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Volume 70, Issue 5, Friday, August 27, 2004


State funds not in danger, VP says

Planning budget cut ahead for University

Cougar News Staff

The University is not facing a 5 percent budget cut from the state, and in fact has an exceptionally strong budget for the coming fiscal year, Vice President for Administration and Finance John Rudley said Thursday.

An article and headline in Thursday's Daily Cougar implied UH's state funding will be cut, but Rudley said planning for possible budget shortfalls is routine.

"Every biennium, the state has to predict what kind of revenue it's going to have," Rudley said, so it asks public institutions to submit budgets reflecting 95 percent of what they actually require. But at the end of the last legislative session, he said, UH wound up with a 1 percent budget cut.

"At the start of the process, a much larger decrease was projected than we actually realized," he said.

Rudley said this year's budget, which totals about $717 million for UH, is strong. More than $9 million of it will go toward hiring 101 new faculty members, and both faculty and staff will receive pay raises. 

The budget also bolsters financial aid and increases capital expenditures for construction and renovation projects.

Nearly $31 million will come from tuition and fee increases, an element Rudley praised.

"A contribution by the students to help cover the state shortfall is tremendous," he said. "It's paying big dividends for us."

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