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President Nick J. Bruno

2016 Dear Colleagues E-mails


December 12, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues: 

It is time once again to begin the nomination process for the 2017 Foundation Awards for Excellence.

Our ULM Foundation makes this program possible, and allows us to recognize excellence in our faculty and staff in six major areas:

  1. Faculty Creative/Artistic Activity
  2. Faculty Teaching
  3. Faculty Research
  4. Service by Faculty, Service by Unclassified Staff, and Service by Classified Staff.

The six recipients will be recognized during Fall 2017 University Week.  Each person will receive a plaque and a one-time salary supplement less applicable deductions (Faculty and Unclassified Staff - $3,000 each and Classified Staff – 10% of their base annual salary not to exceed $3,000).

The guidelines for the awards may be downloaded by clicking here.    Please review the guidelines carefully for complete instructions.   Nominations are due by January 31, 2017.

I urge your participation.

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


November 18, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues: 

Good news for now!  Thanks to Rep. Jackson!

From Rachel Kincaid, ‎Vice President of External Affairs at University of Louisiana System:

Just a few moments ago, Joint Legislative Committee on the Budget (JLCB) members voted to defer the vote on the Governor’s deficit reduction plan to resolve the state’s $315M shortfall. Citing concerns about the proposed cut to Higher Ed, committee members asked for more time to review the Governor’s plan and consider alternatives.  Rep. Katrina Jackson, Rep. Cameron Henry, Sen. Bret Allain, Sen. Sharon Hewitt and Rep. Tony Bacala expressed the most concern about Higher Ed’s cut, asking Commissioner Dardenne to consider reductions in other areas of state government.  
 
JLCB members have 30 days to take action and are expected to meet again December 16th for a final decision.   Their meeting will follow the December 13th meeting of the Revenue Estimating Committee where the state’s economists will update the state’s revenue projections.  
 
The full detail of the Governor’s proposal is attached for your information.   Please give me a call if I can provide additional information.  

 

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


November 18, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues: 

As you have probably heard or read, higher education will again be forced to address a mid-year budget reduction.  While these have become an unfortunate routine we have had to experience, our university continues to move forward due to your commitment and hard work.

We also remain strong!

I have provided for your information the distribution of the cuts allocated to the University of Louisiana System.  I have also included how ULM will address our cuts.  I am happy to inform you NO personnel reductions will be required to address this reduction. 

As you also know, this spring students receiving TOPS will receive approximately $1,600 less funding than they received in spring of 2016.  I cannot at this time project the impact this will have on our enrollment which could further impact our budget.

We have been proactive in attempting to minimize the possible impact.  Every student on TOPS has been informed of services and opportunities available to minimize the impact.  I am asking that you reinforce the effort by urging students to go to the ULM webpage for information.  Approximately 50% of our full-time students receive TOPS!

Linda and I wish you and your family a very happy Thanksgiving.

 

ULS Institution  
EOB FY 17
Reduction 
Grambling State   $   13,076,632 $    320,426 2.5%
Louisiana Tech   $   26,550,006 $    650,574 2.5%
McNeese State   $   16,718,898 $    409,675 2.5%
Nicholls State   $   14,017,818 $    343,489 2.5%
Northwestern State   $   19,372,164 $    474,690 2.5%
Southeastern Louisiana   $   27,336,478 $    669,845 2.5%
ULS-Board of Supervisors   $     1,026,178 $      25,145 2.5%
University of Louisiana at Lafayette   $   43,881,375 $ 1,075,257 2.5%
University of Louisiana at Monroe   $   23,266,317 $    570,111 2.5%
University of New Orleans   $   27,779,142 $    680,692 2.5%
TOTALS   $ 213,024,999 $ 5,219,904 2.5%

 

ULM Reduction plan

ULM’s Reduction:  $570,111
• Travel $50,000   Reduce professional development
• Operating services $220,111  Plant exp. Utilities, deferred Maintenance
• Supplies $200,000 plant expenditures.
• Capital outlay $100,000 Computing center – computer upgrades, reduce maintenance

 

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


October 17, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues: 

Several months back, representatives from the Ouachita Business Alliance presented their plan to our campus community.  Following that presentation it was suggested that chairs of the respective areas of focus would return to host discussions and seek input from our campus community.  I am happy to inform you that on Monday, October 24, from 8:30-10:00 on the 7th floor of the Library building we will host those roundtables. 

I hope your schedule will allow you to come by and provide feedback and ideas regarding the area(s) of interest to you. 

An Executive Summary of the report is available here. The Full Plan is available for download at:
http://www.monroe.org/_literature_142014/Ouachita_Business_Alliance

Thank you.

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


June 28, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues: 

I would ask that you consider completing the survey below. This survey was prepared by the taskforce of Ouachita Business Alliance in partnership with CenturyLink to assess the awareness of higher education offerings and services by the institutions of higher education in Ouachita Parish (ULM and Louisiana Delta Community College).

The taskforce is encouraging citizens and employers to seek participation in the survey. I hope your schedule will allow you to participate.

https://surveys.centurylink.com/survey/se.ashx?s=2EA0F679395F58E4

Thank you.

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


June 27, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues: 

I wanted to provide you with the attached Legislative summary.  This was provided by our System office. 

At this time, it appears we will sustain a reduction of approximately $450,000, for this next budget year plus any additional mandated costs which we expect is an additional $400,000.  This is not as good as we had hoped, but with the negative attitude in the legislature regarding increasing revenues, it is better than in past years.  There is also speculation that additional revenues will be realized prior to the end of the fiscal year, which may provide for some additional funds, but certainly this is not certain. 

Currently our projected student enrollment for the Fall is very good.  We do not know what impact changes to the funding of TOPS will have nor will we know until students arrive.  It is possible this will impact out enrollment negatively.  We will be budgeting anticipating a decline due to that potential impact. 

I will continue to keep you posted.  Thank you to those who emailed and called legislators.  We must continue to communicate with them as to our importance to our region and state. 

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


June 21, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

Following is an update provided today regarding our higher education funding for FY 16-17.  Please read carefully, and contact Senators and Representatives that can help in assuring our funding for next year will remain the same. 

Thank you. 

