Budget Impasse Update

June 18, 2021

Dear UA Community,

I wanted to update you on developments regarding the university’s budget and our plans for moving forward:

  • In the current special session, the legislature passed an operating and capital budget, but yesterday the governor rejected it over technical issues. If not resolved by 11:59 p.m. tonight, the Governor intends to call the legislature into a second special session that will begin on Wednesday, June 23 to focus only on the budget.
  • The Legislature passed an operating budget of $273 million in unrestricted general funding (UGF) for the University of Alaska, a $4.3 million UGF cut from the current fiscal year, and passed a $31.6 million capital budget for the university. 
  • The governor’s action means that with less than two weeks left in the fiscal year, there may not be a signed budget by July 1 as required by the constitution. Without appropriation authority to expend funds from the state treasury, there may be a government shutdown. 
  • Despite the current budget impasse, I want to assure you that the university will continue to provide critical and core services even in the absence of an appropriation.
  • Yesterday, Alaska State employees received layoff notices. We do not currently plan to issue budget impasse-related furlough or layoff notices for a number of reasons, including that many university operations are self-supporting during the summer, and many other university operations are core to our constitutionally mandated mission or are federally mandated, and must continue even in the absence of an appropriation.

We have confidence in the legislature that the budget impasse will be resolved by July 1. However, if there is not a budget resolution by then, we will reassess.

Pat Pitney
UA Interim President