NORMAN — Even in tough economic times, university alumni, corporations and friends will keep up their donations. It happens with churches, nonprofit charities and universities. The University of Oklahoma this week announced that it has recorded an all-time high in the total amount of private gifts received for a six-month period.
OU officials said the $139,709,883 received between July 1 and Dec. 31 was the highest for any six-month period. The gifts came from more donors, too. The number of private gifts has risen by more than 1,800 from 27,585 so far in Fiscal Year 2013 compared to 25,734 at this time last year.
The gifts come at a time when state appropriations as a percentage of the operating costs are down significantly. State regents will ask for increased appropriations this year in hopes of making up past budget cuts.
But they’ll have to get in line. Lawmakers have received budget increase requests from state agencies that total about $1 billion for the estimated $140 million additional dollars they expect to appropriate.
Those requests have come from corrections, the Department of Human Services, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol, common schools and the needed capitol building repairs.