July 28, 2009
To the Campus Community,
In the last week or so, as our Finance folks have been working to close out
the 2008-09 fiscal year, we received two new budget updates from the State.
One came in the form of a continuing resolution, passed by the NC General
Assembly on July 15th, to keep the State funded from July 17th through the
31st, while the NC Legislature is working out a 2009-10 and 2010-11 budget.
That resolution only authorized the release of 84% of the 2008-09 budget for
State agencies. Since the continuing resolution that covered the first two
weeks of July had authorized a release of 85% of last year’s funds, this
decrease signals an increasing concern about the State’s dwindling options
for how to navigate the current economic landscape.
On Thursday, July 23rd, the Chancellor provided a budget briefing to the
University Planning Council, and solicited advice about decisions that we
will need to make moving forward into a difficult budget year.
Then on Friday, July 24th, the Governor issued Executive Order #20 to all
State agencies outlining new budget restrictions. That same day, the Office
of State Budget and Management (OSBM) issued a clarifying memo about this
order. Both documents will be posted on our web site soon. Here is how these
new restrictions will affect our campus:
significant restrictions on purchases, travel, and hiring which apply to
expenditures charged to State general fund budget codes. These restrictions
are similar to those issued by OSBM on April 9, 2009.
» Purchase orders issued before the executive order (July 24, 2009) do not
have to be cancelled, unlike the April 9th directive.
» We will need to once again request OSBM approval for spending State funds,
as we did for the last three months of last year. Forms for requesting this
approval have been sent to budget officers and senior staff.
» We are not required to get OSBM approval for classroom instruction
materials and expenses. We will approve these expenses at the campus level
using the same approval process so that we can closely track these expenses.
» We are prohibited from hiring permanent or temporary employees in
State-funded positions. Any hiring decisions for non-State funded positions
require Vice Chancellor approval in advance.
» The Executive Order states that hiring for classroom instruction, health
care, law enforcement, and public safety with State funds can be approved by
the Chancellor. However, we will still comply with our campus protocol
before making hiring commitments, so that we may respect the priority
re-hire rights of our RIF’d colleagues.
With the start of a new academic year just ahead of us, I know that we will
all be working to make our limited funds go as far as they can to serve our
students. I continue to admire and appreciate all that we are doing,
individually and collectively, to handle this budget uncertainty so well.
Please see your director or vice chancellor if you have specific questions
about these new budget restrictions.