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Blue Ribbon Task Force holds first meeting

November 12, 2014

MSU Denver’s Blue Ribbon Task Force held its first meeting on Nov. 11 and by the end of the session had identified areas in which nearly $1 million can be trimmed from the University’s budget, primarily from job vacancy savings and operating costs within Administration and Finance and the Provost’s Office.

“We’re looking for strategic cuts. It’s very hard for a very small office with a very small budget to make much in the way of a meaningful cut, and we understand that,” said George Middlemist, associate vice president for Administration and Finance, and University controller. “But for offices with unspent money in their budgets, we should be asking ourselves if we’re not spending all the money in our budgets, why are we hanging on to it? Do we just want a cushion or do we have a strategy for it? If we don’t have a strategy for it, we probably can live without it.”

The Blue Ribbon Task Force was created earlier this year to help identify ways in which the University can permanently cut $1.6 million from its overall budget to account for enrollment and revenue decreases. The group is chaired by Cathy Lucas, associate to the president for Marketing and Communications and chief of staff, and consists of student, faculty and administrative representatives from throughout MSU Denver.

Having identified $531,546 in reductions within Administration and Finance, and an additional $464,400 from the Provost’s Office budget, the Blue Ribbon Task Force will develop recommendations for cutting an additional $600,000 from the University’s budget and share those with the Budget Task Force and senior leaders throughout the University.

The Blue Ribbon Task Force will meet again on Dec. 2.

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