Florida Legislature passes million dollar budget for FIU initiatives

Michelle Marchante/News Director

The Florida Legislature passed a budget for FIU’s 2017-2018 school year,  which includes $52.6 million in new capital and operating funds for initiatives, programs and funding for two new buildings at the Modesto A. Maidique campus.

The budget includes $10 million for the new College of Engineering & Computing Complex. This money, as stated in an email sent to Student Media from the Office of Governmental Relations, will go towards the estimated $150 million construction cost, which is being funded through public-private partnerships.

FIU also received $12.7 million to complete what the email calls “phase II” of the Steven J. Green School of International & Public Affairs building.

Initially vetoed by Governor Rick Scott during the regular legislative session, this allocation was added back to the budget by the Senate during the special sessions held between Tuesday, June 6 and Friday, June 9. Once combined with the $15 million the Green Family designated as part of their “transformational” $20 million gift, the email states, this funding will allow the “final phase” of the SIPA building– to build a new building beside it– to be completed.

However, not all of the items on FIU’s budget were approved. Some of the vetoed projects include: $5 million for FIU Uplift (University Paradigm: Learn, Interact, Facilitate), $1 million for FIU StartUP, $1 million for Royal Caribbean’s housing mold remediation, $1 million for College of Law Center for Professionalism and Ethics, $500K for Center for Democracy and $250K for Center for Leadership.

But, a 2:1 match of dollars was also raised this year as part of the school’s First Generation Matching Grant Program, meaning that money raised for the school under this program can be matched $2 for every $1 up to the total amount the state appropriated.

The World Class Faculty and Scholar program and the Professional and Graduate School program, which are meant to help elevate national competitiveness among state universities, also received a combined $16.1 million to “provide FIU with the ability to improve our professional school rankings and ensure our students are successfully prepared for their professions of choice,” according to the email, and directly recognizes graduate success and ranking in the Colleges of Business, Medicine and Law.

FIU also qualified and received an additional $2.2 million in performance funding incentives, the email states, bringing the total state performance funding to $27,468,290. New metric changes relating to student graduation rates and access are also expected to take in 2018.

Other items in the budget include: $6.48 million from Capital Improvement Trust fund to expand the Graham Center Student Union, $3.9 million for university-wide facilities maintenance, $550,000 for operational support for internships at The Washington Center, located in Washington, DC., $2.5 million for Green Family Foundation NeighborhoodHELP, and $969,689 for Florida Public Hurricane Loss Model ($337,050 is from increased funding).


Image retrieved from Flickr.


About the Author

Michelle Marchante
Michelle Marchante is the 2018-2019 Editor-in-Chief of PantherNOW. Majoring in broadcast journalism, she lives and breathes web, print, radio and TV news 24/7. You can connect with her on Twitter @TweetMichelleM

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