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Dec-04-2008 09:57printcomments

Governor’s Proposed Budget Cuts Chemeketa Funding, Yamhill County Expansion

In addition, based on the Governor’s budget, Chemeketa anticipates losing millions of dollars in general fund revenue.

This is what happened in 2005 when Oregon's funding for higher education was strained.
This is what happened in 2005 when Oregon's funding for higher education was strained. Photo by Tim King Salem-News.com

(SALEM, Ore.) - Chemeketa Community College leaders are bracing for the impact of the funding reductions in Governor Ted Kulongoski’s proposed budget.

Chemeketa expected state funding of $6 million to help expand their campus in McMinnville. That funding is not in the current budget. The college also anticipates a 6 percent reduction in state funding of its operating budget over the next biennium.

The McMinnville project was planned to house career technical education services and complements the campus expansion funded with approval of a bond levy last May. The bond funding is not in jeopardy and plans are proceeding on schedule for a new 40,000-square-foot building to house general education classrooms, science labs, and a library. The new McMinnville building is scheduled to open in 2011.

Lacking the additional $6 million from the state, the college will forego construction of a second building on the McMinnville site. The second facility would have provided space for specialized technical trades, such as electronics and welding, that lead to high-demand, living-wage jobs.

“The opportunity we miss without state funding, is providing Yamhill County with a comprehensive community college and local technical education that is critical for workforce development,” said Chemeketa President Cheryl Roberts.

In addition, based on the Governor’s budget, Chemeketa anticipates losing millions of dollars in general fund revenue. College officials are exploring scenarios to reduce expenses, increase revenue and identify appropriate opportunities for mission critical investment in a period of budget contraction.

“The success of our students remains our top priority as we collaborate with faculty and staff to find creative solutions to serve students during a time when they need us most,” said Roberts.

Source: Chemeketa Community College




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