STLCC to receive revenue boost

Posted on 05 February 2013 by admin

Governor Nixon reverses $8.5 million cut to higher education

 

By: Kavahn Mansouri
-Editor in Chief-

 

On Jan. 28 Gov. Jay Nixon met with Missouri’s chancellors and college presidents to discuss the reversal of an $8.5 million higher education cut. STLCC-Meramec President George Wasson attended the meeting.

“The state has been collecting more taxes and sending out lessened refunds than anticipated, so they’ve got quite a bit of flexibility now in this year’s budget since it was based on those lower figures,” Wasson said. “We had been hoping that the governor would release that 1 percent withhold and we’re very happy to hear him proceed with those dollars.”

Wasson estimates STLCC will receive $400,000 from the reallocations of the higher education cuts.

“That’s not huge in the overall $165 million budget, but with funds being as tight as they’ve been, every dollar we receive from the state is well received,” Wasson said.

Wasson said a decrease in student enrollment has had an effect on the budget in the past academic years.

“One of the issues we’ve faced here is the decline of enrollment, which has not just been here at the community college but also in many colleges across the country,” Wasson said. “We’ve got about $6 million less coming in tuition revenues than we had anticipated. Whenever we have changes such as this on the revenue side that helps offset budgetary issues that we’ve been trying to take care of this year.”

During the meeting, Wasson said the governor outlined his plans for the budget he would be submitting to the legislature this spring.

“He told us our core budget would be held the same, so that was very good news,” Wasson said. “We’d been experiencing cuts. For higher education, two and four  yearcolleges and universities he is proposing that $34 million be added to the budget and distributed based on performance funding.”

Wasson said the good news is that the core is going to stay the same and there will be some additional money available to colleges if the legislature passes his budget.

Wasson said ‘performance-funding’ is an evaluation process for community colleges which consists of five areas based on performance. Four areas are shared by each of the 12 community colleges and the fifth is an efficiency figure that is unique to each of the colleges.

Wasson said performance-funding areas consist of three-year graduation and transfer rate, math developmental college success, English developmental college success, license certification exam and budgeted revenue per credit hour completed.

Wasson said the additional funds will go into the STLCC general revenues.

“That will help us come closer to balancing our budget this year since we have our budgeted revenue and budgeted expenses which are budgeted the same. When revenue comes in more we have to hold down expenses or have some change in revenue that will offset that change.”

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