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Uconn has work to do after budget

Imagine being told costs to repair your house are, oh, about $1 million.

After griping, however, it gets reduced to, say, $500,000.

Is that really a reason to celebrate?

After all, for most folks, paying a $500,000 bill is just as damaging on the pocketbook as $1 million — despite the 50 percent cut.

That’s the situation the University of Connecticut is in.

After weeks of facing a $300-million-plus cut in the state’s budget the next three years, it will now see its three-year budget reduced by nearly $143 million.

That was the recent result of both the House and Senate deliberating and approving last month a new state budget, the last state in the U.S. to approve a spending plan for the current fiscal year.

The bipartisan nature of this budget meant Gov. Dannel P. Malloy would not have been able to successfully veto it the way he did with an earlier spending package that would have cut UConn’s funding by more than $300 million over three years.

When that happened earlier in the fall, UConn President Susan Herbst predicted such diabolical results, one would have thought UConn would dissolve into the Connecticut soil it occupies.

It didn’t and it never was going to.

Nonetheless, such a cut would have been damaging, but — then again — so is the $143 million reduction.

There are still programs and staff members in jeopardy.

There’s still lots of work to be done and still much that could go away.

Yes, State U should have done a better job being more accountable. No doubt, the days of second houses for its president and unlimited access to taxpayer dollars are over.

Now is the time to get to work.


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