President J. Michael Ortiz

I want to take this time to bring you up to speed on one way we are going to address our budget shortfall for next year, as well as introduce a change in our budget process.

In response to the governor's budget proposal of reductions of $240 million in funding and 20,000 in student enrollment for the CSU system, Chancellor Reed advised all campuses on Jan. 27 to reduce enrollment by 5 percent for 2004-05.

In an effort to preserve resources for the traditional academic year and to meet, but not exceed, the reduced FTE target of 16,919, the summer 2004 quarter will be closed to all entering students with the exception of credential students. Upper division transfer and graduate applications will not be accepted for summer. These closures are in addition to closures of applications already in place from previous summers (i.e., first-time freshmen, lower division transfers, second baccalaureate).

Please note that this does not impact our current students ability to enroll in courses offered this summer.

The university will also continue the Summer Bridge program, and first-time freshmen admitted for fall 2004 that require remediation will continue to have the option of enrolling in remedial coursework during the summer as Early Start students. Cross enrollment from other institutions (primarily community colleges) will not be available, with the exception of students for whom an agreement currently exists.

The application period for credentials for summer 2004 opened Feb. 1 and closes April 1. We understand that this may require changes for several programs and services and appreciate your cooperation as we respond to the ever-changing budget climate.

From the beginning of my tenure, I shared with you a need to make our budget process more open, soliciting a higher level of feedback and consultation from faculty. While the University Budget Advisory Committee (UBAC) has served us well during strong economic periods, the current budget crisis requires us to provide increased input from the academic community, while enabling me to make the tough decisions that are my responsibility.

Today I met with the current members of UBAC and the Academic Senate Steering Committee to propose a new model for our future budget processes as well as address the plan for this year.

For the 2004-05 academic year, UBAC will play a different role than in years past. It is my intention to draft a budget proposal and then ask the current UBAC membership to review its contents and provide advisory input and counsel. At the end, I will review their feedback and make the necessary decisions that are in the best interests of the university. UBAC will then be disbanded.

The model for 2005-06 and future years will become quite different. I have already asked the senate leadership to begin the development of a new budget advisory committee, which would also include students and staff. The charge of this group will be to work with me to develop a transparent budget process that has long been the desire of the campus community, one that can provide greater support to the future of the university.

I am once again inviting all faculty and staff to attend our University Budget Summit at noon on Tuesday, Feb. 24, in the Ursa Major Suite of the Bronco Student Center. I will be prepared to answer many of your questions and give you the most current information on the status of our 2004-05 budget.

Thank you again for your continued commitment to the students of Cal Poly Pomona.

J. Michael Ortiz