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USM budget panel wants reports

HATTIESBURG — A budget panel at the University of Southern Mississippi is asking administrative and academic department heads at the school to make a case for keeping their units.

The University Priorities Committee — an in-house budget overview committee chaired by Associate Provost Bill Powell — wants the reports by mid-May, according to The Hattiesburg American.

Programs and job positions are at stake as school officials scramble to plug an additional $15 million-$20 million funding gap for the 2011-12 academic year in addition to the $12 million shortfall for 2010-11 shored up last year.

Provost Bob Lyman kept alive the possibility of 100 faculty cuts by 2011-12 during a recent town meeting.

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