Executive Summary

of the

Student Fee Advisory Committee

Budget Impact Review Process



 Prepared by:

Karen Salazar, Chairperson

Student Fee Advisory Committee



June 2, 2005



Student services are an integral part of the University experience. The availability of these services directly supports student retention.  Succeeding academically includes a student’s study skills and mastery of course material, and learning to deal with other everyday issues students face.  With health and mental health centers right on campus, and as other resources such as the LGBT Resource Center or the Center for Women and Men, students do not have to worry about how, or even if, they will have access to these services elsewhere. 

For many students who have no private access to social services such as health care, these student services become their sole access to resources to meet these needs.  At a time when social service programs are targeted for state and federal budget cuts, students have come to rely heavily on the provision of these services. 

In a time of increasing student fees, students should be able to expect to get the services they deserve.  Unfortunately, because of budget cuts, these fee increases have only served to partially make up for the loss of funding.  As a result, students pay more fees, yet receive fewer services in return.  Moreover, the proliferation of User fees and Course Materials fees are examples of some of the ways in which the financial burden for support of services and general education has been shifted onto the shoulders of students. 

As a student-majority committee and the official student voice on matters related to student fees and the provision of student services, the Student Fee Advisory Committee (SFAC) feels it is our responsibility to advocate on behalf of the services that most directly benefit students.  Therefore, the SFAC conducted an exercise to determine what the on-going effects of budget reductions have been to the units that provide these services.  The Committee has done this through the Budget Impact Review Team (BIRT) process.se of BIRT                                                                        

The BIRT process was initiated in FY03-04 as a method of evaluating the effects of the budget reductions implemented between FY02-03 and FY03-04.  These reductions averaged over 20% and totaled approximately $4.1 million over the two years.  As a result, for FY03-04 the SFAC felt it necessary to temporarily replace the Service Assessment Team (SAT) process with the BIRT process in order to assess how the budget reductions had affected the quality and quantity of services provided, how units dealt with the reductions, and how students were responding to any changes to service and/or user fees.[1]  While the BIRT process was very successful last year, the SFAC found that many of the units had been using carry-forward or other temporary funds to mitigate the impact of the cuts, and as a result, the second year into the cuts would be more indicative of any lasting impacts.  Thus, the FY04-05 SFAC decided to continue with the process again this year. 


The purpose of the BIRT process this year was two-fold:[2]


1)        To assess the short and long-term impacts of previous reductions on units’ ability to provide quality services.

2)        To gain a better understanding of units’ long-term budget planning processes and priorities.

The Committee has adopted a fiscally conservative approach to dealing with the new budget realities.  Part of this approach included making 5-year projections for the Registration Fee fund.  These projections showed the Registration Fee fund going into deficit beginning FY06-07 should revenue and funding allocations remain status quo.[3]  This structural deficit would be caused by the increased hidden costs of funding employee fringe benefits.  While we understand that these projections are simply that – projections – and not a guaranteed ending balance, we also understand the need to be forward-thinking and to plan accordingly. 

The SFAC’s main objective is to represent the needs and interests of students when it comes to student services.  While the Committee is taking measures to address the impending structural deficit, we also understand the need to plan ahead for a worst-case scenario.  A worst-case scenario for the Registration Fee fund would be one in which the SFAC finds that it can no longer continue to make continuous incremental reductions, slowly slicing away at units’ budgets.  If this approach continues, there will be a point at which units will be unable to provide quality services to students.  The SFAC will then be placed in the undesirable position of reducing or eliminating some services in order to save others. 

In sum, the Committee understands that it may never be faced with this scenario, but it would rather take the conservative approach to budgeting than do nothing.  This report should serve as the guiding document outlining the priorities for funding that the SFAC has developed over the last three years[4].  Should the need arise to recommend changes to funding allocations, this document should guide that decision-making process.BIRTProcess                                                                                           

In Fall 2004, the SFAC developed a questionnaire designed to help gather information to build upon the information gathered by the previous BIRT process.  The SFAC was looking for ways to more accurately assess how budget reductions had been absorbed by the units.  As a result, the SFAC decided to focus on the following:

1) changes to the quantity and/or quality of services;

2) implementation of new user fees or increases to previously-existing user fees; and

3) the units’ own long-term budget priorities and planning processes. 

