Frequently Asked Questions

VC Finance Move

When is the move date?

We expect to move this fall but the final date has not been determined yet. We will first move all of the furniture and set up the space and then there will be a move-in date for VC Finance. We expect this will be in the fall.

What is the address at the new building?

1608 Fourth St

Berkeley, CA 94710

The VC Finance teams will have space on the second floor.

Who can I contact about the move?

Heidi Van Yang - Business Operations and Communications, Immediate Office

Kristina Lisle - Executive Assistant, Controller’s Office

Jane Christen - Executive Assistant, Financial Planning & Analysis and University Business and Partnership Programs

Where will we sit?

There are two, connected sections dedicated to VC Finance on the second floor of the Fourth Street office. On one side, there are traditional cubicles and on the other, there is a more open-space style set up with conversation and collaboration areas and cubicles. Most of the cubicles will be available on a first-come, first-serve basis. There are zoom rooms and conference rooms that will be available to be reserved.

How do we get access?

Access for VC Finance staff

There are two main entrances to the second floor, where VC Finance will be located. The primary one that staff use is the entrance from the parking lot that leads to the elevators. This entrance has key card access. The second main entrance is at street level from Fourth Street. Currently, these doors are kept locked and there is no key card access. Once you are on the second floor, there are doors with key card access that lead into our division's section. There is also a key card access door between the two sections that VC Finance will occupy. All VC Finance employees will have access to both of our areas. 

Access for visitors

The main entrance is currently locked and there is no one at the front desk. If you have a visitor to our Fourth Street location, you will need to plan to meet them outside of the building and bring them in with you to your meeting through the parking lot entrance. Currently, per P&C guidelines, no non-UC Berkeley affiliated visitors are allowed.

When do we have to be back in the office?

We expect to be able to move into our new building in the fall. Staff should coordinate their schedule and their return to the office with their managers.

Is there parking at Fourth Street?

Yes, there is a parking lot next to the building that accepts C and F parking passes. P&T is offering daily parking permits ($16 for a C pass and $12 for an F pass) and a temporary monthly rate. Visit the Parking and Transportation website to learn more about parking permit options.

How are we meeting the guidelines for COVID-19 safety on campus?

The VC Finance Office is committed to following the guiding principles outlined by our People & Culture team, in compliance with local governance, to safely return to the workplace. Please review the P&C COVID-19 resources page for information on returning to the workplace.

Is there a kitchen space?

Yes, there is a kitchen space designated for VC Finance in our area and also a shared kitchen area with a vending machine on the second floor. The VC Finance kitchen space will be shared by all VC Finance staff. The details of how it will be organized and supplied are being finalized. 

There will be communal areas both with and without tables in our office space. These shared areas will be subject to safety guidelines outlined by People & Culture and UHS.

What if I need an ergonomic accommodation?

The Immediate Office is working with your team leaders to identify who has existing ergonomic accommodations. We are incorporating these existing needs into the space planning for our new location. 

If you identify an ergonomic need when you begin working in a new space, please discuss it with your manager.

Will there be file storage on-site?

There will be minimal file storage on site. Per the direction from Associate Vice Chancellors Mike Riley and Chris Stanich, our teams should be transitioning to digital file storage wherever possible. 

Because there are not assigned desks, the personal paper files you bring with you into the office each day will need to be taken home with you when you leave. If you believe you will need to use the shared file cabinets to store paper documents on-site, please reach out to your Executive Assistant.

What will we do if we need to be on a call in a shared space?

We’ve set aside rooms specifically for remote meetings and calls. Additionally, there are conference rooms that can be booked as needed for in-person or remote meetings. 

Will there be assigned seating?

No. Only the private offices have assigned seating. Most of the rest of the workstations are open and can be used on a first-come, first-serve basis each day. If there are cubicles assigned for a specific purpose, this will be indicated.

What will the workstations look like?

Many of the workstations are traditional cubicles in an open-space floorplan, similar to the way University Hall 655 or the first floor of Warren Hall are laid out. In part of the new space, there are also some seating areas designed for collaborative work. We’re currently determining what kind of technology will be available at each workstation and will update this question when it is finalized.

What are the transportation options?

Visit the Parking and Transporation website for a list of public transportation options between campus and Fourth Street. 

The nearest BART station is North Berkeley BART. There is a weekday shuttle between North Berkeley BART and the Fourth Street building during the morning and evening commute hours to accommodate those who use BART. Hours of operation: 6:40am – 9:20am; 4:10pm – 6:10pm. Anyone with a Cal1Card can use this shuttle. 

The Fourth Street building is four blocks from AC Transit stops on University Avenue (AC Transit 51B) and six blocks from bus stops on San Pablo Avenue (AC Transit 52). A transbay bus (Z) also runs from San Francisco to the Fourth Street area.

There is lockable bike storage in the basement at Fourth Street, with key card access. 

Please note that these schedules may be affected by the pandemic restrictions, so please visit the parking and transportation page or the local transportation websites (AC Transit, BART)  to verify availability.

What is the new mail code?

We’re transferring our existing mail codes and they will remain the same. Mail services keeps a list of the codes on their website

Are there restaurants or coffee places nearby?

Yes, there are several local restaurants within walking distance from our Fourth Street building. There’s a website dedicated to Fourth Street businesses where you can find information on restaurants.

Some highlights include:

  • Artis Coffee 

  • Peet’s Coffee 

  • 4th Street Bagel

  • Cafe M

  • Bette’s Oceanview Diner

  • Tacubaya

Can I work on campus if I need to before we move?

If you need to work on campus before we've moved to our new location, please let your manager or supervisor know.

Managers and supervisors should work with the Immediate Office (vcfinance@berkeley.edu) as needed to make arrangements for those that want to be in the office.

If you do plan to be on campus, please follow the guidelines on the UC Berkeley Coronavirus webpage

Coronavirus (COVID-19)

Department of Finance Reporting (COVID-19)

We are capturing Administrative Leave related to COVID-19. Where will this be included on the template?

Based on guidance from UCOP, we will capture these under the "Additional online/remote courses" section in the template once the Controller’s Office has summarized the data.

Should divisions report the expenses charged against gift funds in the DOF report?

UDAR has been getting questions about reporting expenses that are charged to gift funds in general and COVID-19 related gifts, specifically. They have also established COVID-19 related gift funds and are using the CF1 for these funds. Should divisions report the expenses charged against these funds in the DOF report?

Per the DOF reporting instructions, divisions should only be reporting expenses that are extraordinary and non-absorbable. To the extent that we are receiving funding to cover these costs, they should not be included in the report.

International House is a financially independent organization though its employees are UC Berkeley employees and the expenses are in an agency fund. Should International House follow the same tracking practice as the rest of UCB?

We have a few affiliated 501(c)(3) entities that ultimately record revenue or expenses on our ledger (International House; Haas Executive Education). Divisions should include the associated revenue and expenses in the DOF reports. Maintain records with the details in case we are asked to report on what is core funded vs what is self-supporting or non-profit.

There are several departments on campus that are leasing out space to third parties and will be providing rent abatement to their tenants. How should they record this lost revenue?

If you are providing rent abatements to third party tenants, you will need to track lost revenues by using a contra-revenue account with COVID-19 CF1 or CF2.  Please contact Plant Accounting (plant-accounting@berekely.edu) to assist you with the necessary accounting adjustments.

Should I include the cost of purchasing laptops and other equipment for staff so that they can work from home under the “Additional online/remote courses”category in the template?

Yes, please capture staff remote costs (quarantined workforce costs) in the DOF template. This has changed from our original guidance. UCOP has asked us to capture costs related to staff remote work under the "additional online/remote courses" section on the “Monthly” tab, but track it separately from remote work specific to online courses (such as laptops or zoom for online learning). 

Please include these amounts under “Other” in the “Monthly” tab and include a note in the “Total to Date” tab in the fund column for the “additional online/remote courses” section to identify the amount that is specific for online learning and the amount that is specific for staff quarantined workforce costs.

For lost revenue due to canceled programs or lost enrollment, should we be reporting the net revenue we expected in the division or the gross revenue to the campus?

I'm thinking of the 9% AFC and the 15% from SSGPDP. I'm assuming net revenue (i.e. I'm deducting the 9%/15%.)

Please include the gross revenue. We are looking at the impact to the university as a whole. The 9% and 15% would count as an internal transfer amount, even though they are technically contra-revenue.

If we have anticipated cost savings how would we capture them?

Would we simply reduce the revenue loss by the savings? Should we start preparing to do that for future month reporting?

Include the net amount in your estimate for lost revenue.

How do we track cost savings that are related to lost revenue?

For example, if we lost revenue related to an event we held, but we no longer have vendor or staffing costs for that event, should we capture the cost savings related to the staff or vendors in addition to the lost revenue? For some of my revenue losses I did not consider potential cost savings as the actual and material saving of expenses will not occur until we start delivering instruction and/or reduce class offerings.

The template for the DOF asks that we report extraordinary, non-absorbable costs. As you are filling the templates out, please keep this in mind.

For lost revenue, and to the extent possible, please consider the incremental impact net of any savings from costs that will no longer be incurred. This may be difficult to capture especially for lost revenue associated with future services. 

What is the correct way to capture lost return to aid (RTA) revenue?

Our unit’s revenue is not subject to AFC, as we collect tuition. We do, however, share a third of our UC revenue with the financial aid office as return to aid (RTA). We reported our revenue without the consideration of RTA since it is an internal transfer similar to our revenue share with other units. Is this the correct way to capture it or is the Financial Aid Office already accounting for their lost RTA revenue?

This is correct. We want to report the loss of revenue to the university. The amount that is provided to the financial aid office is considered an internal transfer and should not be considered in your estimates.

When estimating our lost revenue, should we be reporting it from a fiscal year perspective?

We are reporting the loss of revenue that we would typically receive now for classes that will be held over the summer (classes start at the end of May and cross the fiscal year) since we are seeing the loss now. However, as a long-standing accounting practice, we usually defer the upcoming summer revenue to the next fiscal year (FY21). In other words, all the revenue loss from Summer 2020 due to COVID-19 from an accounting perspective should be reflected in the ledger as lost revenue for FY21, not FY20. Should we be reporting our estimated revenue loss from an accounting perspective and defer any current lost revenue for future classes to the next fiscal year?

Report the estimated lost revenue in the month (and year) that you would normally collect the revenue. Do not defer it to the month that the activity will occur. Specifically, for Summer Sessions, they should not defer the estimated loss for summer revenue to FY21. If they normally receive the revenue now, they should report it as lost revenue now.

We have estimated our lost revenue without consideration of bad debt amount. Is that correct?

Our unit recognizes revenue when a student is assessed tuition and fees without consideration for whether or not they will be able to actually pay the tuition and fees. When the university is unable to collect on these fees, the bad debt contra revenue account is booked to our ledger. This tends to be small for us. We have estimated our lost revenue without consideration of this bad debt amount. Is that correct?

Yes, this is correct. We are trying to estimate the total revenue losses to the university related to COVID-19. You do not need to reduce this by an estimate for bad debt.

Since our first report included estimates, how should we true-up the costs in the template?

For example, I included an estimate in the March of the report we submitted in April for cleaning costs of $15K. The actual amount that hit the ledger was $20K. Should I report the additional $5K in the March column or included it in the April column along with my estimate for April expenses?

In order to have an audit trail for the closed month, please override any previous month’s amount with the actual amount that hit the ledger during that period. For the April report, please override the amount in the March column so that it represents what actually hit the ledger. Then use the April column to report actual/estimated costs related only to the month of April. So, in your example, you should include $20K in the March column, if the total amount was incurred during that period in the ledger, and use the April column to report actual/estimated costs related to the month of April.

What types of payroll-related costs qualify as extraordinary, non-absorbable costs for DOF reporting purposes?

If I redeploy an existing employee to work on COVID-19 related work and do not need to backfill them for their existing work should I include the cost of their salary?

Redirected workforce costs will likely not qualify, but additional direct hires for the purpose of helping with COVID-19 efforts will likely qualify. For example, some of our academic divisions have had to hire extra GSIs to help with remote instruction. These expenses will be included in the template.

Should divisions be reporting lost revenue related to gifts?

Lost revenue from gifts should not be included in the Department of Finance Report.

How are we capturing the reduction of overhead costs associated with the cost of heating and air in a building that is vacant?

Utilities costs are not reflected in individual units, we will work with Administration to understand these impacts.

How do you define extraordinary costs?

The goal of the template reporting is to capture extraordinary costs beyond current budgeted levels. For example, while staff may be spending significant time coordinating or responding to various needs, their normal work hours or salaries would generally be assumed to be absorbable. However, extraordinary levels of additional overtime that cannot be absorbed within existing resources may fit the criteria for potential additional funding. Additionally, departments may be required to enter into new contracts for goods or services that cannot be absorbed within existing resources.

Some revenue losses can not be tracked with the CF1 or CF2 because they just do not incur.

Correct. To the extent that you have already recorded revenue and need to issue refunds, you can track the refunds as a contra-revenue using the CF1/CF2. If you haven't yet recorded the revenue, you will need to reasonably estimate the amount of revenue lost by using trend data or budgeted/forecasted amounts.

Since the deadline to UCOP is the beginning of each month and our general ledger closes in the middle of each month, the data will lag two weeks.

About the applicable beginning and end dates, probably our campus can set as using data at each monthly close, so that it's easy to trace. Since the deadline to UCOP is the beginning of each month and our general ledger closes in the middle of each month, the data will lag two weeks.

The beginning date was set by UCOP as March 4th, but if there were expenses incurred earlier as the result of COVID-19 they should also be included in the March amounts.  

Since our estimates are due to them before the general ledger closes, we will continue to use the templates to provide estimates and then true them up the following month when actual data becomes available in the ledger.

The template instructions say to be sure that you can document how you estimated or derived the expenses reported in the template. Incurred costs seem to refer to actuals and not estimates. Are divisions expected to fill out the template with actuals or

We want to report on expenses that have been incurred including any lost revenue. Since we are sending in this report before the month-end close, Actual expenses will not be available in the ledger and will need to be estimated. 