At the end of the day yesterday, higher education funding was restored to last year’s levels with the passage of Rep. Walt Leger’s amendment to HB 69.  HB 69 is the supplemental appropriations bill that appropriates the $284 M in new revenues raising from the session.   Rep. Leger’s amendment closes the $55 M gap but does not address the shortfall for universities that lose funding with the implementation of the new formula.

Essentially if the BOR formula is used, we need $7M more in the formula to prevent a cut.  There are two opportunities left to address it: 

Add Funding in Senate Finance Today:

HB 69 will be heard in the Senate Finance Committee today at 1:30 p.m. in Room A & B.   If Senate members were to amend HB 69 in committee today to add $7M to higher education, no universities would have a cut.  The committee members for Senate Finance are:  Sen. Brett Allain (NiSU), Appel (UNO), Bishop (UNO), Donahue (SLU), Fannin (ULM/Tech), Hewitt (SLU), John (Tech, MSU, ULM) LaFleur (ULL), White (SLU).

Get House to Concur with Senate Amendments to HB 50 tomorrow:

Today, Senate members will hear HB 50 by Rep. Jack Montoucet which will reduce the individual income tax deduction from capital gains. The Senate is expected to amend the bill to also add the change in excess individual federal income tax deductions from HB 38 by Rep. White that failed Sunday night. If the Senate is successful in doing that today, HB 50 will go to the House Floor tomorrow. Thus, we would need House members to concur with Senate amendments to HB 50. If House members concur, $7M of the new revenues from HB 50 to higher education so that no university will have a cut from the new formula. The Senate plans to use the remaining funding from the amended HB 50 to fully fund TOPS.  

I have attached the vote from HB 38 by Rep. Malinda White from Sunday. We will need all House members who voted in support of HB 38 to also support HB 50. This is a majority vote so we need 53 votes to pass it and we need to keep the votes in support from Sunday night and ask those that voted against to now support.  Those that did not support the bill on Sunday night but could be willing to concur if contacted are:

 

Rep. Mark Abraham (MSU)
Rep. Stephen Dwight (MSU)
Rep. Larry Bagley (NSU)
Rep. Stuart Bishop (ULL)
Rep. Carmody (NSU Nursing)
Rep. Kenny Havard 
Rep. Lopinto (UNO)
Rep. Jim Morris (NSU)
Rep. Tanner Magee (NiSU)
Rep. Steve Pugh (SLU)
Rep. Major Thibaut

 

Can you please contact your members on both of these options to restore the funding gap for higher ed?  

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


June 17, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

Received this morning from Representative Katrina Jackson. Will keep you posted.

As many of you are aware of, we are currently in session to raise revenue to avoid massive cuts for the Fiscal Year that begins July 1. However, there have been many delays in the passage of bills to reach the goal.
 
Unfortunately, we just received extremely bad news regarding this current Fiscal Year that ends June 30.  We now have a $200 Million deficit for this year!!! That means between today and June 30 we must find $200 Million Dollars to cut or come up with some plan. As many of you know, these cuts would mostly be absorbed in Higher Education and Health Care; this would likely cause closure of universities, closure of our safety net hospitals, and discontinuation of hospice care amongst other things.
 
Please pray for this state and call your local representatives and senators!!!

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


June 16, 2016

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

Today HB 38 by Rep. Malinda White will be heard on the House floor. The House convenes at 11:00. The bill will help address the state’s lingering budget woes by returning state income tax to pre-Stelly 2007 levels. HB 38 will not apply to 75% of all taxpayers, affecting only those families who earn more than $103,000 annually and have excess itemized deductions. HB 38 will go a long way towards creating a more stable financial base for Louisiana to fully fund the TOPS program and provide support for the state’s colleges and universities. An amendment was added yesterday in committee which provides for sunset (expiration) in 2018.

If this bill fails to win passage, and at the current State funding level, TOPS recipients will only receive approximately ½ of the amount which they received this current academic year. At ULM a student on TOPS will be required to pay the remaining ½ or approximately $2700 per year.

For your convenience, a complete list of House members is attached. Please call those you know and ask for their positive vote. 

Addendum to this post: We have been informed that HB 38 will not be debated by the house today. Will advise once it has been rescheduled. Please continue to contact legislators. Thank you.

Addendum to this post: HB 38 will be debated by the House on Sunday, June 19. Please continue to contact legislators.

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


June 15, 2016

 

June 21, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

Following is an update provided today regarding our higher education funding for FY 16-17.  Please read carefully, and contact Senators and Representatives that can help in assuring our funding for next year will remain the same. 

Thank you. 

At the end of the day yesterday, higher education funding was restored to last year’s levels with the passage of Rep. Walt Leger’s amendment to HB 69.  HB 69 is the supplemental appropriations bill that appropriates the $284 M in new revenues raising from the session.   Rep. Leger’s amendment closes the $55 M gap but does not address the shortfall for universities that lose funding with the implementation of the new formula.

Essentially if the BOR formula is used, we need $7M more in the formula to prevent a cut.  There are two opportunities left to address it: 

Add Funding in Senate Finance Today:

HB 69 will be heard in the Senate Finance Committee today at 1:30 p.m. in Room A & B.   If Senate members were to amend HB 69 in committee today to add $7M to higher education, no universities would have a cut.  The committee members for Senate Finance are:  Sen. Brett Allain (NiSU), Appel (UNO), Bishop (UNO), Donahue (SLU), Fannin (ULM/Tech), Hewitt (SLU), John (Tech, MSU, ULM) LaFleur (ULL), White (SLU).

Get House to Concur with Senate Amendments to HB 50 tomorrow:

Today, Senate members will hear HB 50 by Rep. Jack Montoucet which will reduce the individual income tax deduction from capital gains. The Senate is expected to amend the bill to also add the change in excess individual federal income tax deductions from HB 38 by Rep. White that failed Sunday night. If the Senate is successful in doing that today, HB 50 will go to the House Floor tomorrow. Thus, we would need House members to concur with Senate amendments to HB 50. If House members concur, $7M of the new revenues from HB 50 to higher education so that no university will have a cut from the new formula. The Senate plans to use the remaining funding from the amended HB 50 to fully fund TOPS.  

