Proposed Budget Cuts Would Affect Every College at University of Toledo

Thursday, May 2, 2013

Proposed academic budget cuts at the University of Toledo would touch every college on the university’s two campuses.

Administrators have proposed between $14 million and $17 million in cuts to UT academic programs, according to a memo sent recently to college deans. Those cuts are meant to close a projected budget deficit in fiscal year 2014 of more than $30 million.

While UT officials have said for months that reductions are coming, the memo makes it more clear how the budgets of individual colleges will fare. Cuts would be implemented by July 1, the beginning of UT’s fiscal year.

The cuts to academics are sure to cause angst among faculty, a group already at odds with President Dr. Lloyd Jacobs, judging from a recent performance review of Dr. Jacobs.

Scott Scarborough, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs, said academic budget reductions are a “last resort” for universities, but that UT, like many other higher education institutions, faces outside budget pressures that necessitate the cuts.

“These kinds of things that higher education is going through ... this isn’t fun anywhere,” he said. “But it’s what everyone is having to do.”

The “budget-reduction targets” include about $4 million in savings from a previously proposed reduction in the use of adjuncts and a corresponding teaching load increase for full-time faculty, Mr. Scarborough said.

About $10.5 million in cuts would come from colleges at UT’s main campus. The college of engineering is facing the largest proposed reduction, with a loss of $1.8 million. The college of natural sciences and mathematics has the second-largest target of $1.7 million. Both the colleges of law and business and innovation are projected to have their budgets reduced by more than $1 million each.

Reduction targets for the Health Science Campus, the former Medical College of Ohio, range from a low of $3.3 million to as much as $6.4 million. The college of medicine and life sciences could potentially receive the largest cut at UT, with a reduction target between $1.5 and $3 million.

Reductions would be made to UT’s libraries, registrar’s office, student affairs, and other programs.

The university began its budgeting process in October, with administration reviewing initial budget requests by colleges. Budget-redesign committees then developed area targets for each college, Mr. Scarborough said. Mr. Scarborough said that some of the reductions would be from proposed increases, so would not in all cases be true cuts.

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