Dr. Robert Robbins and interim CFO John Arnold answered lawmaker questions Wednesday, amidst the University’s budget shortage.

The deficit has led to tuition increases, layoffs, and more.

But Wednesday Arnold says there is no quick fix. The process to fix right the budget will take 18-36 months.

This is because officials want to evaluate merit based financial aid. But are guaranteeing no change to current or accepted students aid.

President Robbins answered questions from lawmakers on layoffs and cutting programs.

We think there is enormous savings by consolidating and becoming more efficient and one of the biggest areas where we are going to do that is UAGC,” said Robbins, “the biggest one is athletics, so we are immediately, with the help of outside consultants, our team is going to mobilize and go in and start from scratch with athletics.”

Robbins says there will not be across the board layoffs, but departments are expected to bring a plan to cut up to 15% of their budgets.

“I think there are going to have to be decisions made at the, at the local level about who the the units want to have continue on the resources that they have to support them,” said Robbins.

Robbins also addressed Lisa Rulney still being employed at U of A, saying she is still employed to assist interim CFO Arnold in his day to day operations, while also having a position to work to receive the remainder of her salary.

“In order to be able to pay her contract out, she had to have a title. And so that she could be available to John, you can imagine John dropping in and not having access to what the CFO knew and in information,” said Robbins, “In order to give him access, there is a title so that she could continue to get paid out. And we do this with contracts all the time at the university.”

Robbins says Rulney’s contract expires at the end of the fiscal year on June 30th.