I have attached the vote from HB 38 by Rep. Malinda White from Sunday. We will need all House members who voted in support of HB 38 to also support HB 50. This is a majority vote so we need 53 votes to pass it and we need to keep the votes in support from Sunday night and ask those that voted against to now support.  Those that did not support the bill on Sunday night but could be willing to concur if contacted are:

 

Rep. Mark Abraham (MSU)
Rep. Stephen Dwight (MSU)
Rep. Larry Bagley (NSU)
Rep. Stuart Bishop (ULL)
Rep. Carmody (NSU Nursing)
Rep. Kenny Havard 
Rep. Lopinto (UNO)
Rep. Jim Morris (NSU)
Rep. Tanner Magee (NiSU)
Rep. Steve Pugh (SLU)
Rep. Major Thibaut

 

Can you please contact your members on both of these options to restore the funding gap for higher ed?  

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

Please see below an email I sent to our legislative delegation last night.

Today the House Ways and Means Committee will convene at 1:00 and consider HB 38. Representatives Marcus Hunter and Jay Morris are members of that committee. It is difficult to say how a decrease in funding will impact higher education’s enrollment. Approximately 50% of our full-time students are currently on TOPS. The university will make every effort to assist students find sources of funds to assist in addressing this potential shortfall.

However, this can be eliminated or minimized with the passage of HB 38. You may wish to consider contacting Rep. Hunter and Morris or other members and provide them with your thoughts on this matter. If you choose to communicate, please do so prior to the committee convening. As to the university’s funding for next year, the legislature has to date passed only 1/3 of the projected $600 million deficit. HB 38, if passed, will add an additional $100+ million.

So with less than two weeks remaining in the Second Special Session, it does appear reductions will be realized. I will keep you posted, and continue to ask for your support with calls and emails.

Thank you for your support of ULM.

Email text to legislative delegation:

Lady and gentlemen,

I appreciate the effort and stress you have experienced over the First Special Session, the Regular Session and now the Second Special Session.  I also know that you are weary related to filling the current fiscal deficit, which if not fixed will affect hospitals, TOPS and our universities.

Tomorrow, HB 38 will be heard in Ways and Means and hopefully will move to the full House for debate. This Bill will only affect approximately 25% of our population and as I understand will sunset in 2017. I also know that some of you are opposed to any additional taxes. However, if HB 38 fails, those students who are TOPS recipients under current funding will receive only ½ of what they received in 15/16. As a result the student and/or their family will be forced to pay the difference which at ULM is approximately $2700 for academic year 2016-17.  I have attached a document which lists the number of recipients who are attending college on TOPS from each district.

The failure to pass HB38 will result in a large additional outlay by those families and students who have worked hard to earn TOPS.  I pray you will favorably consider supporting that Bill.

Thank you. 

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


June 3, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

Colleagues, yesterday a historic event occurred in the Louisiana House of Representatives. The House voted overwhelmingly to present to Louisiana’s voters the opportunity to move the authority to raise tuition at our institutions from the Legislature to the university management boards. The vote was 95 yes, 7 no, and 3 absent.

While no one wants to raise tuition, who better knows the needs of the universities than their management boards. This will not in itself “fix” the financial challenges faced by Louisiana’s higher education, but it is a start. I am happy to say all of our representatives except Rep. Jay Morris voted in favor of Senate Bill 80.

We were informed yesterday that in the event the Special Session, which begins Monday, does not find revenues to offset the nearly $600 million deficit, ULM will experience a reduction of approximately $2 million dollars. This does not include any increases in our mandated costs for fiscal 2017.

At this point, this amount is not yet fully known. Have a great weekend.

Check out this article from The Advocate: http://theadvocate.com/news/15986831-172/voters-will-decide-whether-legislature-can-continue-to-set-university-tuitions

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


April 28, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

I am providing this PDF report from the State Higher Education Executive Officers Association (SHEEO) to keep you informed as to the funding for higher education. This organization prepares this report annually and reflects state funding for higher education.

I am sure you will find it interesting and worth of sharing with friends and family.

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


April 4, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

I am providing this article so as to keep you informed of actions being considered by the legislature regarding TOPS and structural changes to higher education in Louisiana. These are very important topics.

Check out this article from The (Baton Rouge, La.) Advocate:

http://theadvocate.com/news/15189807-113/bills-filed-to-change-tops-make-it-easier-to-close-universities-by-lawmakers

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


March 25, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

Good news!

I appreciate Governor Edward's commitment to higher education. Our share due to the reduction in TOPS amounts to approximately $1.4 million. We must now hope the governor and legislature find solutions to the projected deficits for 2017.

Have a restful and enjoyable break.

From The (Monroe, La.) News-Star: Cuts fall to health care; higher ed spared Gov. Edwards also said $40 million was generated in savings, mitigating the $70 million midyear shortfall.

http://www.thenewsstar.com/story/news/2016/03/24/cuts-fall-health-care-higher-ed-spared/82199172/

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


March 23, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

This article provides one factor that could result in further cuts to higher education. Check out this article from The (Baton Rouge, La) Advocate:

http://theadvocate.com/news/15271539-172/la-continues-to-pay-corporations-more-in-rebates-than-is-collected-in-taxes

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


March 21, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

Here is useful and informative information contained within this report if you sustained damage during the recent flooding, compiled by the Monroe Chamber of Commerce:

Weekly Report March 21, 2016

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


March 16, 2016

 

A message to ULM students, faculty, staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty and staff: 

As we resume campus operations, allow me to express my concern for those of you who have been significantly impacted by the flooding across our State.  Please know that we will work with you as we transition back to normal operations over the coming days and weeks. 

I want to express my appreciation to the staff who provided support to our campus during its closure.  Library, physical plant, university police, activity center, maintenance, campus dining and residential life staff continued operations during closure providing necessary services to our students.  Many of those  employees and students experienced the effects of the flooding at their homes and apartments, but came to work to maintain campus services.      

In addition, members of our faculty and staff volunteered to assist those in the community who needed help.

Clearly, ULM was well represented.  I am also very impressed by the spirit of service exhibited by our students during these last several days.  Many students contacted me to ask how they could be of service. I was pleased to learn that so many students formed groups to assist in the relief and rescue efforts.   They volunteered and assisted The United Way, churches, civic groups and individuals with sandbagging, delivered meals and helped people evacuate.    

