Campus Resources and Planning Committee

February 25, 2011

 

 

 

Present:           Bart Finzel, Sydney Sweep, Mark Privratsky, Dave Aronson, Lowell Rasmussen,

                        Maddy Maxeienr, LeAnn Dean, Margaret Kuchenreuther, Jacquie Johnson,

                        Josh Preston, Sara Haugen, Andy Sharpe, Dave Swenson, Sandy Olson-Loy

 

Guests:            Michelle Page, Pareena Lawrence, Bryan Herrmann, Colleen Miller, Cheryl

                        Contant, Mike Korth, Janet Ericksen, Jim Hall

 

 

The committee discussed the following strategies recommended to address the projected $1.73 million budget shortfall and decided to approve each item one by one as follows:

 

A)   Discretionary and out-of-state travel may be reduced, although the expected savings is small.  We recommend targeting potential savings at $25,000.  Unanimous approval.  This may be rolled into one-time reductions.

 

B)    All stimulus funded positions and/or programs should be eliminated or funded with strategic reserves.  Targeted potential savings at $200,000.  Unanimous approval. 

Jacquie said some new positions were created and some existing positions were funded in part by stimulus funds while other positions were expanded.  Some of the newly created positions could go away or may be supported by other funds. 

 

C)   The contingency reserve should be used for the purpose of “buying out” a modest number of appointments.  Any buy-out policy must clearly differentiate between academic and non-academic staff.  Moreover, those units proposing staff for potential buy-outs should be tasked with identifying the savings (position won’t be refilled, personnel will be replaced with someone with less compensation).  Targeted potential savings is $100,000.

 

D)   The retirement incentive program should be counted upon to yield some long-term savings either from a reduction in positions or a reduction in pay-roll.  Targeted potential savings of $100,000.

 

Jacquie believes C and D could realize an additional $100,000 beyond that identified.  The retirement incentive option is not something we have a choice about and there are 120 people on this campus who are eligible.  At this time she does not know who will elect the RIO.  It will cost us about $35,000 a person for the health care account.  Whether we need to replace those who elect the RIO is still unknown.  For every employment group, there are voluntary reduction possibilities.  We will probably need to spend more to affect these retirements than we gain immediately, but this seems like a reasonable use of the contingency dollars. 

 

Unanimous approval to combine both C and D with a targeted potential savings of $300,000.

 

 

E)    The on-going review of vacant positions should continue, although any policy must clearly differentiate between academic and non-academic staff.  Targeted potential savings expected through delays in hiring, restructuring, or hiring part-time or temporary replacements is $100,000.  Unanimous approval with the assurance that other staff reductions (RIO’s) will be taken in consideration in order to have a successful functioning unit. 

 

F)    A reduction in campus financial aid of $100,000 is recommended since UMM’s commitment in this area has doubled in the past two years.   Tabled.

 

G)   A reduction in $100,000 from “Repairs and Maintenance” is recommended.  Average actual spending in this area has doubled in the past two years.  Unanimous approval.

 

H)   Our recommendation includes an additional $50,000 in unspecified reductions.   Approved with one opposition.

 

To generate more time for strategic decisions to be made and implemented, the following one time only initiatives are recommended:

 

i)      Voluntary leaves or reductions in appointments by those among the administrative team and other who have their supervisor’s approval should be encouraged.  Targeted savings is $75,000.  Amended to $50,000 - Unanimous approval.

ii)    An effort to capture some additional “carry forwards” from the requested $1.2 million departmental carry forward balances in Fund 1000 accounts should be made by the Vice Chancellors in their respective units.  Targeted savings of $175,000.  Unanimous approval.

iii)   The contingency reserve should be used to cover the remaining shortfall of $750,000. Approved with one opposition.

 

The CRPC also recommends that anticipated near-term surpluses of over $1.5 million should be allocated towards campus contingency reserves at the end of FY 2011 to the maximum extent allowable.  Unanimous approval.

 

Jacquie said she understands the committee’s sentiment regarding the reserve; however, any proposal that takes more or all of our reserve for a recurring problem will not be well received by the Twin Cities officers.  What is presented at the budget/compact meeting may not look like what was discussed today.  She emphasized that the committee’s job is to make recommendations to her and it is her job to determine the recommendations she can accept in preparing the budget.  She also expressed her own sense of dismay at the situation we face in terms of the cuts we need to make.  Additionally, no one disagrees that we are already bare bones staffing in many areas, but the fact is that the majority of our dollars go towards personnel.  She will do her best to work with Colleen and Lowell to present a believable and acceptable budget to the Twin Cities officers.  She is grateful to Bart for his leadership and to the entire committee.