VC expects budget cuts, renames itself
Nov. 29, 2010 at 5:29 a.m.
VC ANTICIPATED BUDGET CUTS Victoria College anticipates the state will cut its current budget by two-to-three percent. The cut could be as much as $200,000.
The college gets about 26 percent of its funding from the state and the remainder from local taxes and tuition.
Because of higher enrollment numbers, the school believes it will be prepared for the cuts.
Victoria College will continue holding its breath for news of state funding cuts after a finance committee meeting Monday afternoon.
"We have not received any official word about any reductions," said VC President Tom Butler. "The only word we have received is word from staff that those reductions are planned."
Butler said the college will be able to handle the cuts - which are expected be as much as $200,000 or three percent of the VC budget - because of higher enrollment numbers.
"We have higher revenues because we've got more students," he said. "So our higher numbers are paying off for us."
The cuts come after colleges statewide previously reduced budgets by five percent and are expected to reduce budgets by 10 percent for the next legislative session.
"This means that we have fewer funds available to address next year's cut and the year after that," Butler said.
The committee also reviewed the annual audit, which showed the school added $1.6 million to its $37.9 million fund balance. The increase came mostly from fixed assets like new buildings and equipment.
During the regular meeting, the board voted to change the school's name from The Victoria College to simply Victoria College. Butler said including "the" in the name was confusing to community members and those at the school.
"Because it is sometimes confusing, it does not lend itself to marketing," Butler said. "Even when we complete grants, it becomes a little bit of a nuisance."
The school will keep its legal name, Victoria County Junior College District.
The board also approved an agreement with the city of Gonzales to expand an existing educational facility.
The city and its economic development corporation will contribute $400,000 toward the expansion. The school will accept donations for the remainder of the estimated $750,000-$800,000 expansion plan. The school will then lease the building from the city for $1 a year.
The new facility will include a science lab and classrooms for welding, electrical and HVAC courses.
The board also recognized Ernest Guajardo Sr., a long-time former board member; approved David Barnhart for a position on the Advisory Board of the Museum of the Coastal Bend; and approved a physical education course fee change, which will provide students with a Body Pump, a weight-lifting bar.