UW-Madison Budget in Brief

UW-Madison recently released the 2016-17 Budget in Brief, a publication designed to help people, including legislators and other government officials, better understand the university’s budget.

As we get closer to the 2017-19 state budget process, PROFS encourages faculty and others to take a look and become more familiar with UW-Madison budget details.

October Board of Regents Meeting

The University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents will meet at the Davies Center at UW-Eau Claire Thursday and Friday, October 6 and 7. Livestream coverage of the full board portions of the meeting is here.

The regents meet in committee Thursday morning.

The Education Committee will consider new degree programs at UW-Madison and UW-Milwaukee and changes to faculty personnel rules at UW-Whitewater and UW-Green Bay. UW-Eau Claire will also present its academic master plan.

The Business and Finance Committee will consider several contractual agreements at UW-Madison and hear an update on information security.

The Capital Planning and Budget Committee will discuss new building projects at UW-Eau Claire and UW-La Crosse, consider a lease agreement for UW-Madison College of Letters and Science career services, and hear an update on State Building Commission action.

The Research, Economic Development, and Innovation Committee will accept the UW School of Medicine and Public Health Partnership Program annual report and hear a panel discussion on business and community mobilization in Eau Claire.

The Audit Committee will discuss the Fiscal Audit 2017 Plan progress. The committee will also move into closed session to discuss a personnel issue.

The full board will meet Thursday afternoon. UW-Eau Claire Chancellor Jim Schmidt will host a presentation, Partners in Wisconsin’s Future, and Tom Still, president of the Wisconsin Technology Council will discuss UW System’s role as an economic driver in the state. The board will also move into closed session to discuss the naming of a facility at UW-Madison.

On Friday, the board will take action on committee work and hear reports from UW System Board of Regents President Regina Millner and UW System President Ray Cross. They will also consider a resolution (below) on tuition, affordability, and quality.

UW-Madison State Budget Forum

UW-Madison hosted a campus forum on the state budget and its impact on the university on  September 14. The discussion covered the university’s budget landscape and how it has changed over time, the impact of budget cuts, the UW System 2017-19 budget request, and how alumni and friends of the university are being engaged.

Chancellor Rebecca Blank, UW System Board of Regents President Regina Millner, Vice Chancellor for Finance and Administration Laurent Heller, and Vice Chancellor for University Relations Charles Hoslet were panelists.

These slides were used during the forum:

Legislative Update


The 2015-17 biennial budget process was difficult – UW System received a $250 million budget cut along with a two-year extension of a tuition freeze. PROFS played a key role in one budget bright spot: funding for the much-needed Chemistry Building project. In prior budget cycles, PROFS led the fight to ensure retirement contributions are taken pre-tax, saving the average faculty member about $1,800 per year and successfully lobbied for domestic partner benefits and first-day health coverage for faculty and staff. Looking ahead:

2017-19 Biennial Budget

While Governor Walker instructed all agency heads to prepare budgets with zero increases, the Board of Regents approved a $42.5 million increase in state funding over the next biennium. The increase will largely go toward initiatives to develop the state’s workforce and improve its economy, a plan called 2020FWD. The governor has also said he might consider performance-based funding increases for UW. Criteria for such an increase might include graduation and post-graduation employment rates.

FWD2020 highlights:

  • $26.1 million for the educational pipeline, with a focus on addressing the state’s workforce needs and increasing the student pipeline.
  • $6 million to improve the university experience, with a focus on creating graduates who are creative, innovative and entrepreneurial.
  • $6.4 million for business and community mobilization, with a focus on bringing together the university, businesses and the greater community.
  • $4 million for operational excellence, with a focus on improvements in targeted performance areas. The budget process is lengthy, beginning with formal introduction early next year and final passage most likely in late June. PROFS will be involved throughout the entire process and communicate regularly with faculty.

Tuition Freeze

Earlier this summer, Governor Walker said he supported an additional one or two-year freeze on University of Wisconsin System tuition, lengthening the current freeze to six years.

Regent Action on Tenure, Shared Governance and Post-Tenure Review

Last year, PROFS regularly communicated with the chair and members of the Regent Tenure Policy Task Force as they developed new tenure policies. We will continue to aggressively advocate on behalf of UW-Madison faculty as the Regents work to approve a post-tenure review policy this fall.

