U of M expects funding cut from stateby Tim Post, Minnesota Public Radio
St. Paul, Minn. — At their meeting Thursday, the University of Minnesota Board of Regents will hear how the state's budget deficit could affect funding for the university.
When the state faced a budget deficit last year, Gov. Tim Pawlenty cut $100 million from the U's two-year $1.3 billion dollar budget.
U of M officials now wonder what will happen as the state faces a projected deficit of $1.2 billion this budget cycle, and a $5.4 billion shortfall in the fiscal year that starts in July of 2011. University of Minnesota chief financial officer Richard Pfutzenreuter doesn't think lawmakers will touch this year's budget at the U, but next year's funding could be targeted.
"We're hoping they don't, but with the size of this problem we are preparing for the fact that they'll likely cut us," he said.
Pfutzenreuter said it's unlikely lawmakers will cut the U's current yearly appropriation of $623 million to balance the budget, because that money is tied to federal stimulus funds.
"That complicates the ability of the governor and the state legislative leaders to alter the spending on K-12 and higher ed for the current fiscal year, but they can definitely change things for fiscal year 2011," he said.
The U of M is set to get $627 million in funding from the state in fiscal year 2011.