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Governor Proposing Massive Cuts to University of Alaska System

Governor Proposing Massive Cuts to University of Alaska System

“part of Dunleavy’s plan to trim the deficit by $1.3 billion”

Don’t be surprised if this story gets national coverage. The new governor of Alaska, Mike Dunleavy is a Republican so the press will love the narrative.

Inside Higher Ed reports:

Proposed Cuts Imperil 1,300 University Jobs

Alaska governor Mike Dunleavy, whose state faces a $1.6 billion deficit, is proposing to cut $310 million from the state’s education system — including a jaw-dropping 41 percent cut to the University of Alaska System.

The planned reduction represents the largest of any state agency.

Dunleavy’s plan comes alongside a proposed $20 million funding increase for the state’s 13 public community colleges, known in Alaska as “community campuses.”

The new budget, announced Wednesday in Juneau, is part of Dunleavy’s plan to trim the deficit by $1.3 billion. The plan includes cutting nearly one-fifth of the budget of the state Department of Education and Early Childhood Development, which includes the university system.

University of Alaska president Jim Johnsen told the Anchorage Daily News that the proposed cut is the largest in the university system’s 100-year history and could force its campuses to fire about 1,300 faculty and staff members. Johnsen said several research efforts would also be in jeopardy.

In a statement, Johnsen said Dunleavy’s budget, if approved, would devastate the university system, forcing him to propose “deep cuts for every UA campus.” He said the system had already been operating under leaner budgets in four of the last five years.

“Cuts at this level cannot simply be managed or accommodated,” he said. “If this budget passes the Legislature, it will devastate university programs and services, and the negative effects will be felt in communities across the entire state.”


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I’ve been to Alaska several times and it’s my sense that most of the population is of the leftist persuasion. Maybe the Governor is just cutting back on the main liberal indoctrination center in favor of the community campuses?

So it looks like the oil money had dried up for awhile. I wonder how this situation would play out under GND where there is no oil money, at all.

OleDirtyBarrister | February 19, 2019 at 7:34 pm

Alaska has been sucking at the federal teat for a long time and built a lot of largesse in government while imposing little taxation. Production on the North Slope has fallen considerably and the money is not there as it once was, and the cost of that huge govt has now become apparent. The state has raised taxes on hydrocarbons and the burroughs have moved on taxes as well.

It would not be that hard to make surgical cuts in education. Just refuse to comply with federal mandates and cut the people in the offices that are pencil pushers and paper filers fist. At the college and uni level, just start with the office dwellers like the diversity officers first. Then cut all the degree programs with titles that include the term “studies”, like Feminine Studies, African American Studies, General Studies, Cultural Studies, Recreation and Leisure Studies. Then move into degrees for which one never sees in the jobs postings, like Art History, Architectural Studies, Photography, Ceramics, Basket Weaving, etc.