The questionnaire was sent to all units in December 2004, and was to be returned completed to the SFAC by Jan 2004.

The SFAC began conducting interviews with all the Registration-fee funded units in Winter 2005 to follow up with them regarding the questionnaires and to ask questions or request additional information.  Each of the four budget impact review teams summarized the information they compiled into individual reports for each unit, and made recommendations to the entire committee regarding funding priorities.  These were presented to the Committee in the March 2005, and any necessary follow-up with the units was made.

The SFAC began its budget planning and deliberations process in Spring 2005 for FY05-06, and as committee experts on individual units, the respective BIRT teams weighed in heavily on the recommendations.  The level of priority for funding that had been assigned to each unit by the respective teams was used to determine these recommendations.

            The following are the priorities for funding established by the SFAC.  These should serve as guiding principles for any future changes to budget allocations. 



School of Arts & Architecture

Center for Performing Arts (Education)

Center for Performing Arts (Student Services)


Administrative Vice Chancellor

Intercollegiate Athletics

UCLA Housing Office (CHO)

Central Ticket Office (CTO)

Student Affairs Organization

Student Affairs Administration

Student Affairs Information & Research Office (SAIRO)


School of Arts & Architecture/UCLA Live


The majority of UCLA Live’s Registration Fee funding pays for staff salaries and benefits.  UCLA Live has been able to reduce costs by eliminating 4 unfilled staff positions and increasing its donor support.  Recent budget reductions have not affected student users.  Even after these reductions, however, an allocation of over $600,000 seems excessive.  Students comprise only 10 % of the total audience at UCLA Live performances, yet student money pays for half of the fixed costs.  Furthermore, there is an implicit subsidy of $62 per student, yet the student discount on tickets is only $10-$15.  This indicates that student fees are used to subsidize performance attendance costs for non-students.

Priority: Low

Department of Intercollegiate Athletics

Despite a $450,000 reduction in its operating budget for the 2004-05 year, Athletics’ primary contributions to the UCLA community – promoting, school spirit, and students’ ability to watch sporting events – have remained unmitigated.  Even if its Registration Fee funding were reduced, Athletics would remain capable of fulfilling its core mission.  As with previous years, Athletics was unable to provide a line itemization of its use of Registration Fee funds.  Therefore, it is not possible to determine whether Athletics is directing Registration Fee money toward the most crucial areas of student need, such as Title IX sports, the original justification for Registration Fee funding. 

Priority: Low

Community Housing Office:

The Community Housing Office (CHO) assists students in finding off-campus housing.  The unit has engaged in long-range planning strategies for over a decade, and as a result, is very fiscally stable.  Non-student user fees for landlords to advertise their properties and be listed in the CHO’s apartment listings generate approximately $50,000 a year in revenues.  This amount has remained a reliable source of revenue for CHO, and has allowed them to continue to offer the same quantity and quality of services to students. 

While the demand for the services will never go away, the SFAC feels that because of the CHO’s strategic planning, it would continue to offer quality services, even with reduced Registration Fee support.  Furthermore, a carry-forward balance of $53,040 from an accumulation of salary savings and a 50% decrease in expenditures for office space rental, has enable CHO to thrive.

Priority: Low

Central Ticket Office


The Registration Fee allocation enables the Central Ticket Office (CTO) to sell UCLA students discounted tickets to movie theatres and theme parks.  A substantial number of UCLA students buy the theme park and movie passes. With less student fee support the director would try to seek more money from Athletics and the Arts for selling their tickets, or try charging non-UCLA students fees before charging students extra for the movie and theme park tickets.

Priority: Low


SAIRO collects, analyzes and distributes information about UCLA students to inform campus administrators about student needs and provide regular feedback regarding student services.  SAIRO is currently staffed by 2 FTEs and 2 student employees. 

