The university’s 2011-12 general fund operating budget is $471 million, including a state appropriation of $178.5 million.  The $471 million is a 4.4 percent increase over 2010-11. It includes more than $14 million in strategic initiatives such as salary increases, student financial aid, recruiting and hiring of research faculty and compliance-related staff positions.

The proposed budget includes a 3 percent increase in the faculty and staff salary pool. Faculty and administrators will receive merit-based raises averaging 3 percent. Staff who earn below $40,000 will receive a flat rate of $1,200, while those making $40,000 and above will receive 3 percent across the board.

The salary increases, the first employees will have received in three fiscal years, will be funded primarily through about $8.4 million in cost-savings strategies and internal reallocation. Those strategies include changes to the university’s retirement plan, which were discussed and approved at committee meetings in May.

The board also approved 6 percent tuition and housing increases, in addition to increases in the student meal plan. Those increases had been discussed and approved at the Finance Committee meeting in May.

In addition, the board approved creation of the Center for Arts and Culture Partnerships. Housed in the College of Arts and Sciences, the center will work with at least 17 organizations throughout the city to enhance student learning and boost community participation in the arts on and off campus.

The board also approved:

  • continuation of Blaine Hudson as dean of the College of Arts and Sciences. The board conducted its decanal review of Hudson’s performance and unanimously recommended his continuation. Hudson earned praise in a number of areas. A partial list of his successes includes his leadership of the efforts to obtain Phi Beta Kappa status; increasing the number of international programs offered; strengthening outreach and community engagement efforts; and increasing student enrollment, the number of full-time faculty, and alumni support.
  • the appointment of David Dunn as executive vice president for health affairs effective July 1. Dunn is vice president for health sciences and professor of surgery, microbiology and immunology at State University of New York at Buffalo.
  • the appointment of Neville Pinto as dean of the J.B. Speed School of Engineering effective July 1. Pinto has been vice provost and graduate school dean at the University of Cincinnati since 2006.
  • resolutions in recognition of Susan Harkema, associate professor in neurological surgery, for her work on locomotor training that is helping paralysis victims regain use of their limbs; and Sana Abhari, former SGA president, and Brent Fryrear, Staff Senate chair, in recognition of their service on the board. Ramsey lauded Fryrear’s efforts, stating that “his leadership has been remarkable” during his four years on the board. Ramsey said he particularly appreciated Fryrear’s guidance and positive attitude during the past three years, when budgets were lean and employees did not receive permanent salary increases.
  • three capital construction projects totaling $1.8 million to be funded and implemented by the UofL Athletic Association. The projects include a hydrotherapy training room at Trager Field House, Astroturf installation at the Trager Field Hockey Stadium and permanent video towers for the football practice field.