April 29, 2010

Budget units outline their plans; Geoffroy presents university budget to regents

by Anne Krapfl

The state Board of Regents will get a first look at Iowa State's FY11 budget plans April 29 when it meets in Iowa City. President Gregory Geoffroy will outline a proposed university budget that contains nearly $20.4 million less state support than the university received on July 1, 2009, and $58.7 million less than on July 1, 2008.

Iowa State will rely on projected new tuition revenues ($21 million), a one-time state appropriation ($3.2 million) and increases in research indirect cost recovery and miscellaneous income ($400,000) to bring revenue levels back to approximately the July 2009 level. However, that revenue must fund a long list of increasing costs, including student financial aid ($6.4 million), employee insurance ($2.3 million), required compensation increases ($1.5 million) and library acquisitions ($770,000), among others.

Geoffroy's presentation will be posted on the president's web site Thursday morning. Coverage of the regents' budget discussion will be posted in Inside Iowa State later Thursday.

In building the FY11 budget, university leaders made permanent a $24.9 mid-year reduction to the FY10 budget. Iowa State's colleges, library, IT Services and vice presidential units were given reduction targets in late February and submitted their budget drafts by early April. Those plans included operations plans and personnel plans -- supplemental plans outlining specific changes to faculty, staff and graduate assistant positions. The personnel plans currently are being reviewed in human resource services to make sure that the proposed changes are consistent with policies and procedures for the respective employee groups.

Summarized below are highlights of what the units proposed to meet their reduction targets for the new year that begins July 1. Executive vice president and provost Elizabeth Hoffman has accepted the plans, pending regent approval of the university's proposed budget at the board's June 9 meeting.

Academic colleges

Agriculture and Life Sciences: $3,019,896

  • Reduce state funding for graduate assistant positions
  • Eliminate seven vacant faculty positions
  • Continue planning to merge the horticulture and ag education and studies departments
  • Consider a joint administrative structure for the entomology and natural resource ecology and management departments
  • Charge $100 special course fee to students for courses that use special facilities (such as farms, greenhouses)
  • Increase user fee 25 percent to researchers (faculty, scientists) with projects at ISU research farms

Business: $982,642

  • Revise the MBA curriculum (eliminates one FTE faculty position)
  • Eliminate the Saturday MBA program (year two of implementation), eliminates 1.5 FTE faculty positions
  • Merge two B.S. programs (logistics and supply chain management, and operations and supply chain management) into one: supply chain management (eliminates 2.5 FTE faculty positions)
  • Reduce graduate assistant positions

Design: $837,554

  • Reorganize department-level support and student support services into college-wide offices (likely would eliminate three staff positions)
  • Temporarily reorganize department administrative offices, eliminating chair positions, until a new structure is envisioned that will serve the college's future plans
  • Reduce budget for supplemental instruction, which reduces faculty/instructor positions from 94 FTEs to 77 FTEs
  • Reduce supplies/services budgets
  • Increase enrollments in some professional degree programs

Engineering: $2,307,425

  • Cut approximately $1 million by reorganizing units and reducing staff positions in central service units (communications, computing support, alumni relations, development, academic and student affairs, graduate and research programs). Not all decisions have been made, but several that have: close the Engineering Policy and Leadership Institute and decrease central support of undergraduate research
  • Use differential tuition to increase funding to all eight of its academic departments by approximately $1.8 million
  • Reduce hiring of faculty
  • Reduce graduate assistant and lecturer positions

Human Sciences, reduction target: $1,561,285

  • Departmental faculty have voted to continue planning to merge two departments (educational leadership and policy studies, and curriculum and instruction) into a single unit. Planning will continue through the 2010-11 academic year.
  • Remove state funding for the Research Institute for Studies in Education; the center will become primarily self-funded
  • Eliminate positions, both vacant and filled

Liberal Arts and Sciences: $4,737,922

  • Use retirements, resignations, open positions and expired contracts to reduce personnel
  • Reduce merit, P&S and non-tenure faculty positions through layoffs
  • Create "business centers" that serve multiple departments
  • Add course fees for some lab courses
  • Reduce graduate assistant positions in nine departments
  • Substantially cut (21 percent) funding for sociology department (this eliminates two open faculty positions and some graduate assistant positions) as part of a multi-year plan to refocus and downsize the department
  • Reduce energy consumption

Veterinary Medicine: $1,602,998

  • Reduce funds for faculty start-ups
  • Eliminate positions in central administration offices
  • Eliminate seven faculty positions (vacant or planned retirements)
  • Eliminate vacant staff positions, move funding for some to grant or fee income

Library: $974,394

  • Reduce personnel through retirements
  • Reduce energy use (lighting and heat)
  • Cancel some journal subscriptions (titles identified in fall 2009 review) and reduce book purchases

IT Services: $384,825

  • Reduce personnel by 3.5 people through early retirements
  • Reduce student labor hours, which reduces evening and weekend hours of operation in the Solution Center

President's unit: $610,162

  • Reduce state funding of athletics department
  • Reduce student employment hours
  • Reduce professional development, travel, supplies budgets
  • Reduce marketing of the university

Vice presidential units

Business and finance: $2,355,586

  • Transfer some employee compensation lines and supply budgets to reserve funds or fee income
  • Charge fees for services that were centrally supported in the past
  • Reduce staff positions by 24 FTE, which eliminates some services and creates wait time for others

Extension and outreach: $1,961,183

  • Reduce staff positions through retirements
  • Transfer some salaries to sponsored funding or user fees
  • Raise user fees in 4-H
  • Reduce operating expenses

Research and economic development: $918,613

  • Discontinue central funding for eight research centers (which will move under a college or institute)
  • Develop new funding model for four institutes (Bioeconomy Institute, Nutrition and Wellness Research Center, Partnerships in Prevention Science Institute and Institute for Transportation) based on realized indirect costs
  • Consolidate key services of the Institute for Social and Behavioral Research and Center for Survey Statistics and Methodology to create an integrated survey research lab

Student affairs: $969,386

  • Gain efficiencies in enrollment services research and analysis
  • Continue a multi-year plan to move recreation services from state to auxiliary funding
  • Eliminate three vacant positions (registrar and student financial aid offices)
  • Eliminate two planned positions at the Memorial Union
  • Reduce supplies, professional development, training and travel budgets