AUSTIN – A $12.8 billion operating budget for the 2011 fiscal year, which begins Sept. 1, was authorized today (Aug. 12) by The University of Texas System Board of Regents. The new budget represents a 6.9 percent increase, or $829 million, over the previous fiscal year.
“This budget represents our continued efforts for operating as efficiently as possible during a challenging economic climate, but it also recognizes our duty to sustain and advance excellence among all of our institutions,” UT System Chancellor Francisco G. Cigarroa, M.D., said. “The primary drivers to increases in our new budget are tied to excellent developments that highlight the strengths of the institutions, among them increases in student enrollment and scholarships, success in faculty research and patient care. While resources are tight, we will continue to strive for excellence in education, health care, research and service in addition to realigning System Administration efforts to assist all 15 of our institutions.”
Significant areas of growth include research (5.4 percent, $103 million), hospitals and clinics (11.2 percent, $338 million) and scholarships and fellowships (28.7 percent, $82 million).
Growth in research expenses results from a continued commitment by UT System institutions to develop research activities. Hospital and clinic expenses increased largely because of heavy growth in patient care. The increase in budgeted scholarships and fellowships principally reflects growth of federally funded Pell grants and state-funded TEXAS grants.
Revenue from health care, sponsored programs, state appropriations and tuition and fees represent about 85 percent of budgeted revenues. Tuition and fees represent 9.7 percent of System revenue – a slight change from last year’s 9.6 percent.
Although revenue is up 6.9 percent ($835 million) from FY 2010, state appropriations decreased by a net 4.4 percent ($42 million) after a 5 percent reduction mandated by the state’s leadership in the 2010-11 biennium. As a result of the 5 percent cut, UT System institutions experienced a combined reduction of $175 million. That reduction was offset by increases in general revenue that replaced one-time federal funding received through the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act (ARRA) in FY 2010.
The UT System’s four largest institutions account for two-thirds of the overall operating budget: UT MD Anderson Cancer Center in Houston ($3.5 billion), UT Austin ($2.1 billion), UT Southwestern Medical Center at Dallas ($1.7 billion) and UT Medical Branch at Galveston ($1.5 billion).
The portion of the budget that will fund the UT System’s general administration functions decreased 5.2 percent to $33.4 million for FY 2011. General administration is funded mostly from public endowment income generated by the Available University Fund. The decreases were achieved primarily through cost savings resulting from a realignment of priorities and reorganization.
The University of Texas System is one of the nation’s largest higher education systems, with nine academic campuses and six health institutions. The UT System has an annual operating budget of $12.8 billion (FY 2011) including $3 billion in sponsored programs funded by federal, state, local and private sources. Preliminary student enrollment exceeded 202,000 in the 2009 academic year. The UT System confers more than one-third of the state's undergraduate degrees and educates nearly three-fourths of the state's health care professionals annually. With more than 84,000 employees, the UT System is one of the largest employers in the state.