Budget & Planning
FY19 Early Budget Guidance
We head into the FY19 budget cycle better off than we could have been, but still on the heels of five straight years of declining funding from the State of Alaska. Recall that last legislative session for FY18, the governor proposed a flat state funding of $325 for the UA system. Other proposals would have dropped UA funding to $309 or even $303 million. In the end, we ended up midway between the two, at $317 million. UAF’s portion was about $158 million, down $4.5 million from last year. While we were relieved that the worst-case scenario didn’t come to pass, the funding reductions and fixed cost increases meant UAF needed to reduce unrestricted spending by an average of about 4.4 percent this year.
UAF continues to balance required cuts with sustaining the core mission and values of the institution, and its high-quality programs and services. The coming year is expected to be challenging, but UAF is committed to finding solutions to meet these budgetary shortfalls that are both strategic and sustainable.
Please feel free to provide feedback HERE as UAF works to implement solutions to these challenges.
UA is currently also leading a review of some key academic and administrative areas in an effort to streamline operations, known as the UA Strategic Pathways review. For more information on this review please visit the website.
UAF funding comes from a variety of sources. About 40 percent is from state general funds and the remaining 60 percent comes from things like externally funded research activity, student tuition and fees, and auxiliary activities. Because a large percentage of the UAF budget comes from the state, and because the cost of doing business rises with inflation each year, even flat state funding has a sizeable effect on UAF operations. In recent years, as state revenues declined, appropriations to the university have gone from flat to reduced.
Travel and Hiring Restrictions
In light of the state's fiscal challenges and at the Governor's request, UA President Johnsen has suspended all non-essential travel and hiring funded wholly or in part by unrestricted funds, effective January 6, 2016. Unrestricted funds include general fund, recharge/auxiliary, event funds, TVEP and match. For additional guidance, see the FAQs and memo below.
Planning & Budget Committee (PBC)
The UAF Planning & Budget Committee (PBC) is charged with reviewing and assessing options provided by the Provost and Vice Chancellors in the winter and spring. Broad feedback will be collected and reviewed. PBC recommendations will be made to the Chancellor's Cabinet in late spring, for discussion/implementation by the fiscal year end on June 30.
In previous years, the PBC took feedback from the Budget Options Group and UAF community. For FY15-16 budget planning, the PBC agreed to guiding principles and a decision process that included Special Program Reviews, details below.
The PBC additionally created a UAF Vision 2020 document to guide its deliberations. Vision for the future, strategies to achieve goals and areas that may be reduced as a result, are noted. The PBC recommends this for consideration by other university evaluation committees, as applicable.
Special Program Reviews
The PBC recommended special program reviews of a number of non-academic and academic programs.á Special committees are reviewing the operational and/or financial models for the following programs:á
- Farms and large animal care
- Public information, marketing and communications
- Summer Sessions and Lifelong Learning
- K-12 outreach/bridging programs
- Revenue enhancement options
For updates on current and completed special program reviews, click HERE.á