The Legislature’s $43.1 billion state budget for fiscal 2020, approved July 22, provides $558 million to educate students in the five-campus university system. Key aspects include full funding of the state’s portion of collective bargaining agreements for faculty and staff as well as an additional 1 percent increase in the university’s appropriation.
Chancellor Kumble Subbaswamy said, “In partnership with our legislative leaders and the governor, UMass Amherst has emerged in recent years as a top-ranked public research university, and we are grateful for their vital budget support again this year. Our students are flourishing, as reflected in dramatic increases in student retention and graduation rates. Their success plays an invaluable role in the Commonwealth’s economic and cultural vitality.” He noted, as an example, that UMass Amherst graduates more students in the STEM fields than any other university, private or public, in the entire state.
“I want to express my deep appreciation to Governor Charlie Baker, House Speaker Robert DeLeo Senate President Karen Spilka and their colleagues in the Legislature for their strong advocacy of the university and its students,” Subbaswamy said. “In addition, we are fortunate to have a talented local legislative delegation who helped secure this funding increase for our campus. Thank you to Senator Jo Comerford, Representatives Mindy Domb, Natalie Blais, Dan Carey, Lindsay Sabadosa and Paul Mark, and the many other alumni and friends of the campus in the Legislature for their support.”
Governor Baker has 10 days to review the budget. The spending plan preserves the autonomy of the UMass Board of Trustees to set rates and determine the resources needed to provide 75,000 students, including 30,000 at the flagship campus in Amherst, with a world-class education. Trustees are expected to meet soon to set tuition and fees for the 2019-20 academic year.