April 8, 2003

Dear College Faculty and Staff,

Although our final budget reduction percentage for the coming FY is not known at this time, the central administration has asked us to identify how we intend to absorb a 5% reduction in our permanent state budgets during the first year of the next biennium. This information is due by April 14.

To meet this deadline, a proposed budget reduction plan has been assembled. Both the College's Elected Faculty Council and the Ad Hoc Staff Budget Advisory Committee are requested to provide comments on this proposal. In addition, I solicit input from all faculty and staff. I will review all advice submitted as I prepare our final budget reduction plans later this Spring.

You will recall that a 5% annual reduction translates into about $253k plus $55k of benefits for a total reduction of $308k for the first year of the coming biennium.

I propose the reductions shown on the attached spreadsheet. While we are assuming an aggregate 5% reduction for planning purposes, certain College budgets will be impacted more than others. Once the University announces the final percentage reduction, adjustments will be made to this proposal.

Instructional salaries constitute about 64% of our total annual permanent state budgets with staff salaries and operations making up the remaining 36%. However, most of the instructional salaries are not subject to budget reductions. This necessarily implies that staff salaries and operations must bear a disproportionate share of any reduction. My proposal reduces faculty resources (not TA's) by almost $81,000. Further reductions in this category are not possible as they would seriously erode our ability to offer quality instructional programs. The remaining reductions must be taken from staff and operations budgets. We determined that this requires about a 10% reduction in staff and/or operations budgets to be shared equally with the central College and center budgets.

We realize that these large reductions will be very painful to implement. We also recognize that reductions in service will be noticeable. We must, however, do everything possible to promote high quality in all we continue to do.

In preparing my proposal, I used the following College Budget Allocation Principles:

1. Budget decisions are based on the College's strategic priorities that emanate from its mission, vision and goals.

2. Permanent state budgets are used to support the College's: 1) instructional, 2) research, and 3) service programs - in that order.

3. Permanent state budgets all bear some share of any budget reduction, recognizing the possibility of targeted reductions.

4. With advice from faculty, staff and students, budget decisions follow an open, fair, and objective process communicated to the College community in a timely manner.

In implementing the above principles for FY 2003-04, the College will:

1. take advantage of the least disruptive opportunities, and

2. maintain maximum future flexibility

We must also be aware that additional reductions in FY 05 are very possible and may be as painful as those we will suffer in FY 04. We must do all we can to secure non-state funds to supplement our dwindling permanent state support.

Although it is possible that the Legislature will provide more budget relief than expressed herein, I believe we must initiate the prudent steps outlined above to protect our College. Thank you and best wishes.

B. Bruce Bare, Dean
To Return to:Prof Bare's Page, Dean's Office, College of Forest Resources