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Morgan says restructured budget won't cause mass layoffs - The Trail Blazer: News

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Morgan says restructured budget won't cause mass layoffs

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Posted: Thursday, October 5, 2017 4:55 pm

The reorganization of the Morehead State University budget won’t lead to the dramatic staff or program cuts experienced by other regional universities.

The MSU Board of Regents allowed President Morgan the capability to reposition 7.5 percent, or $10 million, of the university’s annual budget during last Thursday’s regular meeting. Morgan contends this will not lead to mass layoffs or complete defunding of academic programs, but will instead ensure the institution adjusts to decreases in state funding.

Dr. Morgan said MSU is in “solid financial shape.”

“When you’re financially stable is the time you want to look at making sure you’re in good shape going forward,” he said.

This summer, Eastern Kentucky University outsourced 180 jobs in an effort to relieve its budget deficit. Dr. Morgan said, instead of outsourcing several faculty and staff positions at once, the administration will consolidate slowly.

“We’re not going to take 100 people on a Friday afternoon and outsource them. We’re going to look at each individual unit to see if we can maintain equal or greater service for faculty, staff and students.”

Kentucky state universities are facing challenges posed by the new performance-based funding model for higher education, which went into effect July 1. Morehead State is also anticipating a 66 percent increase in pension costs in the upcoming fiscal year, adding $3.6 million in expenses.

“It would be wrong of me to say everybody has a Morehead State has a job going forward,” Morgan said. “I don’t know that there’s a university president in the Commonwealth that can say that.”

Responding to concerns that liberal arts programs may be sharply cut, Morgan said he’d like to keep a “balance” of academics at Morehead State, while also bolstering growing areas on campus.

Ideally, Morgan said, the budget adjustment will be well underway by Jan. 1, 2018.

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