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University of Idaho deficit expected to increase to $22 million

Posted: 11:49 AM, Nov 01, 2019
Updated: 2019-11-01 13:49:33-04

LEWISTON, Idaho — More budget cuts are anticipated at the University of Idaho, as tuition revenue is estimated to drop $8 million by 2022, university officials said.

The Moscow-based university has already imposed $14 million in budget reductions this year set to become permanent, The Lewiston Tribune reports.

"The bottom line is: we have been living beyond our means, and we don't have enough resources in reserve," President Scott Green said in a statement.

Current enrollment trends assume a tuition revenue decline, university officials said. In addition, the university has routinely spent more than what it is bringing in, citing low reserves and no expected revenue increases.

Possible budget reductions could include layoffs, not renewing contracts, salary reductions, elimination of academic programs, early retirement and outsourcing services, officials said in a statement.

"We will continue working closely with university leadership and campus shared governance groups on the details of the steps to be implemented as the budget reduction plans are implemented across colleges and units," Green said.

The university's goals include balancing revenue and expenses while rebuilding and maintaining reserve funds, he said.

According to the university website, reserves for the general education budget for this year are expected to be at $4.9 million.

The Idaho university has implemented a Sustainable Financial Model Working Group to help find a solution, officials said. The group is set to meet for the second time Nov. 12 and is expected to share its recommendations in 2020.

An open forum is scheduled next week, officials said. Details have not yet been released.

(by Associated Press)