100%

Scanned image of the page. Keyboard directions: use + to zoom in, - to zoom out, arrow keys to pan inside the viewer.

Page Options

Download this Issue

Share

Something wrong?

Something wrong with this page? Report problem.

Rights / Permissions

This collection, digitized in collaboration with the Michigan Daily and the Board for Student Publications, contains materials that are protected by copyright law. Access to these materials is provided for non-profit educational and research purposes. If you use an item from this collection, it is your responsibility to consider the work's copyright status and obtain any required permission.

February 15, 1979 - Image 4

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Michigan Daily, 1979-02-15

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

age 4-Thursday, February 15, 1979-The Michigan Daily
DECISION-MA KING A T THE 'U'

U' vice-presidents dominate budgetary process

Third in a series
The making of the budget
In studying decision-making at the
University of Michigan, it is important
to understand the University budget
since budgetary decisions set the broad
constraints within which more detailed
decisions on academic and student af-
fairs are made. In this article, we will
examine how the budget is made; in the
next two, we will discuss budgetary
trends of the last nine years paying
careful attention to the implications
these figures have for members of the
University community.
The University budget includes four
current funds used to finance the
ongoing activities of the University. Of
these, the General Fund is the
largest-$173 million in 1977. It pays for
most of the educational and general ac-
tivities of the University. Its main sour-
ces of revenue are student fees and
state appropriations. The Designated
Fund is by far the smallest of the
current funds. It is used to finance a
variety of specific academic and ad-
ministrative activites and its main
sources of revenue are gifts, invest-
ment income, and fees from conferen-
ces and training programs. The Ex-
pendable Restricted Fund, as the
name implies, consists of money
restricted in its-use by the donor
organizations or individuals jagencies
of the U.S. government, private foun-
dations, corporations, alumni, etc.). It
is used primarily for research, but also
for student aid and- other activities.
The remaining current fund-the
Auxiliary A ctivities Fund-is used
for financially self-supporting activities
such as the University Hospital,

Student Housing, Inter-Collegiate
Athletics, etc., which are basically
peripheral to the main educational and
research functions of the University.
We therefore excluded this fund from
our analysis.
WE WILL FOCUS on the budget-,
making process for the General Fund
here since it is by far the most impor-
tant arena for budgetary decision-
making at the University. The key
figure in this process is the vice-
president for academic affairs whose
office is ultimately responsible for
drawing up the General Fund budget.
The main task of the vice-president's
office is to determine how much money
will be made available to each unit.
Control over the allocation of each
unit's budget is delegated to unit heads
lower down in the administrative
hierarchy. As a general rule, unit
budgets from the previous year are
considered minimum baseline for the
year to be budgeted so that the critical
decisions involve the allocation of in-
cremental resources.
The first stage of the budgetary
process is geared to the formal sub-
mission of a General Fund budget
request for state appropriations to the
governor of Michigan on the first of Oc-
tober preceding the beginning of the
next fiscal year. The process begins
with a, flow of written requests for ad-
ditional funding from the various ad-
ministrative units to the office of the
vice-president for academic affairs.
Then some estimates are made by the
vice-president himself of increased
costs attributable to inflation plus
desired increases in compensation for,
faculty and other employees.
Department heads, other faculty
representatives, deans, other executive

"Students have an even harder time exert-
ing an influence on the budgetary process
because they are excluded from many of
the budgetary proceedings and lack suf-

ficient expertise,

resources,

and time to be

active participants."

officers, and the Regents are all in-
volved in a series of consultations about
the General Fund budget request but it
is the vice-president for academic af-
fairs who has the greatest degree of
control over the request. The final ver-
sion is authorized by the "Committee
on Budget Administration" (CBA) con-'
sisting of the president and all the vice-
presidents and chaired by the vice-
president for academic affairs. It is
then passed on to the Regents for for-
mal approval in September.
THE SECOND and most crucial
stage of the budgetary process is
geared to the preparation of the final
operating budget-the "Grey
Book"-which details the precise
amounts of money allocated from the
General Fund to each administrative
unit for the fiscal year. This stage
begins in January when the University
gets an initial idea from the governor's'
budget message to the Michigan
legislature of how much will'be forth-
coming in state appropriations.
Since the amount is typically well
below that requested in the budget
request, and too low to meet the basic
needs of -the University without some
increases in yearly tuition rates, the
vice-president for academic affairs
must consider the sensitive issue of

