The University of Wisconsin System’s total reserves could grow to $1.2 billion by the end of the state’s fiscal year, according to new figures handed over to lawmakers this week. They show the reserve is projected to increase by up to $150 million by June 30th.
University officials have been under fire after it was revealed last month that the system is sitting on nearly one billion dollars in reserve funding. Of that money, about $648 million is in unrestricted reserves. The growth of the fund came during a time when UW officials were claiming the system was facing extreme financial challenges, while regents approved tuition increases of 5.5 percent over the last two years.
UW System President Kevin Reilly and two members of the Board of Regents met privately this week with Legislative leaders. Both Republicans and Democrats have been critical of the UW for not disclosing the reserve funds earlier, while both sides are calling for a tuition freeze on campuses as part of the next state budget. Some Republicans are also arguing a $181 million funding increase for the UW should be rejected.