Emily Walkenhorst at the Democrat-Gazette reports on the ongoing financial difficulties at the University of Arkansas at Little Rock, which has now implemented $3.3 million in cuts from its budget thus far this year:
The University of Arkansas at Little Rock has cut $1.5 million more from its current year budget, amid an expected deficit of more than $10 million.
The cuts announced to campus employees Thursday include some vacant positions and cuts from utility expenditures and property acquisition funds. Scholarship money reserved for high school students who concurrently enroll in the university has gone unused, accounting for about one-third of the cuts, at $550,000.
This round of budget trimming includes one-time savings for this year, such as lower utility bills and budgeted scholarship money that is going unused this spring. No one was laid off in this round, but some positions that have recently gone vacant will not be filled and one dean position will be moved to half time. With no plans for using $365,000 this spring that had been budgeted for property acquisition funds, the university stripped that from its ledger as well. Walkenhorst has more details at the D-G.
More significant cuts are coming. Last week, UALR asked the UA Board of Trustees for approval to lay off faculty members — including those with tenure — and move forward with a plan to cut academic programs, as part of its efforts to manage the university’s budget crisis.