On May 2, 2009, the Queen's Board of Trustees approved the 2009-2010 budget.
If you require an alternate format for either of the budget documents, please contact the Office of the Principal.
May 11, 2009
To all members of the Queen's Community,
I would like to update you on Queen's operating budget for the 2009-2010 fiscal year and the current status of discussions with employee groups about ways we can reduce the wage bill.
The Board of Trustees approved the budget at its May 2 meeting, but expressed serious concern that for the first time in living memory, we will be carrying a deficit ($8.3M).
The Board has also asked that we re-think the current budget projections and deficit levels for 2010-2011 and 2011-2012, which are $14.6M and $8.4M respectively. Trustees have sent us "back to the drawing board" and we will provide progress reports to the Board's finance committee over the summer.
This means that all units will need to reconsider their budget plans for 2010-2011 and 2011-2012.
It also changes the framework of ongoing discussions with the Queen's University Faculty Association. (Negotiations started with QUFA, but we hope to involve all employee groups in seeking ways to solve the financial problems that we face.)
At a meeting on Friday to work on options for an early retirement program, we told the Association that we have to assess our acceptance of such a program in relation to the prospect and magnitude of savings being realized by other means, including salary mitigation. We hope that discussions will continue over the next few weeks.
Our current salary and benefit costs are increasing at 5.5% annually. This is similar at other universities. Unfortunately, in the current economic environment, it isn't sustainable.
As a community, we need to try to find fair and balanced ways to reduce our costs. If we can find a way to reduce annualized increases across all employee groups, this would go a long way towards eliminating our budget difficulties.
As I noted in my recent Report to the Community, we also tabled a proposal with QUFA regarding "Queen's Days", when the University would close down for a few unpaid days during the year, which would save close to $400,000 in faculty compensation each day, and a total of $700,000 per day for the whole university. While I am disappointed this didn't go far, it is but one idea that could help us achieve our goal. I'm hoping we can revisit this idea or that employee groups will table other suggestions that would reduce overall compensation costs.
I welcome the opportunity to continue working with our employee groups, and I will keep the community informed on our progress through this website.
The attached documents detail the 2009-2010 budget and I encourage you to read them and email firstname.lastname@example.org with any questions you have.
We are in this together. I look forward to your input.
Principal and Vice-Chancellor