UF president shares news of state budget impact

Published: June 5 2014


GAINESVILLE, Fla. – The following message was sent today from University of Florida President Bernie Machen to UF’s faculty and staff:

Dear Faculty and Staff,

Gov. Rick Scott on Monday signed a state budget for the coming fiscal year that includes more than $100 million in new funding for the University of Florida.  This reflects an extraordinary level of support for UF from the Legislature and the governor, and we are grateful to them for partnering with us on our goal to become a top-10 public research university.

The budget for FY 2014-15, which begins July 1, includes $25.9 million in new, recurring dollars from a fund established to reward universities for performance on metrics that were developed by the Board of Governors.  Another $5 million is added for preeminence, bringing the funding level for that initiative to $20 million a year.  In addition, the budget includes approximately $16 million for the UF Health Cancer Center to support an effort championed by the governor to obtain National Cancer Institute (NCI) designation. NCI designation will provide additional state and federal funding and access to more clinical trials.

Among the major appropriations included in the budget are:

  • $20 million to complete a new chemistry building.
  • $10 million to renovate the historic Newell Hall into a student study center.
  • $13.5 million for facilities maintenance and repairs, with another $3 million for critical deferred maintenance.
  • $3 million for the renovation of UF’s historic properties in St. Augustine.
  • $4.5 million for the College of Education’s Lastinger Center.
  • $2 million to IFAS for research and extension activities.
  • $2 million to IFAS for the SW Florida Immokalee Research Center.
  • $1.25 million for UF Health’s Center for Neurodegenerative Disease.
  • $712,000 for the Whitney Laboratory for Marine Biosciences.

In addition, the Institute for the Commercialization of Public Research received $4.5 million.  The institute, which is headquartered at UF’s Innovation Hub, provides seed funding for companies that are created from the research conducted at Florida’s public universities.

A few weeks ago, the governor signed another UF legislative priority — a bill that exempts from public records the names of UF researchers who conduct research involving animals. The university sought this legislation to help prevent ongoing personal harassment of researchers and their families by extremist groups.

The FY 2014-15 budget will enable us to begin the new fiscal year with the resources necessary to continue our advance to the top 10, serve the State of Florida and address critical facilities needs on campus.  As always, I am grateful to the faculty and staff of the university for what you do to make UF the fine institution that it is.

Bernie Machen