BOR to discuss FY22 budget, tuition rates and other topics during Nov. 5-6 meeting

by UA News  |   

The University of Alaska Board of Regents will review and approve the university’s proposed FY22 operating and capital budget requests, and consider a tuition rate increase limited to UAF upper-division and graduate tuition in recognition of the tuition rates at UAF peer institutions in the western states. The important contributions of UAA’s and UAF’s engineering programs to the state’s workforce will also be highlighted.

On July 1, 2021, the university will enter the final year of a 3-year budget compact with the governor. Under terms of the compact, UA must reduce costs by another $20 million in FY22 in addition to the $50 million implemented in FY20 and FY21. Interim UA President Pat Pitney will outline the university’s $257 million FY22 state appropriation and operating budget request, which reflects the required reductions. Pitney also will present a capital budget request that includes funding for necessary deferred maintenance, debt relief, and COVID impacts. The budget will be submitted to the governor’s Office of Management and Budget, and the governor releases his budget by Dec. 15.

“Our attention with this budget is focused on maintaining our focus on student centered academic programs and competitive research while looking at how we can operate in a leaner and more efficient manner,” said UA Interim President Pat Pitney. “We’ve endured successive budget reductions totaling $120 million since 2014. Just in nominal terms, a $257 million budget is less than we received in 2007, and adjusted for inflation that puts us back in the '90s.”

Tuition also will be on the board’s agenda. Recognizing UAA, UAF and UAS have different missions and different peer institutions, in concurrence with each Chancellor, President Pitney is proposing no tuition increase at UAA and UAS for fall 2021, and an increase to upper level and graduate tuition at UAF.

In other business the board will hear about the success of the university’s two engineering programs including data on enrollment, graduation rates and workforce impacts. The data will be amplified by the success story of Ben Kellie, a 2010 UAF alum, who was a part of the SpaceX launch team and has since returned to Alaska to start his own manufacturing company.

The board also will receive an update on Title IX and a recent fundraising effort that raised more than $600,000 for programs and scholarships. Regents will approve recommended actions from the board’s Oct. 29-30 committee meetings, resolutions of appreciation for regents whose terms expire in 2021, and elect new board officers.

The two-day meeting will begin at 8 a.m. on Nov. 5 and conclude by 2 p.m. On Nov. 6, the board will convene at 8 a.m. and conclude by 12:00 noon. The meeting will be held via Zoom and livestreamed at alaska.edu/bor/live. Live captioning is available. Or listen via audio by calling 1-866-832-7806 / pin 8475100. If the toll-free line is busy, please call 1-330-595-1371. The full agenda is at alaska.edu/bor/agendas.

The University of Alaska Board of Regents is an 11-member volunteer board, appointed by the Governor and confirmed by the Alaska Legislature. Members serve an eight-year term, with the exception of the student regent who is nominated from one of the three universities and serves a two-year term. The Board was established through the Alaska Constitution and is responsible for University of Alaska policy and management through the University President.

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