Marshall 20/20 continues budget process

Marshall University is coming together to develop a vision for the future of the university.

Marshall 20/20 is planning for fiscal year of 2016.

Departments throughout the university submitted their budget requests in December 2014.

Budget Director Mark Robinson said there will be budget cuts, but they are unsure of what the cuts will be.

“We are cumulating all the cost information from people and meeting with all the units,” Robinson said. “As  President Stephen J. Kopp had said before, he doesn’t want to cut any positions. Right now we don’t know what the cuts are going to be, but we have an idea.”

Robinson said they are trying to reduce the burden of raising student tuition, but it is inevitable.

“The money that is for student services does not appear to be cut, but until we put it all together there is no direct answer,” Robinson said.

Marshall 20/20 is working to build a model that will help students predict their tuition.

“What we are thinking about doing is proposing a simplification of those fees, so it would be based on a program or school, not a course,” Robinson said. “It seems very simple that if we have a smaller and concise number of fees and additions we should be able to disclose that on invoices so people can be prepared and know what their bill is going to be.”

Robinson said Kopp started Marshall 20/20 because of the reduction of state appropriations.

“Marshall 20/20 is an initiative started by President Kopp, realizing that because of the reduction of the state appropriations, we’ve got to learn to survive on our own, almost from the example of being a private institution,” Robinson said. “In other words, can we rely on state for funding year after year?”

Robinson said it is a process that needs to be done.

“It’s a process, it’s a change that people are reluctant to do,” Robinson said. “I think it’s an exercise we have to do, and I think it will take us two or three years to get where we really need to go. But I think President Kopp headed us in the right direction, and we’re going to see that done all the way through.”

Sara Ryan can be contacted at [email protected].