This archived article was written by: Kris Kohler
Administration circulated a press release last week showing an immediate budget cut of $763,200, that depending on future economic conditions may lead to loss of programs, faculty and planned renovations to the campus.
According to the press release, the drastic cut in funds stemmed from the overestimation of the total state budget that equaled $272 million.
The legislature and governor have handed $65 million of the debt to be taken care of by Utah’s higher education system. The rest will be taken from various state agencies and programs.
According to the press release, College of Eastern Utah began the year with $19 million in tax funds, including a one-time appropriation for $600,000 that will not be a part of the 2010 base. This means that when legislature convenes in January CEU will be facing a budget $1.3 million below the current year’s level.
According to Mike King, interim president, the institution should feel little effect this year due to a conservative school budget designed to save much needed funds for use in this type of situation. The savings accumulated from the plan are known as fluff funds and will be instrumental in paying CEU’s portion of the states overestimation of total yearly funding.
The fluff funds will lessen the blow of the cutbacks this year, said King.
There are many factors that come in to play during the creation of the state’s budget. The problem is, if the economy keeps on its current path and the decreased budget continues, we will start to feel the impact soon. The reserved savings will be enough to get us through the year but will then be completely exhausted, Kevin Walthers, vice president of finances and administrative services, said.
“We have began planning for alternative methods to deal with the situation but at the same time we are hopeful that the current economic situation has a major turnaround before any drastic measures are taken,” King added. There won’t be any state -funded agency that won’t feel the impact of this budget cut.