Skip to Navigation
University of Pittsburgh
Print This Page Print this pages

October 13, 2016

Pitt seeks 5% hike in appropriation

The University is seeking a 5 percent increase in its state appropriation for the fiscal year that begins July 1, 2017.

In its annual budget request submitted Sept. 30 to the state Department of Education, the University asked for $154.11 million in general support (including rural education) in fiscal year 2018, an increase of $7.34 million over the current year’s $146.77 million.

In addition, the University is seeking $6.23 million for the School of Medicine and $6.5 million for public service through Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic, Pitt’s dental clinic and the Center for Public Health Practice — line items that are part of the state Department of Human Services budget and separate from Pitt’s general appropriation.

Overall, Pitt’s request adds up to nearly $166.85 million, an increase of $7.95 million over the current year.

The appropriation request is an early step in the annual state budget process. Following agency budget submissions, the governor presents a proposed state budget in early February. Appropriations committee hearings in the House and Senate follow, with a July 1 deadline for legislators to negotiate and approve a budget for the new fiscal year.

In a statement accompanying the FY18 budget request, Chancellor Patrick Gallagher wrote: “This funding would serve to offset some inflationary increases for operating expenses, expand our innovation programs to further drive economic growth for the region, and supply the means to manage tuition increases for in-state students.”

At the requested level of support, the University anticipates a 2.4 percent tuition increase.

In making the case for increased state support, the chancellor cited Pitt’s educational value, its research and its contributions to the region’s economy.

“The necessity for and value of high-quality higher education has never been more evident,” the chancellor wrote. “The commonwealth benefits from having an educated populace, a globally competitive workforce, a vibrant research community and support for increasing Pennsylvania’s economic competitiveness in today’s knowledge-based global economy.”


In July, legislators increased Pitt’s general appropriation 2.5 percent for FY17, which began July 1. Academic medical center funding rose 8.8 percent. (See July 21 University Times.)

The chancellor acknowledged recent increases in state support. “But those increases, while welcomed, do not fully address the inflationary impacts of the prior three years of flat funding,” he wrote. Pitt’s effort to “soften the impact of diminished state funding on students and families” by constraining tuition increases is not sustainable, Gallagher wrote.

“Pennsylvania lags behind nearly every state in the country in its investment in higher education funding, placing the burden of making up the difference on students and their families,” the chancellor wrote. “A sustained and adequate investment by the commonwealth is needed to address affordability for students and to maintain the quality that has made Pitt a preferred institution among Pennsylvania’s highest achieving students.”

—Kimberly K. Barlow 

Filed under: Feature,Volume 49 Issue 4

Leave a Reply