Doña Ana Community College has released its proposed budget for fiscal year 2017. The recommended budget reduction of $1.7 million is made necessary by cuts enacted by the special session of the New Mexico State Legislature in October, 2016.
The state budget adjustments due to declining oil and gas revenue led to a five percent decrease in higher education.
DACC convened its Budget Committee composed of faculty and staff to examine options and make recommendations to the Executive Leadership Team. Recommendations were also received from the Academic Leadership Team, the Faculty Council and several individuals who submitted ideas. The Executive Leadership Team met numerous times to sculpt the budget.
“When considering recommendations we looked meticulously to find any savings or adjustments that would allow for minimal impact,” President Renay Scott said. “However, when cutting budgets, it is a painful process that affects programs college-wide.” “Even with these cuts, we will continue to provide an excellent education for our students,” Scott added.
DACC made these cuts realizing that enrollment is flat and statewide revenue projections are down which means additional cuts to higher education are possible. These permanent cuts will be effective immediately.
- All individual travel will be reduced from $1375 to $1000 per person. This is inclusive of faculty and staff allocation.
- Cuts to operations and supplies will total approximately $400,000. Adjustments will be made to these budgetary lines in the effected divisions and departments immediately.
- Ten total positions will be permanently cut from the budget. Of those ten positions, five (5) are vacant faculty lines and five (5) are staff lines. Four of the staff lines are vacant and one staff line is filled.
- Adjustments were made to course sections based on enrollment changes in programs and/or course efficiencies identified by programs.
The college Budget Committee and Executive Leadership Team utilized the following budget principles to arrive at recommendations and decisions.
- Avoid duplication and seek efficiencies
- Preserve fulltime filled positions before initiatives
- Preserve initiatives that support completion and enrollment that have demonstrated effectiveness
- Identify investment opportunities: invest in people, programs or initiatives that bring new enrollment or meet an expanding or new workforce training need.
- Identify new sources of revenue if possible.
These are permanent cuts to be implemented immediately. This cut addresses the five percent cut by the legislature and an additional two percent reduction due to recent declines in the statewide revenue projection for fiscal year 2017.
Divisions and departments will be notified by their vice presidential member of the Executive Leadership Team about the specific operational and position cuts in their area. Eliminated, filled positions are covered by New Mexico State University (NMSU) Administrative Rule 4.40 and DACC will work with NMSU Human Resources to ensure proper implementation of the policy in the case of the one filled position that will be eliminated.
The Executive Leadership Team is still reviewing and will be finalizing the preliminary fiscal year 2018 budget adjustments soon and will provide information when it is available.
It is difficult to predict exactly what reductions will be required for fiscal year 2018. Final budgets will not be available until the New Mexico Legislature session is completed on March 18, 2017.
The proposed 2017 budget will go to the DACC Advisory Board and then on to the NMSU Board of Regents for final approval.