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Date: May 16, 2000

UVic Board Passes First Good News Budget In Six Years

For the first time in six years, the University of Victoria's Board of Governors has approved a budget framework for the university that provides new resources for programs and services. The framework for the 2000/2001 fiscal year was approved by the board yesterday using the additional funding for universities announced in the March 27 provincial budget.

UVic received a $5.16 million increase in its provincial operating grant for 2000/2001, bringing its total base operating grant from government to $108.9 million. Approximately $1.34 million of this provides for a funded enrolment increase of 192 full-time students at UVic. Of these, 78 spaces have been designated for particular programs (38 for high technology, 20 for nursing, and 10 each for child protection and child welfare specializations). The rest of the additional provincial funding is intended to deal in part with the cost increases of the past few years and to make up a portion of the revenue lost through the extended provincial tuition freeze.

"We appreciate the extra funding from the provincial government this year. It represents a start on addressing some of the concerns about the impact that years of cuts have had on our academic programs," says President Dr. David Strong. "We'd reached the point where more cuts would have been difficult to deal with. The increase means that we're not facing another round of cuts this year."

The board approved a $300,000 increase in the acquisitions budget for the UVic library and provided an additional $1.3 million to the academic, research and operations areas to help repair the damage resulting from successive years of cuts. The board also created a $650,000 Strategic Initiatives Fund to allow the university to meet some of the strategic challenges it currently faces and to take advantage of opportunities in areas such as library collections, equipment replacement, student support initiatives, staff development, faculty complements and information technology applications.

"We wanted to equip UVic to meet the challenges of the future," says board chair Brian Lamb. "The additional funds for the major budget areas will allow the university to target assistance to those units facing the greatest pressures, while the Strategic Initiatives Fund will mean UVic can respond energetically to opportunities as they arise. We wanted to position UVic to stay among the best and most advanced universities in the country."

Decisions about specific allocations for the new base budget funds will be made at the departmental, faculty and senior administrative levels over the next few months.

UVic's provincially funded level for 2000/2001 is 12,000 full-time equivalent (FTE) undergraduate students. Together with 1,313 graduate FTEs, the total funded level at UVic for the year is 13,313 full-time students.

UVic tuition fees remain frozen at 1995/96 levels.
Media contacts:
Jack Falk, Vice-President
Finance and Operations
Bruce Kilpatrick, Director
UVic Communications

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