TO: The University Community
The university community is beginning to feel the results of the mid-year budget cuts on programs and services. As I said at Faculty Institute, as well as in conversations with the student, staff, and faculty leadership, while we are seeing the impact of those cuts, we are also seeing new spending initiatives. For many individuals, not involved in the day-to-day operation of the university, there may seem to be an inconsistency between budget cuts campus-wide and the expenditure of resources for new projects and initiatives.
It is important to understand that funding for each of these initiatives comes from dedicated funds that cannot be reallocated to the mid-year budget cut or to any future budget reduction that may be imposed by the state. Examples include the following:
- Beauregard Hall is now undergoing a complete renovation through a state provided capital outlay fund of 14.9 million dollars.
- The residence hall project is nearing completion with the final stages of clean up after removal of the four old buildings. The land in question will be graded with new sidewalks and lighting added for the safety of community members. A coffee shop will be constructed on the corner of Madewood and Ardoyne Drives across from Cheramie and Gouaux Halls, as the final step in this bond funded auxiliary initiative.
- The clean up and repair work required to correct for damages resulting from Hurricanes Gustav and Ike will lead to the installation of new athletic scoreboards and lighting, a new electronic sign at the front of the campus, on-going roof repair and replacement on dozens of remaining roofs, and the replacement of damaged maintenance facilities. All of this work is covered by insurance.
- Nicholls received a special state allocation of 4.6 million dollars for deferred maintenance projects. Over forty (40) projects are planned involving the majority of buildings on campus. Projects will be combined where feasible to take advantage of cost savings and to maximize the number of projects that we can complete. Projects include: HVAC/mechanical repairs and replacement, numerous fire alarm and ADA upgrades, and some structural repairs. The two most notable projects are the replacement of the HVAC system in Gouaux Hall at a cost of $1.6 million, and the replacement of the passenger lift at Talbot Hall with an ADA compatible elevator at a cost of $600,000.
The above are just a few of the more visible projects that are under way or will be completed in the months ahead. It is important to me that you are aware of these projects and the procedures and policies that drive them.