Campus Spending

UC Santa Cruz spending and economic contribution
The University brings state, federal, and student fee dollars into the local region and each dollar spent by the campus grows to return more than $1.60 to Santa Cruz County…

Sources and uses of campus funds

Sources of University Funds

The University's operating expenditures fall into two major categories: (i) salaries and benefits for its employees (nearly 60 percent of the total) and (ii) those related to purchases of supplies, equipment, and services and to new construction.  Nearly all of the University's budget comes into Santa Cruz County from outside the local area—in the form of, for example, State of California appropriations; extramural support—including Federal contracts and grants, private gifts, and endowments; student tuition and fees; and students/employees using their personal resources to purchase services from campus auxiliaries—e.g., residence halls, bookstore, parking, etc.  Thus, much of the money spent by the University represents new money to the community and generates new economic activity within the region that would otherwise not have occurred without the presence of the campus.

(The economic impact of the salaries the University pays its employees is estimated in the next section.)

Operating and capital budget expenditures

Economic Impact of University Spending

UCSC spends a large portion of its operating budget in the local economy through purchases of supplies, equipment, and services (including on-campus student housing and food services).  During 2004-05, UCSC spent approximately $198 million in such operating and housing/food services expenditure categories, and it is estimated that, of these expenditures, $108 million were spent in the local economy.

That local spending generated $201 million in economic activity which, in turn, created 2,330 additional jobs within the County. In addition, during 2004-05 UCSC local spending on new construction and capital projects is estimated at $40 million, contributing approximately $70 million in economic activity and creating 535 additional jobs.

Each of these direct and direct plus induced economic impacts is depicted as a bar chart.

In total, UCSC spent $47 million on capital projects in 2004-05, primarily for on-campus construction. During that year, more than 110 contracts were awarded for projects ranging from small maintenance jobs to the construction of major facilities such as those for the humanities and social sciences and for the physical sciences.

Based on 2004-05 spending patterns, the University estimates that 80 percent of total capital expenditures were for contracts awarded to local contractors. In addition, at least half of non-local contract awards used subcontractors based locally, resulting in the capture of additional capital expenditures within the County economy. Based on these estimates, approximately $40 million of the University's spending on capital projects flowed into the local economy.

Examples of local expenditures

By far the largest University local expenditure is its investment in employee salaries (who, in turn, spend over three-quarters of their earnings in the local economy), but the campus also purchases supplies, equipment, and services from and awards construction contracts to local firms.

During 2004-05, local purchases of supplies, equipment, and services included:

Almost 100% of the fresh and bulk food served each day to thousands of students in on-campus residence halls and restaurants is purchased locally—of which, 20% is locally-grown, mostly organic, produce (including 2,000 pounds of lettuce weekly).

60% of office supplies were purchased locally in 2004-05; the campus also rented or leased over $4 million in off-campus space.

The campus depends on local agencies for a wide variety of service needs; while too wide-ranging to enumerate here, these contracts represented over $11 million in 2004-05.

In that same year, the following contracts were among those awarded to local firms:

The Humanities and Social Sciences Facility is being managed by the Santa Cruz branch of a major Bay Area project management and construction firm. Similarly, much of the electrical and mechanical work needed to complete the Physical Sciences Building was awarded to local firms.

Most seismic corrections and major maintenance projects are handled entirely by local firms—as well as projects involving electrical and communications upgrades to support new technologies and departmental renovations to support new programmatic needs.

Nearly all landscape and outdoor projects such as signage, hydroseeding, and decking installation/repair, parking lot maintenance/upgrades, and playing field work (including those for children of students or employees) were awarded to local contractors.