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Tuition hike likely as YSU plans 8.5% in cuts

Published: Thu, November 18, 2010 @ 12:05 a.m.


Cynthia Anderson

By Denise Dick



All Youngstown State University divisions must slice base operating budgets by 8.5 percent to deal with this year’s reduction in state funding and a much larger cut anticipated next year.

It’s also likely to bring a tuition increase.

YSU President Cynthia Anderson sent an e-mail to all university employees Tuesday outlining the issue.

“As I am sure you have read or heard in the news media, the state of Ohio is facing severe budget challenges over the next two fiscal years,” Anderson wrote. “These challenges will, in turn, have a substantial impact on public higher education, including YSU. The state has already notified YSU of a $3 million reduction in state subsidies for the remainder of this current fiscal year. We project — at a minimum — an additional $7 million reduction in state funding next fiscal year due to the loss of federal stimulus dollars.”

Ron Cole, YSU spokesman, said divisions include student affairs, academic affairs, finance and administration and others.

“Academic affairs is the largest,” he said. “It takes up all of the colleges.”

The cuts mean a tuition increase is likely, said Scott Schulick, chairman of the YSU trustees.

“We have known for some time that as we headed into 2012, the financial situation looked very difficult,” he said.

That’s when the federal stimulus runs out, and the state’s financial picture isn’t good.

He said the university and the trustees have been preparing for about a year, setting aside funds.

“In many ways, it’s a paradigm shift,” he said.

With the national economic situation, the changes are expected to continue long term, Schulick said.

“It would be foolish not to expect a tuition increase,” he said.

Eugene Grilli, vice president for finance and administration, said that while it’s not a happy situation, provisions have been put into place to handle this year.

“Our bigger concern is as we get into next year,” he said. “We’ll have a bigger setback as far as funding.”

Grilli said that he’s waiting to hear back from the department heads within his division to determine where cuts will be made.

Anderson said YSU is looking at all avenues of revenue enhancement and is open to suggestions. She has asked the executive and administrative staff council to come up with revenue enhancement ideas as well.

“While we are being very careful about filling positions and saving money, we’re also taking a look at the income side,” Anderson said, adding she doesn’t want to rule anything out.

It’s a situation that’s facing all Ohio universities and other states as well. “I hope everyone keeps students at the forefront of the decision process,” Anderson said.

The new state budget is expected from the new governor in March, and it’s unknown what it will entail but cuts to higher education are anticipated, Schulick said.

At the same time, expenses are going up.

With those cuts, the university is left with only its donor community and tuition as sources to tap for funding.

“We’re likely to be forced to have to increase tuition,” Schulick said.

The cuts means sacrifices across the board, he said.

“Our employee groups have to be prepared as we go into contract negotiations that the landscape is very difficult,” Schulick said.

Julia Gergits, president of YSU’s faculty union, said all bargaining units want the university to succeed and students to be served. “Everyone knows we’re in a rough financial world,” she said.

The budget crisis was expected, she said. “The budget prospect just gets uglier and uglier.”

Much in negotiations isn’t about money, though, such as processes for promotion and for tenure, she said.

Besides the cuts, all hirings require administrative approval, the president wrote.

“These measures will remain in effect into the next fiscal year and possibly into future fiscal years, as well,” Anderson said in the e-mail.

It says much uncertainty remains in Columbus and across the state.

“We haven’t seen this type of budget situation facing higher education in decades,” the president said.


1DND(5 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

"We project — at a minimum — an additional $7 million reduction in state funding next fiscal year due to the loss of federal stimulus dollars.” ???? Why are you incorporating dollars that are meant to be a one-time shot in the arm into your budget??? We expect our elementary and high school teachers to take concessions. What about college instructors???

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2Stormieangel(136 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

O.K. Let us start with Ms. Anderson's salary. Reduce it about 25%. After all the cost of renovating Wick Mansion so she can live in a luxury setting (as befitting her status in this world of course) should count for something FOR HER personal gratification. And as mentioned, there are those nice benefits the professors and her have that are far more than the average citizen. And don't give me the crap about the cost of HER education. Let them share in the economical downturn as so many others have....you know, those who have families who are suffering, those who are losing their homes because someone didn't pay for them as Ms. Anderson lives so nicely in a home for which she isn't paying. I cannot feel sorry for the teaching profession. They make enough to live on nicely, unlike the poor smuck on the lower rung of the economical ladder who makes minimum or barely over the minimum wage because jobs aren't plentiful these days. Let them tighten their belts too and quit making the students pay more and more to get what those higher up paid less for to get what they are now ENJOYING. Where are their hearts? Right in their own higher figure bank accounts.

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3southsidedave(5183 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Ah yes, make cuts to the full-time hiring of tenure track staff at YSU and continue to increase the salary of Cynthia Anderson.

Oh and don't forget to continue furnishing living quarters for Ms. Anderson as well. Very nice!!

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4Traveler(606 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Universities are in for a rough future the Internet is going to do them like amazon did book stores. If YSU want to exist in 20 years it needs to start changing now. Already half the class they teach can be done online for much cheaper.

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5palbubba(790 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

How can costs be increasing when those of us on Social Security have been told for 2 years in a row that we need no increase. So glad that Obama Bin Laden and his cronies who can't seem to pay their taxes are SOOO committed to higher education. Don't listen to what they tell you, watch what they do.

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6dancinmoses(68 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

I do find it offensive as a community member that there is an entitlement attitude of those in charge of the institution. I agree cut the huge salary and forget the mansion. Make the students pay for her housing? That is outrageous. Who is really in charge there? Where are the trustees in all of this? How many administrators do there need at that SMALL school? Cut some of them why don't they. seems like incompetence is ALWAYS rewarded and just keep on keeping the public guessing. Like a rigged crap shoot!

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7grand4dad(214 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Agree with you dancinmoses. It offends me too the entitlement attitude there. Not only those in charge but too the unions. Those folks have it made as far as salary, working conditions, benefits,etc. but it seems like their union leaders were very greedy and believe they are entitled to more and more. Meanwhile, students tuition keeps going up, up, up. When are they all going to get together management AND union and start working toward the betterment of the college and THE STUDENTS.

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8peacelover(834 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

A $3 million reduction in state subsidies for the rest of the current fiscal year and a reduction of $7 million in the next fiscal year, due to loss of federal stimulus funds ..... which in turn will be passed on to the student in the form of a tuition increase. So now fewer people will be able to afford college. I hope you Republicans got what you wanted.

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9dancinmoses(68 comments)posted 5 years, 5 months ago

Abe, why does it always come back to the unions? How do you know they were greedy? Did YOU research the facts? Why don't you check too, there are are more and more big shots there (self-important to themselves only) than a few years back. The "Sweet Era" brought in many carpetbaggers that are still there! The house hasn't been cleaned yet and I bet it NEVER will be because people like you blame the working guy and NOT the higher ups who elevate positions and pad the salaries of those who support their unethical behavior. Give the blame to those it belongs to, upper management, they are ALL about themselves - NOT education and most importantly the STUDENT!!!!!

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