UH will cut $4.1M from budget to appease state
The first phase of the state-mandated 5 percent budget reduction began last week and the implementation is expected will continue into the summer.
In January, deans from each college were asked to look into possible areas where savings could be achieved and propose ideas for the University at large.
“We have tried to take the elements of various proposals from the UH community and craft a plan that focuses on efficiencies and savings in the first year,” Executive Vice Chancellor Carl Carlucci said in an e-mail announcing the UH Cost Savings Plan for Fiscal Year 2010.
A projected $4.1 million in savings is expected in the first phase of the reduction. Implementation of the plan will be conducted by each of the departments across campus. The University has given each department initial savings targets they must meet throughout the next four months.
“Most (of the departments) have already developed plans (to implement each item),” Carlucci said in a separate e-mail.
The majority of the nine items proposed deal with the business aspects of the University, such as eliminations or reductions in expenditures and purchasing contracts. One major item of the plan is a mandatory one-day furlough for all faculty and staff late in the semester, which, according to the UH budget Web site, “would be implemented over the course of two weeks, during a non-instructional period, to reduce the impact of services lost.”
“There will be more than one day identified so that not everyone will be off the same day and no departments will close,” Carlucci said.
Business and travel expenditures for departments will see a 10 percent cut. Communication allowances will be eliminated, according to the plan, “except for certain mission critical functions.”
Overtime payments will be reduced by 40 percent, with comp-time substituted whenever possible.
Another major aspect of the plan is to expand the University’s improved recycling program, which will generate rebates that could be reallocated into the budget.
“Now that we do a better job of collecting and sorting (our recyclables), we get paid more per ton,” Carlucci said.
Another item will generate rebates by purchasing all office supplies from Today’s Business Solutions, which, the plan states, “has the University master contract for office supply purchases. (TBS) also provides a rebate to the University, which will be reallocated in the University budget plan.”
The remaining items call for a reduction in consumption and purchasing of printer and copy paper, as well as energy-saving actions such as turning off monitors, printers and lights in offices nightly.
The plan states that “there will be additional cost saving and efficiencies that will be reviewed and implemented in the coming months. Additional ideas for cost savings are always welcome.”