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Clarification Regarding Layoffs
You might have seen an article published Saturday in The Baltimore Sun regarding Fiscal Year 2016 spending reductions mandated for all state agencies in order to close Maryland’s structural budget deficit.
The article mentioned a University System of Maryland cost-savings proposal in response to these cuts that includes 15 layoffs at UMB. I want you to know that these layoffs have, in fact, already been implemented and are not actions yet to come. We do not anticipate any further personnel reductions in response to FY 2016 state budget cuts.
Maryland’s budget challenges have been known for some time, and UMB began planning for reductions in January 2015, when then Gov. Martin O'Malley announced more than $200 million in midyear cuts to bring the state’s FY 2015 budget into balance. Later that month, Gov. Larry Hogan proposed a 2 percent reduction across state agencies to close a looming FY 2016 budget gap.
And so it was then, in January, that the University began undertaking a number of actions to absorb its share of the FY 2015 and FY 2016 cuts, together totaling approximately $10 million. These actions included implementing operational efficiencies, eliminating vacant positions, and delaying facility improvements.
It is undoubtedly difficult to execute significant budget cuts, given the importance of UMB’s core missions, and reducing personnel, even modestly, was the option of last resort. I’m deeply grateful for your hard work and happy to reassure you of the University’s continued strength despite the state’s fiscal challenges.
Jay A. Perman, MD