Lost revenue that was not already recorded in the ledger may never be recorded in the ledger since it was lost. For this, you will need to estimate the revenue you planned to receive but will never receive because of COVID-19. 

UCOP understands that we will need to estimate amounts. We will be reporting these expenses monthly going forward and will include the cumulative amounts in the ledger. Any needed adjustments to estimates made in earlier months can be made in future templates.

We have not completed the process of tagging COVID-19 related expenses on the designated chartfields (CF1/CF2). Also, COVID-19 related payroll expenses for March will not be on the ledger as of April 2, 2020.

We are planning on capturing what is currently on the ledger as of now and making amendments in April as needed. Please let us know if you would prefer a different approach.

In an effort to track overall state costs, and to make informed financial decisions, the Department of Finance is requesting that all departments provide monthly cost estimates associated with COVID-19-related activities. In order to comply with this UCOP has asked us to provide timely estimates of our costs each month. 

Since our estimates are due to them before the general ledger closes, we will need to provide estimates via the templates and then true them up the following month when actual data becomes available in the ledger. We understand this may require extra work on behalf of the units but it is what is needed at this time.

How would you like us to report anticipated reductions in philanthropic giving? There does not seem to be a place to capture this on the form.

This has not been specifically requested by UCOP. For now, we suggest not including it in the template, but if you are able to accurately estimate how much may be lost as a result of this, please maintain estimates in case it may be requested in the future.

Should we capture SSGPDP lost revenue in the template?

Please include all lost revenue related to COVID-19 including Self Supporting Graduate Professional Degree Programs (SSGPDP) revenue and Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition (PDST) revenue in the template under category 1 - Lost revenue due to canceled programs and/or lost enrollments.

Have the new code(s) been added to Cal Answers yet?

I was trying to see if I could run a CalAnswers report by the COVID19 flex codes that we are supposed to be using to track expenses, but I was not able to find them in the flex code search. Have the new code(s) been added to CalAnswers yet? How would I go about running a report to identify spending in those areas?

The codes are included in Cal Answers. Make sure you are using the exact codes. COVD19 for CF1  and COV19 for CF2.

You can search for them using the drop-down and using the search function by clicking on “More/Search” on the CF1 Code or CF2 Code fields in the lower right-hand part of the first section for the General Ledger Summary or General Ledger Detail reports. When doing the search, if you have match-case selected, you will need to enter the search item in CAPS.

If we become aware of an expense incurred previously, should we submit an adjustment or report the expense in the subsequent month?

The template is set up to track cumulative expenses. Use the next month’s report to true up costs and/or estimates from the prior month. You can overwrite the data that was previously submitted to ensure that you have the most accurate information.

How would you like us to capture encumbrances? Would you like to see them reported on the month they are committed or should we only capture the actuals as they hit the ledger?

Please include the amounts that have hit the ledger and to the extent that you can, estimate the amounts that will hit the ledger for that month. When actual data becomes available in the ledger, you can true it up.

Several key categories of expense seem to be missing from the template: Research, Recharge (we have scientific recharge facilities and shops), COVID-19 testing in IGI.

Research:

We are only tracking expenses related to COVID-19 that are extraordinary, not funded and non-absorbable. Sponsored research expenses should therefore not be tracked using the CF1/CF2 value or be included in the template.

Any other COVID-19 research-related charges that are not allowable award expenses and also not normally reimbursed by an external funding source should use the CF1 or CF2 value as appropriate.

Recharge:

To the extent that recharge is part of our internal economy (i.e. it doesn't affect Berkeley's bottom line), it should not be included in the template for the DOF. 

To the extent that there is any external recharge revenue that will be lost, it should be captured.

COVID-19 Testing:

If the expenses are for medical testing that will not be reimbursed by an external funding source then they should be included in the template and tracked using the CF1/CF2.

If the expenses are research-related expenses they should not be included in the template for the DOF. See the above for more detail on research-related expenses. 

The template includes specific lines for types of expenses.

Are we supposed to ONLY list those expense types listed in the template or should we add lines for things, such as, laptops and other COVID-19 expenses that do not fall into the 4 expense themes?

For the templates, please only include costs related to the categories below. For recording expenses in the ledger, please continue to capture all expenses related to COVID-19 under the CF1 or CF2.

Template Categories:

  1. Lost revenue due to canceled programs and/or lost enrollments

  2. Emergency Medical Services (Student Health Clinics only)

  3. Facilities and Cleaning Costs

  4. Additional online/remote courses (specifically for campus closures)

Please do not add extra lines to the templates. We will be consolidating all of the templates into one submission for UCOP, it is important that the structure for each template remains intact.

The formulas in the template are not working.

The template does not include formulas for the lines included below each category. Please include a formula that picks up all the amounts below so that they show up in the “Total to Date” tab.

Will your office be picking up and reporting payroll expenses on the designated earn codes or should we be doing that in addition to expenses on the CF1 and CF2?

The Controller’s office will be gathering the actuals payroll data. For reporting on paid administrative leave they will pull information from CalAnswers reports filtering on the appropriate earn code values.

To ensure we are picking up reimbursable expenses, you will need to update Position Funding in UCPath with one of the optional chartfields, as appropriate.

Once we pull the information centrally, we may need to consult with each division to understand the type of expenses being captured.

Should we include the actual dollar amounts in the template or should they be rounded up?

Please make sure to report all numbers in the templates in $ thousands.

CF1/CF2 tracking in the general ledger (COVID-19)

Do we need to use this CF1 or CF2 tracking for COVID-19 research expenses that fall within the scope of a research project and/or has been approved by the Sponsor on an existing research grant?

It would include things such as lab supplies to perform the research, as well as personnel costs for the researchers who are working on this project.

To the extent that you are doing sponsored research on COVID-19, you should record the expenses the same way you would record any other research you are doing and not track it using the COVID-19 CF1/CF2. The research grant will be funding those costs so we would not need to track them for additional reimbursement.

Will expenses incurred as a result of the coronavirus be reimbursed?

Even though we are tracking these expenses, this does not mean expenses charged to these codes will be reimbursed. 

If you have travel-related expenses as a result of the coronavirus, please review the travel reimbursement page

For more information about funding opportunities, visit the Sponsored Projects Office website

What kind of expenses should I use the CF1 and CF2 COVD codes for?

Please use these codes for expenses such as technology for remote work and instruction (e.g., purchase of laptops, Zoom, learning management systems, etc.), extra costs for facilities cleaning (e.g., cleaning supplies, hand sanitizers, deep cleaning services, etc.), and medical services (e.g., testing kits, medical supplies, staff training, etc.). The COVID-19 codes are meant to track expenses or unanticipated costs incurred as a result of COVID-19.

If I have compensation expenses due to COVID19 that are unrelated to administrative leave, should I track this with the CF1 or CF2 codes even though it is a compensation expense?

If I have compensation expenses due to COVID19 that are unrelated to administrative leave, for example, hiring a graduate student to support moving to online instruction, should I track this with the CF1 or CF2 codes even though it is a compensation expense?

Yes, if you have an expense such as hiring additional help to facilitate remote work, track these with the CF1 or CF2 code. These codes are meant to track expenses incurred as a result of COVID-19. 

  • Chartfield code 1: COVD19

  • Chartfield code 2: COV19

Please update Position Funding in UCPath with either of these optional chartfields, as appropriate.

Do we need to track inventory/use of COVID-related purchases?

Yes. We have received guidance the campus will be more likely to be reimbursed for COVID purchases if we can track their usage during the COVID emergency, particularly with respect to existing, previously purchased inventory. For example, if your department had one bottle of hand sanitizer pre-COVID and purchased 10 more for COVID, keep track of the usage of the 10 new purchases to ensure they were dispensed to staff/facilities during this emergency period.

How do I track costs related to remote work?

To track non-compensation expenses related to the coronavirus, please use either of the following chartfield codes, when and where possible:

  • Chartfield code 1: COVD19

  • Chartfield code 2: COV19

Should we be tracking any student aid/awards we process that are meant as emergency funding awards for students who are in need?

We do have dedicated funds for emergency awards for our students, but we are anticipating to disburse more than we normally would.

The CF1/CF2 can be used broadly to capture any COVID-19 related expenses that would not exist if this hadn't occurred.

For the COVID-19 expense tracking, should we only be tracking those COVID-19 expenses that Supply Chain Management categorized as "essential" purchases?

Supply Chain Management sent out an email about limiting non-essential purchase orders. For the COVID-19 expense tracking, should we only be tracking those COVID-19 expenses that Supply Chain Management categorized as "essential" purchases? Or should we continue to use the chartfields more broadly? Are there any non-comp expenses that should not be included?

Some of the examples of the expenses that my unit has incurred as a result of the needs related to COVID-19 include:

  • IT purchases

  • Emergency student awards

  • Large gift card purchases for students in need

  • Canceled events (lost registration and other related prepaid expenses plus any lost revenue)

In efforts of minimizing non-essential purchase order shipments to the University’s receiving areas and closed buildings, Supply Chain Management has requested departments cancel purchase orders for non-essential items that have been placed within the last 60 days. 

The categories listed as non-essential purchases by Supply Chain Management should not be confused with the category of expenses that should be tracked related to COVID-19.

The CF1/CF2 can be used broadly to capture any COVID-19 related expenses that would not exist if this hadn't occurred. The expenses you listed make sense under this definition. Any expenses incurred as a result of this should be included. Please be sure to maintain any necessary documentation for these expenses in case it is needed in the future.


Note: For template reporting, the expenses listed should only be included if they fall under the template expense categories outlined in the templates. For example, lost revenue for cancelled events and IT purchases related to online/remote courses should be included in the template.

Should divisions report the expenses charged against gift funds in the DOF report?

UDAR has been getting questions about reporting expenses that are charged to gift funds in general and COVID-19 related gifts, specifically. They have also established COVID-19 related gift funds and are using the CF1 for these funds. Should divisions report the expenses charged against these funds in the DOF report?

Per the Department of Finance reporting instructions, divisions should only be reporting expenses that are extraordinary and non-absorbable. To the extent that we are receiving funding to cover these costs, they should not be included in the report. 

Should we be using both chart fields for each transaction?

Per the guidelines, you will only need to use one of the chartfield codes whenever possible. We understand that some people use either a CF1 or a CF2 for tracking other things in their reporting so we created one for both just in case.

General finance COVID-19 FAQs

Will I still be charged parking fees during the shelter in place order?

Read more on the parking and transportation website

Staff who were unable to return their parking permits prior to the "shelter in place" order will not be charged for the unused time until regular operations resume. For the month of March:

  • Monthly employees will be charged 50% of their regular monthly deduction amount on the 4/1/20 pay date.

  • Biweekly employees will be charged their regular biweekly deduction amount on the 4/1/20 pay date, but will not be charged on the 4/15/20 or 4/29/20 pay dates (the latter of which is a benefit holiday).

Similar adjustments will be made for AC Transit Employee EasyPass holders and again for all payroll deduction participants during the month of April once we are able to determine the date when regular operations resume.

Students who were unable to return their parking permits prior to the "shelter in place" order should complete the Student Parking Permit Cancellation Form.

Are the budget process deadlines changing?

Yes. We are currently assessing the financial impact of COVID-19 and its potential impact on the budget process. Once guidance on this matter can be provided, we will communicate revised due dates for the budget submission and related activities. We’ll post updates to the budget process webpage

What happens when the 128 hours of paid leave runs out?

Updated May 5, 2020

Updated guidance has been offered for employees who have exhausted their allocation of COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave and who potentially qualify for and wish to use Families First Coronavirus Response Act (FFCRA) leave. Leadership in People and Culture and CalTime is extending the guidance to exempt employees for the pay cycle ending April 30.

Exempt staff should also use the "Administrative Leave with Pay" code in CalTime if they have exhausted their COVID-19 Paid Administrative Leave allocation and potentially qualify and wish to use FFCRA leave. As a reminder, leave taken should be recorded in full day increments for exempt employees.

Biweekly employees should continue to utilize CalTime’s “Administrative Leave with Pay code for FFCRA leave as needed for the pay period ending this Saturday, May 2. To assist with reconciliation, it is recommended that supervisors maintain their own records of FFCRA time usage for their employees both non-exempt and exempt, in addition to keeping record of the usage of UC Expanded Paid Administrative Leave (COVID-19 Paid Admin Leave).

The most recent guidance from UCOP on leave during COVID-19 can be found here. Please reach out to your HR Partner if you have additional questions.

Even if I can support members of my research team through paid administrative and other leave, these charges will have an impact on the direct-charge portion of my project’s budget. Will the agencies provide additional funding?

Please review the FAQs at VC Research website.

Certain agencies, like NIH, have expressly recognized the hardship that the COVID-19 situation will create for projects. Its leaders expect to review requests for supplemental funding on a case-by-case basis. Other agencies, like the NSA, have stated that remote work will not be eligible for funding. Check the Berkeley SPO COVID-19 resource page for further information on your project’s funder and contact your agency program manager/grant officer to request supplemental funding.

Can I charge my sponsored research contracts and grants for this admin leave?

Please review the SPO FAQ and the memo from Interim EVP-CFO, Paul Jenny on Charging grants and contracts costs to Federal sponsored awards during COVID-19.

As a recipient of federal awards, UC can charge salaries and benefits to such awards if it does so in a manner that is consistent across all funding sources, federal and non-federal. President Napolitano’s order is one of UC’s institutional policies that is used as a basis for charging sponsored contracts and grants. This approach is supported by costing policy guidance recently issued by the federal Office of Management and Budget. This guidance must be implemented by federal sponsors, so please check the UC Berkeley SPO COVID-19 Guidance for further information on a particular agency.

How should I record my administrative leave time if I submit a paper timesheet?

If you submit a paper timesheet, please continue to follow the information featured on the Berkeley Regional Services (BRS) Timekeeping/CalTime page until further notice.

What if I or any of the employees are unable to come to work due to COVID-19 related reasons?

What’s the university policy on paid administrative leave?

