Public Affairs

November 9, 2018

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 9, 2018

UA Board of Regents approves FY20 budget requests with emphasis on developing Alaska’s future

Acknowledging the University of Alaska’s critical role in building the state’s economy and future workforce, the university’s Board of Regents voted to send an FY20 operating budget to the state that includes funds for a range of key strategic investments, continued efforts to build university enrollment and programs to create more innovation.

“The university is committed to helping our governor create a more vibrant Alaska, build an educated workforce and partner with his administration to meet the needs of our state,” said UA President Jim Johnsen. “The university has a key role to play in contributing to the well-being of Alaska and we work diligently to uphold that duty.”

The FY20 operating budget focuses on investing in key strategic areas including commercializing our research; graduating more Alaska-trained teachers and health care professionals; funding facility maintenance; investing in competitive compensation for staff and faculty; and ongoing efforts to increase efficiencies across the system. The requested state appropriation is $358.5 million, $20 million less than the university’s FY14 appropriation.

“Competitive compensation and benefits for our employees is extremely important,” Johnsen said. “There’s not been a full court analysis of compensation and benefits in many years, and no salary increases in nearly three years. This undertaking is very important to the recruitment and retention of our most important and valuable university resource—our people.”

The FY20 capital budget request of $50 million is for deferred maintenance renewal & repurposing and $7 million for sustaining UA Array capabilities in Alaska and funding for establishing digital fabrication laboratories at the university and at the community campuses. The university has more than 400 facilities, with an average age of 33 years, an inflation-adjusted value of $3.9 billion, and a deferred maintenance/renewal & repurposing (DM/R&R) backlog in excess of $1 billion.

The board also approved a policy providing university guidelines for responding to delayed misconduct complaints. The regents supported the new policy because it encourages prompt reporting and makes clear that complaints will be assessed and ongoing impacts will be addressed regardless of when alleged misconduct occurred.

In other action, the board approved two resolutions of appreciation for outgoing regents Deena Bishop and Jyotsna Heckman whose terms expire in early 2019; elected a new slate of officers with John Davies elected chair; and, heard from national higher education experts with the National Center for Higher Education Management Systems (NCHEMS) who commended the board’s strategic direction and encouraged it to continue focusing on a long-term vision for the university as it plays a leading role in developing a stronger and more sustainable economy.

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For more information, contact Roberta Graham, associate vice president of public affairs at 907-360-2416 (cell).

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