Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Community Colleges Oppose Cuts

CCAC President Alex Johnson and other community college leaders will appear before the Pennsylvania House Appropriations Committee in Harrisburg on Wednesday, March 30 to avert a 10% funding cut in Governor Tom Corbett’s proposed budget--$23 million statewide and $3.6 million for CCAC. Dr. Johnson says although it's a small portion of CCAC's overall $116 million annual budget, there would be an impact on direct instruction and on support services necessary to help students be successful. He says community colleges actually need more funding because of increasing enrollment and the commonwealth’s need for a skilled labor force.

Along with seeking to restore the funding, CCAC will also look at raising additional revenue from Allegheny County, foundations and corporations and may even have to turn to students, which Johnson says he and the trustees have not wanted to do.

On April 5th at least fifteen CCAC students will help Johnson convey the importance of community colleges in meetings with legislators in Harrisburg. Johnson says the Western Pennsylvania legislative delegation has traditionally supported community colleges, but this year they have to deal with proposed cuts of many great programs at all levels.

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