Fall Elections

All Wisconsin Assembly seats and 16 seats on the Senate are on the ballot in November. Republicans hold comfortable margins in both houses, but some pundits believe the Senate could flip parties if a Democratic presidential landslide occurs. A split legislature would have an impact on the upcoming state budget process and could slow Republican legislative efforts such as a proposed ban on fetal tissue research and campus carry.

August Board of Regents Meeting

uw system logoThe University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents will meet at UW-Madison’s Gordon Event Center on Thursday, August 18. Livestream coverage of the full board portion of the meeting is here.

Committee work begins at 8:15 am and the full board meets at 11:15 am. All regents will discuss UW System’s strategic framework (2020FWD) and the 2017-19 operating and capital budget requests.

UW System is proposing a $42.5 million increase in state funding over the next biennium. The increase will largely go toward initiatives to develop the state’s workforce and improve the its economy. Governor Walker told all state department heads to submit budget requests with no new funding for 2017-19, but he also said he would consider performance-based funding increases for UW. Criteria for such an increase might include graduation and post-graduation employment rates.

The Education Committee will discuss several new degree programs and hear updates on the post-tenure review policy and math placement test cutoff scores.

The Business and Finance Committee will hear several reports and review three contractual agreements.

The Research, Economic Development, and Innovation Committee will hear a report on the Career Connect Web Portal and an update on UW-Madison’s research efforts.

The Audit Committee will review fiscal 2017 audit plan progress and several reports. The committee will also discuss the Three Lines of Defense Model is a simple and common sense approach for risk oversight.

2020FWD.pdf by Michelle Felber on Scribd



June Board of Regents Meeting

uw system logoThe University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents will meet at UW-Milwaukee Thursday and Friday, June 9 and 10. All meetings will be held in the UW-Milwaukee Union, 2200 East Kenwood Boulevard. Livestream coverage of the full board meeting is available here.

The regents meet in committee Thursday morning.

The Education Committee will hear a report on academic and student affairs issues and discuss several degree programs.

The Business and Finance Committee will discuss several contractual agreements, consider a request by UW-Madison to be granted permission to fully spend a recent bequest, and hear updates on the integration of UW Hospital and the UW Medical Foundation, the system-wide title and compensation study, and UW-Milwaukee’s response to current fiscal challenges.

The Capital Planning and Budget Committee will discuss several building projects (including UW-Madison’s Witte Hall) and the sale of university-owned properties.

The Research, Economic Development and Innovation Committee will hear presentations from Brightstar Wisconsin Foundation, the Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation (WEDC), and UW-Milwaukee Chancellor Mark Mone.

The Audit Committee will discuss the progress of the Fiscal 2016 Audit Plan and review and approve the Fiscal 2017 Audit Plan.

The full board meets Thursday afternoon and Friday morning. Three newly-appointed Regents will be introduced: non-traditional student Lisa Erickson of Osceola, Milwaukee attorney Tracey Klein and Janesville attorney Bryan Steil.

The board will discuss and approve its 2016-17 operating budget, including tuition and segregated fee schedule. UW System announced yesterday it would not release budget documents prior to Thursday’s meeting.

The board will also discuss a request by UW System President Ray Cross to urge legislators to fund a 33 percent increase in the Wisconsin Grant program. Funding for the grant program has remained flat at 2010-11 levels, while the number of students receiving aid has increased by 28 percent.


Governor Walker on Tenure, Tuition, Free Speech on Campus

Governor Scott Walker spoke about UW System and recent faculty no confidence votes with Jay Weber on WISN radio yesterday.

The pair touched on several subjects, including tenure (“jobs for life”), the possibility of extending the tuition freeze into the next biennium, shared governance and giving more power to the chancellors, strengthening free speech on campus, and “superstar” faculty members who bring in large amounts of research funding.

Wisconsin Technology Council Report: The Value of Higher Education to Wisconsin’s Economy

The Wisconsin Technology Council, an independent, non-profit board of leaders in business, technology, education and investments, released a report (below) examining the role of public support in higher education in the state. Their conclusion?

“Further cuts in public support for higher education in Wisconsin will harm the state’s economy, which relies on colleges and universities for talent, technology transfer and business development in the communities those institutions serve.”

Faculty Senate Approves Amended Resolution on No Confidence in UW System President Ray Cross, Board

The University of Wisconsin-Madison Faculty Senate adopted the amended resolution below on Monday, May 2, 2016. Audio from the meeting is embedded below.

Archived audio of the meeting: