Campus' Goals & Budget Reduction Guiding Principles & Strategies

July 17, 2020

I. Overarching Campus Goals

  1. The preeminent mission of the campus is to support and advance the educational and professional success of our students.
  2. A fundamental goal of the campus, especially critical during the COVID-19 pandemic is to always prioritize the health, safety and well-being of our students, faculty, staff, administrators and our communities.

II. Guiding Principles During Budget Reductions

  1. When budget reductions are required, our goal is to retain and preserve our current employees’ jobs as much as possible, to the extent that our core educational mission is ensured by the resident pool of experienced employees.
  2. Another important goal is to protect and preserve funding as much as possible to support student success (e.g., GI 2025 efforts).
  3. Therefore, prorata or equal cuts proportionally to all divisions is NOT equitable, nor strategic.
  4. Budget reduction scenarios must include multiple year planning, as economic recovery will NOT be completed in a one-year cycle. All credible economic forecasts predict a protracted and multiple year pattern of economic downturn and eventual recovery (i.e., anywhere from 3-6 years).
  5. Maximum flexibility and nimble budgetary adjustments and innovative brainstorming will be VITAL as economic conditions continue to evolve in dramatic and unpredictable ways in the future.
  6. Enhanced and improved communication and robust consultation processes are essential.
  7. Teamwork, collegiality, transparency and trust are paramount to our campus’ success.

III. Budget Reduction Strategies

A. Base CUTS or Permanent Reduction Strategies:

  1. Focus on cutting/holding previously approved new and vacant positions (permanent and temporary staff positions, but with special consideration for student assistants). Open positions that are essential to student success and for critical or essential campus operations must be preserved and maintained in the base (CO requires presidential approval).
  2. Freeze/halt travel expenses from base budget lines within divisions (CO requires presidential approval).
  3. Where appropriate, identify other base reductions within divisions (e.g., O&E; Academic Affairs may consider Faculty Early Retirement Program or FERP savings from retiring tenured faculty).
  4. Identify other potential workload efficiencies for baseline cost savings (e.g., streamline existing operational processes to reallocate staff workloads more efficiently).
  5. Future consideration of a campus-based Early Exit Program (analogous to Humboldt’s EEP).
  6. When base budget reductions warrant deep cuts, the only other alternative includes implementing permanent layoffs of employees (both permanent and part-time).

B. Temporary One-Time CUTS to Meet Campus’ Budget Reduction Gap:

  1. Identify internal divisional one-time funded cuts or reductions.

C. Temporary One-Time REVENUE Bridging Strategies

  1. Rely on campus’ CARES/FEMA federally-approved funding to ameliorate/offset the costs of new COVID-related expenditures incurred during Spring 2020, Summer 2020, Fall 2020.
  2. Cabinet VPs/Sr AVPs will have discretion to utilize their own one-time carryforward revenue to bridge/temporarily fill budget gaps within divisions.
  3. One-time campus reserves to bridge/fill budget gaps will be identified for consideration.
  4. Student over-enrollment beyond target will yield new temporary tuition and fee revenue for the campus. Unfortunately, there is a concomitant cost to other campus units to accommodate additional student need demand. Furthermore, continued over-enrollment over time will be unsustainable without commensurate baseline state appropriations for increases in campus baseline student FTES growth.
  5. Identify and seek other potential sources for new revenue (e.g., company sponsorships, grants, external donors).