The president of the University of Connecticut has made it clear that $16 million in midyear state cuts to her budget will not impact her promise to use the revenue from tuition hikes to hire new tenure-track faculty.

In fact, trustees at the University of Connecticut got to hear all about how those plans are moving “full speed” ahead Wednesday.

What is not clear is where the $16 million will come from.

Susan Herbst would not take questions yesterday after the Board of Trustees meeting, nor was she available Thursday for a phone interview. Larry McHugh, the chairman of the board, did not have any details of how the university would shed $16 million Gov. Dannell Malloy wants cut from its budget.

The university has increased the number of tenure-track faculty by 50 this year and is planning for 120 new faculty members next fiscal year, as promised when increasing tuition by 6 percent to pay for this hiring plan.

While Herbst is unwavering that the hiring plan will move forward, it is unclear whether further tuition and fee increases will be used to help makeup for state cuts. State funding to UConn has been reduced by 14 percent — or about $30 million — since fiscal 2010. The state is also facing another deficit next fiscal year.

Tuition decisions are typically made by the board in January.

McHugh said further tuition increases have not been discussed, nor has the possibility been ruled out.

“It’s just too soon to say,” he said.

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Jacqueline Rabe Thomas

Jacqueline was CT Mirror’s Education and Housing Reporter, and an original member of the CT Mirror staff, joining shortly before our January 2010 launch. Her awards include the best-of-show Theodore A. Driscoll Investigative Award from the Connecticut Society of Professional Journalists in 2019 for reporting on inadequate inmate health care, first-place for investigative reporting from the New England Newspaper and Press Association in 2020 for reporting on housing segregation, and two first-place awards from the National Education Writers Association in 2012. She was selected for a prestigious, year-long Propublica Local Reporting Network grant in 2019, exploring a range of affordable and low-income housing issues. Before joining CT Mirror, Jacqueline was a reporter, online editor and website developer for The Washington Post Co.’s Maryland newspaper chains. Jacqueline received an undergraduate degree in journalism from Bowling Green State University and a master’s in public policy from Trinity College.

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