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Title Bar, Contact Us, State of the University Address 2000
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Our expenditure picture is simple to understand—56 percent of our all-funds budget goes to personal services, and the rest to equipment, utilities, supplies, and other operating expenses (Chart 4). We cannot seriously cut utility costs—in fact, they will increase this year with the high cost of oil, natural gas, and electricity—bills for July and August were more than $1 million higher than last year. We can work to cut down our operating costs and delay ordering new equipment, but only for so long; this year, yet again, we did not get the additional funding required by the union contracts’ provisions for raises and they, too, had to be paid from steady-state funding.

If one looks at the State budget, almost 80 percent goes to personal services (Chart 5). That is why the cuts in the State budget, although not a huge percentage of the total, affect our staffing levels so drastically. And that is why when we get large cuts, we have no choice but to decrease the number of personnel paid by State funding. We have done that without breaking any tenure or contractual obligations, but as a result, positions cannot be filled rapidly, temporary employee numbers must be lowered, and there is a general perception that we are at least temporarily in stasis—or worse. At the same time, we cannot afford to pause in our progress. Not at this point.

Although our State funding is a sad story, our total budget has grown significantly. We have increased research dollars by 68 percent in the past 10 years, from $84 million to $141 million, an increase of $57 million; in the past 20 years, expenditures have increased by $108 million, or more than 300 percent (Chart 6). As you can see, biomedical research has grown dramatically. Given the funding growth in the National Institutes of Health, we expect that trend to continue.

So whereas our tax support is lamentably sluggish, our research productivity has multiplied. Add to that our royalty income, also a result of our research agenda (Chart 7). We are now ranked in the top 15 of all schools nationally (SUNY takes credit for that ranking, but Stony Brook alone—producer of approximately 96 percent to 97 percent of the total SUNY royalties—earns the title on its own). As you can see, royalty income can be a roller coaster. The biggest success story we have is ReoPro®, invented by Dr. Barry Coller. As he constantly reminds me, if a better or less expensive drug comes along—threats occurred in 2001 and 2003—the royalties can drop precipitously; we cannot depend on these numbers continuing. This single life-saving drug has contributed $52 million to Stony Brook budgets in the past seven years.

Our advancement funds have also grown. Again the statistics look terrific—we have brought in more than $90 million in the last decade and almost $20 million last year alone; our annual yield is now five times what it was a decade ago (Chart 8). Our scholarship gala last spring raised $1.4 million at a single night’s event. The $90 million doesn’t even include our greatest gift, the Charles B. Wang Center, the largest gift ever given to SUNY and the most beautiful building by far (Photo A).

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Our advancement funds have also grown. Again the statistics look terrific—our annual yield is now five times what it was a decade ago.