As of March 17, 2020, all UC employees are eligible to receive a one-time allotment of up to 128 hours of paid administrative leave to be used no later than December 31, 2020, based on certain conditions. Managers and supervisors are asked to grant their employees permission for these requests and to be flexible as their staff adjusts to the current situation. Please review details and special guidance for supervisors and managers as well as COVID-19 related leave for academic appointees and refer to resources provided by UC Berkeley People and Culture. You can track COVID-19 related paid administrative leave in CalTime as “CV19-Admin Leave with Pay.” President Napolitano’s March 16 Executive Order is available on the Berkeley People and Culture website.

If an employee is working remotely either out of state or out of the country, what are the tax implications?

The UC Office of the President and the UCPath Center have requested that all employees who have temporarily relocated outside of California and continue to work remotely update their tax information in UCPath as there may be income tax implications. Nonresident aliens working outside of the U.S. will also need to update their GLACIER record. If you completed the out of state information form as requested in a previous communication, or it was completed on your behalf, you will be receiving a separate direct email from the Central Payroll office.

For detailed instructions on how to update tax information, view frequently asked questions or to sign up for direct deposit due to a temporary change in address, please visit the Payroll website. All employees will need to update their information once they return to California. If you have questions, please email payhelp@berkely.edu

Will UC Berkeley help pay for my internet access if I work remotely?

Supervisors can approve the purchase of internet/hotspot/similar to enable a person to do remote work but only if it is to be used solely for business purposes.

Will we be fully reimbursed for purchases that have abnormally high prices currently due to limited stock (e.g. hand sanitizing and disinfectant supplies)?

We encourage buyers to buy emergency supplies as needed in order to maintain safe operating conditions for our campus community. While we cannot guarantee reimbursement from FEMA or the state, we have received guidance to document the market prices of any items with currently extraordinary pricing. We recommend taking a screenshot of the prices of the items at the time of purchase, both at the purchase site and from alternative sellers in order to demonstrate the extraordinary market conditions.

FEMA Reporting (COVID-19)

In a FEMA webinar they mentioned a $3,300 expense limit - is this a single expense or group expense?

For example, if a face mask order is $3,300 per case would it qualify if it is a single PO?

Our understanding is that FEMA is talking about the aggregate cost. There is a minimum threshold before you can request reimbursement from FEMA but it is not per expense item. We will be able to group activities to meet this threshold.

The sub-category (Expense Sub-Activity) drop down menu is not showing the items, it just stays at "loading" mode.

Do not open the template in Google Sheets. Download the file into Excel. Additionally, you will need to select an Expense Activity before you Select a Sub-Activity. 

Are food spoilage costs and donated food eligible for reimbursement?

No food spoilage does not qualify as an emergency protective measure. Donated food also does not qualify.

For expenses that are not captured in the upcoming submission (January 20 - April 30), because they were not correctly coded with CF1/CF2 codes, are these expenses still eligible for FEMA reimbursement once we journal them to the correct chartstring?

Does the invoice/service date of a transaction need to be reported in the same GL month to make it eligible for reimbursement?

The CF1/CF2 codes are not a requirement for FEMA reimbursement. They were created internally to help up track these expenses. Expenses that have not been coded with the CF1/CF2 should be included in the submission if they are for qualified emergency protective work. The timing of the expense doesn't matter so long as there is an audit trail.

Are costs recorded when a PO is issued or when a product is received?

Costs are eligible for FEMA reimbursement when the material is received and paid for. Our costs are recorded to the ledger when the voucher is approved and journaled. Depending on when we submit our request for reimbursement, the actual receipt of and payment for the material may or may not have occurred. We will need to work with Procurement and Accounts Payable to review this on a case by case basis. For now, if the expense has been recorded in the ledger, please include it in your reporting.

Is equipment purchased for employees to work remotely eligible for FEMA reimbursement?

This may qualify under temporary relocation of essential services if the equipment was solely purchased as the result of the pandemic. We will collect the data and evaluate whether the cost is eligible or not. One thing to note is that FEMA does take into account any salvage value of the equipment when providing reimbursement.

Do we have an idea of what the future timeline for submissions will be?

The disaster end date has not been set. The incident period can go on for years. We will establish a  timeline for future submissions once we’ve completed the data collection for the first reporting period.

Does additional funding for internships qualify for FEMA reimbursement?

A number of our students lost internships as a result of COVID-19 and we provided them with additional internship funding. This funding was not supported by CARES Act funding. Does this additional funding qualify for FEMA reimbursement?

The costs reimbursable by FEMA are costs related to response and recovery from the emergency. Funding provided directly to students that were not paid as the result of emergency work does not qualify for reimbursement. If these students were specifically hired to facilitate remote learning these expenses may qualify under temporary relocation of essential services.

Should we track research expenses related to COVID-19 with a CF1 or CF2?

Yes, please track research related to COVID-19 with a CF1 or CF2 code.

Can the template data be pulled at any entity level?

The default is L3 and L4. You can change it when you run your Cal Answers report. But when you include it please run it at the L3 or L4.

Should we include lost revenue to recharge units in the FEMA template?

Lost revenue will not be covered by FEMA. However, it is advisable that the costs be reviewed to ensure that there are no eligible costs within the content of the revenue loss totals.

Are other costs associated with labor for online teaching eligible for FEMA reimbursement?

Not all labor qualifies for reimbursement under emergency work (category B). Typically, for existing employees only overtime labor is eligible for reimbursement from FEMA. Other pay may be eligible for part-time, reclassified and seasonal employees and employees hired specifically in response to the COVID-19 impacts. If your division has labor costs in one of the eligible activities, please let us know when you submit your report and we will follow-up with you.

If we hired faculty or GSIs to support online courses, could they qualify for FEMA reimbursement?

Yes, these costs may qualify under temporary relocation of essential service if these individuals were specifically hired to facilitate remote work. Base pay for temporary or reassigned employees qualifies if they are doing work within an eligible activity. We will need to work with HR to provide documentation that these employees were specifically hired as the result of the pandemic to perform this work and not hired in the normal course of our business.

Does admin leave qualify for FEMA reimbursement?

Administrative leave does not qualify for FEMA funding because the individual on leave is not doing work to protect from the virus. FEMA will only provide reimbursement for work related to emergency protective measures (category B). We are working with HR and Government Relations to understand other types of funding that may provide relief for eligible paid leave and FMLA based on specific eligibility criteria.

What is the period we are reporting on in the FEMA template?

We will limit the data for the first reporting to data recorded in the ledger from January 20 – April 30, 2020. Once we receive and analyze the data from January 20 – April 30, 2020, we will determine the next reporting period and intervals of reporting.

Because the reporting requirements for FEMA are so complex we are planning for a staggered collection of data. This will allow us to refine our approach, if needed, to ensure compliance. The Public Health Emergency for California was declared on March 22, 2020. The incident period for reporting eligible expenses related to the emergency is January 20, 2020, until it is declared over. We have 60 days from the declared end date to request reimbursement for all eligible expenses, but we can submit multiple applications/versions until the period closes.

As the COVID specific chartfields were not set up until mid-March, it may require units to work with their departments to identify COVID-19 related expenses in the ledger that are not specifically identified as such. Additionally, any expenses incurred in January will need to be reviewed to see if they fall within the review period.

Which activities are ineligible for FEMA reimbursement?

A complete list of known eligible and potentially eligible activities is included in the guidelines

Costs that are ineligible include: 

  • Costs that were covered by gifts 

  • Costs covered through CARES or other federal funds

Which activities are potentially eligible for FEMA reimbursement?

A complete list of known eligible and potentially eligible activities is included in the guidelines

The broad categories include:

  • Emergency operations (activities related to Emergency Operations Center)

  • Increased cleaning and sanitation

  • Purchases including PPE and sanitation supplies

  • Use of facilities as sheltering and/or hospital locations

For emergency protective measures, FEMA will only reimburse labor-related expenses for these eligible activities related to:

  • Overtime for regular and seasonal employees (non-exempt)

  • Regular and overtime for temporary or redirected employees

Should I include costs that might be covered by gifts in the FEMA reporting template?

Yes, you should include these costs in the Expense Reporting tab and any associated revenue in the Revenue Received_Fundraising tab. The Revenue Received_Fundraising tab also allows you to provide a narrative summary of any fundraising activities related to COVID-19 in the additional notes section and identify the associated expenses included in the Expense Reporting Template for which this funding has been used. We will review this revenue against the FEMA eligible requests to ensure that we are not duplicating requests for funding from more than one source as appropriate. We will also be working with University Development & Alumni Relations (UDAR) to track this funding.

How will the reimbursement be distributed if it is received?

How each unit is reimbursed is to be determined based on how we receive the funds from FEMA.

FY2020-21 Budget Process

What is the budget timeline?

The budget process was launched the week of August 10. A timeline for the process is available on the budget process page. Generally speaking, the process will take approximately two months to complete.

Can we request the use of the $1.5M discretionary fund through the budget process?

Yes, a section of the narrative template will be devoted to this. The $1.5M pool will be available to address cases where extraordinary relief is justified. This is not an opportunity for divisions to submit funding requests for a common unmet need or to pursue a new initiative - as would have been the case in previous years. Should you believe your reduction will cause severe inequity or hardship, you can submit a funding request for these resources.

What templates are we using this year?

There will be four templates used during the budget process: a three-year planning template in the form of a SRECNA, two supporting templates through which you are asked to specify planned expense reductions and use of reserves, and a narrative template to provide context for your financial plan. The budget call letter and guidelines provides more specific details on the templates.

Will there still be budget targets?

The budget targets used over the past several years, based on a net surplus/deficit model, have been discontinued in light of the financial impacts associated with COVID-19.

Is the investment of carry-forward balances discouraged?

We’ll provide guidance on carry-forward balances in the call letter and budget process guidelines.

Will the fiscal close dates be adjusted?

The fiscal close dates are set by UCOP and so will remain the same for the most part. We’ll communicate any updates to the dates.

How are the exceptions to the hiring freeze decided?

The People & Culture website provides guidance on exceptions to the hiring freeze.

Will seismic capital projects be delayed? Is there a prioritization for which capital projects will be deferred?

To help address our financial challenges the Chancellor and EVCP are considering the deferral of capital projects on campus.

Cost recovery plan

Is the $65M reduction to the general allocation permanent or temporary?

The $65M reduction is based on the Common Good expenses related to COVID-19 (extensive cleaning, testing, remote learning, and loss of tuition). Some of these expenses will be temporary (testing) while others may linger (loss of tuition). Therefore the amount associated with COVID-19 costs, which informs the reduction, will be assessed annually if not more frequently given the uncertainty surrounding the virus. As our financial position improves, the campus will be able to lift the reduction.

Will there be a reduction again next year?

It is difficult to say due to the high level of uncertainty with respect to the virus. Campus will reassess reductions at least annually (if not more frequently) and make necessary adjustments to reflect changes in our overall financial circumstances.

What happens if the situation improves during the budget process?

We’ll make adjustments to campus support as needed to reflect changes in our overall budget situation - either positive or negative. Though changes could take place mid-year, they are not likely to take place during the budget process.

Does the $65M include both COVID-19 and structural deficit impacts?

No, we have separated the financial impact of COVID-19 from the structural deficit issues in the central ledger.

How will we address the need to build central reserves?

Campus will form a task force this year charged with developing a plan to rebuild central reserves to a responsible level in 3-5 years, beginning in FY22.

How long will there be a hiring and merit freeze?

It is difficult to say without greater certainty about the continued impact of COVID-19. It is our hope that these measures would be suspended in FY22. More information about the hiring freeze is available on the People & Culture website.

Will the center be giving us funding for the cost associated with remote teaching?

The Finance Committee has approved an $11M plan to support remote teaching. Investments include greatly improved online delivery of major gateway courses, graduate student support to help faculty develop remote learning tools, expanded infrastructure to support remote instructional delivery, and a technology equity program to ensure that low-income students have the equipment and services they need to learn remotely.

Can we use our restricted FFE?

Yes, you can make withdrawals from FFEs but should do so prudently. Like the use of reserves, withdrawal from an FFE provides one-time cash that can be used to address your financial challenges. Doing so, however, comes at the expense of the annual FFE payout, which will be reduced as a result of the withdrawal.

Use of reserves

Can we use reserves to make up the difference in the central funding reduction?

The use of ending balances is encouraged but should be balanced by the need to use reserves for other priorities and the anticipated length of the COVID-19 recovery period. Divisions should be careful not to deplete their reserves should the crisis extend into future years, in which case temporary or permanent expense reductions may be necessary. For the budget process, campus will provide a 3-year budget template to help divisions select the budget levers that best fit their individual needs.

Can we contribute reserves to the center instead of taking a reduction in central funding?

We will try to provide this flexibility. The Financial Planning & Analysis team still needs to work through the mechanics and determine the feasibility of this approach.

What do you mean by “unlocking” reserves?

We strongly encourage divisions to adhere to the “first dollar principle” and optimize their use of “spendable” reserves. You should review how restricted your funds really are. For example, some units have inherited funds that may have been further restricted but could actually have more flexibility in the fund terms versus the full chartstring (DeptID, CF1, or CF2) level. Also, some funds may be classified as restricted at a campus level but may be unrestricted at a college, departmental or program level. If you are holding restricted funds that you can no longer use but another unit within your L3 could use them, perhaps you could consider providing that flexibility/funding source to the other unit.

Methodology and calculations

How are the exclusions calculated, particularly academic compensation?

The data were pulled from SmartView/Cal Reporting reports. We followed the same methodology used during the last budget reduction. It is important to note that we excluded all C&G funds.  We used the three-year average of expense exclusions from FY17, FY18, and FY19, and applied these against total (non-C&G) expenses forecast in the Q3 submission for FY20. The proportion of this figure to the total forecasted expenses campus-wide (less calculated exclusions) is each unit's share of the $65M reduction.

To verify the data, you will also need to remove any double-counting that might occur as the reports are pulled based on accounts and fund groups. 

