Machen Open to Look For Alternatives for Cuts
University of Florida President Bernie Machen said he's willing to look at budget cut alternatives to try to avert the most damage. Grad students from the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences hope that includes dipping in to UF's reserves. They all come together at UF's Faculty Senate Meeting. Students think they have a better idea but UF Leaders say they can't afford it.
"The proposed budget cuts will damage UF's hard earned reputation as a leader in academia," Kelsey Antle, Grad Student said.
Antle says the budget cuts will hurt the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences.
"We're trying to voice, to voice our concerns as graduate assistants," Antle said.
Antle and others protested during the faculty senate meeting.
"The really abrupt budget proposal that had really had been put forth on by the administration," Antle said.
Antle says her college is hit hardest by proposed cuts to UF to the tune of $5.9 million which equals to about 5.3% of the budget. In late April, protestors hoped the university would use money from its reserves, although that was seemingly rejected by UF administrators, some are still pushing for it.
"We hope the president and the provost listen to our suggestion that we use the unrestricted funds the university has," Antle said.
"We are open and looking for things we can do," UF President, Bernie Machen said.
Machen said that they would have to tighten belts first.
"It's still their and mine intention to try and reduce the budget as much as we can," Machen said.
Other UF officials say they can't go into the reserves anymore.
"How did it go down from 111 million to 67 million its because all the colleges have been spending down their reserves," Joe Glover, UF Provost said.
But in the end, Antle is still grateful the line of communication is open.
"We would love the opportunity to meet with them again, we would love a one on one since there's some confusion about the numbers," Antle said.
There is a public forum on May 29th to discuss Machen's budget proposals. A final plan is expected to be presented to the Board of Trustees on June 7th and 8th.
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