Our campus was spared, with the exception of the new water ski facility, which retained several feet of water in it.  On a lighter side, our campus made national news when one of our students, Colin Landry, posted a video of fish swimming on Warhawk Way.  At last count nearly 2 million individuals had viewed his post.

I have received several emails from students expressing concern about classes resuming, since they experienced flooding and lost everything.  I have instructed them to speak with their faculty and advisors to develop a plan so as to assist in their academic requirements.

Once again, thank you all for your patience, service and spirit of giving. 

Thank you.

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


March 15, 2016

 

A message to ULM faculty and staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues,

WHERE TO GO FOR ASSISTANCE DUE TO FLOODING
[Updated 3:00 p.m. Tuesday, March 15. Please check local news outlets as information changes rapidly]

 
If you need emergency/evacuation assistance, please call 9-1-1 and request evacuation assistance from local public safety personnel.  
 
All local Levees are Off Limits to all forms of Pedestrian Traffic
Due to the saturated conditions, all unauthorized traffic on the levees, including foot traffic, is PROHIBITED.  

Tensas Basin Levee District, City of Monroe and Ouachita Parish officials urge residents to adhere to this strict warning.  Due to the elevated water levels and high degree of saturation, too much traffic on the levees can compromise their structural integrity.
 
Several area Water Systems Under boil Advisory-Check the News Star at http://www.thenewsstar.com for complete list and updates.
 
United Way 2-1-1
2-1-1 is an easy to remember phone number that connects callers to information and services in times of need. It is available 24 hours a day, seven days a week, even during disasters. United way also set up a special fund to assist with flood recovery.
 
American Red Cross Shelters-Ouachita Parish
Saul Adler Community Center – 3900 Westminster Ave., Monroe, La. 71201
 
FEMA

FEMA said that residents and business owners who sustained losses in the designated parishes can begin applying for assistance today by registering online at http://www.DisasterAssistance.gov/ or by calling 1-800-621-FEMA (3362) or 1-800-462-7585 (TTY) for the hearing and speech impaired.
The toll-free telephone numbers will operate from 7 a.m. to 10 p.m. seven days a week until further notice. Here is a checklist of the information you will need to have on hand to complete the form.
 
 

Information Checklist

Before starting your application, you, your co-applicant or a minor in your home must be a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national or qualified alien. Please have a pen and paper and the following information ready:

- Social Security Number
If you do not have a Social Security number, please apply for a Social Security number, then visit DisasterAssistance.gov or call FEMA at 1-800-621-3362 to complete your disaster application. Your household may still be able to receive assistance if there is a minor in the household who is a U.S. citizen, non-citizen national or qualified alien with a Social Security number.
 
- Insurance Information
Describe the type(s) of insurance coverage you have, such as homeowners, flood, automobile, mobile home insurance, etc.
 
- Damage Information
Describe your damages caused by the disaster, including the type of disaster (flood, hurricane, earthquake) and type of dwelling (mobile home, house) or vehicle (car, boat).
 
- Financial Information
Provide your family's total annual household income, before taxes, at the time of the disaster.
 
- Contact Information
Give FEMA the address and phone number where the damages happened and the address and phone number where you can be reached after the disaster.
 
- Direct Deposit Information (optional)
If you are approved for assistance and want your funds deposited directly into your bank account, provide your banking information. This includes:
 

 
 
City of Monroe Offers Temporary Electricity/Storage Permits to aid Residents
Due to the historic rain event of last week, we are announcing that you can obtain a Certificate of Occupancy for temporary electricity/temporary storage.

The fee has been reduced to $25.00 (business check, cash, money order, Cashier's Check - NO PERSONAL CHECKS).

Certificates of Occupancy can be obtained at the Planning and Zoning Division Office located at 3901 Jackson Street from 8-5 (closed for lunch).

Please note the following: All other permits will be needed to be obtained for all other rebuilding and repairs. Please contact the Planning and Zoning Division office (329-2430) before proceeding with any remodeling, repairs or construction.

Monroe Public Works Garbage and Trash Schedule for this week
Due to neighborhood flooding and flooding at our normal landfill (White Oaks), Monroe Public Works was not able to complete it's normal garbage schedule last Thursday and Friday.  
However, below is a summary of what Monroe City Public Works crews are, and will be, doing this week to help remove garbage and trash from our city neighborhoods that are currently accessible.

NOTE - For those who are cleaning out flood damaged homes in the City of Monroe IF YOU CAN, PLEASE haul the debris to the landfill.  If you can't do that, please do not put the material on the roadside until your trash pickup day or the night before.  We don't want the debris to fall into ditches and clog up drainage flow.  Please help us and your neighbors by doing this.

THIS WEEK (3/14 - 3/18) - Monroe Public Works will pick up both Garbage and Trash on its normal routes.  Unless deterred by water on the roads.

On WEDNESDAY (3/16) - Monroe Public Works will pick up the garbage route that wasn't able to be collected on this Friday (3/11).
 
 
Samaritan's Purse
For more information about how you can help or to volunteer with Samaritan's Purse, go to
www. spvolunteernetwork.org. Donations to help with the flood relief efforts can be made at www.samaritanspurse.org.

Samaritan's Purse has helped more than 29,000 families in 35 U.S. states following floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, fires and ice storms. Recently the organization's U.S. disaster team responded to the massive flooding in Texas, and also provided aid to victims of the deadly tornadoes in Oklahoma and ice storms in Tennessee. Please contact Samaritan's Purse if you need help with clean up. Their number is 805-1897. They can help anyone but would love to be of service to those without insurance!
 
LUS Ag Center-How to Repair and Recover After a Flood
The LSU Ag Center has a number of publications available at: http://www.lsuagcenter.com/topics/family_home/hazards_and_threats
 
The First West Thrift store
The First West Thrift store will be open from 9-6 Monday - Wednesday for Flood relief assistance. 
The store is giving clothing and toiletries away to victims in need. No regular shopping at this time.
For the time being - First West Thrift Store isn't accepting any more donations until they have processed the backlog they currently have. The community has been so generous!
 
