The 2014-15 funding budget, which runs from May 1, 2014 to April 30, 2015, was approved by the Board of Trustees on June 26, 2014. The approved funding budget reflected a $3.2 million deficit, with direction from the Board of Trustees to balance it by April 30, 2015. The full budget report can be found at: http://brocku.ca/finance/university-financial-information/budget-reports with a video explaining some of the budget comments. This video was produced by three experiential-learning students who are noted at the end of the video.
Since the funding budget’s approval, work has been underway to balance the books by April 30, 2015. As of Jan. 31, 2015, it is believed that the mitigation measures taken will allow us to accomplish this objective. To this the Senior Administration would like to say thank you to everyone for making this possible.
This said, it looks like we all have some additional work ahead. As many in the University community know, we were facing some significant headwinds going into the development of the 2015-16 budget as our costs were set to grow significantly faster than our revenues. This prompted the guidance document that can be found at https://brocku.ca/webfm_send/33677. It introduced a number of initiatives, including four per cent cost reductions across the University.
As the budget is being finalized, we are looking at another deficit budget. The projected deficit is $3.9 million, which will once again require mitigation measures to be put into place. The complexity going into fiscal 2015-16 is that many of the savings opportunities utilized to balance the funding budget in 2014-15 have already been used just to get the funding budget deficit down to $3.9 million. This means achieving a $3.9 million mitigation target will be harder in 2015-16 than it was in 2014-15.
The budget guidance and related plan did not produce a balanced budget for 2015-16 due to forecasted reduced enrolment of 375 undergraduate students. Looking forward, the strategic enrolment planning committee is anticipating enrolment will fall further as a result of the population decline of 18-20 year olds in Ontario.
In early April it is expected the full budget report, similar to the 2014-15 budget report, will be posted. When this occurs this website will be updated.
In the meantime we might reflect on what Brian Hutchings, Vice-President of Finance and Administration, said about the 2014-15 budget, as it continues to hold true today: “We are not out of the woods. Brock has a large deficit and a debt load, and several years of hard work ahead of us to make the University strong and in control of its future. But when everyone joins in, we will get there.”