Current as of June 28, 2012
Dear Campus Community,
The S.C. General Assembly has passed a compromise state budget for the fiscal year beginning July 1, and has sent it to the governor for any vetoes she wants to make.
The budget agreement includes a 3 percent salary increase that will apply to work performed beginning July 1, and therefore should begin to appear in paychecks on July 16. The other good news for employees is that the state will absorb the employee share of increased premiums for health insurance this year.
As you know, the state does not fund salary increases for all of Winthrop’s full-time employees; Winthrop will budget more than a million dollars this year toward fulfilling that mandate. We also must meet increased payments into the state retirement system, increases in employer share of health insurance premiums, increased utility rates, and myriad other expenses required to run Winthrop. We are factoring all this into our spending plan for the new fiscal year.
While our operating appropriation for the new fiscal year will remain at $12.4 million -- about half what it was pre-recession -- the new budget will provide some one-time allocations for maintenance, technology and infrastructure needs that will be useful in our plan for the coming academic year. Spending will remain tight even with these resources, simply because we still are coping with the aftermath of the recession and all that has meant to our operations.
Our tuition increase for the coming year, which was adopted by trustees earlier this month, will remain one of our lowest ever at 2.9 percent. The board’s Executive Committee affirmed that rate today, after hearing an update on the developments in Columbia. I will be extending my personal thanks to three legislators who made a big difference in our having that ability this year: Senate Finance Chairman Hugh Leatherman, a real friend to higher education, and Rock Hill’s own Sen. Wes Hayes and Rep. Gary Simrill. All worked hard on Winthrop’s behalf during this session, and are deserving of thanks from all members of the Winthrop community.
As we all prepare for the Fourth of July holiday and a few more weeks of summer before the campus again welcomes a new academic year, please know that the trustees join me in extending thanks for all you do to make Winthrop the special place that it is.