As we begin developing the budget for fiscal year 2021 (FY21), our commitment to becoming a student-ready, regionally-engaged university that empowers diverse learners for economic and social mobility will continue to be our focus. While we deal with the uncertainty of the pension situation, we must keep our focus on student success and the implementation of Success by Design. Earlier this fall, I authorized the creation of a one-time $2 million Strategic Investment and Innovation Fund (SIIF) to support the implementation of Success by Design, and Box 3 initiatives in particular. Of that, $1.5 million will be allocated to the First Five initiatives and the remaining $500,000 will be available for the 2020 NKU Innovation Challenge. Thanks to our efforts in being good stewards of our funds in 2018-19, we have been able to set aside these non-recurring resources to support Success by Design.
On the pension issue, we are working with other universities on a request for proposal (RFP) for services that will assist the universities to analyze the options in HB1.
Following is an overview of the FY21 budget development timeline:
Throughout the budget process, we will solicit ideas and suggestions to keep the campus community engaged and informed. We will consult with Staff Congress, Faculty Senate, Student Government Association, Council of Chairs, Academic Affairs Council and the relevant budget committees. Input from students will be sought about parking, housing, technology, dining and tuition costs. All suggestions and ideas will be considered as we develop a budget recommendation for approval by the Board of Regents in May 2020.
A new process that will be added for this budget cycle will be the implementation of six-month assessments. These will allow us to gain a better understanding of divisional budgets and factors impacting those budgets. In late January, we will begin this process with the Deans and division heads to look at the college and division budgets to better understand the cost drivers and revenue opportunities as well as budget performance through the first half of the FY20.
The following principles will guide the development of the budget:
Thank you all for all the hard work and dedication that goes into the creation of our annual budget. I look forward to working with you on this endeavor.
Ashish K. Vaidya, Ph.D.
Northern Kentucky University
800 Lucas Administrative Center
Highland Heights, KY 41099