Board committee approves fiscal year 2009 operating budget

Thursday, June 5, 2008 | 5:59 p.m. CDT; updated 11:20 p.m. CDT, Monday, July 21, 2008

COLUMBIA — The UM System Board of Curators Finance and Audit Committee unanimously passed a $2.5 billion operating budget for the 2009 fiscal year. The entire board is expected to approve it Friday.

The budget changed from April to May primarily because of an expected spike in enrollment system-wide for the fall semester. According to a May 7 university news release, MU is expecting record enrollment, up 26 percent from the same time last year. Preliminary figures presented at the meeting show 5,700 students have paid the initial enrollment deposit at MU, an increase of about 700 from the same time last year.

“We have about 600 more students built into this budget,” said Nikki Krawitz, UM System vice president for finance and administration. “So we’re a little conservative, but accurate.”

The increased amount of expected tuition and fees brought the net total in student fees to a little more than $400 million.

The budget is expected to reflect:

  • Total revenues of about $2.5 billion.
  • A slight increase in total expenditures, totaling about $2.4 billion.
  • A total change in net assets to $110.4 million for the UM System.

State appropriations in the budget went down $9.1 million because the Missouri General Assembly did not fund the Preparing to Care initiative, a higher-education funding bill, or ranked faculty compensation, Krawitz said.

While the board held a brief information session on the fiscal year 2010 appropriations request, UM System President Gary Forsee said prioritizing needs and requests to the state legislature could help in receiving more funding.

“I’m not comfortable right now with how we deliver the message to the General Assembly on the overall budget process,” Forsee said.

Board of Curators Vice Chairman Bo Fraser agreed. “We need to make sure what we take to the legislature are our very top priorities,” he said.

The board will also vote Friday on whether to implement a bachelor of health science degree program at MU.

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