establishing a new tuition fee schedule.
This involves weighing the adverse.
consequences of higher tuition rates on
students, their parents and others
against the adverse consequences of
lower increases in salaries and other
program expenditures on the faculty
and the University as a whole. After a
process involving consultations with
many of the same people involved in the
budget request formulation, a new
tuition fee schedule is formulated by
the vice-president for academic affairs,,
authorized by the CBA, and formally
approved by the Regents in April or
May.
Meanwhile, a lengthy series of
"budget conferences" takes place in
which various administrative unit
heads have an opportunity to pleadx
their case for additional' funding before
the vice-president. When these con-
ferences have been completed, a ten-
tative operating budget is then drawn
up in the office of the vice-president for
academic affairs.
THIS BUDGET, is presented to the
"Budget Priorities Committee" which
consists largely of faculty members but
also includes two students and the vice-

some minor adjustments, it is then
submitted to the CBA. The CBA has the
final administrative authority to frame
the operating budget and it generally
makes a few more changes before sen-
ding the budget on to the Regents for
discussion and formal approval around
the beginning of the fiscal year itself.
At the stage when budgetary issues
(the' budget requests, the tuition fee
schedule, and the -final operating
budget) are formally considered and
voted upon by the Board of Regents,
they are virtually approved exactly as
presented by the administration. In-
dividual Regents will deplore the need
for tuition hikes and comment upon
various other aspects of the budget, and
occasionally one will even vote no; but
the Board as a whole very seldom
openly opposes the administration on
the General Fund budget. As a rule,
they do not have much impact on the
budget because they do not have the
time or the inclination to familiarize
themselves with the specialized and
comprehensive information necessary
to understand the budget in all its com-
plexity and to argue against a carefully
prepared and well-documented ad-
ministration position.
Faculty members are in a somewhat
similar position. Their general interest
in higher education is articulated by a
"Committee on the Economic Status of
the Faculty," which gathers data and'
presents reports to high-level ad-
ministrators and to the Regents. The
administration must try to provide at
least enough of a faculty compensation
increase to avoid serious disaffection
and the loss of prestigious faculty
members to other institutions. But
when it comes to the details of the
budgetary decision-making process,

even those facultymembers on such
advisory committees as the Budget.
Priorities Committee do not have the
time to develop enough familiarity with
all the relevant information to have
much of an impact.
STUDENTS HAVE an even harder
time exerting an influence on the
budgetary process. because they are
excluded from many of the budgetary
proceedings and lack sufficient exper-
tise, resources, and time to be active
participants.
It seems evident that the executive
officers-and the vice-president for
academic affairs in par-
ticular-dominate the GeneralFund
budgetary process.
The only significant exception to this
rule in the recent history of the Univer-
sity was provided by the Black Action
Movement strike of 1970. This strike
forced the University to increase
General Fund allocations for financial
aid and other programs and services
for minority and "disadvantaged"
students.
TOMORROW: Trends in revenues
and expenditures
This series of articles. on decision-
making at the University of
Michigan has been adapted from a
research report titled "Conflict and
Power On The Campus: Studies In
The Political Economy of the
University of Michigan, "written by
Andy Brown, -Harley Frazis, Jim
t Robb, Mike Taylor, Eitan Yanich,
and Tom Weisskopf.

presidents for
finance. After

academic affairs and
the committee makes

420 Maynard St., Ann Arbor, MI 48109
Eigh ty-Nine Years of Editorial Freedom
Vol. LXXXIX, No. 114 News Phone: 764-0552
Edited and managed by students at the University of Michigan
Dorms Soul join boyCott

v WO LOCAL organizations, the Ann
Arbor Farm Labor Organizing
Committee (FLOC) Support Group
and the Infant Action Coalition
(INFACT) are seeking dormitory
residents' support for their boycotts of-
Nestle's, Libby's, and Campbell's food
products.
We wholeheartedly support these
boycotts and urge dorm residents and
dorm students to do the same.
FLOC, which represents migrant
farm workers, is boycotting Libby's
and Campbell's in an effort to get
higher wages and much-needed im-
provements in housing and working
conditions. INFACT is boycotting
Nestle's, which owns Libby's, to
protest that company's practice of
selling baby formula to Third World
countries that lack the specialized
equipment to properly prepare it and
as a result, the formula in its un-
prepared, non-nutritious state is fed to