Mercy Chefs          
Mercy Chefs, a Virginia-based, nonprofit disaster relief organization, is deploying a team of professional chefs to prepare meals for victims, volunteers and first responders in Monroe.  Monday night, their team will arrive with their state-of-the-art mobile kitchen and will begin meal service Tuesday. The chefs are prepared to serve 1,500 meals daily.
 
Mercy Chefs' mobile kitchen will be stationed at Evangel Assembly, 5800 Frontage Road, Monroe. Beginning Tuesday, residents and first responders are invited to pick up meals there.
 
Meal times will be posted on the organization's Facebook page, http://on.fb.me/1poNuvh. If the need arises, and as the team is able, Mercy Chefs will coordinate deliveries for victims unable to reach the distribution site.
 
Ouachita Baptist Church
The clothes ministry at Ouachita Baptist Church will be open Mon., Tues., Thursday and Friday from 4-6 pm. This week. Free clothes to those in need. Our address is 824 Highway 3033 in West Monroe. For more info call 318-387-6372.
 
Family Church is preparing and serving hot meals all week for lunch and Supper. They will deliver.  Contact person is Michelle Miller : 318-366-2332
 
Fair Park Baptist Church Seeking Donations for Cleaning Supplies
If you would like to donate cleaning supplies, please take them to Fair Park Baptist Chruch located at 4412 White’s Ferry Road in West Monroe. Phone number is 396-6303. Please take donations to the church on Sunday, March 20 from 8:30 a.m. to 7:00 p.m and on Monday, March 21 from 9:00 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.
 
Assistance with Laundry-Laundry Lounge
Pamela Graham owns the Laundry Lounge on 7900 Desiard Street. She has offered free washes to flood victims. She said she will continue to help until the need is gone or until she goes broke.
"The people who come in that are going through this, even there children. They've just had such good attitudes about it and they have kept smiles on their faces, during a really hard time and it's very inspiring", Owner Pamela Graham said.
 
If you will like to donate detergent or anything you can drop it off at the Laundry Lounge.
You can contact them at (318) 345-1015.
 
 
Assistance with storage Space
Old Albertson's Building on 165 North is open for storage at no charge for flood victims. People are flowing in, but we still have a ton of space! Also, at 5:30pm this evening Family Church will be here with tons of hot BBQ plates! More info call 318-267-8750. Help spread the word!
 
North Monroe Baptist Church Providing Assistance with Flood Clean Up
They are trained for clean up/restoration. Can assist with ripping up floors, installing new sheet rock, etc. This is a blessing to those without flood insurance. If you need assistance, please call the church at (318) 343-4730. There is an assistance form on line at http://northmonroe.com/contact-us/. The church is also soliciting donations and need volunteers.restoration...whether is getting water out to ripping out floors to installing new sheet rock, etc. This will be such a blessing to those without flood insurance. If your house flooded or you know someone whose house did, please contact the church with the address. They want addresses. Like Bill said, you don't want to bring a group in and not know places to send them to work. If you are looking to help, there are sign ups at the church as well, and they are taking donations
 
Volunteers Needed at St. Albans Church in Riveroaks
St. Alban's could use folks to volunteer at drop-off/pick-up donation center located in McLean Hall - 8:00 a.m. till 7:00 p.m. daily.
 
The Assembly-Water Rescue & Salvage
715 Cypress St., West Monroe, LA 71291 (318) 387-1500
The Assembly has teams ready to go out and assist. Please give them a call if you or you know someone in need.
 
Lexington Elementary School Call for School Uniforms
Uniform drop off at Lexington on Monday for families that lost their clothes for children. Please drop off between 8-12. Need Navy and khaki shorts and pants, White, Navy and Canary Yellow polos. Also looking for other basics-underwear, socks and toothbrushes and toothpaste. 1905 Spencer Ave, Monroe, LA 71201 or call (318) 322-9753.
 
Macaroni Kid Monroe-West Monroe School supply Drive
Macaroni Kid Monroe-West Monroe  will continue collecting school supplies and cleaning supplies for those schools and students affected by the floods this week. Drop off points include Skatetown West Monroe, Magic Grill West Monroe, and A-1 Key & Lock during their business hours.
 
School Supplies Needed
School supplies are being collected at the West Monroe-West Ouachita Chamber of Commerce and all four branches of Ouachita Valley Federal Credit Union for those schools affected by recent floods. Needed notebooks, pencils, crayons, folders. schools affected by recent floods. Needed items include notebooks, pencils, crayons, paper and folders, navy and canary yellow polos. We also will accept other basics such as socks, underwear, and toothbrushes and toothpaste!

Northeast Louisiana Food Bank-Food Needs & Recovery
4600 Central Avenue, Monroe LA 71203, (318) 322-3567 www.fbnela.org for information regarding food needs and recovery. They have emergency bags ready to go out and collected.
 
 
Black Bayou Lake National Wildlife Refuge Needs Volunteers TODAY!
Help is needed today at Black Bayou Lake National Wildlife Refuge. Beginning at 11 a.m., volunteers are needed to sandbag the Conservation Learning Center.
 
For Current list of Road Closures and updated information, go to:
http://www.myarklamiss.com/
http://www.knoe.com/
http://www.thenewsstar.com/
http://www.opso.net/

 

Thank you.

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


March 10, 2016

 

A message to ULM faculty and staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues,

Below is an article for you regarding the outcome of the Special Legislative session which ended yesterday evening at 6. Certainly it is disappointing that we go into another session beginning on Monday knowing that there remains a deficit of $800 million for next fiscal year. It appears another special session will be required. A permanent “fix” to our State’s budget problems continue to elude us.

At this time, we do not know how much of a reduction we will be required to absorb this fiscal year, but we do know that approximately $1.5 million less revenues than projected will not be forthcoming as a result of our being required to absorb 20% of this semester’s TOPS payments. The Revenue Estimating Committee will meeting prior to the end of the session and with the slight increase in oil prices lately, some additional relief may occur.

I want to assure you that I along with the other presidents and UL System staff urged lawmakers through adjournment to cast their votes to address the fiscal challenges and not defer them as has been the case over the last eight years. More work will be needed prior to June 30 to again avoid massive reductions in next fiscal year.

