Senate Introduced Budget: Drastic Reductions
By Office of the President
Monday, 01 23 2017
Testifying Before Senate Finance Committee
Dear Members of the A&M-San Antonio Community:
On Wednesday January 25, all presidents of Texas A&M University System academic institutions will testify in Austin before the Senate Finance Committee regarding the upcoming budget request for the forthcoming biennium.
If you follow the Legislature closely, you may have noticed that the Senate eliminated special funding for higher education institutions. The Texas A&M University System budget impact is a loss of $187.2 million in total general revenue. This is extremely significant for Texas A&M University-San Antonio as it zeros out these three line items of special funding:
- Transition Funding - approximately $11.6 million
- Institutional Enchancements - $1 million
- Comprehensive Expansion - $11 million
All told, the Senate's version of the budget for our University is a 56.6 percent decrement in our general revenue from last session, which equates to a reduction of approximately $25.5 million. The average net reduction for all Texas A&M System universities is 29 percent, excluding the flagship. In terms of percentage, among Texas A&M System universities, only one school has a reduction larger than ours. For Texas A&M University-Texarkana, the proposed Senate budget would mean a 61.9 percent decrement.
We are at the beginning of the legislative process. This Senate scenario is a hard-hitting impact for our University community and mirrors the FY 2009 full-time faculty and staff employment and student enrollment. As I previously noted, this is a constrained fiscal year, and it is important to remember that we are at the beginning of the budgeting process. The introduced budgets in the upper and lower chambers of the 85th Legislature have significant differences.
The House version of the budget has a more modest reduction of $4.4 million - a 9.8 percent decrement - in general revenue for A&M-San Antonio. Hearings for the House Committee on Appropriation are not yet scheduled.
We will remain focused on the initiatives we have started. We will continue to evaluate the fiscal implications of the proposed budget and make hiring and operating decisions accordingly. The President's Cabinet will continue to consult with the various shared governance groups of the Faculty Senate and Staff Council along with the University Resources Commission throughout this process. Please do not hesitate to contact me or any other member of the Cabinet. I will continue an open dialogue and promote transparency with the University community as the legislative session progresses.
Should time allow, I invite you to follow along during the live broadcast of the legislative session online at 9 a.m. on Wednesday, January 25.
Dr. Cynthia Teniente-Matson