Bruininks addresses economic challenges

Unprecedented reductions will be seen throughout the University.

University of Minnesota President Bob Bruininks said Friday all units of the University of Minnesota will be asked to make cuts of 5 to 8 percent due to economic challenges facing the school. At the Board of Regents meeting, Bruininks said the University will have to make unprecedented reductions to cope with the financial crisis. Addressing these issues, Bruininks said, through tuition or staffing would result in a 12 percent tuition increase or 900 layoffs. Both options are out of the question, he added. Tuition will only be increased, he said, after cost reductions have been maximized. Two-thirds of balancing the budget will be unrelated to tuition and will require certain programs to be cut âÄî even programs that are highly desirable. In addition to eliminating academic programs, the University is also currently looking at further administrative restructuring and changes to the health benefits plan. Other cost reductions will come from limiting purchasing, energy use and printing, and through better space management.