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Dearborn, Flint budgets strained

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The budgets for U-M-Dearborn and U-M-Flint call for a 2.4 percent tuition increase, contingent on the state making good on its promise to restore some of last year's cuts.

U-M-Dearborn's $81 million budget anticipates a state funding reduction of 2 percent, a 1.5 percent salary increase, higher costs for health care benefits and the hiring of additional faculty to support increased enrollments.
"To go another year
without providing
adequate compensation to faculty and staff is inconceivable."
—Juan Mestas,
U-M-Flint chancellor

For the second year, Dearborn has budgeted for a 1.5 percent increase in enrollment, even though it experienced double that number of new students in the fiscal year that just ended. Chancellor Daniel Little told members of the Board of Regents July 15 the budget includes student financial aid increases larger than the tuition hike.

Little expressed concern that the flexibility in the campus's spending plan disappeared with the state budget cuts of last year, echoing President Mary Sue Coleman's statement that continued erosion of state appropriations threatens the academic core.

"We think it is no bargain to anyone in the state to let quality suffer," Little told regents.

The U-M-Flint budget of $55.96 million calls for a 3 percent increase in state funding, flat enrollment and additional financial aid to offset the tuition hike. Following a year in which Flint campus employees did not receive raises, Chancellor Juan Mestas recommended a 3 percent salary increase.

"To go another year without providing adequate compensation to faculty and staff is inconceivable," Mestas told regents, adding that last year not one person complained to him about the lack of an increase.

"[The salary increase is] a good faith effort and is the most we can afford," he said. "We are in this together, and we'll get out of this together."

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