Monday Update Messages | Spring 2020

Please see below for Monday Update messages from the spring 2020 semester. Click here for the fall 2019 semester.


This is the first of a three-part series that will provide basic information about our budget and related funding sources. Each part will address basic “need to know” information for those managing or administering a budget within the UW System. The three parts are:

               Part 1 – Base Budget Authority & Funding Sources

               Part 2 – A Closer Look at State and Tuition Funding

               Part 3 – Budget Rules We Need to Know and Follow

Did you know the total base operating budget approved for the Parkside campus for FY20 is a little over $100 million? This amount is up almost 4% over the base budget authority received for FY19. Our base operating budget is dependent on, and directly impacted by, the underlying funding sources supporting the budget. But not all of the funding sources supporting our base budget are available for general operations. 

Some of the funding (budget authority) we received is restricted for specific purposes. Any unused funding that is restricted for a specific purpose generally lapses. This means the budget authority granted ceases. The funding cannot be used for any other purpose. For example, much of the financial aid budget we receive is restricted and can only be used for student financial aid.

Some sources of funding are not specifically restricted, but we receive the funding with the understanding that the funds should be used for the purpose for which they were given. Examples of funding we consider designated includes student fees, housing rents, and meal plan revenue.

The following should give you some understanding of the various funding sources that contribute to the success of our campus. One thing we need to remember is that the “fund” in a funding string identifies the source and type of funding being used. While the source and type of funding may influence or even control how we spend those funds, a “fund” is not determined or defined by how we spend those resources.

Did you know:

  • A little over $30 million of the $100 million base operating budget is earmarked for student financial aid. In fact, most of the $30 million is from the federal government and is restricted. These funds can only be used for student financial aid. It should be noted that this amount does not represent all the financial aid available to our students. There are other sources of financial aid awarded to our students that do not flow through our budget.
  • In addition to federal financial aid for our students, we receive federal grants supporting faculty and student research. Totally federal funding budgeted for our campus is approximately $31 million.
  • About $16 million in program revenue (excluding tuition) is received annually, primarily from students, but also from other users, for various services provided by our campus. These funds support operating budgets used to provide services such as housing, meal plans, and parking. Student fees also help support student center activities and some athletic activities.
  • Approximately $26 million of our operating budget is supported by tuition revenue. Tuition, as you know, is tied to enrollment. Variations in enrollment directly impacts our budgeted spending authority. This basically means, even though we have a budget, we cannot spend it unless we have (or at least anticipate having) the revenue.
  • Another $26 million of our operating budget is funded by the State of Wisconsin. Yes, only 26% of our $100 million base operating budget comes from the State. These funds, along with the tuition funding, provide the primary source of funding for the core operating budgets allocated to many of the departments on campus, commonly referred to as Fund 102. We will take a closer look at how the state and tuition resources are utilized on our campus in Part 2 of this series.

One last point. In addition to the approximately $100 million base operating budget we receive annually, the campus also benefits from capital funds that are appropriated through the capital budgeting process. The capital budgeting process is totally separate from the regular biennial budgeting process that determines our base operating budget. Capital projects includes large projects such as the Wyllie Renovation, as well as smaller repair or maintenance projects in our heating and chilling plant that typically go unnoticed by most of us on campus. The amount of capital funding the campus receives varies significantly depending on the number and sizes of projects approved.

Scott Menke
Vice Chancellor for Finance & Administration

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