UA president says drastic actions would have to happen to cover Dunleavy’s proposed $134M in cuts

The Governor’s budget proposal lops $134 million from state support for the University of Alaska, reducing the general fund allocation from the current year’s $327 million dollars to $193 million, a cut UA president Jim Johnsen says would require drastic actions.

“To close campuses, to close programs, we have to do less with less,” Johnsen said. “We’ve heard that statement coming out of Juneau recently. That’s what we’re going to have to do, in a pretty dramatic way.”

President Johnsen provided some perspective on the magnitude of the proposed reduction.

”All of UAA is $120 million,” Johnsen said. “So closing the entire UAA campus does not meet this cut.”

He also offered another illustrative option.

”If we doubled our tuition, we would just cover this cut,” Johnsen said.

Johnsen emphasizes that everything is on the table as UA administrators and regents begin discussing how to absorb such a large reduction, but noted it starts with more narrowly defining the university’s missions.