May 6, 2020: Budget for FY2021
By now you have read the recent messages from Chancellor Wrigley and President Marrero regarding the budget for FY2021. While we still need more guidance from the System on how to approach these reductions, here is what I know at this point.
All state agencies have been instructed to plan for a 14% reduction in budgets. This means a $19,900,000 reduction for George Southern. For Academic Affairs, which comprises the majority of the university budget, this may require a reduction of up to approximately $12 million.
This week, my office is working on a budget plan that gets us to that 14% reduction. Echoing what President Marrero said on Monday, our goal is to continue providing a transformational, rigorous, and innovative education for our students, and the impact on them will be our primary consideration. We will be strategic in our approach; this will not be an across-the-board cut. Given the severity of the situation, we must consider all of the following options:
- There may be furloughs, but they will not be implemented without guidance from the System and state.
- The System will also provide guidance on early retirement incentive plans that may be offered.
- There will be hiring limits, and we will have to consider giving up vacant lines, which will also impact the number of visiting and part-time faculty we can hire.
- We will need to make cuts in travel, operations, and equipment allocations.
Making strategic reductions to our budget in these areas this year will help us maintain the quality education we are so proud of, continue scholarship activities, keep the focus on our people, and allow us to return stronger once state revenues rebound.
The president and all cabinet members will be meeting with both the Senate Executive Committee and Staff Council this week to discuss strategies and options. Many of your departments have been engaging with new strategies for scheduling and modes of course delivery, and now is the time to put that flexibility and creativity into play. I ask for your patience and support during this process. I assure you that I, along with your deans and department chairs, will do everything we can to minimize the impact of these cuts on the broader university mission.
I know this is unwelcome news in an already unsettling time. As soon as I know more, I will share it with you.
Carl L. Reiber
Provost & Vice President Academic Affairs
Last updated: 8/18/2021