Report 2016-130 - UC Office of the President: Status of Actions Taken
Auditees must provide the State Auditor with information regarding their progress in implementing recommendations from our reports at three intervals from the release of the report: 60 days, six months, and one year. Additionally, Senate Bill 1452 (Chapter 452, Statutes of 2006), requires auditees who have not implemented recommendations after one year, to report to us and to the Legislature why they have not implemented them or to state when they intend to implement them.
To inform discussions about the Governor's Proposed Budget and the Legislature's deliberations on the state budget we are providing information at-a-glance about the University of California Office of the President's (Office of the President) progress in implementing those recommendations. Outlined below are the 33 recommendations which we made to the Office of the President in our report, The University of California Office of the President: It Failed to Disclose Tens of Millions in Surplus Funds, and Its Budget Practices Are Misleading (Report 2016-130: April 2017).
The Office of the President is reporting that it has no funding left in its fund balances that are unrestricted, undesignated, and allocated for Office of the President purposes. The Office of the President asserts that because the Department of Finance did not approve its budget change proposal, it is using its remaining unrestricted fund balances to address a budget gap. According to the November 2019 budget to actual expenditures presentation to the Regents, the Office of the President has directly reallocated $87.6 million to campuses and indirectly reallocated $78.7 million to campuses as a result of implementing our recommendations over the last three years.
We continue to have concerns that the Office of the President did not present its annual budget by April 2019, as specified by our recommendations. In fact, the Regents did not approve the Office of the President's fiscal year 2019-20 budget until July 2019, three weeks after the Governor signed the state budget. The failure to present the budget by April of each year may hinder the Department of Finance, the Legislature, and the Governor when making decisions regarding the UC's portion of the state budget. This is a critical recommendation that, if successfully implemented, will improve stakeholders' ability to hold the Office of the President accountable.
Additionally, we have concerns related to the Office of the President's implementation of our salary recommendations. In our 2017 report, we noted that opportunities existed for the Office of the President to reduce its salary costs by giving a greater weight to public sector positions when it set its salaries. However, the Office of the President applied an 8 percent market adjustment to its salary ranges that negated the effects of its new weighting methodology. Because of the 8 percent salary range increase, the Office of the President asserts it did not realize any salary savings from implementing this recommendation. Thus, we believe the Office of the President's implementation of our recommendation falls short.
Overall, the Office of the President fully implemented nine of the 10 recommendations that were due by April 2018, nine of the 11 that were due by April 2019, and seven of the 12 that are due by April 2020. We recognize the Office of the President's resource investment and progress made thus far in implementing our recommendations by improving its fiscal, staffing, and systemwide initiative processes. However, the Office of the President still needs to fully implement key recommendations to successfully address the concerns we identified in our report.
Changes Due April 2018
|Document and review the restrictions and commitments on its funds.||✓|
|Develop a reserve policy.||✓|
|Implement our recommended budget presentation.||✓|
|Reconvene campus budget committee and establish an agreed-upon charter.||✓|
|Realign Staffing Costs|
|Develop a method for weighing comparable public and private sector pay data.||✓|
|Determine how to restructure salary ranges.||✓|
|Change employee benefit policies.||✓|
|Develop a strategic direction for its workforce plan.||✓|
|Evaluate Systemwide Initiatives|
|Develop clear definitions of systemwide initiatives and administration.||✓|
|Develop a comprehensive list of systemwide and presidential initiatives.||✓|
Changes Due April 2019
Changes Due April 2020
To access all recommendations, responses, and our assessment: