University of Minnesota Requests More Than $200 million in Bonding

Financial Plan Meant to Increase Returns

University of Minnesota Entrance
University of Minnesota Entrance

MINNEAPOLIS- The University of Minnesota presented its 2018 capital request to the Board of Regents, asking for $234 million in funds from the legislature.

According to the presentation to the Board of Regents, the University of Minnesota has split its $254 million request  into three parts. The vast majority, almost $200 million of the proposed funding, will go toward restoration and maintenance projects.

These funds, placed under Higher Education Asset Preservation and Restoration (HEAPR) are for repairs across the entire state system. These include renovations to the Reserve Officer Training Center Armory Building, Boynton Health Services building, as well as the decommissioning of Diehl Hall. The renovation of Pillsbury Hall, which has been in the works for a several years, would cost $36 million. The other project, Greater Minnesota Academic Renewal would be $15.8 million, which would provide funding for research labs and student services deemed necessary for student success.  

According to the President Kaler’s capital request, $17.5 million would be funded by the university itself, leaving $234 million to be requested from the state. It also appears that the university may be looking to move the renovation of Pioneer Hall onto the capital plan, which would add $104 million of debt to the capital plan. In the Board of Regents’ agenda items, a limit of $400 million was set as the top amount the school was willing to request.

The plan increases investment earnings and lowers the overall cost of capital, while mitigating the potential risk to the university. If the policy guidelines are followed the university is projected to experience a half a percent increase in annual returns. However, like all financial projections, these are speculative.

Alpha News reported in late May that the university continues to get increasingly more expensive, and that the administration has already been called out for modest increases in tuition costs for students.

Henry Carras