$3.06 million must be cut from 1996-97 UA budget

By Trigie Ealey
Arizona Summer Wildcat
June 12, 1996

Arizona Daily Wildcat

Joel Valdez, senior vice president for business affairs


The office of business affairs will have to cut its budget by $2.07 million for the 1996-97 fiscal year - the deepest cut in a universitywide, $3.06 million budget reduction plan released last month.

Among the areas the office oversees are utilities, grounds and maintenance of the campus, and the purchase of property.

Joel Valdez, senior vice president for business affairs, said he does not yet know where the cuts will come from. He said the office is looking at where the cuts can be made.

"The problem is that we asked for a 5-percent increase in tuition but only got a 3-percent increase in tuition," Valdez said. "Costs are continuing to rise for things like electricity and water."

Final plans will not be made until the end of the month, when the adjustment recommendations are due to the budget office. The administration is pushing to start the budget year on July 1, Provost Paul Sypherd said in a memo to university vice presidents, vice provosts and deans.

With a total funding base of $7.25 million, the libraries are the only area not facing a cut. The main library will receive a $350,000 increase in funding to cover the increasing costs of technology and periodicals.

With a collection estimated at $40 million to $50 million, the library is expensive due to costs of maintaining a steady temperature and humidity level to preserve the investment, said Dean of Libraries Carla Stoffel.

This summer, all the windows will be caulked for the first time in 20 years.

"On the rare occasions that we have a driving rain, we have some water leaks in the windows," Stoffel said. "If that happens when it rains, air is probably getting through as well."

She said the repairs could not only preserve the collection, but could also save money on utilities.

"The lack of a cut is a symbol of the importance of the library and our efforts to be more efficient on campus," she said, noting that the library has cut nearly $750,000 since 1990. "I am thrilled we are not being cut this time."

Other reductions include a $142,800 cut in funding to President Manuel Pacheco's office, $270,700 from research and graduate studies, and $59,200 from undergraduate education.

The office of student affairs will see a cut of $293,000, which will be spread among campus health services, enrollment services, cultural affairs and the office of the dean of students.

Saundra Taylor, vice president for student affairs, could not be reached for comment.

The academic colleges are being asked to plan their budgets without allotting about 1 percent of the base amount. The 1-percent savings is used as insurance in the case of a dramatic dip in enrollment. State schools are funded by the Arizona Legislature based partly on a formula which calculates student enrollment on day 21 of the semester.

If enrollment is better than predicted, the 1-percent savings can be worked into the budget of the individual college. If enrollment is below expectations, the colleges will have to live without those funds.

Edward Frisch, UA director of resource planning and management, said the departments themselves decide where the cuts are to be made.

"The cuts are made by the departments because they have the best knowledge of what is in their best interest," he said.

The budget reductions are larger than expected, Frisch said, due to early indications of a lag in enrollment. Telephone registration for fall semester has not kept pace with prior years, he said.

Jerome Lucido, assistant vice president of enrollment services, said the enrollment figures for the fall semester are preliminary.

"The enrollment decrease is modest right now, and there is still a lot of time for enrollment to pick up," Lucido said. "We are projecting a decrease of about 250 at this point."

Frisch said the positive side of the cuts is where the reductions are aimed. Cutting the administration costs leaves more money for academic programs, he said.