The University of Maryland, College Park is under a campuswide hiring and construction freeze due to an anticipated state budget shortfall, University President Wallace D. Loh announced Wednesday in a letter to faculty and staff.
Loh said all state agencies have been asked to "immediately begin to limit all discretionary spending" and warned of "additional budget reductions during this fiscal year."
The hiring freeze, effective immediately, will affect all hires except lecturers, graduate assistants and positions funded by external research grants, with "rare exceptions" to meet critical needs. Any new, state-funded renovations or major equipment purchases will be suspended, "unless necessary for safety reasons," Loh wrote.
"Our campus has already borne its share of state-mandated 'preliminary reductions' last year and this year, and more may follow," he wrote.
Loh said he would form a task force of students, faculty, staff and administrators to come up with new ways to save money, find new revenue streams and update the College Park campus' strategic plan through 2020.
"We have a flagship mission of excellence, opportunity, and impact," Loh wrote. "These are not just promises. They are written in our charter, character, and destiny. Working together, we will emerge stronger."