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August 3, 2004

Update on campus budget offered

Acting Chancellor Martin M. Chemers and Margaret L. Delaney, interim campus provost and executive vice chancellor, have provided the following message to the campus community on the state budget:

UC President Robert Dynes has issued a video letter for UC faculty and staff regarding finalization of the 2004-05 UC budget. See video

As you may have learned from news reports, the governor and legislature have reached agreement on a budget for FY 04-05.

After both the Senate and Assembly voted to approve the budget last week, the governor signed it into law on Saturday, July 31.

Even though the long-term fiscal problems of the state are not fully resolved, we are very pleased that this budget includes no additional cuts to the University of California beyond what was included in the May revision budget. Among other provisions, this budget restores outreach funding to 90 percent of FY 2003 – 04 levels, and it will provide for offers of freshman admission to UC-eligible students who previously were offered only a Guaranteed Transfer Option (GTO). (www.ucop.edu/news/archives/2004/jul29.htm)

With the provision to offer admission to students in the GTO program, UC will be able to honor the Master Plan for Higher Education and offer fall admission to all eligible students as it has done in the past. Earlier this summer, our campus was able to offer admission to students in the GTO program who had applied to UCSC. This occurred during the regular admissions cycle and within our planned enrollment target. It is too soon to know what impact this new systemwide GTO pool may have on our freshman class size, but we will keep you informed as the new academic year begins.

Given this budget and the new compact between the Governor and the University of California (www.universityofcalifornia.edu/news/compact/), we anticipate at least a temporary end to the budget reductions this campus and the UC system have experienced over the past three years and a return to a more predictable budget planning process. However, we still face the challenge of institutional transformation to address the permanent reductions in state funding we have received. This will be the focus of much of our work over the next two to three years.

Since FY 01-02, UC Santa Cruz has experienced a total permanent reduction in state funds of $23.5 million. Designated cuts in outreach, research, student services, public service and summer session accounted for $12.4 million of this total. The remaining state budget cuts totaling $11.1 million directly affected our core budgets for both academic and academic support units. When this amount is added to other permanent budget cuts taken in order to fund rising costs of essential functions, the campus has absorbed a total of $14.1 million in permanent annual reductions in its core activities.

Our budget reduction planning process for 2004-05 was completed by the end of June 2004. In the final analysis, we focused on preserving core activities of research and teaching, despite cuts to the academic divisions ranging from 3 percent to 5 percent. We were able to maintain our operations, protect health and safety services, and keep our commitment to minimize layoff of staff, despite cuts to academic support divisions ranging from 5 percent to 10 percent. (See more detail, including examples of budgetary investments, in the Campus Provost’s message from June 14. A complete retrospective of this year’s budget processes and messages is available at www.ucsc.edu/budget_update/)

In addressing the undesignated budget cuts, only nine individuals funded by state general funds and student fees were actually laid off, and 16 individuals experienced partial reductions in time, ranging from less than 10 percent to 60 percent. In addition, 42.3 FTE vacant staff positions were eliminated. This represents a relatively small percentage of the approximately 3,000 UC Santa Cruz staff. Credit is due to senior officers’ judicious use of the hiring freeze and other careful planning decisions over the past several years.

These staff reductions are not trivial and their impact will be felt in many ways. Yet, given the magnitude of budget cuts, there are many fewer layoffs than would have been expected. We recognize the tremendous impact these actions have had for remaining staff members, and we sincerely appreciate their continued hard work and commitment.

We also recognize and appreciate the hard work of the deans and vice chancellors and their engagement of members of their divisions in recommending budget reductions. As well, we value the consultations with the Academic Senate and its committees which informed our decisions.

Here are some points that underscore UC Santa Cruz’s forward momentum:

• Undergraduate applications to UC Santa Cruz this year were up 7.4 percent compared to last year; for the same time period, the UC-wide applications declined 4.1 percent.

• As of April 21, the average GPA of undergraduate students admitted to UCSC was 3.81.

• We are on target to enroll nearly 3,100 new frosh, a smaller entering class than a year ago.

• Overall enrollment projections appear to be close to our enrollment target of 14,447 total students (three-quarter average), despite the smaller entering class due to improved retention and an increase in graduate enrollments.

• We will enroll 90 more graduate students than anticipated, due in part to our commitment during admissions cycle to help offset graduate student fee increases if they exceeded 20 percent. Total graduate student enrollment in fall quarter is expected to be 1,525.

• We anticipate the arrival of 37 new faculty in the coming academic year.

• Deans have received authorization to recruit for 20 new faculty in 2004-05.

• A record-breaking $32.2 million was raised in private support last year, setting the stage for continued achievement in the coming year.

• We are proceeding with the construction of the McHenry Addition, with approval of our capital budget.

• We will open new facilities this fall: the Engineering 2 building and student apartments at Cowell, Stevenson, and Kresge Colleges

The achievements reflect the ongoing dedication and hard work of faculty, staff, and students. As we look forward to the new academic year and its opportunities, we are convinced that the campus is well poised to advance our collective aspirations. We sincerely thank you all for your continued efforts.

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