NWACC Cuts Almost $2 Million After Low Enrollment
BENTONVILLE — The NorthWest Arkansas Community College Board of Trustees found another $900,000 in proposed, deeper budget cuts during Monday’s meeting. The cuts come from freezing many unfilled positions throughout the college.
This is in addition to cuts that were already discussed during the September board meeting. The budget cuts, which total $1.8 million, received final board approval Monday.
College officials knew they would have a budget shortfall for fiscal year 2013 and took several measures to close that gap. The college had projected a 1% enrollment increase but instead experienced the first decrease in the college’s history. The decreased enrollment made further cuts necessary because it meant a $785,000 decrease in projected revenue.
There was also a decrease in the projected beginning fund balance, which meant even a wider gap between expenses and revenue this year.
Ultimately, college officials sought out $923,000 in potential cuts. By freezing more than two dozen open positions, the college will save nearly $939,000. No positions with someone serving in that position is being removed, meaning these cuts do not involve any kind of reduction in force.
“These are positions that we can do without for now but they are not frozen for ever more,” said Wyley Elliott, vice president for public relations and development.
The positions include both administrative and classified staff. The responsibilities that would normally be held by people in those positions are being spread to other staff, he said.
There was also discussion about reducing operational costs further. These potential cuts would have a low impact on the budget but would have a negative impact on students, Elliott said.
By slashing expenses by $938,000 the college will be making up for the lost tuition revenue and it further decreases the initial budget shortfall to $1.2 million.
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