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UC Merced Budget Process

UC Merced's "budget call" is a process designed to determine effective, sustainable financial plans for UC Merced’s schools and divisions. The process is designed to align resource allocations with the university’s strategic plan – a blueprint for growth, academic advancement, and diversity through the year 2030.

The budget call process follows these principles:

  • Transparency – Clear and easily understood
  • Predictable – Can be used reliably for future needs
  • Integrated – Connected with other campus processes
  • Adaptable – It is a “living” process that can be revisited as needed
  • Accountable – Can measure progress

The university's schools and division have been asked to develop a multi-year document that outlines the initiatives it plans to undertake to advance UC Merced’s goals as outlined in the strategic plan. These initiatives may address infrastructure that underpins the university goals or contribute directly to advancing a specific goal, objective or measure of the strategic plan.

Plans developed by the schools and divisions form the basis for resource requests in the budget call process. Each year, schools and divisions will be invited to revisit and extend their plans. It is anticipated that, on a rolling basis, the first two years of initiatives outlined in the plan will represent a prioritization/sequencing of work based on the priorities identified by the Chancellor and recommended by the EVC/Provost as part of the annual budget call. The process must be forward-thinking to enable proactive planning at the school and division levels in support of the strategic plan, while also conservative in its projections to ensure UC Merced is fiscally responsible.

Annual Budget Call Schedule


  • Determine baseline budget levels for schools and divisions based on cost drivers
  • Develop preliminary budget estimates based on projected state budget and enrollment expectations for the upcoming year
  • Budget call submissions due from schools and division (late spring)
  • Budget requests reviewed and prioritized by Joint Council
  • CFO and EVC/Provost make recommendations to Chancellor
  • Chancellor announces preliminary budgets for divisions and schools


  • Governor finalizes state budget
  • University budget expectations updated
  • University budget estimates revised based on updated state allocations
  • If budgetary surpluses or deficits arise from prior year, funding additions or reductions are determined for schools and divisions
  • Final budgets provided to schools and divisions for upcoming fiscal year


  • Enrollment census complete
  • Budget implications determined. Surplus or deficit for current fiscal year determined
  • If there’s a surplus:
  • Review budget call prioritization from prior fiscal year (informed by strategic plan) and revisit unfunded priorities
  • Draft preliminary mid-year funding augmentation recommendation and circulate to Joint Council.
  • If there’s a deficit:
  • Announce spending target reductions for fiscal year to Joint Council


FY 2022-23 Budget Call Timeline

November: Formal budget call announcement to schools and divisions

Feb. 1 – April 14, 2022: EVC/Provost and CFO meet with school and division strategic planning teams

April 15, 2022: Budget call submissions due from schools and divisions

April 18 – April 29, 2022: EVC/Provost and CFO meet with schools and divisions to review submissions

May 2-13, 2022: EVC/Provost and CFO provide proposed budget allocations for FY 2022-23.

Proposed allocations are reviewed by Chancellor and Senior Administrators Council.

May 16: 2022: Chancellor announces FY 2022-23 preliminary budgets for schools and divisions