Arizona State University President Michael Crow used an email to students and alumni last week to criticize Gov. Doug Ducey’s proposal to cut $75 million from the state’s three public universities.
In his message, Crow wrote that the governor’s proposed cuts signal that higher education is a low priority in Arizona and that the public universities are bearing the brunt of the budget balancing process.
He said his university would lose the most because Ducey’s proposal allocates cuts to each institution based on head count, and because a number of programs at the University of Arizona are exempt from cuts.
The UA programs he referred to include agricultural extension services throughout the state and the College of Medicine, both unduplicated at ASU or elsewhere in the state.
Under Ducey's proposal, ASU would lose more than $40 million in funding, the UA $21 million and NAU $13 million.
UA officials said there would be no comment from President Ann Weaver Hart or anyone else on campus in response to Crow’s e-mail.
Shortly after Crow sent his message, Board of Regents President Eileen Klein sent a conciliatory note, saying the universities understand the challenges Ducey faces in restoring fiscal order to the state and that they believe he is a supporter of higher education.