1. Academic Salaries & Benefits - 3yr Avg = Account Expenses Category Academic Salaries & Wages minus 50242 Acad Teach/Limited Benefits minus 50212 Acad Nonteach/Limited Benefits plus 53060 Benefit Assess/Acad Regular

2. Scholarships/ Fellowships - 3yr Avg = Account Expenses Category Scholarships & Fellowships

3. Designated Student Fees - 3yr Avg = Fund Bucket Designated Student Fees (Total Funds/Current Funds/Unrestricted/Designated/Designated Student Fees)

4. SHIP - 3yr Avg = Expenses for Department FXSHP/Student Health Insurance Plan

What are the financial costs incurred due to COVID-19?

The financial impact of COVID19 is related to either revenue “shocks” (mostly loss of tuition) and increased expenses (cleaning, technology, and testing).

Can we request additional exclusions? I strongly believe that my expected reduction is too high. Is there an appeal process?

No, the exclusions are final. They were reviewed and approved by the Chancellor and Provost. For the budget process, campus has made available a $1.5M pool of discretionary funds to address cases where extraordinary relief is justified. Should you believe your reduction will cause severe inequity or hardship, you can submit a funding request during the budget process.

Which funds will be affected by the cut?

Divisions will be allowed to submit two unrestricted funds from which the in-year reduction will be taken. The funds provided must be unrestricted in nature: #19900, #68600, sales and services funds, tuition.

FY2019-20 Budget Process

How do we update changes in the general allocation (from one DeptID to another) in CalPlan?

We loaded what was in the permanent budget as of December 31, 2018 to July 2019 (FY20) in CalPlan to account 71110. If divisions later make changes to the permanent budget, these changes should be noted with 74101 transfers in CalPlan as FP&A does not make these late changes for the divisions. The general allocation will be updated for academic units once Form A has been returned and uploaded.

Under 71302 support I see a $ amount for my division. What is this for?

This is the $5.0M referenced in the Budget Call letter that is being provided as a one-time adjustment to help defray the cost of the 3% merit rate for staff salaries. For academic units, these amounts were loaded in CalPlan from the central commitment database, and the amounts can also be seen on the divisional Intersection Detail Reports (IDRs). For non-academic units, the decision was made after the database load to CalPlan, so these amounts do not show up on the IDRs; however, affected units were emailed with their respective amounts on February 19th. These amounts were entered manually in CalPlan to the benefitting units in the month of September in account code 71302.

​How are campus commitments calculated in the multi-year budgeting template?

​You can find the detail for these in the Intersection Detail reports (IDR) posted to your divisional folder in google drive, under the FY2019-20 Budget Process Folder, in the sub-folder Intersection Detail Reports. Besides an IDR for FY19 Forecast (for items outstanding for quarters 3 and 4) and FY20 Operating Budget, there are also IDRs for FY21 and FY22.

How do we address issues where ongoing campus commitments aren't reflected in the template in FY21 and FY22; should we plan for related transfers and/or expenses?

Please contact the DFL concierge at dfl_concierge@berkeley.edu with a subject line of multi-year planning process and identify the commitment not captured in the multi-year template

Would you please confirm whether CalPlan includes the new UCRP payroll assessment at 0.65%?

While the UCRP assessment is included in CalPlan when the month has been actualized, CalPlan does not include the mechanic to plan for account 53709 at the moment (due to timing of the release of the information related to the assessment). The amount may be immaterial to any particular division, and benefits are in general, over planned in CalPlan (for various reasons). DFLs may enter a DeptID adjustment if they want to include the amount in their plans.

Why don’t the Intersection Detail Reports include all of my commitments?

The Intersection Detail Reports (IDRs) for FY19 and FY20 were run as of January 16, 2019 to help clarify to DFLs what was loaded to CalPlan (along with the updated general allocation amount for FY20). Any changes to commitments made after that date (e.g., EVCP TAS) will not appear on the IDRs. The affected units were emailed and the amounts were updated manually in CalPlan. IDRs for FY21 and FY22 were run as of February 20, in conjunction with release of the Multi-Year Template.

How do I capture capital projects and investments in revenue generating programs below the net operating line?

This is in reference to tracking the “below the line expenses/Reserve investments” that were approved as part of the FY19 Budget Process. Please refer to the FY19 Budget approval letter sent to your Dean last year to understand if below the line expenses were approved for your unit. If they were, they should be tracked using the management code 3I00MC in the actuals ledger as well as in CalPlan, regardless of the account code used. This step will enable us to measure your progress against divisional targets (those expenses will be excluded when calculating performance to Net Operating Surplus/Deficit targets).

Please pay special attention to transfer account codes - if you use the management code on a transfer account code, please code the management code on both sides of the transaction.

​For FY20 Operating Budget, should I include expenses relating to new planned requests for Reserve Investments?

If this is a brand new investment, the requests should not be entered in CalPlan or the Multi-Year Template (MYT).  If the request is for an increase in an already existing initiative, the ongoing initiative should be included in divisional plans - but not the additional amount which would require approval. However, if this initiative/investment will be undertaken regardless of whether the request to use reserves is approved, the costs should be included in CalPlan and the MYT.

I wanted to confirm my interpretation of our budget "target."

My interpretation is that this is not the target for our surplus/deficit, but rather the amount that our budget needs to be lowered by. Is that right?

The budget target represents the amount the Net Operating Surplus/(Deficit) line needs to be improved by to meet your FY20 Operating Budget Net Surplus/(Deficit) Goal. Each divisional finance leader was emailed their specific division’s FY20 Operating Budget Target and Goal. We have included additional language in Appendix 1 of the FY20 Operating Budget Guidelines.

For Contracts & Grants, should we be entering revenue quarterly to net to zero or should we be approximating the invoicing so that we have seasonality?

I have a question on how to best enter the revenue expected for our grants. The guidance is for the revenue to net to zero on the C&G, should we be entering revenue quarterly to net to zero or should we be approximating the invoicing so that we have seasonality?

You should still align the revenue seasonality with the expense seasonality since most of the Contracts & Grants are cost reimburseable. If you have some grants that are not cost reimburseable and you have some idea of how they will be invoiced, you can adjust for that if it is material, otherwise have the revenue follow the expenses.

We normally receive a breakdown of what we receive in 71220 (TAS). Will that be forthcoming?

We have not sent out any other breakdowns in the past for account 71220 outside of what is included in your Intersection Detail Reports (IDRs), which can be found in your division folders on the shared google drive. For detail on the EVCP TAS allocation amount, your Dean will soon be receiving a letter outlining the updated TAS amount.

Could you let me know where the commitments unrelated to TAS are so I can check for our other commitments?

The other items should be included in your Intersection Detail Reports (IDRs) which you can find in your division folder on the google drive.

I'm working on my multi-year template and when I refreshed the template, the data I input disappeared after the refresh. How do I fix this?

You fix this by adding "=" in front of your number and writing it out in decimal format. So if you're entering $300,000 then you would input "=300". Or if you're adding 3%, then type in "=.03". For more detail, review the multi-year template job aid. There are Smart View training resources on the CalPlanning website and there are office hours in University Hall, room 670.

UCPath Implementation

What is the deadline for Post-UCPath Funding Corrections (processed as Direct Retros)?

Requests for final position funding entries with effective dates after 3/1 (for MO) and 3/10 (for BW) that are handled by BRS must be submitted by 6/3.

Please note: for Position Funding updates handled by departments/units, 6/19 (BW) and 6/24 (MO) are the final UCPath Pay Confirm dates.

Does the fact that the same account is used for Students and Staff affect the CBR calculations?

CBR is now managed by OP and is processed in UCPath and is no longer based on GL account code.

If you have questions about CBR please contact centralresourcemanagement@berkeley.edu

Are the suspense chartstrings going to be excluded from the deficit clearing process?

Suspense chartstrings will not be excluded from the deficit clearing process. Units will need to clear all L4-fund deficits by fiscal close per policy.

Should z-coded compensation (flat $ rate) be assessed for vacation (e.g. SAS)?

UCPath has standardized the CBR and Vacation assessments. If an Earn Code is assessed CBR than then it will likely be assessed Vacation. Please note that CBR is assessed on salary net of vacation taken.

Are there changes to the CBR charges?

UCPath has standardized Z-coded compensations system-wide. For a list of all new Z Earn Codes, please see the list of Earn Codes CBR Exclusion. We are working with other UC's and UCPath to address the Academic Stipend vacation assessed issue. Since this is a system-wide issue it will take some time to address.

What happened with the CBR assessment on the PostDoc Fellows title code 3253?

CBR was assessed on PostDoc Fellows (title code 3253) in March 2019. Previously PostDoc Fellows have been exempt from CBR based on Berkeley’s policy. CBR is now managed by OP and is processed in UCPath. Per discussion with OP, Berkeley was allowed to continue excluding PostDoc Fellows from CBR assessment through FY19.  To reverse March assessment, we recorded a manual reversing journal in March and will update the subsidiary table in BFS for the system journal to post correctly in April. We requested a configuration change in UCPath to fix this issue and it was implemented.

How do I correct a suspended transaction?

  • Look up historical chartstring usage
  • Review Position Funding in UCPath
  • Identify a new funding source (if appropriate)
  • Corrections in UCPath should include processing a Direct Retro as well as updating the Position Funding.

How do I identify a suspended transaction?

Using the Cal Answers GL Detail Report

  • Select the appropriate period
  • Filter for the two salary account codes 50200 & 51200
  • Enter Fund Code value of 69995
  • Enter the Allocation deptID value

Is there a report you can run to see suspense chartstrings?

Any GL detail report that shows CF1 values will work.

Can we change the default chartstring?

No. This is managed by the Controller's Office. If you have questions about this, you can contact controllers_ucpath@berkeley.edu

When will I see my journals posted to the ledger? How do I know they posted?

In the future journals will post as they come in, with direct retros and off-cycle payments being processed several times a week. Right now we are experiencing numerous data issues with UCPath delivered journals and we have to manually fix them which is a time consuming process. Due to this, we will post all journals on a bi-weekly and monthly cycle through May. As we resolve these issues we are hoping to be able to post once a week. Once the issues are resolved the journals will post automatically as they come in.

Use the payroll cycle schedule as a reference. https://www.ucop.edu/ucpath-center/_files/mypath/calendar/payroll-processing-schedule-2019.pdf. Please allow a couple of days after GL Post Confirm date to see payroll journals in BFS.

When will the new HR and Payroll reports with UCPath data be available in Cal Answers?

The implementation of UCPath affects HR and Payroll Leave Accrual reports. These reports will have data available as of Friday, March 8 from pre-UCPath and then the data will remain static as of that date while we work to transition the data source from Human Capital Management (HCM) to UCPath.

General Ledger reports, Financial Management reports, and PI Portfolio, as well as the associated ad hoc reporting, are unaffected. 

The current Cal Answers Payroll Expense Detail report will continue to be updated with funding transfers for pre-UCPath pay through September.

The Cal Answers team has posted the planned release schedule to the website. This schedule is subject to change, because it is dependent on when we can get sample data from UCPath to test. 

The first release (May 2019) will include an Employee ID lookup dashboard and the updated HR Workforce Detail dashboard.

How do we distinguish between appointment types in the general ledger?

Within the GL, analysts can no longer distinguish between appointment types as all compensation transactions are booked into one GL account (51200). Is there a plan to modify the Cal Answers Payroll Expense Details report to include appointment type?

In Cal Answers, you can currently include job code and job code description, which can help with categorizing jobs.

The Cal Answers team has put the suggested update (include appointment type in the Payroll Expense Detail report) on their list of upgrades. 

What is the new Payroll posting schedule?

There is a UCPath production processing schedule available on the UCPath Center webpage. 

  • Payroll expense transfers processed in PPS for pre-UCPath payroll entries (transactions for pay periods ending 03/09/19 and prior) will continue to be posted once a month in BFS with the PPS data available for reporting in the legacy Payroll Expense report in Cal Answers. You can find the schedule by going to https://controller.berkeley.edu/sites/default/files/optrs_deadline_schedule_jan_thru_sep_2019.pdf
  • Payroll transactions from UCPath will post to BFS at least three times a month, after each monthly and bi-weekly pay period. You can find the schedule by going to https://ucpath.berkeley.edu/tools-resources/transactional-user-resources and clicking on the link for "UCPath Center Payroll Processing Schedule."

  • The payroll expense transfers processed in PPS will also appear in the legacy Cal Answers Payroll report within the first four business days of the month.

University of California Undergraduate Experience Survey (UCUES)

What is a Wild Card?

The wild card module allows each campus to specify a customized set of important topical items of interest to campus constituents. At Berkeley, recent topics include students' RRR week and final exam experiences (2011), undergraduates' connection to UC Berkeley through graduation and beyond (2009), advising and mentoring (2008), diversity (2007), and technology (2006).

Who runs UCUES?

UCUES is a collaborative effort overseen by representatives of nine UC undergraduate campuses and the UC Office of the President.

Who oversees the data collection, storage, and use?

UCUES is governed by a research protocol approved by UC Berkeley's Committee for the Protection of Human Subjects. Each of the other UC campuses submits this protocol to its respective institutional review board with an intent to rely on CPHS's approval.

How do I propose items or topics for inclusion on an upcoming administration?

From time to time new survey topics of interest are included in UCUES as part of the special topics, Wild Card, module. UC Berkeley affiliates may contact Sereeta Alexander(link is external) at the Office of Planning and Analysis at Berkeley to propose additional items or topics for inclusion. Affiliates of other UC campuses may contact their respective campus representatives.

I'm an undergraduate and I'm busy. Why should I take this survey?

There are many good reasons to participate in this research project. To list a few:

  1. Make a difference. UCUES is your chance to influence policy in your major, your college, throughout campus, and across the UC system. It is the only effort of its kind to systematically collect feedback from all undergraduates about what is working well, what is not working well, and what is important to you. Your responses will be used by faculty and staff in a variety of ways to help evaluate and improve the experience of current and future undergraduates.
  2. Be counted. As with voting, your opinions do not count unless you participate. Administrators need to hear from a broad array of students to obtain an accurate and well-rounded perspective.
  3. It's easy. It only takes about twenty minutes to complete. You don't even have to leave your computer.
  4. Win great prizes. Each year we give out thousands of dollars' worth of prizes, from iPods to cash prizes to bookstore gift cards, to a lucky group of randomly selected participants. The earlier you complete the survey, the more chances you have. But you have to participate to win.

