I sent this message to our faculty and staff earlier today.
You may be aware that on May 28 the Governor, Lieutenant Governor, and Speaker of the House directed state agencies to submit appropriations requests for the state’s 2012-2013 biennial budget that include a possible 10% budget reduction. This is in addition to a similar directive on May 18 to implement a 5% reduction for the 2010-2011 biennium.
These measures are being taken in response to the economic recession and the resulting weakness in state sales tax revenues.
In early May UT Austin completed plans to reduce general revenue spending by 5% for the current biennium. In the weeks ahead, we will consult University leadership, including representatives of the faculty and staff, regarding how we will proceed with our plans for the possibility of deeper budget cuts as directed by the state.
At this point, I cannot say how these developments will affect our University. They do have the potential to disrupt our plans for a 2% merit raise pool for fiscal year 2011 for faculty and staff. Merit raises remain a high priority and we will do our best to preserve them.
I want to thank the deans, vice presidents, chairs, and supervisors for effectively communicating our budget plans in May. We will continue to be forthcoming and transparent, and I’ll share additional news with you as it becomes available.
These are challenging times for all of us, and I am even more grateful for your contributions to our University.