Making the CutsBy Gerrad Frei • March 15, 2012 • Category: News, Top Story
The task is a daunting one. Yet Administrative Chancellor for Administrative Services Rob Cramer seems undeterred.
The current budget lapse approved in July 2011 requires the state to find $174 million in cuts over the next two years. The UW System’s share of that lapse is $65 million.
This means that cutting the University of Wisconsin-Platteville’s share of the lapse of over $1.8 million is the responsibility of Rob Cramer and other administrative staff members.
“Its not the ideal situation,” Cramer said. “But its our job to find out where we can make these cuts and reallocations.”
Cramer explains that the plan for the current fiscal year is to cut $1.3 million from the UW-Platteville budget, with $560,000 planned for next year. However, most recent estimates have the cuts and reallocations for this year at just over $1.5 million.
“We don’t want to make cuts across the board,” Cramer said. “We want to be more strategic. We especially want to keep this from hurting the students.”
Student Affairs will have to reduce costs by $73,735 which is 5 percent of the lapse. Though this seems an insignificant amount, they are only provided with $792,725 in funding, which means that the $73,735 owed is roughly 9.3 percent of their total funding.
In comparison, Administrative Services is allotted $7.6 million in funding, meaning the $469,519 owed is equivalent to just 6.1 percent of their total budget.
“Finding where to take and move funds is like trying to hit a moving target,” Cramer said. “Just because there is a vacancy or reduction currently within an office, does not mean that there will be in the future. But we need to fill the most important vacancies first.”
Cramer also notes that “where expenses are occurring” and “fairness” were large factors in deciding which reallocations and cuts would occur and where.
Such was the thinking when it was decided that since 90 percent of the internet usage stems from the residence halls, more of the internet payment should come from the residence hall funding. Over time, this may cause the price of living in a residence hall to increase, Cramer said.
Cramer has hope for the school’s financial future after last February’s state job report citing an addition of 12,000 new jobs, the building of distance learning programs and the imminent launching of a very deliberate capital campaign for UW-Platteville.
However, Cramer notes that the school has a plan to cut $1.8 million from its budget every biennium for the next four years following this biennium, should recent trends continue.
“We all need to work together for the future health of the university finances, without state financial backing,” Cramer said.