Save 75% - Only $49.99 for 1 full year! digitalPLUS subscription offer ends 12/1
NewsOpinionReaders Respond

Is a 1 percent trim really doomsday?

Colleges and UniversitiesUniversity System of MarylandMaryland General Assembly

The recent op-ed written by William E. Kirwan, chancellor of the University System of Maryland, is similar to Chicken Little declaring that the sky is falling ("Doomsday for Md. higher education," April 24). Mr. Kirwan states that "under the doomsday budget, the USM would be cut nearly $50 million" and would "dictate a double-digit increase for in-state undergraduate tuition, an increase significantly higher than the 3 percent included in the governor's budget proposal."

However, based on information found on the USM's own website (www.usmd.edu) the combined budget for the 11 universities and one research facility within the USM system is currently in excess of $4.5 billion, serving approximately 155,900 students. Using these numbers, the $50 million cut translates into a cut of approximately $321 per student or 1.1 percent. So where does Mr. Kirwan come up with the double-digit increase?

He also states that "…it is simply not possible for the USM to 'absorb' a nearly $50 million cut without significant pain." According to the USM, Maryland is the twelfth largest university system in the nation. It is inconceivable that it cannot absorb a 1 percent cut.

Declining revenues and increased costs plague all of the states, many to a much higher degree. Maryland is fortunate to have one of the most stable economies in the country. A 1 percent cut is not a doomsday scenario. More efficient use of technology, for example, could be used to absorb the 1 percent cut. Residents have had to absorb a substantial cut in their buying power far in excess of 1 percent. Let's not lose touch with reality. The Maryland General Assembly would be prudent to look at whether this is really "doomsday" or just another case of "the sky is falling."

Rebecca Cornell, Woodbine

Copyright © 2014, The Baltimore Sun
Related Content
Colleges and UniversitiesUniversity System of MarylandMaryland General Assembly
  • Senator displays his own arrogance
    Senator displays his own arrogance

    State Sen. Paul Pinsky writes an appropriately-named commentary condemning corporate lobbyists and maintaining that he and his fellow Democrats will fight against this "corporate victory" in the past election ("Post-election arrogance?" Nov. 14). That's funny. I was under the apparently...

  • Maryland's unfriendly business climate kills another 1,000 jobs
    Maryland's unfriendly business climate kills another 1,000 jobs

    Maryland is incredibly unfriendly to business with its heavy burden of regulations, high taxes and an out-of-control minority business enterprise extortion process that enriches a few African-Americans without hiring the inner city minorities it is designed to assist ("The Bechtel blame...

  • Don't let Maryland turn into Illinois [Letter]
    Don't let Maryland turn into Illinois [Letter]

    On the same day that The Baltimore Sun publishes "As recovery continues, Maryland households fall behind" (Oct. 11), the newspaper also prints an article about the trucker shortage ("Trucker shortage looms large as Baltimore port eyes growth").

  • Spending cuts aren't cheap [Letter]
    Spending cuts aren't cheap [Letter]

    A reader argues that overspending is the problem in Annapolis ("Maryland's spending problem," Sept. 29).

  • Maryland's spending problem [Letter]
    Maryland's spending problem [Letter]

    Dreary job reports coupled with the news that Maryland is projecting $405 million in less revenue for the current fiscal year and the next has caused the O'Malley/Brown cheerleaders at The Sun to put on the pompoms and go into full attack mode ("Apocalypse? Not now," Sept. 26). Various...

  • Politics as usual on state budget numbers [Letter]
    Politics as usual on state budget numbers [Letter]

    Having spent 47 years in state and local government, I have a pretty good feel for impending fiscal year budget problems ("Apocalypse? Not now," Sept. 26). The very quietly issued projections for the next fiscal year for the state budget are concerning. That the state has already, also very...

Comments
Loading