The University System of Georgia will receive $1.83 billion in state funding for fiscal year 2013 following adjournment of the 2012 session of the Georgia General Assembly on March 29 and the governor’s signing of the state budget. The amount is a 5.2 percent increase over 2012 fiscal year funding and includes full formula funding of $76.7 million in recognition of enrollment growth. The current year’s budget had no formula funding increase.
The capital outlay budget includes $52.3 million for a new Veterinary Medicine Teaching Hospital, replacing the current facility built in 1979 which is now small and outdated. Construction on the new facility is projected to begin this fall at the intersection of College Station and Barnett Shoals roads.
Other key bond projects included by the General Assembly include $4 million for major repair and rehabilitation funding and $1.525 million in equipment for UGA Agricultural Experiment Stations statewide; $2.5 million in new bonds and $1 million in existing bonds for the Food Technology Center at the UGA-Griffin campus; $2.5 million for construction at the Rock Eagle 4-H facility; and $3 million for renovations at the Rural Development Center in Tifton.
The final budget also includes $1.2 million to expand graduate medical education to new hospitals statewide, a key component of the state’s initiative to address its shortage of physicians. This was particularly important as the Georgia Health Sciences University/University of Georgia Medical Partnership enrolls its third class in fall 2012.
For the fourth consecutive year, no salary increase pool was allocated for the University System and other state employees.
Other funding allocations in which UGA will participate include $35 million for University System major repair and rehabilitation projects, $10 million system-wide for facility repair and sustainment and $8 million to the Georgia Research Alliance to purchase equipment and fund research and development infrastructure.
In other key issues before the General Assembly, proposed legislation with language allowing guns to be carried on the state’s campuses did not pass. Likewise, legislation to restrict the University System in enrollment of undocumented students did not pass. System policy already prohibits the five most restrictive institutions in admissions, including UGA, from enrolling such students.