We can only work with the resources we are given; however, we must continue to urge legislators, both Republicans and Democrats to abandon the practices of the past and work together to fix our State. The Louisiana of my youth was a State with a great deal of pride. We boasted the tallest State capitol, the largest indoor arena (the Superdome) and the longest bridge (the Lake Ponchatrain Causeway), currently we dismantle our public services and lack that pride as we find ourselves at the bottom of most lists which are not favorable.

We have a lot of work to do. I know you are passionate about the benefits of higher education, your commitment during these difficult times is testimony to that. Please join me in advocating for higher education over these next several months. We must regain the pride! Certainly I am grateful to the legislators for taking action which minimizes our reductions. I will continue to urge them to do more.

Thank you for your commitment and dedication to higher education and ULM.

Check out this article from The Advocate: http://theadvocate.com/news/15127060-175/louisiana-legislature-begins-final-day-of-special-session

 

Thank you.

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


March 7, 2016

 

A message to ULM faculty and staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues,

Please find below the message we received today from the UL System regarding the status of the mid-year budget issues.  Bills which would have helped reduce or eliminate cuts to universities have failed to pass in the House as early as yesterday.

It is critical that we continue to contact not only our legislators, but those in other regions of the State that you or family members may know. Currently there is approximately $80 million of the shortfall which will be allocated to higher education if a solution is not found.  That translates to approximately $3 million for ULM.  I continue to be hopeful a solution is found which would prevent drastic actions being taken. 

Thank you.


From the University of Louisiana System Office - March 7, 2016

With only two days remaining in the special legislative session, we need your help more than ever. In this very tight timeframe, legislators must find $177 million to ensure the budget gaps for higher education and healthcare are filled. Today is the last day for members to pass bills from the House in time to be approved by the Senate before session ends.  

We need you to spread the word on the importance of valuing higher education in Louisiana. Louisiana’s higher education system is already the lowest funded state in the South—we need reinvestment, not more disinvestment.

Instruments that could help spare higher education from another budget cut include:

House Bill 34, Rep. Walt Leger, changes upper and middle income tax brackets.   Generates $44.2 M in FY 16 and $324 M in FY 17. 

House Bill 33, Rep. Walt Leger, reduces the deduction from gross income for federal itemized deductions.  Generates no revenue in FY 16 but $142 M in FY 17.

House Bill 64, Rep. Jack Montoucet, “cleans” one penny of sales and use tax exemption for utilities.  May be amended to “clean” two pennies.  Fiscal note in FY 16 is $60 M and FY 17 is $240 M.

House Bill 46, Rep. Ted James, reduces the amount of ad valorem tax credits and provides for the carry forward of 80 percent.  Fiscal note assumes no revenue in FY 16 and $48 M in FY 17.

Clean penny legislation:

House Bill 61, Rep. Jay Morris, no fiscal note

House Bill 101, Rep. Katrina Jackson, FY 16 fiscal note of $170 M and $797 M in FY 17

House Bill 104 by Rep. Julie Stokes, FY 16 fiscal note of $116 M and $574 M in FY 17.

Please contact your legislator today and ask them to find funding to support our universities.

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


March 1, 2016

 

A message to ULM faculty and staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Students, Faculty, Staff, Alumni and Friends,

Here is the latest update regarding cuts to higher education as well as the amount needed to prevent further cuts.  The chart below is very interesting in that it illustrates how tax exemptions have exceeded corporate revenues. This has taken a huge toll on Louisiana’s budget. 

The message from the University of Louisiana System Office offers an overview of how much additional revenue or cost reductions are needed to prevent further cuts to higher education. 

We have only a few more days for our legislators to solve this year’s as well as next year’s deficiencies so that higher education will not sustain additional cuts. 

Please continue to communicate with your legislators.  Student’s please urge your parents, friends and families to contact legislators and tell the “NO MORE CUTS TO HIGHER EDUCATION”!  Everyone loses when we do not have a strong higher education system. 


From the University of Louisiana System Office - March 1, 2016

As members of the House and Representatives and Senate continue to negotiate solutions to solve Louisiana’s budget crisis, higher education is again on the cutting floor.

House and Senate members need to add $75 M in funding to higher education to prevent yet another cut to Louisiana’s colleges and universities. After eight years of budget reductions, any cut to higher education should be off the table in those negotiations.

To make up cuts in state funding to colleges and universities, Louisiana has raised tuition on Louisiana students and their families by 99%. Unfortunately, those increases were not used to provide new enhancements at our colleges and universities, but to maintain the status quo. Tuition increases were followed by reductions in state funding from universities and colleges which was then added to the budgets of other state agencies.

The Louisiana Legislative auditor recently released a report on the increase in tax credits and exemptions granted by state agencies, which is depicted in the chart below:

 

chart of Corporate Income and Franchise Tax Exemptions 

While state support has increased in some areas of state government, state support for higher education has been cut by $683 M.  Our legislators have difficult decisions to make to balance the needs of the state and its future.  Our colleges and universities are already funded at the lowest level of any state in the South and near the bottom in the nation.    

To prevent another cut to higher education, legislators need to make sure that $75 M of funding is added to higher education before March 9.   Higher education funding is an investment in the state’s future and needs to be a priority again. 

 

 

Thank you for your support and efforts on behalf of ULM and higher education. 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


February 27, 2016

 

A message to ULM faculty and staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear students, faculty, staff, alumni and friends,

I want to update you on the status of the Special Legislative Session. Thursday, the Louisiana House of Representatives passed an additional penny of sales tax which closes the budget gap by $221 million. But there is still more work to be done.

As you know, the university makes many decisions based on facts and figures. ULM shares these facts and figures with our elected officials so when we discuss issues such as the budget with them, we all are talking about the same thing.

Some of the facts and figures ULM has shared with our elected officials include:

I’m asking you to visit www.ulm.edu/president/budget-message.html to learn how pending budget cuts will impact ULM.

While progress has been made by the House to close the current year’s deficit, the remaining days of the Special session are critical.  Please continue to contact your legislators. 

Visit https://www.legis.la.gov/legis/FindMyLegislators.aspx for contact information for your legislators.

