HONOLULU, Hawaii (HawaiiNewsNow) - University of Hawaii administrators warned of significant budget cuts in the months ahead that are expected to eclipse those seen during the Great Recession.
“The COVID-19 pandemic has now confronted the state and UH with the most dire fiscal crisis in our history,” UH-Manoa Provost Michael Bruno, in a letter published on the university’s website.
“We should have no pretense that routine evolutionary change will enable us to help the state recover and flourish under the financial condition we face today and for a number of years to come. Although the precise extent and nature of the cuts to our state allocation remain unclear, it is certain that these cuts will be significantly larger than those we experienced during the Great Recession.”
Officials say they don’t yet know how many people, programs or departments will be affected by cutbacks. So far, they’ve already eliminated at least eight executive positions.
All executive staff and managers are also not getting a pay raise next fiscal year.
Bruno’s letter directed faculty and staff to a separate website that laid out suggestions from the university’s budget committee and responses from those units.
Officials stressed those suggestions are preliminary, but they included such things as doing away with some majors or programs and collapsing others.
The university said the plans, once finalized, are “expected to produce significant cost savings through reduction of administrative costs, the elimination of low enrollment academic programs and the reorganization of programs and departments.”