The Texas governor, lieutenant governor and speaker of the house have asked all state agencies, including higher education, to cut their baseline budgets by 4% to reflect the loss in revenue from falling oil prices. Baseline budget is not the previous year’s allocation, but rather, it is the amount of money needed for continuing current services given inflation and population growth.
Community colleges are doubly hit because part of their funding comes from local taxes, also affected by the oil downturn. Since community college enrollments tend to go up in difficult times, these cutbacks will likely coincide with enrollment growth.
As of now, health and retirement benefits are exempted from this request.