Some capital campaign donors may wait to see how much money, if any, the University receives from the state this year before deciding how to direct their pledges, administrators said last month. Otherwise, the University's billion-dollar capital campaign is not expected to fluctuate greatly during upcoming legislative debates to determine whether the University will retain $37 million in state funding, they added. "It is really to early to tell what will happen," said Rick Nahm, senior vice president for planning and development. "If there is a change it would occur once it is determined definitely what the appropriations are." Last month, Gov. Robert Casey proposed eliminating all of the University's state appropriations in his budget proposal. The General Assembly will now debate and revise the proposal before returning it to Casey for his signature this spring. Among the proposals, the governor suggested eliminating all state aid to the Veterinary School, an amount equalling 40 percent of its operating budget. Nahm noted, however, that the University updates donors of the budget situation. "Some people want to wait and see what is going to happen," Nahm added. "If the money is cut, you may see people rallying with gifts to restore it." "The rallying could particularly be seen in the Vet School or with financial aid," Nahm said. "Or you may see people putting their money in other areas of the University." Executive Vice President Marna Whittington said last month she believes donors know that the University is a "quality institution" and will continue to give. "The jury is out," Whittington said. "They may be waiting until we get through the appropriation issue." The capital campaign is divided into several smaller parts. Many donors request their money be placed one of these specific areas, such as financial aid or facilities. Nahm said that when the governor proposed halving the University's state appropriation last year, donors also watched to see how the University would eventually fare. He added the campaign was not affected greatly either way because the University retained $37 million in state funding. Budget Director Stephen Golding said last month that preserving the academic core will be the highest priority in the University's upcoming plan to deal with the potential cuts. The University's five-year $1 billion campaign is several months ahead of schedule and has raised 64 percent of its goal as of this summer.Comments powered by Disqus
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