Please do not hesitate to email me if you have any questions. 

Sincerely,

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President


From the University of Louisiana System Office - Thursday, February 25, 2016

 

Wednesday, while 2,000 college students from across the state rallied on the steps of the State Capitol pleading to spare their colleges and universities from another budget cut, the House Appropriations Committee voted to cut higher education again.  This is the third cut to Higher Education in the past 90 days as Louisiana continues its race to be the first state in the nation to eliminate state support for public colleges and universities.

This cut is in addition to the $70 million the Legislature is considering right now that has been described as the “best case scenario” for higher education.  Louisiana has cut its colleges and universities to the level that we are behind every state in the South, ranking last in state support.  Further cuts to ULM will cripple the state’s higher education system. Our legislators are deciding now the future stability of our postsecondary education system. Our universities have been cut to the bone—we can’t take further disinvestment.

Our legislators have difficult choices to make, but our lawmakers must recognize the value in educating Louisianans. A college graduate annually contributes $3,900 more in tax revenue to Louisiana than someone with only a high school diploma. An investment in higher education is not only an investment in our students—it is an investment in our state and our future. 


From the University of Louisiana System Office - Friday, February 26, 2016

Thursday, the Louisiana House of Representatives approved a number of revenue measures as well as additional cuts as part of a plan to eliminate the $943 million current year shortfall. 

Revenue measures passed yesterday include a one cent sales tax which will generate $221 million this year and $892 million next year.  Amendments added to the “clean penny” legislation requires a 18-month sunset and exclude manufacturing equipment.  

Other revenue measures approved yesterday include advanced payment of sales tax, clarification on businesses’ net operating loss computation, and renewal of a telecommunications tax. The advanced payment legislation is expected to generate $75 million in 2016, while the telecommunication tax renewal will generate $6.9 million in 2016 and $43.2 million in 2017.     

In addition to passing new revenue bills, House members also approved additional cuts to state agencies including Higher Education. Cuts passed yesterday will further reduce the Support Education in Louisiana First Fund (SELF) by $752,070. Along with cuts, members also approved the use of the rainy day funds and BP settlement funds totaling $328 million.  The cuts plus the one-time funds total $589 million.

This is very promising news, however, higher education still faces a $70 million cut as these measures move to the Senate. House members convened this morning while Senate members will convene at 4:00 p.m.  Twelve calendar days are remaining in the special session which will conclude on March 9. 

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


February 24, 2016

 

A message to ULM faculty and staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear employees, students, alums and friends of ULM,

The Special Legislative session has reached its mid-point.  If you have followed the proceedings, you know that it is going slow.  However, it does appear that collaboration between the governor and legislature is beginning to show. 

Higher education systems have joined together to provide daily releases such as the one below throughout the remaining days of the session.  I will be forwarding those releases to you so as to keep you informed.  Beginning tomorrow we will be including information which is specific to ULM which coincides with the daily topic. 

We must remain active in communicating with our legislators.  I urge you to follow the proceedings through the legislative website and/or local and state-wide news.  It is imperative that we show our support for the university and higher education. 

Some of our SGA members and students are in Baton Rouge today to participate in the rally in support of higher education.  Let's add our voice to theirs in making sure cuts to higher education are stopped. 

Some good news yesterday!   Representative Katrina Jackson's HB 62, "the Clean Penny" bill passed House Ways and Means and now goes to the House floor.  This bill was a critical part of the governor's legislative agenda to balance the state's budget.  Call or write your representative and urge his/her vote for this bill. 

Thank you.

edcuation graphic 

 
Since 2008, Louisiana’s higher education system has been under constant pressure to do more with less. Colleges and universities have answered that call with a reduction of programs, faculty, staff and spending. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce ranks Louisiana 16th in the nation in higher education efficiency. Any more cuts to higher education will go well beyond efficiency and have a serious impact on students—cancelled classes, delayed graduation, additional program elimination, delayed building maintenance and more faculty and staff layoffs.
 
Louisiana already ranks #1 nationwide in cuts to higher education and is “racing to the bottom” to provide the least amount of funding to colleges and universities of any state in the nation.  Not only does Louisiana rank #1 in cuts to higher education but it also ranks near dead last or 48th nationwide in the level of funding Louisiana provides for our colleges, universities and research centers statewide.  To make up the difference, our students and their families are paying 99% more in tuition and fees than they did in 2008, placing hardships on our families and closing the door for many of the state’s most promising students. 
 
The Governor has proposed a mixture of cuts and bills that will raise revenues to stabilize the budget and stop continued cuts to Higher Education: 

Existing Revenue and Cuts

Total

Rainy Day Fund

$128M

BP Settlement Fund Non-Coastal Dollars

$200M

Executive Order Cuts by the Governor

$21M

JLCB Cuts Recommended by the Governor

$38M

Legislative Cuts Recommended by the Governor

$29.5M

Supplemental Budget Cuts

$70M

Cuts to Ad Valorem Tax Credits (HB 46, HB 47 by   Rep. James)

$50M

 

Increased Revenues

Author

FY16

“Clean Penny” Sales Tax  

House Bill 62 by Rep. Katrina Jackson

$221.8M

Business Utilities Tax

House  64 by Rep. Montoucet

   $60M

Increased Tobacco Tax

HB 14 by Rep. Leger

     $16M

Increased tax on   Alcoholic Beverages

HB 27 by Rep. Cox

   $6.7M

Income Tax Brackets

HB 34 by Rep. Leger

$44.2M

Change in Ad Valorem Tax Credits

HBs 46  & 47 by Rep. James

$50M

This week, the Governor’s most critical piece of legislation that will protect higher education from additional cuts will be voted on at the capital.  

House Bill 62 by Rep. Katrina Jackson, referred to as the “clean penny” sales tax is expected to be heard this week on the House Floor.     

There are only 16 days left in the special session to stop the cuts to higher education.   In the budget proposal under consideration now, higher education can expect a $70 million dollar cut which will be the 13th mid-year cut to higher education since 2008.    Another cut to higher education only ensures Louisiana’s downward spiral in funding for higher education
 
Your role to stop Louisiana’s race to defund higher education is critical – please keep sharing information with your legislators and neighbors about the significant role ULM plays in Louisiana’s future success.  We need that message to be heard in every parish and every community across our state if it is to truly resonate.   This Wednesday, February 24th, is “Higher Education Day at the Capital” with a rally that will be held at noon on the Capitol steps hosted by the student body presidents of each college and university statewide. 
 
