April 6, 2018

Purdue trustees approve university’s operating budget

WESTVILLE, Ind. — The Purdue University Board of Trustees on Friday (April 6) approved a system-wide $2.3 billion operating budget for fiscal year 2019 that maintains student affordability while supporting key university initiatives and capital improvements and providing a competitive merit compensation pool.

Process improvements implemented over the past year by the Office of the Treasurer and Chief Financial Officer have led to an earlier submission of the university’s operating budget, saving months of staff effort effort in budget preparation.

“For this budget, we have streamlined our processes and provided better information, such as monthly trend reports and quarterly projections, that allow those preparing budgets to make better decisions and plans for how to allocate and target resources,” said Bill Sullivan, Purdue treasurer and chief financial officer. “This has taken a budgeting process that normally runs in excess of eight months down to three months.”

Sullivan said that instead of using multiple spreadsheets, the university used a cloud-based system that allowed for automated loading of data and provided information online, ending streams of paper reports that were historically part of the process. Budget targets also were provided based on trends, which increased the accuracy of budgets initially submitted.

The FY 2019 budget includes the previously approved sixth year of a tuition freeze at the West Lafayette campus and a previously approved tuition and fee increase of 1.4 percent at the Purdue Northwest and Purdue Fort Wayne campuses. The ongoing tuition freeze at the West Lafayette campus, combined with lower room and board rates and significant discounts on books and supplies through the university’s Amazon partnership, means that students attending in the 2018-19 academic year will have a lower total cost of attendance than in 2012.

Additionally, the approved budget provides for a merit salary pool of 2.5 percent at West Lafayette, a 2 percent recurring merit salary pool at Purdue Northwest and a 2 percent non-recurring salary pool at Purdue Fort Wayne. The budgeted increase in fringe benefit costs is $14 million.

Purdue also plans to invest $61 million for repair and rehabilitation projects across all campuses.

“The overarching principles in developing this budget were to maintain student affordability, support the ongoing Purdue Moves initiatives and needed capital investments, and allow us to recruit and retain the very best faculty and staff by providing competitive compensation,” Sullivan said. “It’s always a difficult line to walk, but we have managed to produce a budget that is fiscally responsible while maintaining our investment in excellence.”

Trustees endorsed the following total operating expenditures for fiscal year 2019:

* At the West Lafayette campus: $2.1 billion.

* At Purdue Northwest: $160 million.

* At Fort Wayne: $153 million.

Source: Bill Sullivan, 765-494-9705, sully1976@purdue.edu

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