UW News

June 11, 2020

UW Regents approve 2020-21 budget as University faces financial challenges from COVID-19

The University of Washington Board of Regents on Thursday approved the University’s 2020-21 budget, which seeks to continue prioritizing its academic mission while also responding to the financial pressures brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic.

With many UW auxiliary units facing significant revenue shortfalls, and in light of expected impacts on state revenues from the pandemic, the University is restricting expenses in several areas – including hiring – to only those deemed essential to supporting instruction, research and clinical work.

Additionally, the Board of Regents approved a faculty salary plan that suspends an annual salary increase for faculty. The 2020-21 budget also does not include an annual increase for professional staff. These actions do not apply to classified staff, whose salaries are set by contract.

Provost Richards developed the faculty salary plan in close consultation with the Board of Deans and Chancellors and the Faculty Senate Committee on Planning and Budgeting.

“It is simply not feasible to recommend regular 2% merit increases for all faculty,” UW President Ana Mari Cauce wrote in a message to faculty co-signed by Richards, Faculty Senate Chair Joseph Janes and Vice Chair Robin Angotti. “Moreover, in our discussions with faculty, many noted that, considering the furloughs experienced by so many staff and the high rates of unemployment and economic hardship across our state, providing raises at this time would run counter to our values and our public mission.”

While the faculty plan does not provide for regular merit increases, it does provide for 10% promotion increases to faculty members who will be promoted on July 1, 2020, and September 16, 2020.

“This recommendation was not made lightly, and in no way reflects the contributions or excellence of our faculty or professional staff,” President Cauce said. “Indeed, the way our faculty and staff have gone above and beyond in service of our students, state and society has been truly remarkable.”

The FY2021 budget runs from July 1, 2020 to June 30, 2021 and totals more than $8.25 billion.