, the Task Force produced a report that included a number of recommendations for budget reductions. It was posted in Blackboard Vista under the Leadership Group's Reports and Minutes section. Several of the proposed cost-cutting measures identified in the report led to actions being taken, including downsizing of leased copiers across campus, reductions in the level of custodial services received, elimination/reduction of communication allowances and reductions in outlays for business meals and special events.
This year, the Task Force conducted two surveys: 1) a survey of budget planning processes at other institutions and 2) a survey of staff and faculty regarding budget reduction proposals and revenue-generating proposals. The Task Force also conducted a review of UHD departments that experienced significant growth over the last decade. They compared the staffing of those departments to various Texas higher education institutions. The Task Force has completed its work and a report is now available for the community to review on Blackboard Vista at the Leadership Communication Portal's Reports and Minutes section in the Efficiencies and Budget Reduction folder. I encourage everyone to read the report and direct any feedback to me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
In the coming months, we will implement new efficiencies, consider additional budget reduction measures and put in place a new budget/planning process that will ensure our limited resources are focused on strategic initiatives that support institutional goals and objectives.
The budget situation is constantly evolving at the legislative level and with the UHS Board of Regents. As the media has reported, the governor has called the legislature into special session to deal with the public school financing issues that were raised by the proposed appropriations bill. Once an appropriations bill is passed, I will send out another message that will address its specific impact on UHD. At this time, the Board of Regents is also considering proposals for modest tuition/fee increases across the system.
We will continue developing our plans to address pending cuts and to maximize current resources in support of our core mission of student success.
I will keep the community informed as we move forward.
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Last updated or reviewed on 6/3/11