SAIRO down-sized in the 1990s, and therefore, had a carry-forward balance for many years.  Currently that carry-forward balance is $154,455.  Student Affairs intends to take $20,000 - $30,000 of this carry-forward to use for other units in need.  Of the remainder, SAIRO stated plans to hire a PA II for 2-3 years on a contract basis. 

Priority: Low


Administrative Vice Chancellor

Deferred Maintenance


The College

HUP-Scholarship Resource Center

Student Affairs Organization

Student Affairs Administration

Student Information Systems


Student Academic Services

Career Center

Student Internship & Study Abroad Services


Student and Campus Life

Cultural and Recreational Affairs

Office of International Students & Scholars

Student Legal Services


Student Development & Health

Student Psychological Services (SPS)

SPS Telephone Help Line

Student Health Services

Center for Women & Men




Student & Campus Life

S&CL Division Administration

S&CL Technology


Chancellor’s Organization



Facilities (Deferred Maintenance)

 The total Facilities budget has remained consistently at or near $600,000 since the late 1980s, dropping slightly to its current annual total of $540,000.  While it does not provide services directly to students, Facilities is doing its part to maintain and improve the state of student services on campus.  As repairs neglected today will become liabilities in a more expensive tomorrow, Facilities merits medium priority for Registration Fee funding.

Priority: Medium

 Scholarship Resource Center (SRC)

The Scholarship Resource Center assists students in seeking scholarships, fellowships, and educational grants to help fund their college education.  The SRC is a small unit that receives the majority of its funding from Registration Fees.  In order to deal with the impacts of previous budget reductions, it has reduced the amount of programming, workshops, and outreach it provides.  Further budget reductions would result in staff reductions, and thus services provided to students.

Priority: Medium-High

 Office Technology Center (Student Affairs Information Systems)

 The Office Technology Center (OTC) is the technology support wing of the Vice Chancellor for Student Affairs.  The OTC operates behind the scenes to ensure that the technology needs of units offer direct student services are met.  

 After the last round of budget reductions, the OTC received a 21% reduction in its Registration Fee budget resulting in a real loss of $114,114.  OTC operates on Registration Fee and Student Affairs money alone. OTC is a medium priority because its services are an underlying necessity for all student groups and Student Affairs offices. However, they are not deemed high priority due to their ability to cope with the past budget cuts and recent completion of a project to update the network.

Priority: Medium

Career Center/Intern and Study Abroad Services Office

 The Career Center (CC) provides career services for UCLA students, including career planning workshops and counseling, on-campus interviews, and on-line job listings.  It also works closely with the Intern and Study Abroad Services Office, to assist students furthering their education outside of UCLA.  

Over 2 years the CC has implemented budget reductions of roughly 25%.  This has resulted in adverse impacts to service quality and quantity.  Despite past success in raising external funds, the CC has been unable to increase fundraising to cover the reductions. The implementation of student user fees for on-campus interviews and workshops did not have the fiscal results anticipated.  As a result, the fee has been rescinded.  Long-term, the CC is exploring ways to make its operations more efficient and create new ventures, such as a partnership with the Alumni Association that will generate funds from new uses of its resources without reducing services for UCLA students.

Priority: Medium

 Cultural and Recreational Affairs (CRA)

The Department of Cultural and Recreational Affairs (CRA) serves as the
administrative center for campus recreation programs, facilities, and
services. As such, CRA serves a very broad cross-section of the UCLA
community by providing unique and valuable services that are not duplicated
in other units.

 Previous budget reductions have not significantly impacted student services, as CRA has been able to rely on revenue generated from non-student user fees, such as recreation memberships.  Further reductions, however, would likely result in new and/or increased student user fees.

Priority: Medium

 Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS)

 The Office of International Students and Scholars (OISS) offers several programs that ease the transition of international students to their new environments.  Increased overhead costs  resulting from the implementation of the Student Exchange Visitor information System (SEVIS), and recent budget cuts have reduced the ability of OISS to expand upon its current programming. An increase to user fees, however, has served to allay these costs and preserve the unit's core services.  Furthermore, it was reported that these user fees did not represent a significant financial burden upon the students that OISS serves, thus securing the unit's ability to generate additional revenue, should it become necessary.

