University of Missouri to cut 400 positions at Columbia campus

About 100 of the 400 positions to be cut at the University of Missouri may come from layoffs, school officials said.
About 100 of the 400 positions to be cut at the University of Missouri may come from layoffs, school officials said.

The University of Missouri expects to cut 400 positions, possibly including nearly 100 layoffs, to manage significant losses in state revenue and tuition dollars.

At a campus forum Monday, Interim Chancellor Garnett Stokes told faculty, students and staff that absorbing the largest cuts to the university budget in recent memory will mean jobs will be lost.

MU officials announced last week it would slash 12 percent — amounting to roughly $55 million — of its budget from all schools, colleges and divisions on campus in fiscal year 2018.

All four campuses in the University of Missouri System, in Columbia, Kansas City, St. Louis and Rolla, are having to cut spending for fiscal year 2018 .

University of Missouri-Kansas City leaders expect to cut about 3 percent from budgets at all university schools, colleges and divisions.

At MU, the cuts are to deal with revenue loss because of state funding reductions and declines in enrollment on the Columbia campus. Earlier this month, the Missouri legislature passed a budget with a 6.58 percent decrease in core funding for universities statewide.

MU had already announced an expected 14 percent decline in incoming freshmen for the fall.

At Monday’s forum, Stokes said the drop in enrollment would result in about $16.6 million in lost revenue. Mizzou expects to recoup roughly $7 million of those dollars with a proposed 2.1 percent increase in tuition.

After speaking for nearly 90 minutes, Stokes answered questions Monday from members of the campus community for more than an hour.

In her address, Stokes said that of the 400 positions to be cut, at least half are currently empty. Among the remain half, many are retirements and nonrenewed contracts.

“About 80 to 100 are layoffs, but we won’t have the final numbers until June,” said Christian Basi, university spokesman.

Last month, anticipating financial woes for the university, MU’s division of operations announced it would be eliminating about 25 administrative-level jobs effective July 1. That would be part of the overall 400 position job reduction at MU.

Stokes is holding a second forum at 9:30 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Tuesday in Jesse Wrench Auditorium on the Columbia campus.

Mará Rose Williams: 816-234-4419, @marawilliamskc