Can items from one module be correlated with items from a different module?

No, not directly, since a completely different and non-overlapping subset of students is assigned to each module. Items from modules can only be directly correlated with the items from the core.

Is UCUES an anonymous survey?

No. UCUES responses are confidential but not anonymous, which means individual student identifiers are collected along with each set of responses, but the responses are never reported in such a way that would allow identification of individual respondents. Non-anonymous data collection also allows survey responses to be matched to individual-level institutional data from university records and across survey administrations to create multi-year panels.

How are UCUES results used at Berkeley?

  1. Systematic administrative uses
    • UCUES responses about the academic experience in the major are reported each year to each department for its majors. The results are also analyzed in detail by the Financial Policy and Institutional Research Team for academic program review, the periodic in-depth evaluation of every instructional program. Students are asked to rate how satisfied they are with such aspects of their major as instruction by faculty and graduate student teaching assistants, advising, equitable treatment by faculty, and the availability and quality of courses. These responses are also compared to other majors and to prior years' data to examine trends over time. UCUES data have helped shift academic program review from a predominant focus on faculty and graduate students to one of increasing attention to the undergraduate experience.
    • UCUES results regularly inform the decisions of administrators in everyday situations, from answering specific questions (for example, what percentage of students are employed off campus or how many hours undergraduates study per week) to providing a more complete and nuanced picture of the everyday experience of a diverse population of undergraduates.
    • UCUES responses are a key component of the UC system's public accountability initiative, which is akin to the Voluntary System of Accountability template proposed by AASCU and APLU (formerly NASULGC).
  2. Non-routine administrative uses
  3. Scholarly research
  4. Instruction
    • Sociology 105, Introduction to Sociological Methods (uses subset of UCUES data for computer data analysis-intensive course)
    • Undergraduate Research Apprenticeship Program (undergraduates conduct original empirical research using UCUES data)

Can UCUES responses be calculated over time to document trends in the undergraduate experience?

It depends on the items and the time period. Although early versions of UCUES date back to 1996, the core set of items has remained relatively fixed only since 2006. Some items go back before that time, while others do not. It has been long established that responses to survey items are highly sensitive to even small changes in the question wording or response options. As a result, tracking non-identical UCUES items across years is unlikely to lead to valid comparisons and is not recommended.

Currently there is no comprehensive database of which items appear in which administrations of UCUES, but the complete set of questionnaires to date is available at the UCUES main page.

How do the modules work?

ll undergraduates are asked a common core of questions about time use, student development, academic engagement, experience with their major (for upper division students), campus climate, and background characteristics (demographics).Module Work Flow

Following the core, each student is asked a set of questions from one of several topical modules, determined by random assignment, on a subject such as

  • academic engagement,
  • civic engagement (politics and community service),
  • student development (moral and psychological),
  • student programs and services,
  • globalization, or
  • a "wild card" group of items unique to each campus.

The form of each module, except the wild card, is identical across all campuses in a given year. This arrangement allows greater breadth of topics and more discretion over content without increasing the length of the survey.

What distinguishes UCUES from other national surveys of college students?

It is administered to the entire population (census) of students, rather than a sample.

It integrates institutional data from university records to provide basic demographic and educational variables such as ethnicity, age, and grade point averages.

The modular format magnifies the scope of the survey without increasing completion time and jeopardizing response rates. Each student is asked a common core of items about academic engagement and demographics followed by a randomly assigned topical module. Consequently, administrators and researchers have a broader view of the student experience covering not just academics but also civic engagement, moral and psychological development, and experience with campus programs and services.

The wild card module allows each campus to specify a customized set of important topical items of interest to campus constituents. At Berkeley, recent topics include students' RRR week and final exam experiences (2011), undergraduates' connection to UC Berkeley through graduation and beyond (2009), advising and mentoring (2008), diversity (2007), and technology (2006).

It contains costs, very effectively, by employing a strictly web-based survey tool and relying on email as the primary form of contacting students.

Why use a census administration instead of a sample?

It allows analysis at the level of small groups such as majors and specific demographic groups (such as sophomores, student athletes, or student parents). This feature is critical for incorporating UCUES results into periodic assessments of academic departments (particularly academic program review).

It enables a modular structure to ask a greater number of items about a broader array of topics.

It yields sufficient numbers of repeated observations of the same students to create multi-year panels with repeated observations for the same individuals.

All students have chance to participate, promoting a sense of involvement (every voice is heard) and making recruiting and participation a campuswide effort.

Who is eligible to participate?

All regularly enrolled undergraduate students eighteen years or older on April 1 of the year of the survey are invited to participate. A very small number of limited enrollment/2nd degree students and minors are excluded from the eligible population. (The excluded group constitutes less than one percent of the total undergraduate population.)

What is the response rate? How is it calculated? Is it "good?"

The precise figure varies from year to year and by campus, but at Berkeley it has been:

  • 2011: 30% (6,982 out of 23,656)
  • 2010: 45% (11,203 out of 24,967)
  • 2009: 37% (9,016 out of 24,379)
  • 2008: 50% (11,833 out of 23,904)
  • 2007: 51% (11,957 out of 23,278)
  • 2006: 48% (10,717 out of 22,430)
  • 2005: 52% (11,673 out of 22,450)
  • 2006: 48% (10,717 out of 22,430)
  • 2007: 51% (11,957 out of 23,278)
  • 2008: 50% (11,833 out of 23,904)
  • 2009: 37% (9,016 out of 24,379)
  • 2010: 45% (11,203 out of 24,967)
  • 2011: 33% (7,750 out of 23,656)
  • 2012: 39% (9,732 out of 25,203)
  • 2013: Survey not administered

The numerator is the number of undergraduate students who logged into the survey system and submitted their responses. The denominator is the population of eligible undergraduates.

Not every student answers every item presented, and in general some items (such as parental income and open-ended items that require a typed response) are more likely to be skipped than others. One departure from common practice in reporting web survey response rates is that the denominator includes students with inactive email addresses on the assumption that they may have been contacted about the survey through other means such as advertising, direct communications from academic departments and other units, or word of mouth.

Opinions vary greatly as to what makes a "good," "high," or "adequate" response rate and what relationship, if any, there is between response rate and the accuracy of the results. While conventional wisdom holds that low response rates yield biased results and that increasing response rates tends to reduce bias, recent research suggests that neither of these claims is necessarily the case. See, for example:

Groves, Robert M. 2006. "Nonresponse rates and nonresponse bias in household Surveys." Public Opinion Quarterly 70:646-675. [Also see other articles from the same special issue.]

Keeter, Scott, Carolyn Miller, Andrew Kohut, Robert M. Groves, and Stanley Presser. 2000. "Consequences of reducing nonresponse in a large national telephone survey." Public Opinion Quarterly 64:125–48.

Krosnick, Jon A. 1999. "Survey research." Annual Review of Psychology 50:537-67.

Visser, Penny S., Jon A. Krosnick, Jesse Marquette, and Michael Curtin. 1996. "Mail surveys for election forecasting? An evaluation of the Columbus Dispatch poll."Public Opinion Quarterly 60: 181-227.

How often is UCUES administered?

Since 2004, UCUES has been administered annually at Berkeley and every other year (even numbered years) at the other UC undergraduate campuses. Earlier versions of UCUES date back to 1996.

Why doesn't the questionnaire ask about demographic information such as ethnicity? What other data are available as part of the UCUES dataset?

Institutional data, the administrative and transactional data collected by the university, are already collected and maintained at the individual level in application, registration, and degree databases and matched to the survey results.

Among the most important institutional variables are:

  • ethnicity
  • age
  • admission status (transfer admit or new-from-high school freshman admit)
  • term and year of admission (used to calculate year in school or unofficial class level)
  • units earned (used to calculate official class level)
  • date and title of degrees earned (for students who have graduated)
  • UC grade point average
  • major(s) (e.g. Integrative Biology) and college(s) (e.g. College of Letters & Science)
  • location of permanent address
  • international student status
  • high school grade point average and SAT scores
  • high school's Academic Performance Index ranking
  • participation in selected university-sponsored pre-college outreach and preparation programs

A few items already available in institutional data, such as gender, parental income, and parental education, are repeated in the survey to achieve greater completeness and detail. Summary financial aid data are likely to be included in future releases of UCUES data.

For administrative uses, any institutional data that identify individual students by student ID number can be linked to the UCUES data, from a roster of an intramural soccer team to a list of students who graduated from a particular high school or community college to a list of scholarship winners.

What is UCUES?

UCUES, the University of California Undergraduate Experience Survey, is an omnibus survey of the experience of undergraduate students enrolled at the nine University of California undergraduate campuses.

Survey results are matched with institutional data from campus records to provide a detailed portrait of students' backgrounds, academic and co-curricular activities, goals and aspirations, experience with academic and administrative units, self-assessments of gains in academic and social skills, interactions with other students, engagement in community service and civic activities, perceived obstacles to academic success, and many other topics.

The results are used both for administrative purposes – to evaluate and improve programs and policies affecting undergraduates – as well as for scholarly research. For example, Student Experience in the Research University (SERU) conferences and publications, as a program of the Center for Studies in Higher Education

Recharge

Can a recharge activity purchase an item with current reserves and collect money over the useful life of the equipment to repurchase the item at the end of the useful life?

Yes. The assignment of a depreciation charge during the useful life will permit the recharge center to have sufficient funds at the end of the useful life for purchase of a replacement piece of equipment.

Can a recharge unit assign a piece of existing equipment, purchased with federal funds, to the recharge activity and depreciate the value of the equipment over the useful life of the equipment?

No. If the equipment was originally bought on federal funds, the recharge unit cannot depreciate the value of equipment and assign the respective costs to the recharge fund.

Can a recharge activity lease a piece of equipment and charge the lease payments to the recharge operating fund?

For capital leases, lease payments can be allocated to the recharge operating fund provided that the amount of the lease payments is roughly equal to the amount of depreciation that could have been charged for the same period and the University has title to the asset. For operational leases, the lease payments should be allocated to the recharge operating fund.

What determines whether or not an item can be assigned as equipment with depreciation allocated to a recharge account?

The University definition for equipment must be met. Presently the item must have a purchase price of at least $5,000 and a useful life of more than a year. The item must be used in the recharge activity to have its charges assigned to the respective fund.

Where can I find information regarding the useful life of a piece of equipment?

The useful life tables are prepared by the Office of the President and can be found at the Useful Live Indices for Equipment Depreciation page. Useful lives can also be found in the campus equipment inventory tracking system, BETS. To request a new classification of equipment with new useful lives, complete the Equipment Useful Life Update Form (Word) and submit to gao@berkeley.edu.

Can you elect to expense a piece of equipment in the year of purchase?

No. The equipment purchased for use in a recharge activity must be charged out to that activity through annual depreciation charges over the useful life of the equipment or financed through a capital lease.

Can a recharge unit assign a piece of existing equipment, purchased with non-federal funds, to the recharge activity and depreciate the value of the equipment over the useful life of the equipment?

If the equipment was originally bought on non-federal funds, you can make the assignment and the subsequent depreciation. If the equipment is used only part of the time for recharge activities and the remainder of the time for non-recharge activities, only that percentage of the equipment time on the recharge activity should be assigned to the recharge unit.

Where do I find funding to purchase equipment for assignment to a recharge activity?

The University operating policies require the department to purchase the initial equipment for the newly established recharge activity. If it is an ongoing recharge activity and the amount of the equipment purchase is small, you can finance the purchase from amounts in the recharge accounts current reserves. If it is an ongoing recharge activity and the amount of the equipment purchase is substantial, you should finance the purchase through a capital lease or seek outside seed money from other sources.

FY2017-18 Budget Process

How were divisional budget allocation decisions made and what are those decisions?

Are there now more decisions to come from the leadership of the various schools, colleges, and administrative divisions? If so, when will they be made and how will they be communicated?

Divisions have been informed of their FY2017-18 budget improvement targets and each division will now consider how to implement their targets within their respective division.  

An iterative budget process has been underway since December 2016. At a retreat in February, the Deans and Chairs discussed the budget process, opportunities, and challenges. Since then, the Office of the Chief Financial Officer (OCFO) has discussed budget issues regularly with the Council of Deans, deans in small groups, Vice Chancellors, Chief Administrative Officers, Divisional Finance Leaders, the Board of Visitors, the Berkeley Foundation, Academic Senate leadership, and student and staff committees. We have tried to conduct our work with transparency and the greatest degree of participation possible.

The goal of this year’s budget process was to learn and better understand the needs and objectives of each division so we could complete the hard work of meeting our deficit reduction target of $54 million in a thoughtful, strategic, and collaborative manner. We should note that the budgetary targets within the multi-year plan were established in concert with the Office of the President; the targets within the plan are non-negotiable.

The OCFO established a Target Setting Working Group composed of nine Divisional Finance Leaders  (from seven academic divisions, Intercollegiate Athletics, and Real Estate) to recommend a methodology for budget target-setting. We tasked the working group with providing exclusions and establishing a baseline from which to set budget improvement targets. Exclusions represent the campus’ highest priorities and were exempted from the budget target calculations. The budget improvement target is the amount by which a division must improve its net operating budget between FY2016-17 and FY2017-18.  

