$42M Budget request from UOG seeks to fix multiple issues

Dr. Thomas Krise UOG Photo (Photo Credit UOG Website)

The University of Guam is requesting $42M from the Legislature for the upcoming fiscal year.

With UOG President, Dr. Thomas Krise, saying that they hope to reverse years of decreased funding with this budget request.

Further adding that should UOG receive the full amount request – then the University will not increase tuition for this fiscal year.

“This is really a restoration to the level of funding that we had through the middle of the last decade. So for 30 years we were running at about $30M a year all the way through without adjustments for inflation. So if you adjusted for inflation our current, instead of $42M it would be $63M,” said Dr. Krise.

The budget request, according to UOG, would address several issues ranging from staffing retention and hiring, to overall infrastructure, as well as student enrollment and retention.

Recently, the University of Guam made headlines in all local media as they rose tuition costs.

According to UOG President Dr. Krise, if they were to receive the full $42M then tuition costs for this coming fiscal year will not increase.

However, if UOG does not get the full funding, Dr. Krise said, “so if we do not get the GovGuam appropriation the only other significant source of revenue is tuition. And so that’s what you’ve seen happen in many public university’s across the US. Where the state, the individual states have declined in their support for the institution, they’ve jacked up the tuition nearly like private university’s and you see them shrink. And you’ve seen them much less significant to their communities.”

Adding, “so we’re really not interested in that. But it’s the only other alternative so.”

Both Dr. Krise, and UOG Faculty Union President Dr. Bob Barber in a previous interview, told PNC that the University salary scale is dated at 10 years old.

With both referencing how the recent pay raise for GDOE teachers, which they say is well deserved, has only sparked the demand for a pay raise at UOG.

“We provide the example of, ‘if somebody has a terminal degree, a doctorate, and goes to work for GDOE or UOG, they’ll be paid $13K more going to GDOE than UOG.’ So that just highlights how way out of wack the faculty salary scale is. So this will help us, this won’t solve the whole problem, this will be a phased effort to try to raise our salary scale over a period of time,” said the UOG President.

As for general infrastructure of UOG, Dr. Krise says that the proposed funds would also aid in filling in their 77 vacancies in high need areas from , student services, and facilities maintenance.

Dr. Krise told PNC that, “quite a few of the 77 critical openings that we have are in facilities and maintenance services. That team is very good, but it’s a…small team trying to manage hundreds of acres and ten’s of thousands, hundreds of thousands of square feet of facility. So it will help, it will begin to build back to a level of regular maintenance.”

This story is developing.

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