(KCPW News) Administrators at Utah’s public colleges and universities should not expect their budgets to be held harmless next year, if Governor Gary Herbert’s recent comments at his monthly news conference are any indication. He’s convinced there is still fat left to be trimmed, even if institutions are already implementing layoffs and furloughs.
“We’ve been recognized as the best-managed state in America, but that doesn’t mean that we’re perfect, it doesn’t mean that there aren’t other ways of doing things maybe more efficiently and better, and get a better bang for the taxpayer’s dollar. So, I would have a hard time believing that even in our colleges and universities, we could not find better ways to deliver the education system at less expensive prices,” he said.
Governor Herbert recently created a new commission to examine the state budget and try to eliminate inefficiency in order to save money.
As to what colleges and universities should do to make education more affordable to Utah students, Herbert believes they ought to look to the private sector.
“Some of our more successful institutions have foundation work where they actually go out and get alumni and others who want to help defray cost from a private source, having great success at that. So that’s one of the areas that we can at least foster charitable giving, to help keep the cost of education down,” said the governor.
Herbert says professors should also expect to spend more time in the classroom, which could mean less time devoted to research. He says each institution will have to come up with its own solutions in collaboration with the state board of regents.