ICANN will use a combination of auction proceeds and operational savings to replenish reserve fund.
ICANN’s organizational growth and the IANA transition has caused a budget shortfall, and ICANN plans to make it up by cutting costs and raiding the new TLD auction piggy bank.
The organization believes its reserve fund should equal one year of operating costs. It’s $68 million below that point.
It plans to make up this deficit over eight years by running a fiscal surplus of $32 million total. The other $36 million will be taken from the new top level domain auction proceeds.
Auctions have delivered over $240 million in cash. The community is still deciding how to divvy up that cash, but giving some of it back to ICANN was never the intention.
There’s a veiled threat to new TLD registries that might be upset about ICANN using some of it to cover its shortfall: another option was for ICANN to raise fees.