UK Board approves budget that includes raises, tuition hike
LEXINGTON, Ky. (WTVQ) – The University of Kentucky Board of Trustees Friday adopted a $3.7 billion budget for 2017-2018 that includes pay raises and tuition hikes.
“We will fulfill our mission as the University for Kentucky by investing in the students, faculty, and staff who honor our commitment to the state and the world each day through their work in education, research, care and creative efforts,” said UK President Eli Capilouto. “This budget, under the continued leadership of our Board of Trustees, invests in the people who make this place work, in those who provide care throughout our state, in researchers who are expanding the boundaries of discovery, and in our students who carry forward our strongest hopes for a brighter tomorrow.”
Specifically, the budget approved by the UK Board of Trustees Friday includes:
• A salary merit pool of 2.5 percent that represents the fifth consecutive year under Capilouto that faculty and staff have received salary increases — an unprecedented investment in recent memory.
• A 4 percent tuition and mandatory fee increase for students from Kentucky; 6.5 percent for students from outside the state. This would be the fifth consecutive year of tuition increases of no greater than 5 percent for Kentucky resident students. The Board of Trustees approved tuition and fees at a special meeting on June 6.
• An 8 percent increase in student financial aid and scholarships funded by UK to $126 million.
• An investment of $2.5 million toward colleges with proven programs and measurements that improve student success. Additional dollars are being invested in a continuing fighting fund to help retain faculty.
• An increase in the university’s budget by about $100 million over last year, largely the result of the continued expansion and strength of UK HealthCare.
• Debt service representing less than 3 percent of the proposed operating budget even with more than $2.2 billion in construction on living, learning and research spaces in the last six years under Capilouto and the Board of Trustees.
• An investment of $1 million in a recurring capital renewal pool – which now is up to $8 million annually – to address deferred maintenance and modernize our campus. And a new fund, with an initial $500,000 investment, will create a pool of funds to address utility needs.
“We are the University for Kentucky. And, increasingly, the work we do on behalf of our state has an impact on the broader world as well,” said Britt Brockman, UK’s board chair. “This budget invests in our people today so that we continue our critical work tomorrow. And as the Commonwealth’s indispensable institution, we are focused squarely on the future of those we serve today and of those we will serve throughout our state and world tomorrow.”
In other board action, a pledge of $2.4 million from the William E. Seale Family Foundation of Annapolis, Maryland, was accepted. The gift will establish and endow the “William E. Seale Endowed Chair in Business” in the Gatton College of Business and Economics. This brings to over $12 million in gifts to the Gatton College from the Seale foundation. Seale earned three degrees from UK — a bachelor’s in chemistry and master’s and doctoral degrees in agricultural economics. He went on to become a founding partner of The ProFunds Group, a Bethesda, Maryland-based mutual fund company, and remains a principal in the organization.
The Board of Trustees also authorized the UK executive vice president for finance and administration to:
• acquire properties located at 322, 324 and 328 Scott Street in Lexington and lease adjacent land owned by Norfolk Southern Railroad. This property is in the area that will become a major entry point to UK with extension of Newtown Pike.
• exchange deeds with the owner of property located at 414 Pennsylvania Court for property owned by UK at 544 Columbia Avenue in Lexington. The Pennsylvania Court property will allow completion of new Greek housing sites as UK has established a Greek Park in that area.