The House's proposed budget for the state's university system would slash $175 million from the university's budget.
That's a far bigger hit than the Senate's $50 million proposed previously. It's also a larger cut than Gov. Beverly Perdue has recommended.
The House is expected to vote on its budget next week and already Thursday, UNC leaders were sounding alarms.
"We're not as excited about the House budget as we were about the Senate budget," Holden Thorp, chancellor at UNC-Chapel Hill, told his trustees Thursday morning. "There are some very severe cuts."
If approved, the cuts would lead to the elimination of about 1,700 positions across the university system, a far larger total than the 1,200 in jeopardy under Perdue's spending proposal, UNC President Erskine Bowles said Thursday.
"Fully understanding the impacts of these reductions will take some time," Bowles said in a news release Thursday. "In all of our previous analyses, we never imagined that reductions would reach this level."
Even if 1,700 positions are eliminated, fewer workers than that would actually lose their jobs. Universities routinely hold positions vacant to prepare for budget cuts.
Still, Bowles and others have said for months now that cuts at that level will force the elimination of hundreds of faculty positions across the state.
Read Friday's News & Observer for more.