Review of the New Budget Model

PDAD&C#59, 2010-11

 Cheryl Misak, Vice-President and Provost
 March 7, 2011
 Review of the New Budget Model

When the University's New Budget Model was implemented in 2007-08, it was understood that it would undergo periodical review. Now that we have a few years of experience with the New Budget Model, it seemed appropriate to take a look at how it was doing. Last year a committee was struck to evaluate the budget methodology. I asked the committee to appraise the strengths and weaknesses of the model, its adherence to the principles outlined by the original Budget Review Task Force, the incentives and disincentives that have emerged, and the effectiveness of the model.
The committee has now completed its review and I am pleased to present the final report. Its general finding is that the New Budget Model brings an improved and transparent framework to the manner in which resources are allocated across the University.

I would like to thank the committee members for their work and I would also like to commend the broad consultative approach they followed in reaching their recommendations.

We will move immediately to implement the recommended adjustments to the methodology for allocating revenues and costs. These adjustments will be offset by a University Fund adjustment in the first year, to effect the transition. The review process also identified some issues which require more in-depth analysis and the committee recommends that working groups be established to address these matters. These include an analysis of tri-campus information technology services and costs allocation, the establishment of service and funding agreements for the Human Resources services provided by the Professional Faculties North and South offices, and a comprehensive review of the budgetary aspects of tri-campus central and divisional libraries.

Let me take this opportunity to acknowledge the remarkable efforts of Sally Garner, Executive Director of Planning and Budget, and the fine people in her office. One thing that has come up again and again in discussions of the New Budget Model is that the quality and usefulness of the information coming from the Office of Planning and Budget has made it much more easy, indeed in many cases, has made it possible, for Deans and other division heads to make decisions that have positive budgetary, and hence positive academic, impacts on their units.