Utah Valley Community College's $19.2 million budget request for 1989-90 is both realistic and reasonable but falls way short of meeting the college's needs, says UVCC President Kerry D. Romesburg.
The proposed budget request, which will be presented to the state Legislature in January, represents an 11.8 percent ($2,043,700) increase over the current $17.2 million budget."It (the request) does not represent the needs of this institution," Romesburg told UVCC Institutional Council members Thursday. "And no one should think it does."
But, he said, the budget stands a good chance of being approved because it is so conservative.
Total requests by the state's public colleges and universities total $27 million. Had the institutions requested what they need, Romesburg said, that figure would have been $71 million statewide.
Lacking in UVCC's budget request is funding to expand and upgrade the college's library and purchase badly needed equipment. However, funding is being requested to increase enrollment by 244 full-time students.
"We know we need equipment," Romesburg said. "All the state institutions do."
The college's largest request of $579,600, from state tax funds, is to cover a 4.5 percent salary-inflation adjustment for faculty and staff. The request parallels increases in the consumer price index but does nothing to bring UVCC salaries in line with other Western colleges and universities, Romesburg said.
Faculty and staff haven't had a raise in three years, he said, and trail their peers in adjacent states by 19 percent.
Increased mandated costs include $242,500 to cover a 20 percent increase in health care premiums for employees. Romesburg said the 20 percent hike follows increases of 22 percent and 18 percent, respectively, the past two years. The new funding will not improve health care benefits, only maintain them at current levels.
Because approximately 350 students this year were unable to get classes they wanted, the proposed budget includes a request of $749,100 to accommodate 244 more students during the 1989-90 school year. Funding from the increase would come from state taxes and tuition hikes.
Romesburg said UVCC could easily attract another 500 students if it had the funding to accommodate them. UVCC is faced with a growing problem of deciding which students will be admitted and which will be turned away.
UVCC also is requesting $132,100 to turn its one-year licensed-practical nurse program into a registered nurse program that includes an associate's degree.
Statewide, funding is being requested to train an additional 113 nurses annually. Thirty-five will be trained at UVCC.
"It (a nursing shortage) is very acute in Utah County," Romesburg said.
The school is requesting $77,000 to promote local economic development through its Short-Term Intensive Training program. The funding would enable the college to offer updated training and industrial skills to local industries either on site or on campus.