Together, we can help our state choose to make funding for our colleges and universities in support of Louisiana’s students and their families a priority.   
 
Sincerely,

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


February 12, 2016

 

A message to ULM faculty and staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues,

Late yesterday afternoon we were informed by the UL System of a budget reduction.  The System’s total reduction totals $12,741,509.  ULM’s share is $1,387,005.

We will address this reduction in the following manner:

  1. Hiring freeze through 6/30/16; however, those deemed critical to our continuing mission funding will be considered.  The vice presidents and I will review those requests from deans and division heads and act appropriately in the best interest of our university. $1,037,005.

  2. Reduction in the transfer of operating dollars to athletics by $200,000.

  3. Reduction in campus travel by $150,000.

The latest information on TOPS is that LOSFA will begin paying up to 80% of amounts due to universities beginning on Thursday.  The disposition of the remaining 20% ( approximately $1.4M for ULM). Our most recent information is the university will absorb the remaining 20%.

I understand the frustration, concern and maybe even anger that you are feeling; however, we have met the challenges we have faced to date and will continue our work to educate our students who have chosen this university to pursue a degree.  In the more than 40 years of service to higher education, this is the longest and worst financial crisis our state has faced. However,  I continue to trust that our legislators and governor will come together to find a permanent solution to the lingering budget short falls that threaten higher education.

We must remain vigilant during this upcoming Special Legislative session, and urge our legislators to do what is best for Louisiana.  This is not the time for ideology and party affiliation to get in the way of cooperation and collaboration in solving our budget challenges.  This latest reduction must serve as our call to action.  Contact your legislator or other legislators who may be friends or family and tell them cuts to higher education must stop and reinvestment must be resumed.

The governor has asked for suggestions in addressing the budget deficit. Here is the link if you have ideas that may assist in the process: http://gov.louisiana.gov/news/the-louisiana-budget-crisis-faqs

I will continue to keep you informed as developments occur.

We will continue to SOAR!

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


January 26, 2016

 

A message to ULM faculty and staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues,

As a follow-up to my email on Friday discussing the proposed budget cuts, I wanted to share with you the preliminary outline we have submitted to the UL System regarding the impact a $4.1 million dollar reduction would have on ULM. 

I want to be clear that we have NOT been informed of a cut at this time.  However, a reduction of this magnitude is significant at any time, and especially so at this point in our fiscal year.  This scenario is based upon this reduction becoming effective in early March, if solutions are not addressed in the upcoming Special session. 

I cannot overemphasize how important it is for each of us to continue to communicate with our friends, family and elected officials that higher education is a high priority and critical to our state’s future economic growth.  Therefore, permanent funding solutions must be implemented. 

Following is the plan we submitted.  Please know this can change if and when a final disposition of the state’s budget is determined.  We should have definitive answers following the upcoming Special legislative session, which begins on February 14 and will last three weeks. 

I want to repeat, this is at this time a “what if” scenario.  We have not been informed of a reduction, only the possibility if solutions are not found. 

1. A hiring freeze will be implemented immediately.  Filling of vacant positions will be reviewed on a case by case basis.

2. One day per week furlough from 3/1/16 to 6/30/16 for all eligible employees.

3. Reduction in travel.

4. Layoff of up to 34 employees.  This scenario assumes employees who currently do not have permanent status.

5. Reduce operating fund transfer to athletics.

 

These combined actions would meet the targeted reduction amount. 

I share your frustration and anxiety; however, this challenge is not unique to ULM. This challenge is a challenge for higher education statewide.  All recent polls indicate the public views higher education as a high priority for state funding.  In speaking with our legislators, they too understand the need to fund higher education.  While I cannot say what the result of the upcoming Special legislative session will be, I remain optimistic that permanent solutions will be found.  The temporary “fixes” of the past cannot continue. 

We must continue to focus on moving forward as we have and provide to our students with the best academic experience possible.  ULM is growing due to all of your efforts, and  continuing to recruit and retain the best prepared students possible continues to be critical not only to our fiscal stability, but also the continued growth of our university. 

Thank you!

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President

 


January 22, 2016

 

A message to ULM faculty and staff from ULM President Nick J. Bruno

 

Dear Colleagues,

You may have already heard or will soon hear about the proposed cuts to higher education. We must provide a general response as to the impact of the proposed reduction ($4.1 million) for ULM if solutions are not found during the upcoming Special Session beginning February 14.

The vice presidents and I met today and will meet again on Monday to finalize our submission which is due in Baton Rouge by 9:00 a.m. Monday. No specifics have been requested, only the potential impact on the university. This is a very difficult challenge at this point in the fiscal year.

If a reduction of this magnitude is realized the options we have available are very limited.

The majority of that reduction would come from personnel in the form of furloughs, a hiring freeze and/or reduction of workforce. In a meeting with university presidents on Tuesday, the governor reaffirmed his support and commitment to higher education but also reminded us of his obligation to maintain a balanced State budget.

It has been estimated that this fiscal year’s shortfall may approach $800 million.

A deficit of that magnitude will require that all or most state services will be impacted. It is imperative that we all continue to advocate not only for ULM but also for higher education across Louisiana. Our legislators and the governor must find permanent solutions to the fiscal challenges we have faced since 2009.

Higher education, due to our lack of protection in the state constitution, has experienced, since the recession, the greatest disinvestment among all fifty states, while tuition increases is the third highest.

The Special Legislative Session will provide our elected officials the opportunity to provide permanent solutions to funding of higher education and other critical services our citizens expect and deserve. We must work with our community, business leaders, students and alumni to continue to communicate the value of higher education to Louisiana.

These solutions can only come from our legislators and governor working together. We must urge that collaboration in the coming weeks.

I will keep you informed as more information is available. I remain confident that solutions will be found, and we will continue to grow and serve our region and state.

 

Nick J. Bruno, Ph.D
President


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