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* Higher-ed share of supplemental budget solution grows

Lawmakers in Olympia are working on two budgets, one for this year and one for the next two years. Unfortunately, it appears that the answer for both will be less state funding for Shoreline Community College and all of higher education.

On Friday, Feb. 18, 2011, Gov. Chris Gregoire signed a laundry list of budget reduction measures for the current fiscal year that ends June 30. On the list is $25 million the state is pulling back from several financial assistance programs aimed at higher-education students. Of that $25 million, $13.14 million is coming from the State Need Grant program that helps students at community and technical colleges.

Later that same day, officials at the State Board of Community and Technical Colleges sent word of Shoreline’s share: $460,238. However, students won’t be left without the financial assistance. The supplemental budget also includes language directing colleges to make up the difference from local funds.

Despite the Governor’s signature, it isn’t clear whether or not that number could grow.

The reduction package falls $226 million short of the deficit projected by the state Office of Financial Management.  Lawmakers are expecting that deficit to grow after the March 17 state revenue forecast. “The March forecast will provide remaining information to complete the final supplemental,” Gregoire said in a statement.

Daryl Campbell, Vice President for Administrative Services, said the college’s Senior Executive Team would begin reviewing potential steps to meet the new reduction target. 

SCC/Jim Hills

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