During the last plenary of the year, chaired by Ana Suárez, the Social Council’s Budget and Action Plan was also approved, with a 490,949 euro budget, a reduction of 3.5% compared to the current financial year.
The University of Las Palmas de Gran Canaria’s Social Council approved the draft ULPGC 2022 Budget, which amounts to 162.48 million euros and entails a 7.9% increase compared to the 2021 budget, according to the University’s director Roberto Moreno. He also emphasised that this is a budget with “realistic income provisions and prudent expenditure provisions” which guarantees the normal activity of the ULPGC.
The director, Roberto Moreno, explained to the Social Council plenary that these budgets, previously approved by the University’s governing board, “have been drawn up in a context of uncertainty linked to the impact of the health and economic crisis caused by the pandemic” and that they have therefore taken into account 1.91 million euros in appropriations in order to meet costs incurred due to COVID.
Regarding the total expenditure anticipated for the ULPGC during the 2022 financial year, Roberto Moreno highlighted during the plenary that the budget programme with the greatest share is that for ULPGC management and services, representing 38.5% of the budget. This is followed by the programme related to teaching at 33.4% of the total budget and the programme related to research which represents 24.8%. Lastly, the social participation programme remains at 0.3% of the budget and relates to the budgetary appropriations of the Social Council.
With reference to economic classification, the most significant portion of the 2022 budget will be allocated to staff costs, specifically 111.2 million euros (68.5% of the budget). Another 23.07 million euros will be earmarked for services and current assets, and University investments amount to 24.28 million euros, compared with the 16.30 million assigned to this area in 2021.
In relation to the ULPGC dependant entities, the University’s director highlighted that the accounts for the TIC ULPGC and RIC ULPGC companies currently have undergone rigorous procedures in which expenses are adapted to the income received. Moreover, the director reported that in 2022 the RIC ULPGC company, which primarily manages the university halls of residence, will also adopt a new model for the management of the ULPGC merchandise shop.
The ULPGC Fundación Parque Científico y Tecnológico anticipates a projected income from its own activity of 3.7 million euros and the TIC ULPGC expects a net revenue with a value of 1.04 million euros.
The director assessed this draft budget as “an austere budget which demonstrates a lack of Canary Island regional government funding but which nevertheless reinforces real investments”, while also advocating for the need to obtain a multi-annual funding contract programme including a strong plan for investments into physical infrastructures.
Similarly, the director submitted to the plenary the ULPGC multi-annual financial programming for the 2022-2024 period which has been presented to the Canary Island government. In this regard, the person in charge of ULPGC funding also reiterated the ULPGC governing team’s interest in guaranteeing the institution’s financial sustainability with a stable funding plan, for which “in our budget we show the urgent need for a multi-annual plan for Canary Island government funding, mainly with regard to infrastructures”.
The Social Council 2022 Action Plan
During this final plenary of the year, the Social Council’s 2022 Budget and Action Plan was also approved. This amounts to 490,949 euros and registers a 3.5% decrease in relation to the current 2021 financial year. The amount assigned from the Canary Island regional government is the same as for the 2021 financial year, at 325,000 euros, and the internal resources of the ULPGC provided to this body have decreased to 165,949.25 from 184,119.96 euros (-9.87%) as a result of a reduction in costs in the area of staff costs.
The Social Council budget presented and approved in the plenary has a bearing on three important lines of action: the promotion of the relationship between the University and society; the supervision of economic activities and the provision of services through internal monitoring; and the bid for institutional improvement and academic excellence. Along this line, in 2022 the Council expects to effectively promote the ULPGC Alumni Association and foster ULPGC relations with its cultural, professional, economic, and social environment through a greater dialogue with the productive sector, the signing of an agreement with the Confederación Canaria de Empresarios [Canary Island Confederation of Entrepreneurs] being expected to materialise in January for this purpose.
Finally, the plenary has agreed the ULPGC Social Council’s support of the Las Palmas de Gran Canaria city council in order for the municipality to be recognised as a ‘City of Science and Innovation’, for which it is expected that the city and the ULPGC will increase their ties and mutual cooperation.