Tag: 2015-17 state budget

Regents to Discuss UW System Budget Proposal

uw system logoThe University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents is meeting at UW-Oshkosh today and tomorrow, August 21 and 22. Livestream coverage of the full board meeting is here.

Regents committees will meet Thursday morning, while the full board will meet Thursday afternoon and Friday.

The board will consider UW System’s state budget request Thursday afternoon. The proposal includes $95.2 million for the “Talent Development Initiative,” the implementation of new performance measures, and statutory language changes related to compensation, including the ability to offer merit pay increases.

The budget request notes that Governor Scott Walker directed state agencies, including UW System, to submit proposals that assumed no new funding, but UW System discussed its intention to request an budget increase with members of Governor Walker’s staff.

Budget request highlights:

  • $30 million for a competitive grant program targeting six areas critical to the state’s economy: agriculture, finance, insurance/real estate, healthcare, manufacturing, transportation, and water research.
  • $27.3 to cover a pay plan funding gap. Historically, UW System funds about 30 percent of a pay plan increase with tuition dollars. The two-year tuition freeze has led to a funding gap, with many campuses holding insufficient reserves to cover the pay plan. 
  • $24.4 million to increase the number of college graduates statewide, with much of the funding directed to the Course Options program, a program that allows high school students to earn college credits. Additional funding would expand the Flex Option degree program, improve the credit transfer system, and assist working and first-generation college students.
  • $22.5 million in one-time funding to assist with the creation of STEM (science, technology, engineering, and math) jobs. The money will be available to individual campuses through a competitive grant process.

UW System also plans to implement several accountability measures:

  • To meet or exceed the current goal of 80,000 undergraduate degrees conferred by 2025-26
  • To enroll at least 32 percent of Wisconsin high school graduates immediately after graduation
  • To meet or exceed the current plan to improve second-year return rate
  • To meet or exceed the current plan to improve the six-year graduation rate.


August 2014 UW System Board of Regents Budget Request

June Board of Regents Meeting

uw system logoThe University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents is meeting at UW-Milwaukee today and tomorrow, June 5 and 6. The regents will meet in committee Thursday morning and in full Thursday afternoon and Friday morning. Video and audio stream of the full meetings is available here.

Four new regents are participating in their first meeting — José Delgado, Eve Hall, UW-Madison student Nicolas Harsy, and UW-La Crosse student Anicka Purath.

The board will discuss the 2014-15 annual budget and begin discussion on the 2015-17 biennial budget process. UW System President Ray Cross told the Wisconsin State Journal he expects the current tuition freeze to continue into the 2015-17 biennium. Governor Scott Walker recently expressed support for a continued tuition freeze.

Chancellor Rebecca Blank has repeatedly said she would like to raise professional school tuition to levels similar to peer institutions, but Cross said the timing is not right for such an increase and tuition will be frozen for all undergraduate and graduate students, regardless of residency.

The board will also discuss plans to spend down financial reserves. The Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports the current budget will spend down about 15 percent of the reserves, much of it coming from tuition reserves. UW System will carryover about $61 million in unspent tuition in 2014-15, down from $151 million one year ago.


Regents to Meet Thursday

uw system logoThe University of Wisconsin System Board of Regents will meet in Madison this Thursday, March 6. The meeting is the first since UW System President Ray Cross took office last month. Cross is scheduled to address the regents shortly after the meeting begins at 9 am.

The meeting will feature a presentation by Dennis Winters, chief economic officer at the Department of Workforce Development, and two panel discussions on the role UW System can play in the state’s economic development efforts. UW-Madison Chancellor Rebecca Blank will participate in the discussion focusing on how UW System can help Wisconsin employers become more competitive.

Some of the questions regents and panelists will consider include:

  • How do business leaders use the resources within UW institutions?
  • What are business leaders’ biggest competitive challenges? Are there things UW institutions could be doing that they are not?
  • Who do business leaders hire from UW institutions? What skills and experience are needed? What kind of employees will be needed in the future.
  • What specific activities do UW institutions undertake to keep academic programs and initiatives relevant to employers, the community, and students?
  • How can curricula be structured to best meet the needs of the state?
  • How can UW institutions best prepare students? How do students perceive their level of preparation for employment or starting a business in Wisconsin? 
  • To what extent should UW institutions consider reprioritizing or reallocating resources to expand certain academic programs or scale down others?

The board will also discuss the development of the 2015-17 biennial budget. UW System is expected to outline its budget priorities later this summer.