Gov. Brian Kemp signed the fiscal year 2021 budget into law Tuesday morning. The final budget doesn’t include mandatory furloughs for University System of Georgia employees.
All state agencies, including the USG, were originally told to cut their budgets by 14% for the next fiscal year, starting July 1, due to revenue loss caused by the coronavirus. All 26 USG universities had to submit reduction plans, including possible layoffs and furloughs. The amount of furlough days would have been tiered based on salary.
On Friday, the state legislature passed a final budget with around a 10% reduction from last fiscal year, instead of 14%. The USG will take a $242 million cut under the approved budget, according to the Georgia Budget & Policy Institute. In the approved fiscal year 2021 budget, no USG employees will be forced to take mandatory unpaid days off.
The signed budget doesn’t mean USG institutions won’t furlough employees, just that it isn’t mandated by the state.
The University of Georgia submitted a proposal in May that would hold nearly 400 jobs vacant in order to cut its budget by 14%.