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Regents Lay Out Potential Areas for Cuts, Efficiencies

IOWA CITY, IA (CBS2/FOX28) - The Board of Regents announced the first of three phases to cut costs and save money at Iowa's three state universities on Wednesday, as a part of the Rising to the Next TIER program.

The TIER (Transparent, Inclusive Efficiency Review) program is aimed at reducing costs statewide that the board said is unsustainable.

Phase I is extremely preliminary. The Board of Regents brought in the financial consulting firm Deloitte to look at the places Iowa State University, the University of Iowa and the University of Northern Iowa could save money, whittling down the options from a list of 12 to eight.

Deloitte took six campus visits over 10 weeks and completed nearly 400 interviews to complete Phase I. The eight areas where the firm sees room for efficiency are:
  • Sourcing and procurement
  • Academic programs
  • Information technology services
  • Facilities
  • Finance
  • Human resources
  • Strategic space utilization
  • Student services

"This is all still a work in progress. This is not a done deal," said Sheila Koppin Doyle, communications director for the Board of Regents.

Because nothing is set in stone, Deloitte has yet to suggest specific line items that could save the state specific amounts of money.

"There are no preconceived notions with the respect to the dollars to be saved, and much of this needs much more time, (it) has yet to be determined," Koppin Doyle said.

To do that, Deloitte and the board are turning to the public. They will be hosting three public forums in the next two weeks to talk about changes to administrative programs.

The board is waiting until school starts again in the fall to talk with students and faculty about what they think is important to maintain in academic programs.

In response to the report, the University of Iowa said it "is always looking for additional ways to become even more efficient. The task force has identified several areas that are promising, and we look forward to working with Deloitte to develop specific strategies for each one."

The board said it is waiting to released more information at the public forums. The first will be held at UNI on Monday, June 16. The second will be held on Wednesday, June 18, at 11 a.m. in the IMU ballroom on the second floor. The third will be held at ISU on Tuesday, June 24.

The TIER program has nothing to do with the Board of Regents' decision last week to tie 60 percent of state allocated funding to the number of in-state students at the three universities. These are separate funding decisions.

 
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