The University of Maine system says it expects a $3 million budget shortfall when the fiscal year closes in June 2020.

The shortage comes despite a tuition increase, an additional $10 million in state funding, and increased enrollment. Now, administrators are working to determine how to close the gap. According to the Portland Press Herald, one recommendation is to dip into the reserves for campuses in Augusta, Machias, and the law school in Portland. In addition, they suggest using about a million dollars in system reserves.

The budget will be reviewed next week and then the full board of trustees is scheduled to vote on a recommendation on May 3rd. The trustees will vote on the proposed $573 million budget at their May 19-20 meeting, which is a 3.8 percent increase from the current budget.

Some of the changes in the proposed budget include a 7.6 percent increase in financial aid, from $87 million in 2019 to $93 million in 2020. The budget also suggests a 4 percent increase in in-state tuition at the law school, from $22,290 to $23,190. That tuition hasn't changed since 2013. An average 2.8 increase in tuition for the other campuses has also been proposed, with the cost of in-state tuition, fees, and room and board changing from $17,819 a year to $18,314.

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