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Board of Higher Ed formalizes budget request for the 23-25 biennium

The Chancellor of the North Dakota University System has been given a new two year contract – and a raise.

The state Board of Higher Education made the decision after an executive – or closed – session with Chancellor Mark Hagerott.

"We really appreciate what the Chancellor has done," said Board chair Casey Ryan. "He has been a great leader. We see him as visionary."

Ryan said Hagerott has led the system during a very difficult year.

Hagerott responded his success derives from the staff, and the college presidents.

"The presidents are the most thoughtful, collegial group on the front line," Hagerott said. "They have a much harder job than I have."

Hagerott also thanked the Board.

Hagerott will get a 2.7 percent raise. That will bring his salary to just over $400,000.

Ryan noted this was the first time the Chancellor's contract was discussed behind closed doors, thanks to a new state law. The Board has been able to have confidential discussions over the individual presidents' contracts for a number of years.

The Board has also given its okay to the system’s proposed budget for the 2023-2025 biennium.

That proposal calls for $680.1 million in state general funds for the campuses and system office, as well as a $252.7 million capital budget.

The budget contains a proposal for a higher education stabilization fund, similar to the existing K-12 stabilization fund.

"That helps with recruiting and retention," Hagerott said. "Quality people coming here, known that if oil's down and ag is down, they're not facing defunding of their labs. So it has long-term benefits."

Another proposal was to add an assistant vice chancellor for research and workforce. Board member Jeffry Volk is not in favor of that.

"I'm of the opinion that we have to push more effort down into the institutions, and ask them to manage what we've got them for, and have the system office not be setting up programs and areas that overlap with what the institutions do," Volk said.

But Volk did vote in favor of the budget plan.

The proposal now goes to the state’s Office of Management and Budget for review.

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