many infants who then die of
malnutrition. This practice is
deplorable.
If a majority of the dorm councils
approve the groups' proposals, all dorm
students will then be allowed to vote on
whether to support the boycott.
We feel that the students deserve to
decide for themselves the merits of the
boycott. Unfortunately,,there is no of-
ficial vehicle which the students can
use to address issues such as the
boycott. Since the dissolution of the
University Housing Council (UHC) last
fall, the students have not had voice in
these matters.
The decision by Housing officials to
allow FLOC and INFACT present their
proposals to the dorm councils, and
ultimately to the students, is a big step
in the right direction. To guarantee an
active student involvement in housing
decisions, the UHC should be revived
as soon as possible.

On November 2, 1976, the night
Michigan voters sent Jimmy Car-
ter and Don, Riegle , to
Washington, they also passed
Proposal A, which would ban the
sale of throwaway beverage con-
tainers.
Many of the state's environ-
mentalists enthusiastically
celebrated that night but then
Proposal A disappeared - at
least until last December when it
finally took effect.
WHILE THE state legislature
and many store owners were
ready for the change, the public
was takenby surprise. Suddenly,
buying a sixpack became an ex-
pensive proposition, and if one
wanted to take a can of Tab to
class, one also would have to
bring it back home or forfeit the
ten cents deposit. -
Life with the bottle bill has
changed in other ways, too. The
great macho art of crushing beer
cans is now a thing of the past.
After all, they're now worth a lot
of money. The garbage rate has
declined.. Glass and aluminum
manufacturers are spending
large amounts of money to en-
courage citizens to buy their par-
ticular products, and it isn't un-
common to see people in grocery
stores hotly debating whether to

t

purchase their beverages in cans
or battles.
Soon after the proposal was ap-
proved, proprietors insisted they
didn't have room in their stores
Tor the returned containers and
customers resented the increased
prices of deposits. Proprietors
also said theywouldn't take back
cans if the pull tab wasn't still on
it.
BUT THE bottle bill seems to
be working. And while some
people are surprised, nearly
everyone is pleased.
People have been complaining
for years about the environment,
but it is seldom that anyone, ex-
cept for those small percentage
of activists, does anything
besides talk. Every time
someone returns a bottle or can,

he or she is contributing to the
preservation of the environment.,
The bottle bill is a perfect exam-
ple of people finally backing up
their meaningless rhetoric with
action.
So why did it take so long for
the development of something so
simple? Of course no one knows
for sure, but it might seem to
have something to do with the
fact that complying with the law
is so simple. In addition, retur-
ning a bottle or can to the store
makes one feel that he or she has
fulfilled an important respon-
sibility.
A FEW YEARS ago, the Ann
Arbor City Council passed what
they not so modestly called "the
clean air resolution." All the
resolution did, however, was ban
smoking in the council chambers.

The' bottle bill and
how it's working

By Julie Rovner

Signs were dutifully posted, and
then dutifully ignored by all in-
cluding then Mayor Albert
Wheeler. When asked why Coun-
cil had passed the resolution at
all, former Councilwoman Liz
Keogh said it "looks good for
to vote for something called clean
air. It's like going to church on
Sunday."
That seems to be the secret of
the bottle bill's success. But we
shouldn't just sit back and bask in'
the glow. It is clear that the
voters don't think government'is
responsive to their needs, and are
now willing to take lawmaking in-
to their own hands. The voters
stand by what they have created,
and defend it vigorously as
California has seen with Prop. 13;
It took a lot of hard work to
create and implement the bottle
bill, and that-success shouldn't be
viewed as-a lucky break. Rather,
it can be seen as the first in a long
series of successes involving the
cooperation of the government
and the voters.
Julie Rovner is Co-Director
of the Daily Editorial page.

OUR PIiOqRfI S
CONFLICT' INVOLV1
CAMSMAOIAh ~S;
ANP It PRW6Nf
A WIDER 0
Ai

' r I

747l

p9

III \\X, a-
:'r .. ' - , ii
M I;
4 - , -. .

-I V.

