Northern New Mexico College’s Board of Regents passed the College’s FY15 budget April 26, 2014 following meetings Thursday and Saturday, addressing the need to pass a balanced budget by May 1.
The final budget, totaling $32.3 million will maintain tuition and fees at FY13 levels but also includes freezes on the Construction Trades Management, Radiologic Technology and Automotive Technology programs. (The Construction Management program does not include trade programs such as plumbing and welding.) Current students will still be graduated from these programs, but new enrollments will not be taken. Vice President of Finance and Administration Domingo Sanchez said the classes could still be offered under a continuing education model if demand exists.
The Board issued the following statement before adjourning Thursday:
The Northern New Mexico College Board of Regents dedicated the majority of its April 24th meeting to listening to the concerns of students, faculty and community members regarding NNMC’s programs and administration. The Regents remain confident that the College’s administrators are focused on the best interests of the College. The current administration began its tenure under very dire financial circumstances, and it has competently guided the College through a very difficult period. The Regents believe that the College has turned the corner and is ready to build on that progress.
Nine positions were also eliminated from the budget. The College’s Child Development Center was also discontinued following efforts to revitalize it during the past year.
Budgetary goals included a reduction in operating expenses by 5 percent, reduction and repurposing of existing positions to reduce cost, reduction of reliance on State and auxiliary funding, assessing the long-term viability of academic programs and cushioning against an anticipated 5 percent drop in enrollment.
The college-wide Effectiveness, Resource and Utilization Committee (ERUC), comprised of staff and faculty, evaluated academic programs during the past seven weeks, taking into consideration the college’s core mission, level of enrollment, graduation rates and employment outlooks. Program recommendations were made to the Board’s Audit, Finance and Facilities Committee April 22. Of the eleven programs evaluated, three were given final consideration by the Board.
The Board also urged administrators to begin hiring and travel freezes immediately. The budget approval vote was unanimous, with one member absent.
In 2013 the College was removed from fiscal watch following a series of timely audits and budget approvals.