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Annual Operating Budget Timeline & Process

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UT System Board of Regents Rule 20501: Accounting, Operating Budgets, and Legislative Appropriation Requests directs the annual operating budget process. 

The following is a representative timeline of the process used to complete the operating budget for each fiscal year. The institution-specific portions of the process vary slightly among institutions and the timeline may adjust slightly depending upon whether or not the budget is adopted in a year in which the Texas Legislature enacts the biennial General Appropriations Act.

Institution Budget Council Meetings (October through completion)

  • Analyze data for potential reallocation of resources,
  • Review any new cost savings initiatives,
  • Review proposed new fees,
  • Review other potential income sources or increases,
  • Project current income stream, 
  • Review requests for additional funding, and
  • Establish priorities.

UT System Board of Regents (BOR) Approves Budget Preparation Policies and Operating Budget Rules in February

  • Budget Preparation Policies adopted by the BOR as required by Regents Rule 20501.
    • Directs adherence to the BOR guidelines and the General Appropriations Act.
    • Directs that institutions maintain favorable operating margins and minimize use of prior year balances.
    • Provides salary guidelines including merit salary increases for faculty and staff.
    • Provides high-level guidance on staff benefits including staff group insurance, retirement programs, workers’ compensation insurance, and unemployment compensation insurance as well as other operating expenses.
  • Approves the proposed Operating Budget Rules for the upcoming fiscal year as required by Regents Rule 20501.

Institution Budget Councils Meet (February to May)

  • Establish salary policy.
  • Firm up income projections.
  • Send budget instructions to departments.
  • Establish timeline for departments to follow.
  • Most institutions hold departmental budget meetings.
  • Discuss strategic goals and objectives, progress toward attainment, and budget needs.
  • Texas Legislature finalizes appropriation bill (late May of odd-numbered years only).

Budget Discussions with System Administration and Detailed Budget Instructions (April through May)

  • UT System Office of Budget and Planning (OB&P) issues detailed budget instructions on behalf of the Chancellor as required by Regents Rule 20501 and by the approved Budget Preparation Policies.
  • Discuss institutional goals and objectives, progress toward attainment, and budget needs.
  • Discuss ongoing resource reallocation process.
  • Institutional Budget Councils finalize budget based on recommendations from OB&P.

Review by Office of Budget and Planning (Late June through July)

  • Institutions provide budgets to OB&P which follow a review, discussion, and final revision process. 
  • Institutions Summary level budgets are consolidated for BOR presentation materials.
  • Formal budget approved at the August BOR meeting.

Board of Regents Approves Annual Operating Budget (August)

  • Formal budget approved at the August BOR meeting.
  • OB&P makes finalized budgets available online in accordance with Texas Government Code Sec. 2052.0021 and provides statutorily required budget submissions to oversight agencies.