Letters
Black History
To The Daily:
As Vice President of Minority.
Affairs on the Michigan Student
Assembly, I feel it is my duty to
respond to a portion of last Wed-
nesday's front page report of
Tuesday's MSA meeting. Your
report on the comments made by
Jeff Coleman, Budget Priorities
Committee member, in reference
to the "misproportion of funds
which go to minority groups" and
the overlap of activities and a'
lack of communications" which
he cited in the organization of this
year's "BLACK HISTORY
MONTH," was both one-sided
and misleading.
It seems that if your reporter
felt Coleman's comments worthy
of front page coverage and that
they possibly reflected the sen-
timents of other white students,
he would have also included some
of the statements made in rebut-
tal. At least five assembly mem-
bers, including the President, the
Vice President and myself
responded in favor of the support
which MSA has so recently given
to minority student activities.
Unfortunately, those responses
had to be held until later on the
agenda because Coleman was
speaking during constituents
time (when students get a chance
to exercise their right to

University and in the greater
society, conditions whichsmake
the support on minority student
activities not only necessary, but
important.
First of all, we must separate
in our minds the various com-
ponent groups which have been
lumped together for the sake of
expediency under the
numerically inferior title of
"minority." Blacks (African-
American), Asian-American,
Hispanics, - and Native
Americans, all have separate and,
distinct identities which stem
from their unique backgrounds
and experience. What brings
them together under the catch-
word "minority" is not simply
their numbers, but the op-
pression, the exploitation and
cultural genocide which they hve
all experience in consequence of
racism. All minority groups have
also been lumped together in
Coleman's mind and in the
$10,000 figure he cited. That
figure includes not only, BLACK
HISTORY MONTH, but all
allocations to all minority groups
from September to date. Because
minority students make up ap-
proximately 10 per cent of the
student population (which relates
back to this University's sagging,
ten year old commitment to in-
crease their enrollment) he feels
that the funding this year has
been misproportioned.
Misproportioned or overdue?
For years, minority students
have been virtually inactive at

other minority student activities)
threatends to add more variety,
to broaden a few perspectives.
For that reason, it is important to
the entire University Community
and not just to black students. Af-
ter all, the histories and ex-
perience of racially oppressed
groups in this country cannot or
should not be viewed in isolation.
They are intimately entwined
with the history and evolution of
our society. Ignoring black
history from a black perspective
is like refusing to look in a
mirror,'- your self image as an
American will , always be
somewhat distorted.
Finally, I must comment on the
statement that there was an
overlap of activities and a lack of
communication in, planning for
BLACK HISTORY MONTH. If
you will look over the BLACK
HISTORY MONTH CALENDAR
which has been distributed
aroundi campus, you will find
political and educational as well
as cultural and social activities.
It would seem that there is
enough variety to justify, say,
more than one dinner because it
gives more people the oppor-
tunity to attend at least one and
also gives them a choice between
African and Soul food. Coleman
cited various incidences where he
perceived overlap, but this shows
that maybe he himself should at-
tend in order to discover the
distinction betweenJor example,
an African dress exposition and a
New York fashion show.
Mnr~.anvpnn fharta will .1 mie.,ha

considering the number of black
organizations involved, the fact'
that no previous campus-wide:
coordinated BLACK HISTORY.
MONTH has ever taken place,
the fact that all black people (like
all white people or any race of
people) do not function together.
as one and the fact that part of,
the purpose of BLACK HISTORY
MONTH is to stress to black,
students the need for unity and,
cooperation, I am very pleased,
with the agenda for February and
have even greater expectations,.
for -next year. And I would hope
that the Michigan Daily will
begin to give as much coverage to
positive incidents which concern
black people as .it does to those
that reinforce negative images.
-Pam Gordon
Vice President,
Minority Affairs Committee
MICHIGAN STUDENT
ASSEMBLY
Minorities
To the Daily:
I'm sick and tired of hearing
about the "special needs" of
minorities, females, and gays on
this campus. If they're so damn
sure that they're deserving of
equal treatment and opportunity,
let them get down to studying -
like us 'privileged' white middle
class males and prove it instead
of screaming for special con- t
sideration.
It would be nice if the Univer-
sity community concentrated
more on academics and the

Back to Top

© 2021 Regents of the University of Michigan