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Gov. wants UH to get more funding

manoaleftcGov. Neil Abercrombie is proposing to spend more money on The University of Hawai’i, including funds for faculty salary increases and fixing up a backlog of repair problems.

The UH Board of Regents and administration on Wednesday praised the governor’s new executive budget and thanked  Abercrombie for his support of public higher education for students throughout the state.

“The governor’s proposed budget demonstrates his strong commitment to public higher education in Hawaii. If passed, it will allow the university to address the urgent need to substantially reduce a $487 million backlog of deferred maintenance,“ said

The University of Hawai’i Board of Regents and administration praised the State of Hawai’i executive budget released Monday and thanked Governor Neil Abercrombie for his support of public higher education for students throughout the state.

]“The governor’s proposed budget demonstrates his strong commitment to public higher education in Hawai’i. If passed, it will allow the university to address the urgent need to substantially reduce a $487 million backlog of deferred maintenance,” said Board of Regents Chairman John Holzman.

The executive budget supports the board’s requests for $14 million to restore the salaries of UH faculty to pre-recession levels and $19.5 million for the modest negotiated 3 percent faculty pay raises in the current biennium.  The requested funds will enable the university to free up student tuition to invest in improvements on all UH campuses, officials said.

The budget requests still have to be approved by the state Legislature next year.

Interim UH President David Lassner also praised Abercrombie and state Budget Director Kalbert Young for entering into this partnership with the university.  “The executive budget represents a huge step toward financial sustainability for the university.  If supported by the State Legislature, this will enable the restoration of classrooms, labs and infrastructure to provide 21st century educational facilities, programs and support that enrich students’ lives and communities across the state.”

The executive budget also supports the board’s capital improvement requests for construction of the College of Pharmacy building at UH-Hilo and the renovation of Kuykendall Hall at UH-Manoa, as well as the board’s operating budget requests for investment in outcomes-based funding for community colleges, systemwide educational innovation, implementation of the Hawaii Innovation Initiative (HI2), and support for systemwide Native Hawaiian initiatives.

The executive budget supports the board’s requests for $14 million to restore the salaries of UH faculty to pre-recession levels and $19.5 million for the  negotiated 3 percent faculty pay raises in the current biennium.