After constructive debate and discussion, the working group delivered recommendations that guided the exclusions to the base (FY2016-17 operating expense budget). Here are the items we agreed to exclude:

  • Contracts & Grants: all expenses included under the fund category “Contracts & Grants” which includes federal, state, and private funding for things like research, training, and fellowships
  • Academic Salaries & Benefits, including teaching activity: includes Ladder Faculty (fully and partially funded), as well as Other Academic positions and temporary academic support (TAS); does not include summer salaries
  • Scholarships & Fellowships: all expenses included in the account category “Scholarships and Fellowships,” which includes fee remission and financial aid
  • Activities funded with Student Services Fees: charged to all registered students and funds services that are necessary to students, but that are not part of the university’s programs of instruction, research, or public service
  • Faculty Research on non-Contracts & Grants dollars: all faculty-managed funds including start-up, retention, and BEAR Grants
  • Purchased Utilities
  • Student Health Insurance Program funding: financial obligations of claims paid on behalf of student premiums
  • Sexual Harassment Prevention Program

We shared the target methodology with the Council of Deans, Academic Senate leadership, CAPRA, Vice Chancellors, Chief Administrative Officers, and Divisional Finance Leaders in full transparency. Divisions were advised that they could meet their targets with either incremental net revenue or cost savings, and adjustments to targets were made after individual meetings with divisional leadership. The adjustments reflect academic priorities such as managing the impact of enrollment growth, anomalies in target methodology such as School of Optometry clinical operations, operational needs such as uninterrupted facility services, and investments in philanthropy. A full listing of division budget decisions will be posted on cfo.berkeley.edu.

The targets that divisions have been assigned are highly differentiated because of the way in which we have calculated the base (as described above) to which the targets were applied. Budget improvement targets for instructional divisions are about 1% of FY2016-17 budgeted total expenses; those for administrative, research, and service divisions are between 4% and 6%. We should note that many instructional divisions are meeting their targets almost entirely from increased revenues, while non-academic divisions are meeting their targets primarily through staffing and service-level adjustments.  

The budget process concluded on Friday, June 23 with allocation letters being distributed by the Chancellor-designate with all final decisions on performance targets and annual allocations. The OCFO prepared the letters on her behalf and they were sent out to divisions (Deans of Schools and Colleges, Vice Chancellors, Vice Provosts, Head Librarian, etc.). Campus-level budget decisions are now final. Each division will communicate directly with their faculty and staff to explain how these decisions will be distributed throughout the division and how strategic plans will be implemented. As divisional decisions are made, we plan to have a coordinated communication plan about any adjustments to service levels that will impact faculty, staff, or students across campus.

Why is the target for this year so large if we have five years to bring our budget into balance?

The annual budget target for FY2017-18 is part of a larger five-year plan. Our reduction target for FY2016-17 was $40 million, which was primarily achieved through cost reductions. We will be able to make more progress against our deficit in FY2017-18 because of a concerted effort toward revenue generation programs; the reduction target for FY2017-18 is $54 million and will be achieved through an equal balance of revenue generation (52%) and budget reductions.

What are the sources of revenue growth in the FY2017-18 budget?

We had hoped to meet a significant amount of this year’s deficit reduction budget improvement target with increased revenues and we exceeded our initial goal. Based on the budgets submitted by the divisions, 52% of the targeted $54 million in deficit reduction will come from increased revenues including private gifts. This is excellent news because it means that every dollar we make in revenue generation is one less dollar we’ll have to reduce in expenses. We will continue to seek ways to increase revenues to offset the need to make cuts. In addition to over $8 million in private gifts, FY2017-18 revenue plans include new or expanded academic programming in University Extension, Summer Sessions, Concurrent Enrollment, Self Supporting Graduate Professional Degree Programs, and via Professional Degree Supplemental Tuition.

How will campus leadership ensure the divisions meet their targets?

Divisional leadership will be accountable for their budgetary performance throughout the fiscal year so any needed strategic and corrective actions can be taken in a timely and effective manner. To achieve that goal, we distributed quarterly financial reports in FY2016-17 to help ready the campus for this new environment. We will continue to use our quarterly review process to assess and manage every division’s financial performance against the established targets and expectations. The quarterly review process helps campus leadership accurately assess if we're on track to meet our financial goals. These quarterly reports enable leadership to identify performance opportunities and challenges and make any needed material modifications to existing plans.  

In addition to financial performance monitoring, we will track the specific performance of each revenue generation program. To support the campus in these new activities, a new department - New Academic Ventures at Berkeley (NAV-B) - is being established to vet agreements, develop and maintain an inventory of best practices, review and execute requests for consulting and other services, and develop analysts who can quickly construct data-driven market/demand assessments.

Will there still be merit and market increases for staff this year? Will senior leadership also be getting raises?

As in years past, merit, internal equity, and market-based adjustments will continue for non-represented staff or in accordance with represented staff collective bargaining agreements. Also, with the approval of the Office of the President, the senior leadership of the campus has agreed to forgo any salary increases. The categories of seniorstaff who will not be eligible for compensation increases this year include: Senior Management Group members, Vice Provosts, Deans, and employees classified at the Manager 4 level.

In addition, this year rather than having a separate 1% equity program and 2% merit program, we will have a simpler-to-manage 3% salary program pool that will be based on merit, equity, and market factors:

  • Merit: a pay for performance approach based on the employee’s performance rating

  • Internal equity: the employee’s salary relative to the campus-wide average salary for the employee’s job title

  • External market: the employee’s salary relative to the midpoint of the salary range for their grade (which is based on market data)

Division leadership will provide further information regarding their division’s procedures for administering this year’s salary program. The guidelines provide additional information, including eligibility criteria for salary increases, as well as important deadlines. In the meantime, FAQs are available online. Additional questions may be sent to compdesk@berkeley.edu or handled by your HR Partner.

If budget reductions were limited in areas related to our instructional mission, revenue generating activities, and facilities maintenance, then where were reductions centered?

What do you think will be the most visible impacts of these new cuts? What will our students notice and how will they be affected?

We are anticipating campus service adjustments and there will be further, detailed communications once divisions have decided which services will be impacted and how. A common focus in planning across non-academic units was to prioritize services or systems that support life safety, enable teaching and research, or are required to operate the university.

For example, facility maintenance will ensure that fire alarm and sprinkler systems are operational, that fume hoods and building HVAC function properly, and that electrical systems and basic building systems are working. IST will prioritize campus network services, protect network and data security, maintain campus systems such as the financial and payroll systems, and provide campus email service. CSS priorities are fundamental HR, payroll and research administration services. For students, there may be an increase in response and/or wait time for a variety of student services.

How will faculty recruitment and retention be impacted?

Faculty recruitment and retention remains one of the campus’ highest priorities and we will continue to invest in this.

The letter from Chancellor-Designate Christ refers to painful reductions; does that mean a new round of layoffs is pending?

Berkeley will continue to reshape our workforce in a way that best aligns with our needs, values, and available resources. To the extent that divisions are not able to meet budget targets for coming years, one way to lower costs is headcount reduction through attrition or, when necessary, through layoffs. Workforce decisions are made by divisional leadership.

How has our budgetary situation been impacted by the Governor’s decision to withhold funding?

Following the recent release of the State Audit of the Office of the President, the Governor has withheld $50 million of funding appropriated to the university in the 2017-18 Budget Act. This funding will be released to the university once it meets certain specified conditions. At this point, it is unclear how, if at all, the Governor’s decision will impact the Berkeley campus budget. The Office of the President is making every effort to meet the conditions set by the Governor to release the funding. It is also not clear how the Office of the President would decide to allocate the $50 million to Berkeley and the other UC campuses should the Governor decide that the university has not met all of its conditions.

There has been talk of rolling back the recently approved tuition increase. How does the campus plan for significant shifts in external funding?

Berkeley maintains a scenario-based financial model to anticipate changing political conditions. As each condition changes, the model is updated for decision making. Our current projections indicate that we can reach a balanced budget by FY2019-20. We have assumed that in-state tuition will grow at 2.5% each year and that nonresident supplemental tuition will grow at up to 5.0%. State support is projected to increase by 4.0% in FY2017-18 and FY2018-19 and 3.0% to 3.5% thereafter. We have also assumed that nonresident enrollment will remain capped at 24%. Salaries are assumed to grow at 2.0% and gradually increases over time to reflect enrollment growth projections. The model also assumes interest expense increases in 2021 as capital loans repayments start and debt deferral ends.

How are divisions in deficit, such as Athletics, accounted for in the aggregated campus budget and what actions are being taken to improve financial performance?

Our budget is comprehensive and includes academic, administrative, auxiliary operations (such as student housing and Cal Performances), and intercollegiate athletics programs, including all divisions reporting deficits. For FY2017-18, divisions were able to meet their budget targets either through revenue generating programs or cost saving activities. For example, Athletics was directed to improve its financial performance by $4.6 million over FY2016-17. We will continue to partner with divisions in deficit positions to make improvements to their net operating results throughout FY2017-18 and beyond.

Each division has a different capacity to generate revenues. Some revenues, like those generated by Self Supporting Graduate Professional Degree Programs, accrue directly to divisions. Others, like undergraduate and graduate tuition, accrue to the center and are divided among the many competing needs of the university. All divisions contribute to the generation of revenues either directly or indirectly. For example, while there is less of a market for Arts and Humanities Self Supporting Graduate Professional Programs, they - and Social Sciences - are among the largest contributors of teaching across campus and generate a significant share of the campus’ tuition revenues.

FY2018-19 Budget Process

How do I capture capital projects and investments in revenue generating programs below the net operating line?

This is in reference to tracking below the line expenses that were approved as part of the FY18 Budget Process. Please refer to the FY18 Budget approval letter sent to your Dean last year to understand if below the line expenses were approved for your unit. If they were, they should be tracked using a management code. 

"Reserve investments” expenses are tagged with the new Management CF1 code 3I00MC. This step will enable us to measure your progress against divisional targets (those expenses will be excluded when calculating performance to Net Operating Surplus/Deficit targets) and report to UCOP appropriately. 

I wanted to confirm my interpretation of our budget "target."

I wanted to confirm my interpretation of our budget "target." My interpretation is that this is not the target for our surplus/deficit, but rather the amount that our budget needs to be lowered by. Is that right?

The budget target represents the amount the FY18 Operating Budget Net Operating Surplus/(Deficit) line needs to be increased by to meet your FY19 Operating Budget Net Surplus/(Deficit). For example, if your FY18 Operating Budget Net Surplus/(Deficit) was ($435K) and your target is $356, then your FY19 Operating Budget Net Surplus Deficit will need to be ($79K) or better to meet your FY19 Operating Budget target. We have included additional language in Appendix 1 of the FY19 Operating Budget Guidlines to include examples of this. 

Should we be entering revenue quarterly to net to zero or should we be approximating the invoicing so that we have seasonality?

I have a question on how to best enter the revenue expected for our grants. The guidance is for the revenue to net to zero on the C&G, but when we've reviewed our quarterly statements, the revenue lines had been highlighted. Should we be entering revenue quarterly to net to zero or should we be approximating the invoicing so that we have seasonality?

They have stopped marking the revenue line items for Contracts & Grants. With that said, you should still align the revenue seasonality with the expense seasonality since most of the Contracts & Grants are cost reimburseable. If you have some grants that are not cost reimburseable and you have some idea of how they will be invoiced, you can adjust for that if it is material, otherwise have the revenue follow the expenses.

We normally receive a breakdown of what we receive in 71220 (TAS). Will that be forthcoming?

We have not sent out any other breakdowns in the past for account 71220 outside of what is included in your FY19 Operating Budget IDRs (Intersection Detail Reports). The FY19 Operating Budget IDRs have not changed except for the change I made to the EVCP TAS allocation amount. If you are referring to the IDRs, these can be found in your Division folders on google drive. For detail on the EVCP TAS allocation amount, your Dean should have received a letter outlining the updated TAS amount.

Could you let me know where the commitments unrelated to TAS are so I can check for our other commitments?

The other items should be included in your IDRs (Intersection Detail Reports) which you can find in your Division Folder on the google drive. 

I'm working on my multi-year template and when I refreshed the template, the data I input disappeared after the refresh. How do I fix this?

You fix this by adding "=" in front of your number and writing it out in decimal format. So if you're entering $300,000 then you would input "=300". Or if you're adding 3%, then type in "=.03". For more detail, review the multi-year template job aid. There are Smart View training resources on the CalPlanning website and there is a special Smart View office hours on Tuesday, April 10 from 1pm - 3pm in University Hall, room 670

How do we update changes in the general allocation (from one DeptID to another) in CalPlan?

We loaded what was in the permanenet budget as of January 31, 2018 to July 2018 (FY19) in CalPlan to account 71110. If divisions later make changes to the permanent budget, these changes should be noted with 74101 transfers in CalPlan as FP&A does not make these late changes for the divisions.

Under 71302 support I see a $ amount for my division. What is this for?

This is because $4.5M is being provided in FY19 as a one-time adjustment to academic units to help defray the cost of the 3% merit rate for staff salaries. This was entered in CalPlan to the benefitting units in the month of September in account code 71302.

​How are campus commitments calculated in the multi-year budgeting template?

​You can find the detail for these in the Intersection Detail reports (IDR) posted to your divisional folder in google drive. Besides an IDR for FY18 and FY19, there are IDRs for FY20 and FY21.

How do we address issues where ongoing campus commitments aren't reflected in the template in FY20 and FY21; should we plan for related transfers and/or expenses?

Please contact the DFL concierge at dfl_concierge@berkeley.edu with a subject line of multi-year planning process and identify the commitment not captured in the multi-year template

Who reviews the private gifts tab of the Revenue Generation Template?

Non-Academic revenue generation plans will be reviewed by the applicable Vice Chancellor/Associate Vice Chancellor, VC Finance, and NAV-B, then approved as part of the budget review process. Philanthropy programs will be vetted by University Development and Alumni Relations.

Academic revenue generation plans will be reviewed by VC Finance and NAV-B and approved as part of the budget review process. Philanthropy programs will be vetted by University Development and Alumni Relations.

Who in UDAR can help me with my Revenue Generation Template private gifts tab?

Michelle McClellan, AVC of Constituent Programs at University Development and Alumni Relations (mcclellan@berkeley.edu), is a resource to divisions for their philanthropic planning and in managing their fundraising leads.

What is the Budget Improvement Target base?

The BIT represents the amount by which each Division will need to increase their planned Current Year Operating Budget Net Operating Surplus/(Deficit) amount as compared to their planned Prior Year Operating Budget Net Operating Surplus/(Deficit) Goal.

