Budget Facts following the 2010 legislative session
Once again, the community and technical colleges saw deep cuts to their base budgets: $44.8 million cut for FY2011 beginning July 1, 2010 ($37.7 million in basic cut plus an additional $7.1 million in additional compensation cuts (furloughs). Here are some of the facts:
We are very grateful that the Legislature and Gov. Chris Gregoire focused attention on the needs of laid-off workers and low-income adults trying to train for high-wage jobs Worker Retraining and Opportunity Grants, respectively. The colleges will continue to stretch to the degree possible to serve as many dislocated workers as possible as we work our way through this great recession.
College enrollments continue to rise
College students of all ages are also making clear decisions to reduce commute time, save money on gasoline, and learn in flexible ways. On-line enrollments have increased by over 5,000 FTEs (a 25 percent increase) over last year at this time. Rising student demand paired with lower state support means that funding per student is dropping substantially:
Community and technical colleges will need additional resources in the coming two years to sustain the current level of service. The unemployment rate is expected to remain above 9 percent for the foreseeable future so colleges will remain under serious pressure to meet this record demand.