Operating budgets cut to address $4 million loss

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Amanda Graef

College attempts to mitigate impact on students.

By Austin P. Taylor

ataylor160@student.alamo.edu

A shortfall caused by over-budgeting and declining enrollment caused a decrease of $4 million in this college’s budget for 2017-18.

This will manifest itself in a variety of ways this semester. 

Dr. Stella Lovato, vice president of college services, said the operating budgets across departments have been slashed by 25 percent. 

This means departments will need to limit purchases to the essentials. Many departments won’t be able to self-fund activities such as club gatherings and events. Departments wishing to travel for events will have to make their case to Lovato’s office.

To reduce travel costs, Lovato’s office procured an SUV for clubs and other organizations based on campus.

If interested in using the vehicle, call Janae Johnson, coordinator of risk management, at 210-486-0902 or email jjohnson650@alamo.edu.

The college also had to cut back on creating new positions and filling recently vacated ones.

President Robert Vela said he thinks the best way to go about doing this is to judge situations on a case-by-case basis. 

“If a position needs to be filled, we’ll look for a temporary solution while the hiring process is taking place,” Vela said.

Vela said temporary adjuncts might be brought in to fill positions if staff cannot take on additional class. 

Larry Rosinbaum, this college’s budget officer, said the adjunct budget is “pretty much the same.”

Drops in enrollment and applications for financial aid means certain labs have limited the number of work-study students they can hire. 

The writing center and the integrated reading and writing center have each lost a work-study position. 

This will limit the number of tutors in labs and reduce available hours for each.

“We’ve not been able to advance our funding at the same rate of demand for our services,” said Jane Focht-Hansen, coordinator for the writing center. 

The IRNW lab already limited the number of appointments students can make. The loss of a work-study position affects its ability to help students. 

Payroll and benefits haven’t been cut. All full-time employees will receive the same pay and benefits as they did in the previous academic year.

A pay raise is still scheduled for January.

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