How do non-academic units submit their revenue generation plans?

DFLs of non-academic units: Submit templates to the DFL Concierge at dfl_concierge@berkeley.edu and Scott Shireman, Chief Operating Officer of University Extension and Director of New Academic Ventures at Berkeley (NAV-B) at scottshireman@berkeley.edu, and their respective Vice Chancellor or Associate Vice Chancellor. Non-Academic revenue generation plans will be reviewed by the applicable Vice Chancellor/Associate Vice Chancellor, VC Finance, and NAV-B, then approved as part of the budget review process. Philanthropy programs will be vetted by University Development and Alumni Relations.

Campus Conversations July 31, 2020

How many current students have decided not to register for classes this fall? How much income has been lost because of this?

We will not have final fall enrollment numbers until October. Once we do we will be able to assess the impact on the budget.

What is the percentage athletics staff who have taken the voluntary 10% salary cuts?

The director of athletics, the department’s highest-paid coaches have agreed to voluntary salary cuts for 2020-21. The UC Office of the President has not yet provided guidance on personnel actions for career staff.

What consideration is being given to reworking the athletics budget to help meet the budget shortfall?

Given the questions of the safety and viability of athletics in the fall; what consideration is being given to reworking the athletics budget (deferrable maintenance, temporarily cutting coaching staff salaries, etc.) to help meet the budget shortfall?

Just like every department and the campus as a whole, Cal Athletics is not immune to the effects of the pandemic. Since March, department leadership has modeled different scenarios and is forecasting as much as a $50-55 million impact on its budget if fall sports do not compete at all this year. The impact could be reduced considerably if football and other sports return in the spring. The athletic department’s plan to meet its budget objectives include adhering to a campus-wide hiring and merit-pay freeze; voluntary pay reductions for the athletic director, its highest-paid coaches; cutbacks of operations and administrative budgets by at least 10%; and consideration of a low-interest loan to help close any remaining budget gap after other budget-mitigating steps are put into place. The intent is not to make permanent changes because of an anticipation of a return to normal operations within 12-18 months.

Our football program costs millions of dollars, yet brings in no money. Seems like something we can easily cut.

That is actually not correct. Football produces significant net revenue, from television rights, ticket sales, merchandising, concessions, contributions, and sponsorships. In addition, football games provide opportunities for thousands of students, alumni, and the entire Cal community to come together for a common purpose and gather on Saturdays in the fall. With a nearly 140-history, football is truly a part of the fabric of our university and gamedays are opportunities to celebrate the entire campus.

What is the cost of running athletics programs?

Seems like that would be a major expense.

IA supports its 30 teams and 850 student-athletes with an annual budget of approximately $100 million. It supports its budget through media rights (i.e. television), ticket sales, philanthropic contributions, endowment income, and sponsorships, among other revenue streams. The department and the campus reached a six-year budget agreement in 2019, which provides for a dramatic reduction of institutional support through 2025. In order to be transparent, the plan has been shared with the Chancellor’s Cabinet and DIVCO. Chancellor Christ explained her perspective in arecent column that appeared in the 2019-20 winter edition of California Magazine. The athletic department met its budget target for the 2020 fiscal year despite the cancellation of spring sports in mid-March through a strict management of its expenses.

What is the "New Student Programming Fee"?

What is the "New Student Programming Fee" which has appeared in the last few days but not mentioned in the fee schedule?

You can review a full listing of fees at https://registrar.berkeley.edu/tuition-fees-residency/tuition-fees

The New Student Programming Fee is not new and is charged every year - in fact, we are happy to report that this year it was lowered from $475 to $380.  This fee covers expenses related to Golden Bear Advising, Golden Bear Prep, Golden Bear Orientation, and Getting your Bearings. You will be assessed a fee of $380 on your first semester CalCentral bill. As orientation is mandatory for all new undergraduate students, so is the fee. If applicable, look to your financial aid package to see if this fee will be covered by financial aid in the form of the “New Student Grant.” If you have financial concerns related to the New Student Programming Fee, please complete the New Student Needs Questionnaire.

The programming fee covers:

  • Golden Bear Advising and Golden Bear Prep pre-arrival modules Golden Bear Orientation programming (virtual programs in August 2020 and any future in-person programming).

  • Getting Your Bearings programming (virtual programs in fall 2020 and any future in-person programming).

  • Please refer to our Office of the Registrar Tuition & Fees page for more details on student fees.

For more information, visit https://orientation.berkeley.edu/policies/.

What are the University's top 3 expenses, and how have they changed over the past 10 years? What is driving that change?

UC Berkeley’s largest and most pressing expense is faculty and staff compensation, which grows almost every year due to the need to provide merit/cost of living increases and to ensure workforce competitiveness. Other major expenses include deferred maintenance and seismic corrections that are needed to improve the safety and quality of our campus buildings. As the oldest UC campus with the oldest infrastructure, these expenses are greater at Berkeley than at other UCs.

With the majority of staff working from home, what operational cost can be cut?

UC Berkeley’s most significant cost comes in the form of employee compensation, in terms of both faculty salaries to support instruction/research and staff salaries to provide operational support for the campus. Therefore, operating costs, which are largely constituted by the compensation of the staff who provide this support, do not go away because the campus is currently working remotely. Moreover, in some instances, operating costs are actually increasing due to remote operations (e.g., the need for more technology) and the direct impact of COVID-19 (e.g., facilities cleaning, virus testing). Also, in order to preserve as many jobs as possible, Berkeley is working to redirect staff whose workload may be reduced by a closed campus into areas where workload has increased due to the virus.

Why aren’t essential workers receiving a merit increase?

Why aren’t essential workers receiving a merit increase such as facilities services staff? Every time the campus shuts down for reasons being the fires, the PG&E electricity shutdowns, now COVID shutdowns, facilities services have always been working and still manages to serve the campus community.

UCOP froze merit increases for career, non represented staff throughout the system. The campus cannot act in contradiction to that decision.  At the same time, represented staff previously negotiated collective bargaining agreements that include cost of living increases. We are asking managers to take note of extra work being assigned to any of their team members and do whatever is possible to support them. At the same time, many, perhaps most, of the thousands of staff who are now working from home are dealing with significant challenges and hardships. 

How will the budget deficit of $340 million impact staff who are working on visas, since employees working on visas have many rules to abide with.

First, after the mitigation steps we have taken, the deficit for the current fiscal year is projected to be approximately $65 million. This is a complex question.  Staff who work with students needing visas are supported through campus funds and we will take steps to ensure they can continue to fill this important function. With regard to visas that apply to visiting scholars and employees, there are two units involved: the Berkeley International Office (BIO) and Berkeley Regional Services (BRS). BIO is a recharge unit that will continue to provide its services.

Your BRS HR Business Partner, following the lead of BIO, will continue to help scholars seeking visas in collaboration with the BRS Visa Team and BIO.

Is UCB considering returning to the Central Shared Services model to save money and standardize work?

We are still using a shared services model. The campus adapted the model to move to regional service centers in the last couple years, and this still gives the economies of scale that we need to operate effectively.

In light of BLM and campus deficits, how will Cal's UCPD budget be affected? Student support programs are being cut left and right so I'm curious as to what has been prioritized in this year's budget.

This year’s UCPD budget has not been finalized yet. The decision-making process will take into account the diverse perspectives of the campus community, and will be guided by the Chancellor’s recent message about campus values and objectives regarding community safety.

Is there consideration in budget cut talks to substantially reduce funding to UCPD?

This year’s UCPD budget has not been finalized yet. The decision-making process will take into account the diverse perspectives of the campus community, and will be guided by the Chancellor’s recent message about campus values and objectives regarding community safety.

With deep budget issues why are we still paying for a militarized police force? Why has the University not offered substantial (e.g. 50%) cuts to UCPD for the next fiscal year with a planned pool timeline for complete dissolution of the UCPD?

This year’s UCPD budget has not been finalized yet. The decision-making process will take into account the diverse perspectives of the campus community, and will be guided by the Chancellor’s recent message about campus values and objectives regarding community safety.

How far would cutting UCPD funding go in helping to balance the budget and mitigating losses? How much of a priority is racial justice in the new budget? Will the administration commit to defunding UCPD?

This year’s UCPD budget has not been finalized yet. The decision-making process will take into account the diverse perspectives of the campus community, and will be guided by the Chancellor’s recent message about campus values and objectives regarding community safety.

If the UC budget is negatively impacted by the pandemic, why are we increasing our budget on UCPD?

This year’s UCPD budget has not been finalized yet. The decision-making process will take into account the diverse perspectives of the campus community, and will be guided by the Chancellor’s recent message about campus values and objectives regarding community safety.

Is the University looking at suspending the Cancel for Non-Payment Policy for the coming semester?

We understand that this policy can create confusion for some students. With this policy, students who don't pay the required 20% by the deadline may be temporarily dropped from their classes. Any students who are dropped can re-enroll the following day, but only after waitlists have been processed. Basically, students who are officially registered have priority to enroll in classes but all students can still enroll in classes.

For students who receive financial aid, and the majority of our students do, their aid will cover their minimum tuition payment, so we do not anticipate they will be at risk. These students also receive a corresponding exception status in CalCentral to ensure they can enroll in their classes.

The CNP policy is intended to support students in addressing their administrative responsibilities before the term begins so that they can focus on their academic responsibilities. It also finalizes course enrollments early in the semester.

Additionally, CNP ensures students have access to essential campus resources and other support services from the very first day of instruction.

Some students are confused about the short-term emergency loans. These loans are interest-free. Eligible undergraduate and graduate students can receive a co-payable loan the same day they apply; exceptional requests may take up to two business days. With these interest free loans, students can pay at least 20% of their tuition and fees.

During this pandemic, CNP is as important than ever. With some students considering taking the term off, they may neglect to drop their classes. The CNP policy will temporarily drop them from those classes, freeing up seats for students who are actually planning to enroll this term. Our goal is to ensure students have access to the classes they need.

https://registrar.berkeley.edu/registration/cancellation-withdrawal/cnp

Former generations of students who voted on campus fees were not impacted by the current COVID situation / crisis.

Former generations of students who voted on campus fees were not impacted by the current COVID situation / crisis. The school should recognize this and "go beyond itself" to demonstrate compassion for current students who are impacted by the current situation. The fact that former generations of students voted to enact fees in a different non-COVID universe fails to recognize how current students are impacted, and shifts the burden of caring for students away from leadership.

Tuition and mandatory fees are set by the University of California Office of the President for all UC campuses. Tuition and mandatory fees have been set regardless of the method of instruction and will not be refunded in the event instruction occurs remotely for any part of the Academic Year. Mandatory university charges for tuition and student services continue to help cover ongoing operations such as the delivery of instruction and the cost of student services such as registration, financial aid, and remote academic advising. Our teaching continues, even as its method of delivery has changed. Students are connecting with and learning from world-class faculty, completing coursework, earning full course credit, and making progress toward an immensely valuable UC Berkeley degree. UC Berkeley student services continue to be available to students via remote options including virtual study jams, remote movie nights, “Coffee & Career” video chats, online fitness and art classes, and student-led programs and activities to ensure that the term remains a very powerful and enriching one for our students.

Some campus-based fees were established to support certain efforts like the Wellness Fee which is paying for many essential health services. Others were established to maintain the safety of buildings or other facilities when necessary for the health and safety of students - e.g., to address seismic deficiencies. Even as UC campuses such as ours have curtailed limited aspects of their operations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the costs that campus-based fees are intended to cover continue.

As it currently stands, all student fees are being assessed regardless of the mode of instruction. This is a systemwide practice implemented by UCOP, and has been further clarified in an FAQ posted on the Student Affairs website. A breakdown of Berkeley’s “Campus Fee” can be found on the Office of the Registrar’s Tuition & Fees web page.

UC Berkeley is not able to offer in-state tuition for nonresidents. The difference in tuition for residents versus nonresidents is a reflection of the significant investment by California taxpayers in the University of California system.

I am an International student and I have to pay a lot of fees related to that. I feel that it is unfair that we have to pay for transportation and gym fees when we don't use it or the service is not offered.

I am an International student and I have to pay a lot of fees related to that. I feel that it is unfair that we have to pay for transportation and gym fees when we don't use it or the service is not offered. Is there any way that the campus can adjust this?

Tuition and mandatory fees are set by the University of California Office of the President for all UC campuses. Tuition and mandatory fees have been set regardless of the method of instruction and will not be refunded in the event instruction occurs remotely for any part of the Academic Year. Mandatory university charges for tuition and student services continue to help cover ongoing operations such as the delivery of instruction and the cost of student services such as registration, financial aid, and remote academic advising. Our teaching continues, even as its method of delivery has changed. Students are connecting with and learning from world-class faculty, completing coursework, earning full course credit, and making progress toward an immensely valuable UC Berkeley degree. UC Berkeley student services continue to be available to students via remote options including virtual study jams, remote movie nights, “Coffee & Career” video chats, online fitness and art classes, and student-led programs and activities to ensure that the term remains a very powerful and enriching one for our students.

Some campus-based fees were established to support certain efforts like the Wellness Fee which is paying for many essential health services. Others were established to maintain the safety of buildings or other facilities when necessary for the health and safety of students - e.g., to address seismic deficiencies. Even as UC campuses such as ours have curtailed limited aspects of their operations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the costs that campus-based fees are intended to cover continue.

UC Berkeley is not able to offer in-state tuition for nonresidents. The difference in tuition for residents versus nonresidents is a reflection of the significant investment by California taxpayers in the University of California system.

Idea for fairness - Transit fees like for buses not needed for remote learning can be *optional.* There was an increase in transit fees. This seems illogical.

The transit fee is a student referendum voted on by the students. The reason for the increase in the fee is the students wanted additional service, a new bus line. They included the new bus line in the referendum and it passed when the students voted. It was not a campus decision, it was a student request.

As it currently stands, all student fees are being assessed regardless of the mode of instruction. This is a systemwide practice implemented by UCOP, and has been further clarified in an FAQ posted on the Student Affairs website.

