Presented to the Board of Regents

November 18, 1999

Overview of Budget Development Process

The Budget Development process at Montana Tech begins with Program Directors, Deans, and Department Heads at the program expenditure or "cost center" level. Discussions of program budgets and priorities are held among the staff or faculty of the various departments and programs. Budget managers at this level are assisted by the Budget Director s office and any budget or other financial information is provided as needed. A budget request format with prior year budget information is provided to facilitate accurate and consistent budget requests.

In the Academic Area, the departmental requests are brought before the Vice Chancellor s Academic Deans Council, presented, and discussed. The Chancellor attends these meetings. The Budget Director attends. Other campus executive officers are specifically invited. The meetings are actually open for all to attend. A similar pattern of participatory budget discussions occur in the Administrative and Student Affairs Program Directors Council. Following these meetings, the Vice Chancellors then summarize all their area budget requests and, in consultation with their Area leadership, establish a general priority for the requests.

The Montana Bureau of Mines and Geology is funded separately by the Legislature as a department of Montana Tech. The Bureau Director (assisted by the Director of Budget, the Controller, and the Director of Contracts and Grants) works with the Bureau staff and researchers to establish the Bureau Budget.

All campus budget requests specifically address operations, personnel, equipment, program plans, improvement objectives, and new ventures. The Chancellor s Cabinet and executive officers are especially interested in knowing about a program s long term goals and vision. Budgeting is as much a discussion of program as it is the finances associated with those programs. The focus is on what will be accomplished through the expenditures in terms of program quality and service.

The Chancellor ultimately approves all budgets in consultation with the Chancellor s Executive Group after a review and discussion of institutional budget issues and priorities with the Chancellor s Cabinet. The Cabinet serves in the role of a "campus budget committee" in this regard. The Controller and the Budget Director serve as immediate staff to the Executive Group and Cabinet and directly assist in the coordination of the budgeting process.

It is important to note that the budget development process at Montana Tech includes a great deal of participation, interaction, and overlap which contributes to a well coordinated and integrated process and outcome.

Primary Participants in the Budget Development Process

Chancellor s Executive Group

The Executive Group (for budget) is comprised of the Chancellor, the three Vice Chancellors, and the Director of the Bureau of Mines and Geology. On occasion the Executive Director of the Tech Foundation is included. The Controller and the Budget Director provide budget analysis and serve as advisors to the process. This group provides the general direction and establishes the parameters for the campus budget deliberations. It is at this level that specific institution-wide issues such as accreditation, strategic planning, matters pertinent to The University of Montana or the Regents, or special problems are incorporated into the charge given to the campus in order to establish the next year s budget. Ultimately, the Executive Group crafts a balanced budget which reflects, as best possible, the institution s mission, goals, and mandatory expenses and obligations.

The Chancellor s Cabinet

The Cabinet includes the four Academic Deans, the Dean of Students, three Vice Chancellors, the Controller, the Bureau Director, and the Foundation Executive Director. Other campus administrators, students, faculty, and staff are frequently invited to attend a Cabinet meeting depending on the agenda. The Cabinet is advisory to the Chancellor and considers all programs from an institutional perspective. Certain campus program budgets, such as the campus marketing and recruiting budget, are specially reviewed by the Cabinet due to their institution-wide interests. A specific agenda is established for each meeting, but any subject may be brought forward.

Other Groups Consulted on the Campus

Chancellor s Advisory Group

Faculty Senate


Tech Foundation

The UM Executive Council

Enrollment Management Committee

The EMC is an ad hoc group convened by the Chancellor. It is comprised of the Budget Director, the Controller, the Registrar, the Director of Marketing and College Relations, the Financial Aid Director, the Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs and Research and the VC for Administrative and Student Affairs. This group is essentially an institutional research group that is concerned with enrollment and related budget matters. It is this group that attempts to predict the number of new students by specific category and analyzes the impact on the institutional budget. Retention is also discussed as an aspect of enrollment management. Assessment and oversight of the institution s recruiting and retention efforts is another function of the EMC. To serve this end, two campus committees are attached to the EMC in an advisory capacity and the EMC meets with each group as a committee of the whole on occasion. The two advisory committees are: the campus advisory committee for marketing and the advisory committee for college success and retention.

The Budget Director

The "Budget Office" at Montana Tech consists of one person who reports to the Controller. The Director is also responsible for payroll and personnel, AA/EEO, purchasing, and accounts payable. In terms of the position s budget responsibilities, the position is responsible for budget analysis, expenditure budget oversight, and position control. The Director coordinates the budget development process, prepares all budget development documents, works directly with the estimation of FTE enrollment levels, creates and distributes the final July 1 budget, monitors actual FTE, revenues and expenditures throughout the year. There is significant, ongoing interaction between the Budget Director and the Controller, the Director of Contracts and Grants, the Academic Vice Chancellor and the Student/Administrative Affairs Vice Chancellor, the Chancellor, the OCHE Finance and Budget Officers, and the University of Montana s Budget Office and the UM Administration and Finance Office.

Budget Development Schedule

The "budget process" for each year and for the biennium is a very dynamic process which begins long before the formal budgeting process and continues throughout the fiscal year as circumstances change and needs and opportunities need to be addressed. The development of the FY2001 budget really began during the establishment of the FY2000 budget. This is due, in part, to the fact that there is very little flexibly in the overall budget, and planning is made difficult, if not impossible, by virtue of the fact that revenues cannot be accurately or realistically estimated beyond the current semester. Also, the institution is facing special, significant problems related to inadequate enrollment/revenues for this biennium. The remaining aspects of FY2001 budget development will involve the following schedule of meetings:

Early November, 1999 The Cabinet, the EMC, and the Executive Group will continue to meet on an ongoing basis to discuss issues which will have a fiscal impact for FY00 and FY01. The most important of these discussions will be to determine how to manage a shortfall in the budget due to unrealized enrollment. Naturally, biennial FTE, revenue generation will be an essential part of these discussions as well.

Late February, 2000 Executive Group review of budget status to date and expected revenues and FTE for FY01. The budget request process will be initiated with budget managers, Deans, and Directors.

Early March, 2000 Initial Executive Group discussions with EMC and Cabinet concerning FY01 budget scenarios FTE, revenues, base expenditures, mandatory expenses, utility costs, special situations, and emerging priorities.

Late March, 2000 Executive Group development of draft budget for FY01.

Early April, 2000 Executive Group budget review discussions with the Cabinet, the Academic Deans Council, and the Student/Administrative Affairs Council.

Late April, 2000 The draft budget is finalized by the Chancellor upon the advice of the Executive Group.

Early May, 2000 The Chancellor directs the Budget Director to implement the July 1, FY01 budget. Note: This budget is subject to change related to FY01 actual enrollment.

See Attached Tables