Priority: Medium

 Student Legal Services (SLS)

 Student Legal Services (SLS) provides legal counseling and assistance
regarding a wide range of legal issues to all currently registered and
enrolled UCLA students. These issues range from housing disputes and credit
and financial issues to domestic violence and sexual harassment. These
services are very valuable to students as SLS offers students unparalleled
access to legal professionals for a fraction of what equivalent services
would cost outside UCLA. In addition, SLS is the only unit on campus which
offers professional legal advice and service, making this unit an essential
component of UCLA. 

 The impacts of previous budget reductions include fewer appointments available for students due to reduced attorney time and increased student user fees.  The SFAC feels, however, that more operational efficiencies can be added, such as increased partnering with law students to provide services at lower costs.

Priority: Medium

 Student Psychological Services (SPS)

 In spite of the budgetary challenges it has faced in the last few years, SPS has been able to meet increasing student demands for services.  SPS has implemented new user fees, used carry-forward funds, and collaborated with other departments such as the LGBT Resource Center and Center for Women and Men.


While psychological services are important for many students, priority is classified as medium because through the BIRT process, the SFAC determined that SPS could reasonably handle the demand for its services with its current resources.

Priority: Medium

 Student Health Services/Ashe Center

 The Ashe Center is a well-controlled, well-organized unit.  The recent implementation of its electronic data system allows it to track user ratings, which will be helpful to SFAC in future evaluations.  The Ashe Center is expecting some problems in the future with increasing costs of employee benefits, and does not have the ability to draw from external sources.  The Ashe Center will not be able to sustain its current functionality without increasing co-pays or receiving increased Registration Fee funding.  The SFAC's continued commitment to funding the Ashe Center is necessary to maintain this excellent resource for the student body.

Priority: Medium-High

 Center for Women and Men (CWM)

The CWM provides student services ranging from counseling to workshop presentations, aimed at promoting awareness of, and developing skills to deal with, issues of gender and sexuality.  Previous budget reductions have resulted in a decrease in services provided.  The CWM has had a carry-forward balance of over $200,000 for the last three years due to salary savings from an unfilled position. 

 The impacts of previous budget reductions include heavy workloads for staff due to a reduction in staff, coupled with increased demand for services. While the committee supports the services the CWM provides to students, it recommends that the CWM seek external funding more aggressively and look for ways to work with other to provide services. 

Priority: Medium

Student & Campus Life Administration

Student & Campus Life Administration (S & CL) is the umbrella for all units under the Student and Campus Life Division.  Their focus is student-centered, emphasizing quality student contact and teamwork among S & CL departments. This office provides the necessary administrative support to departments in the division that provide direct services to students.  S & CL provides administrative support in the areas of human resources, budgeting, technology, and development for the units. Registration Fees are used for administrative costs that support student programs and services.  Some funds have also been used to fund individual research project by students.  The division has maintained all programs and services without sacrificing quality of service.  The impact of the past years’ budget reductions has included personnel reductions. 

Priority: Medium


 The Ombuds office provides conflict mediation services to both students and non-students affiliated with the University.  Registration Fee funding supports approximately 1/3 of the office’s operating budget, with the remaining 2/3 coming from the Chancellor.  Ombuds dealt with the previous budget reductions by using some of its unallocated carry-forward.  These carry-forward funds accumulated over 4 years (1998-2001) due to salary savings.  Because of the availability of these funds, no sacrifice to quality of service has been made.  Possible strategies to deal with further reductions include charging non-student user fees.  Because of its financial stability and support from the Chancellor, Ombuds merits medium priority.

Priority: Medium


 School of Arts & Architecture

UCLA Marching Band


Administrative Vice Chancellor

Child Care Services


Student Affairs Organization

Student Affairs Administration

Bruin Corps

Student & Campus Life

Center for Student Programming

Community Programs Office

ü      Campus Retention Committee

ü      Student Initiated Outreach Committee

LGBT Resource Center

Marching Band

 The Marching Band has had issues with funding, which has consequently hindered its ability to make certain appearances at sports events for decades.  A task force which included two SFAC members convened in 2000 and concluded that “the Band is under-funded relative to the number of demands placed upon it and its players.” The report also concluded that Athletics was not a “cash cow” that could be expected to offer significant additional resources for the band.

