Campus Forum, March 2018

Posted: March 20, 2018 | Author: President Scott L Wyatt | Read Time: 3 minutes

President Scott L Wyatt spoke with employees of SUU at an open forum Monday, March 19, 2018, providing a summary of the 2018 Utah Legislative Session. His presentation covered the three areas in which the Legislature impacts higher education and SUU the most; funding, construction, and policies.Legislative Appropriation for SUU info-graphicPresident Wyatt viewed the session as a success from a funding perspective. The slide above has line items of the budget listed. When the Legislature gives a percentage increase to Compensation, the legislature funds 3/4 of the salary increase and First Tier Tuition funds one-fourth.

Health and Dental, the request from Regents was an increase of 5.7%, the legislature provided 4.1%. SUU has a self funded program and the actual cost is 7%, which will be made up by SUU.

Growth and Capacity, Completion and Workforce shows a significant gain for SUU. This year, SUU was successfully funded with a higher percentage than most Utah schools. He gave special thanks to Senator Evan Vickers, for SUU receiving 6.9% of the total appropriation in these columns.

Other funding that was approved:

  • $319,800 for performance-based funding (money that may be earned) based on the performance of the University in certain categories developed on Utah’s workforce needs
  • $200,000 ongoing funding for the Utah Shakespeare Festival
  • $100,000 one time funding for the Utah Shakespeare Festival
  • $50,000 one time funding for the Utah Summer Games
  • The state received $800,000 for the Library consortium, of which SUU will get a portion

Legislative Agreement info-graphicOur Schools Now, a group advocating for more resources for public education. The group was attempting to place an initiative on the ballot in November, which would have meant a tax increase for all citizens with a significant amount of money earmarked for education. After the Legislative Session, this was changed to be a referendum on the ballot in November, polling voters’ interest in a 10 cent increase on gas tax, a non-binding way to gather the public’s opinion.

If the referendum garners public approval and the Legislature adopts the increase, SUU could receive approximate amounts listed above.

campus forum graphic

Funding for the Sorenson Legacy Foundation Center for Hope was not provided this year, but the odds are good it will be funded next year. The only two buildings funded by the Legislature this year were two smaller projects at Utah State University and Snow College.

President Wyatt claims a success this year funding the collaboration between Southwest Tech and SUU, giving students the opportunity to be enrolled in both institutions. $200,000 of ongoing funding was provided to Southwest Tech, to the benefit of both schools and the program.

March 5 executive order for legislative communication

President Wyatt would like the campus community to be aware of the March 5, 2018 Executive Order made by Governor Gary Herbert. The order, shown above, prohibits the lobbying on Capitol Hill by Executive Branch employees (employees of SUU are a part of the Executive Branch). A maximum of four lobbyists (including the president and vice president) may approach the Legislature on behalf of the institution.

The second part of the Order, states that no employee may offer a gift of any value to a legislator, including giving them free admission to events. Specific permission must be granted by the Governor for each case.

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