Queen’s releases 2015-16 financial statements
September 23, 2016
The university’s draft financial statements for 2015-16 are now available online, and will go before the Board of Trustees for approval at the Board’s Sept. 30 meeting.
The statements, which outline the university’s consolidated financial results for the fiscal year ending April 30, 2016, report a surplus of revenues over expenses of $39.5 million, even as the university continues to face a number of financial challenges.The surplus represents 4.5 per cent of the university’s total expenses.
“The university is committed to achieving long-term financial sustainability and maintaining our position as the quintessential balanced academy,” says Vice-Principal (Finance and Administration) Caroline Davis. “The operating fund surplus will provide important flexibility for future strategic priorities and a reserve for future pension payments. In addition, surpluses accrued by the faculties have been set aside in departmental reserves in support of academic priorities.”
The primary reasons for the surplus are actuarially defined pension expenses lower than pension contributions, significant utility savings, and an increase in tuition revenue.
Despite the surplus, the university continues to face a number of financial challenges, including low interest rates, an unsustainable pension plan with a $285-million solvency deficit, a $253-million deferred maintenance backlog, and reliance on government controlled grant support and tuition, all of which continue to be a part of the financial landscape.
“As has been the case in previous years, a significant portion of our surplus is non-cash and therefore not available for operations. We cannot count on continued surpluses in the years to come, and must prudently manage our reserves to help address our financial challenges,” says Vice-Principal Davis.
In May 2016, the Board of Trustees approved the 2016-17 operating budget, which is balanced after a $16.4 million drawdown of reserves.