 The Band is now in even greater need of funding.  The last round of budget cuts reduced the Band’s registration fee funding by 16%.  Consequently, it no longer performs at Olympic sports events (lamented recently in a student written Bruin editorial) and has no funds to replace 15-year old uniforms or buy replacement instruments.  The band had a carry-forward of less than $3K.  It does not want to go into default and will delay purchases if necessary to avoid that, managing down to the penny.  Currently, the band is experiencing problems with the availability of trombones, sousaphones and mellophones, as well as uniforms, and it needs to hire additional instructional staff.

Priority: High

UCLA Child Care Services

This department has had to endure the uncertainty of Registration Fee funding decreases, and has had to face cutbacks at the state and federal level. The service that Child Care Services provides for UCLA students is valuable in providing a low cost alternative to students with financial need, and the SFAC strongly supports their efforts. Many of the students serviced by them would likely face retention problems as a result of any decreases in service.

Priority: High

Bruin Corps

Bruin Corps provides over 240 students with service learning opportunities, whereby students outreach to over 750 area elementary and middle school students through tutoring programs. The Registration Fee accounts for about ten percent (10%) of Bruin Corps funding. During the last round of budget cuts, Bruin Corps received a 16% reduction, for a total loss of $10,677, in its permanent Registration Fee budget.  Despite this cut, the program has doubled the amount of students that participate in the service-learning program from 120 to 248. Bruin Corps is a high priority due to the ever-increasing demand for these services, the continuing state budget cuts to academic preparation programs, and the value they bring to both the students who work in the project and those who benefit from them.

Priority: High

Center for Student Programming

The CSP is funded completely through Registration Fees.  The unit supports, advises and guides over 800 student run organizations on campus including Greek Letter Social Organizations.  The CSP facilitates the acquisition and distribution of resources to support student programming and assists with divisional programs and projects.  The Center registers and assists student groups in the development, design, and implementation of activities to maximize their educational benefit and to assure compliance with campus regulations.  The unit has made attempts to seek external funding, but has only been successful with the Spirit Squad.  The CSP is consistently involved in collaborations with other units to produce programs and events on behalf of students and to maximize funds. 

Priority: High

Community Programs Office, CRC, & SIOC

During FY 03-04, the Student & Campus Life Division of the Student Affairs Organization approved the departmentalization of the Community Programs Office (CPO).  Essentially, all funding that CPO receives goes to pay for personnel costs. Currently, the Campus Retention Committee (CRC) and the Student Initiated Outreach Committee (SIOC), which are affiliated with the CPO, fund every other cost associated with the CPO.  The SFAC commends the CPO, CRC, and SIOC as one of the finest examples of the administration and students partnering to address funding concerns and broader social issues, in particular outreach issues. Moreover, the committee strongly supports the efforts of the CPO and CRC in providing direct student services and service to the Los Angeles community at-large.  

 The SFAC feels that budget reductions to the CPO, CRC, and SIOC would mean personnel cuts and a considerable loss in services.  Furthermore, demand for the units’ services has increased consistently each year, creating a significant strain on already overworked staff and directors.

Priority: High

 LGBT Resource Center

 The LGBT Resource Center has provided valuable services to students that the SFAC strongly supports.  The center is funded completely with Registration Fees and any further reductions would mean elimination of personnel and the services they provide. This is a very small, 2-person operation that needs all the funding it currently receives, and the unit would suffer greatly from any budget reductions.

Priority: High


[1] Refer to FY03-04 BIRT Cover Letter.

[2] Refer to FY 04-05 BIRT Cover Letter.

[3] Refer to Trend Report of Financial Activity FY00/01-Fy09/10 (Actual and Projected) dated May 12, 2005.

[4] Refer to FY 03-04 Budget Recommendations Letter and FY 04-05 Budget Recommendations Letter.