We do not see the Class Pass Fee to be a usage fee that should not be assessed now, during remote instruction. Like many of our campus fees, this particular fee is funding an initiative that relies on stable multi-year revenue as per our agreement with AC Transit. We will continue to assess these fees as originally planned.

How can UCB justify mandating this fee when it is so concerned about maintaining public safety and student health and safety in all other areas?

Current common wisdom and guidance from the State and County suggest people should minimize use of public transportation as much as possible, but the school is still trying to impose a $95 transit fee for public transportation. Students will be remote in the Fall and even if they are able to be on campus for a short amount of time may not feel safe using public transportation. How can UCB justify mandating this fee when it is so concerned about maintaining public safety and student health and safety in all other areas?

The transit fee is a student referendum voted on by the students. The reason for the increase in the fee is the students wanted additional service, a new bus line. They included the new bus line in the referendum and it passed when the students voted. It was not a campus decision, it was a student request.

As it currently stands, all student fees are being assessed regardless of the mode of instruction. This is a systemwide practice implemented by UCOP, and has been further clarified in an FAQ posted on the Student Affairs website.

We do not see the Class Pass Fee to be a usage fee that should not be assessed now, during remote instruction. Like many of our campus fees, this particular fee is funding an initiative that relies on stable multi-year revenue as per our agreement with AC Transit. We will continue to assess these fees as originally planned.

No mention of graduate students thus far, are they not part of your broader picture? Do graduate students factor into decision making at UC Berkeley?

Graduate students form an important part of University Life. Whether in their programs or departments, or via Graduate Division town halls, or the scheduling of an appointment during office hours with Dean Lisa Garcia Bedolla, feedback and requests from graduate students help us to better serve the needs of our graduate students.

Will work-study be transferred into loans since positions at places like the libraries won’t be open for work-study?

There are a number of work-study positions that may offer remote work accommodations. The Work-Study Program office is working diligently to recruit additional work-study employers and inform existing employers that they may consider engaging work-study students in remote work. Consistent with standard practice in other years, if students do not accept the work-study offered in their financial aid package before the start of the term, it will automatically be converted into loan so the funding is available in form they can access right away, if needed. Students may request that the offered loan be converted back to work-study later on in the academic year when they identify a work-study opportunity. To learn more about work-study and how to get the most out of the program, please review the Work-Study Information for Students and Work-Study Frequently Asked Questions pages.

Currently, neither FAFSA nor Cal itself takes rent cost into account when determining financial aid. What can you do to take families’ rent costs into account so that this doesn’t happen?

Currently, neither FAFSA nor Cal itself takes rent cost into account when determining financial aid. For students living in the Bay Area, New York, and other high-rent areas, this can make the financial aid calculations inaccurate and result in families having to pay larger sums than they can afford. This is exacerbated year to year when those families need to work harder to increase their salary to keep up with rent but backfires when they report that increase in earnings to FAFSA. What can you do to take families’ rent costs into account so that this doesn’t happen?

Please allow us to correct an erroneous assumption in your question. Financial aid packages are based on the Estimated Total Cost of Attendance, which includes rent, food, transportation, personal expenses, and books and supplies in addition to tuition and fees. Off-campus rent amounts are based on actual rent costs that UC Berkeley students report in the periodic Undergraduate Cost of Attendance Survey conducted by the UC Office of the President. These costs are adjusted for inflation yearly. Should the standard allocation not match the actual living expenses students experience, they may request a Cost of Attendance Adjustment.

Will meeting students' needs when it comes to aid for, e.g., off-campus living, be affected by this deficit?

No. The student aid budget is separate from the campus operating budget.

Why are students still being charged a “campus fee” when the campus is closed? If this fee is being using for other purposes, shouldn’t the name change?

We use the term “campus fee” to describe a set of fees that are only charged at the UC Berkeley campus. Campus fees are distinct from “system-wide fees” such as tuition and the Student Services Fee, which are charged at the same rate to all students in the UC system and are set by the UC Office of the President and the UC Regents.

Campus fee referenda are approved by a vote of the student body, and the fees cannot be used for purposes outside the original referenda language. Some were established to support certain efforts like the Wellness Fee which is paying for many essential health services. Others were established to maintain the safety of buildings or other facilities when necessary for the health and safety of students - e.g., to address seismic deficiencies. Even as UC campuses such as ours have curtailed limited aspects of their operations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the costs that campus-based fees are intended to cover continue.

As it currently stands, all student fees are being assessed regardless of the mode of instruction. This is a systemwide practice implemented by UCOP, and has been further clarified in an FAQ posted on the Student Affairs website. A breakdown of Berkeley’s “Campus Fee” can be found on the Office of the Registrar’s Tuition & Fees web page.

Will the cost of attendance be adjusted for the lesser value remote learning we will be experiencing in the 2020-2021 school year?

Tuition and mandatory fees are set by the University of California Office of the President for all UC campuses. Tuition and mandatory fees have been set regardless of the method of instruction and will not be refunded in the event instruction occurs remotely for any part of the Academic Year. Mandatory university charges for tuition and student services continue to help cover ongoing operations such as the delivery of instruction and the cost of student services such as registration, financial aid, and remote academic advising. Our teaching continues, even as its method of delivery has changed. Students are connecting with and learning from world-class faculty, completing coursework, earning full course credit, and making progress toward an immensely valuable UC Berkeley degree. UC Berkeley student services continue to be available to students via remote options including virtual study jams, remote movie nights, “Coffee & Career” video chats, online fitness and art classes, and student-led programs and activities to ensure that the term remains a very powerful and enriching one for our students.

Some campus-based fees were established to support certain efforts like the Wellness Fee which is paying for many essential health services. Others were established to maintain the safety of buildings or other facilities when necessary for the health and safety of students - e.g., to address seismic deficiencies. Even as UC campuses such as ours have curtailed limited aspects of their operations in response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of the costs that campus-based fees are intended to cover continue.

UC Berkeley is not able to offer in-state tuition for nonresidents. The difference in tuition for residents versus nonresidents is a reflection of the significant investment by California taxpayers in the University of California system.

What is the university doing to facilitate childcare for Cal employees and the wider campus community?

What is the university doing to facilitate childcare for Cal employees and the wider campus community? We cannot effectively do our jobs if we have to take care of children throughout the day. Are University backed youth programs a priority for the campus?

We have created a new central website called “Caring for Families” (family.berkeley.edu). This site is a clearinghouse for all dependent care information; it points users to resources available to them (according to whether they are students, staff, or faculty). It will also have Covid-related updates. The site will also feature a new web-based tool that is under development, to help members of the campus community find others with whom to trade or share care. This tool is called “Berkeley Care Bubbles.”

How will the campus budget affect this fall semester and the spring 2021 semester? What if spring 2021 is fully online?

COVID-19 affects the campus budget in three major ways:

  1. Lost revenue in auxiliary operations (e.g., Athletics, Housing & Dining, CalPerformances) due to remote operations
  2. Increased costs required to deal with the virus (e.g., for remote instruction and operations, cleaning, virus testing)
  3. Lost funding due to the economic downturn caused by the pandemic (e.g., reduced state funding)

If the campus is fully online in the spring, the lost auxiliary revenue, in particular, will see the greatest negative impact.

Is there going to be a reduction in the number of GSIs being hired for Fall 2020? If so, how are PhD students who rely on GSI positions for funding themselves through grad school to proceed ahead?

We can’t predict whether departments will hire fewer GSIs overall since those factors are influenced by enrollment and other factors. Students who are concerned they may not get an appointment in their own department can review this Expected Jobs Opportunities list.

What are the University's top 3 expenses, and how have they changed over the past 10 years? What is driving that change?

Berkeley’s largest and most pressing expense is faculty and staff compensation, which grows almost every year due to the need to provide merit/cost of living increases and to ensure workforce competitiveness. Other major expenses include deferred maintenance and seismic corrections that are needed to improve the safety and quality of our campus building. As the oldest UC campus with the oldest infrastructure, these expenses are greater at Berkeley than at other UCs.

What does a budget cut mean for VCRO museums with an already tight budget, like the Botanical Garden, in terms of the amount they will be given and job security?

Unfortunately, this year’s budget cuts will be painful. The VCRO will consider a unit’s ability to cushion these cuts with available reserves and will also be expecting units to spend some of their “rainy day” funds to maintain their essential programs and personnel. We are aware that the museums, as well as the Botanical Garden and field stations are unique campus resources, and we are committed to keeping them viable through the current budget emergency.

Why do we budget a total of $30M for "testing & health services" over two years in the expense projections, a service that is currently free through the City of Berkeley for all residents and also covered by Health Insurance?

Why do we budget a total of $30M for "testing & health services" over two years in the expense projections, a service that is currently free through the City of Berkeley for all residents and also covered by Health Insurance? The IGI testing facility could bill the medical system for reimbursement; currently, most tests are done for populations not affiliated with UC at all (like power plant workers or prison inmates). It is not clear to me why we should cut established, successful educational projects in line with our core mission to fund free healthcare services, particularly if they benefit populations not even remotely affiliated with UC. Arguably, other societal institutions are better equipped and funded to handle testing costs. The government has agreed to reimburse all testing and this path - together with philanthropy- needs to be exhausted before we cut into funds needed for faculty recruitment, retention, and needed for the long-term success of the university.

Like most cities and counties, the City of Berkeley has found that, while it can offer testing to everyone, turnaround can be slow. The city estimates a turnaround of 6-8 days, which is too long to be very useful. UC Berkeley was able to mobilize quickly and start a testing lab during the early weeks of Shelter in Place, and has had enough capacity to assist the city in its testing, achieving a turnaround of a couple of days. For example, we test residents of some nursing homes and homeless shelters, as well as firefighters for the city. By testing our own staff and students, we relieve the city of the burden. Until cities have all the testing they need in a timely fashion, the Innovative Genomics Institute will continue to offer its services to the campus and community.

What percentage of tenured faculty will retire before the fall school year and what is the related financial savings?

Data is still preliminary. We have 20 retirements as of June 30, 2020, which is 1.33% of the faculty (this is a bit lower than usual). All were full Professors. Average salary of full Professors is $186,000; so, with benefits, these retirements represent savings of approximately $5,150,000.

Can we put pressure on the regents? I support pay cuts across the board rather than layoffs.

We are encouraging UCOP to move as quickly as possible to implement an equitable furlough program to minimize the need to lay employees off. However, for those campus services that are not currently being provided, some degree of layoffs may still be required if employees cannot be reassigned.

I’m a new faculty member and I’m wondering how budget cuts could impact new faculty.

The effects on new faculty would be no different than on veteran faculty. We will honor startup packages. We ran a bridge grant program that will allocate around $600,000 in response to requests from Assistant Professors whose research was affected by the curtailment of campus activity in the spring.
https://apo.berkeley.edu/sites/default/files/bridging_grant_program_for_...

The pandemic has a disparate impact on those who have lower incomes. Will the Senior Management Group be asked to take a larger time (pay) reduction compared to other non-represented staff?

The furlough program under consideration by UCOP would be tiered so that those with higher incomes would have to take higher numbers of furlough days (and, as a result, have a larger reduction in compensation).

Can you commit that any pay reduction (whatever it's called) will not affect the compensation used to calculate our 3-year highest average compensation figure used for determining pension?

This is not within UC Berkeley’s control, but rather the retirement system’s control. However, a reduction in time does not affect the salary calculation for retirement purposes. It does, however, affect service time accruals.

Why is Cal not implementing the tiered percentage salary cuts for everyone on campus as was previously suggested by some campus leadership?

The campus cannot take this step on its own. UCOP must implement such a furlough program and it has indicated that it is developing a plan that might be ready for in depth discussion in the Fall.

How will UC Berkeley leadership shift the financial burden of cuts, reduction in time, pay, etc. to staff who have the willingness and/or capacity to weather such cutbacks, so we can support our most vulnerable employees?

Voluntary reductions in time and voluntary separations can and will be used as one way to give people who are in a position to reduce their income the opportunity to do so.

Has a 37 1/2 hour work week been considered?

Yes, this type of reduction in time is also under consideration.

Will UC Berkeley consider temporary salary reductions for people who earn above a certain threshold in order to safeguard the jobs of more vulnerable workers?

UC Berkeley is considering all options to address the budget shortfall, including reductions in time for employees.

Can voluntary salary reductions also be done on a temporary basis? With a freeze on merit increases etc, when can one expect to have salary level restored, if at all?

A voluntary action can be revoked at any time. We do not know when UCOP will take further action on merit increases.

What time frame is meant by the term "temporary" for work reassignment, layoffs, time reduction?

What time frame is meant by the term "temporary" for work reassignment, layoffs, time reduction (e.g., X months? years?); how will that length of time be decided; and what is expected to happen after that period (e.g., back to previous level, re-evaluation with potentially another temporary period, or changed to permanent).

Temporary layoffs can be, generally speaking, up to 4 months with the length of time varying in accordance with the applicable collective bargaining agreement or policy. The length of a temporary layoff will be determined according to business need. Prior to the end of a temporary layoff, the business unit will evaluate next steps, including whether a temporary layoff will be made indefinite or possibly extended if the applicable collective bargaining agreement or policy permits it. Reassignments will be made depending on business needs.

What commitments have the unions made to cut salary and merit pay costs? They need to (reduce) pay their fair share.

UCOP, which handles all contractual interactions with organized labor, has been negotiating with the unions on this issue.

Can campus send a survey out to staff to find out the areas to which workloads have increased with no compensation?

Over my 20 plus years at campus, I have seen the staff consistently take on more work, when employees leave, retire, or vacate positions, and we have not been compensated for the additional work. Can campus send a survey out to staff to find out the areas to which workloads have increased with no compensation? It seems that there is a disconnect between the powers to be and staff when it comes to workload. The union has been trying to negotiate this issue for years to no avail.

We are continuously working to set realistic expectations for managers and the campus as a whole, with the message being less people means less work. We rely on managers to work with their teams to understand and agree on what work can and cannot be done given our reduced capacity, which is not the same across all business units.