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A joint effort between the Faculty Club and the Brown Organizational Review Committee succeeded in reducing the club's expenses by $50,000 last fiscal year, said Richard Bova, senior associate dean of residential and dining services.

The ORC report issued last February called for a transfer of surplus funds from the Office of Residential Life and Brown Dining Services to the Faculty Club, which corresponded to $100,000 and $102,000, respectively, at the end of the fiscal year ending June 30. As part of this budget reduction plan, the ORC — which along with the University Resources Committee was charged with cutting $30 million from the University's budget for the past fiscal year — recommended that the Faculty Club reduce the Dining Services subsidy by $50,000, Bova said. The ORC also recommended that the club continue its "ongoing revenue-enhancing initiatives," according to the report.

Because the restaurant is financially affiliated with three other University departments — ResLife, Dining Services and Auxiliary Properties — the annual budgets for all four units combined "are designed to come out to zero," Bova said. When setting the Faculty Club's budgeting for the fiscal year, revenue is not projected to meet expenses, he added.

The funds that ResLife and Dining Service contribute to the Faculty Club are used to aid the restaurant in meeting its expenses, Bova said. The use of the contributions "is not discretionary. I know exactly what we are using that money for and where it goes," he added.

This goal to reduce the Dining Services subsidy by half has been reached because "of the Faculty Club coming and working with the ORC," Bova said. The restaurant adopted three broad measures to attain its goal. The first was reduction in operational expenses, which involved spending less on dining equipment. The second was savings from "creative workforce redistribution," which involved "some salary savings," Bova said. The third involved generating income from external business.

But because the Faculty Club is organized primarily as "service to the University in providing for faculty and student lunches," it does not aim at turning a profit, Bova said. Most universities have some form of faculty dining, and these "are not necessarily stand-alone entities financially," he added.

ResLife and Dining Services, as University departments, are not designed to net profit either, Bova said. "If there are residual monies at the year's end, those monies are reinvested in the buildings," he added.

The late-summer opening of the restaurant to the general public on Friday evenings had been part of the third portion of the plan. The decision was designed to attract outside business and to reduce disparity between revenue and expenses, Bova said. "We're opening up, people can give a look and hopefully they will like what they see," he said, adding that he hoped this would bolster restaurant memberships and event reservations.

But the program has since been phased out due to lack of popularity, Ann Hoffman, director of administration for Dining Services, wrote to The Herald in an e-mail.

As for future budgetary aims, "our goal would be to get revenue and expenses to combine to zero,"  Bova said, without contributions from other departments. But he added that this objective might not be achievable in the current restaurant market.

The Faculty Club is "a great hub" for the University, designed to service students, faculty and staff, Bova said. But without external department subsidies, it wouldn't be able to operate, and "there would be nothing to take its place," he added.




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