Good news for the university in governor’s FY23 budget

December 15, 2021

Dear UA Community -

Today, Gov. Mike Dunleavy released his FY23 budget, and there’s good news for the university.  

For the first time in many years, our operating budget will see a modest increase. The governor’s budget for the university includes a $4 million increase toward stabilizing state general fund operating support and $22.8 million in one-time federal American Recovery Plan Act (ARPA) funding for specific areas of investment that will contribute to the state’s economic recovery. These investment areas include $7.8 million for critical minerals and rare earth elements research, $5 million for heavy oil recovery method research, and $10 million for the drone program.

The governor’s university operating budget for FY23 is $276.8 million in unrestricted general funds and the FY23 capital budget includes $20 million in state federal funds to modernize the student IT system. Implemented 30 years ago, updating the UA’s student-facing IT systems is essential to delivering a quality student experience. The capital budget also includes $94.4 million federal budget authority for UAF's Seward Marine Center Research Vessel Infrastructure project. The budget also includes a $300 million general obligation transportation and infrastructure bond that has $18.65 million for the University of Alaska Fairbanks - Bartlett Hall and Moore Hall Modernization and Renewal project.

After eight years of budget cuts totaling more than $100 million, I am encouraged by this support for the university system as we build financial stability and confidence among Alaskans, our partners and our state leaders. 

While we did not receive funding for everything the Board of Regents requested, including the remaining fixed costs increases and $50 million to address our critical deferred maintenance backlog, we will continue to advocate for these needed projects and seek funding for them from funds allocated to the state from the federal infrastructure bill. 

We appreciate that the governor understands investment in the university system, its programs and research will help rebuild the state.

As the upcoming legislative session gets underway next month, I will continue to advocate for the needs of our three universities and will keep you informed.


Interim UA President Pat Pitney