Chancellor unveils drastic scenarios for cuts to higher education

Dan Klaich, Nevada’s higher education chancellor, told the system’s governing Board of Regents the state is facing the worst economic shortfall in anyone’s memory, nearly $1 billion. This will mean either massive cuts to every aspect of government, or woefully unpopular tax increases. Or both.


The packed meeting was held on the College of Southern Nevada’s campus.

If the Legislature applies the cuts equally across state government, it will likely mean budgets will be reduced by 22 percent for the rest of this fiscal year and the next one.

A 22 percent cut from government support for the state’s higher ed system works out to about $110 million.

Klaich outlined three scenarios that would cut that much from the system:

1. Close Nevada State College and the College of Southern Nevada.

2. Close Great Basin College, Truckee Meadows Community College, Desert Research Institute, UNLV’s law and dental schools, and the system’s medical school.

3. Close the state college, Great Basin, Truckee Meadows, Western Nevada College, all athletics at the two universities and the agricultural experiment station at UNR.

Don’t like those options? Klaich laid out a few others.

The system could implement 20 percent salary cuts across the board.

It could lay off 1,290 faculty and staff.

It could implement tuition and fee hikes of 48 percent.

Contact reporter Richard Lake at or 702-383-0307.