The Daily Tar Heel

Serving the students and the University community since 1893

Friday December 3rd

UNC budgets cut by 2 percent, no jobs lost

The cuts eliminated the need for the nighttime parking fee.

To delay the widely criticized nighttime parking fee, UNC’s administration had to cut administrative costs by $2.6 million.

Matt Fajack, vice chancellor for finance and administration, told The Daily Tar Heel that recent administrative cost cuts saved students and staff from a night-parking fee.

“Each non-academic unit was allocated a 2 percent budget cut,” Fajack said in an email. “The cuts were in many areas — such as in my unit we consolidated several departments in facilities services and reduced the number of times we clean each office and reduced several unfilled positions.”

No positions had to be terminated due to these cuts.

“There were several open positions so we did not have any layoffs,” Fajack said.

Fajack said expected revenues from night-parking fees were covered by the $2.6 million saved in recent administrative cost cuts.

The proposed fee would have required undergraduate students — with the exeption of freshman — to pay a $10.40 fee, allowing student parking on campus after 5 p.m., while faculty and staff would have had to purchase a permit costing between $227 and $390.

Pamela Taylor, principle program evaluator for the Program Evaluation Division of the N.C. General Assembly, said the University has made strides to save money, such as the institution of the Carolina Counts initiative in 2009.

“In our (spring 2014) report we highlighted the Carolina Counts initiative. We identified that as a large-scale effort on a campus that had shown some promise in reducing costs related to operations on campus,” Taylor said. “We felt that they had the right elements in place and had been able to achieve $58.1 million (saved) over four years.”

The Carolina Counts initiative will streamline campus operations and provide more money for academic projects on campus.

Joe Templeton, part-time special assistant to the chancellor for planning and initiatives, said he is proud of what the initiative has accomplished.

“We had a formula that we used, and it had to be from the continuing budget, from the state-line or from the University funds. We didn’t count grants and contracts, so there’s a specific guideline we used to count our savings,” Templeton said, “Those guidelines lead us to save $63.4 million a year from those expenses over five years. It’s an expenditure that you take it away and it’s gone.”

Taylor doesn’t necessarily think the University’s high administrative costs can be attributed to administrative bloat.

“I hesitate to call it bloat because if things are working at the level it wants to it’s fine. If there’s a standard out there that you’re trying to achieve and you manage to achieve it in your own resources and you have three more people working on it than somebody else, do you necessarily need to reduce? Maybe not,” Taylor said.

“There are probably still areas in which Carolina can achieve greater efficiency in its operations if they were so inclined.”

university@dailytarheel.com



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