2016 Legislative Budget Requests

Education Budget

  1. Workload $3.5 million (2.18% increase) - Provides funds for increased demand for IFAS research and extension activities based on the delivery of research information to IFAS clientele throughout Florida.  The costs are determined based on a formula that accounts for everything from patents and licenses, field consultations, research materials, educational materials, group learning events, etc.
  2. Beef Teaching Unit Renovation $2.6 million – This is a complete renovation of the UF/IFAS Beef Teaching Unit.  The Beef Teaching Unit is an 80 acre farm that includes a commercial style 100-head feed-yard and a 35-head cow herd of various types, sizes, and production ability. The unit serves the undergraduate student population in the Department of Animal Sciences, averaging 500+ undergraduates, all of whom receive instruction at the unit.  The facility is in critical need of updating as it is outdated, limiting teaching of the latest technology and animal management techniques, is unable to comply with water quality standards and lacks basic facilities such as adequate restrooms. Improved facilities will enable UF/IFAS to recruit top undergraduate students and enable Master’s and Doctoral candidates to pursue research at the unit.
  3. Information, Technology, Training and Support $1,850,600 – These funds would provide for updated online communication and video conferencing equipment and software to improve access to online learning for undergraduates as well as the public.  In addition, these resources would enable us to expand our Mobile Application development capacity as currently, demand far exceeds supply.  There are 11 UF/IFAS Web and Mobile apps that enable clientele to get UF/IFAS related information and services anytime, anywhere on their mobile device such as Plant Guides, Citrus Diseases, Forages and minute by minute weather reports that enable more efficient use of irrigation.  Currently, Mobile Web apps requests from departments exceed the capacity to develop new apps.   It would also provide IT support in all five Extension Districts to train agents in the use of technology for their programs.

Agriculture Budget

  1. Invasive Species Early Detection, Rapid Response $1.3 million – Rebuilding the Invasive Exotics Biological Control facility in Ft. Pierce and expand program to include an Early Detection, Rapid Response for invasive wildlife component.  So, we would include but certainly not be limited to some of the more popular animals such as pythons and monitors.  This program would provide scientific information on effective control methods to land managers as well as baseline data to determine impacts of exotic species on the ecosystem.