Community Colleges Face State Funding Cuts

The Honorable Rick Perry
Governor, State of Texas
PO Box 12428
Austin, Texas 78711-2428

Dear Governor Perry:

Ranger College respectfully requests that you exempt Ranger College and the other 49 community college districts from the mandated budget cuts currently under consideration. More than 75% of our money to operate this college comes from state funds. This spring (2010) we have a head count enrollment increase of 66% over the Spring of 2009. In an almost unheard of occurrence, our enrollment increased in the Spring of 2010 from the Fall of 2009.

Like other community colleges, we are working very hard to serve the needs of citizens in our service area as well as address job training, job creation, and workforce issues to create a better trained and more proficient workforce.

Currently the budget at Ranger College is stretched very tightly and almost to the extreme limits. In the almost 90-year history of this institution, Ranger College has encountered one of its biggest challenges in cutting the budget for state mandated funds by 5%. For FY 2010 this cut represents $103,254 and for FY 2011a reduced amount of $104,490. Because almost all of the monies in the FY 2010 budget have been committed for salaries and instruction, Ranger College faces an even greater challenge with a cut of $207,744 if the 5% cut for the biennium is absorbed in the FY 2011 budget.

Currently this institution finds itself in a strong growth mode where students in our 4.5 county service area are seeking access to the courses and services this college offers in greater numbers than every before.

If forced to do so, Ranger College would absorb budget cuts by reducing the number of classes offered, increasing class size expanding the number of courses offered through distance education, and eliminating adjuncts. The college would also institute a hiring freeze and perhaps cut salaries by 2%.

Again, we sincerely hope that you, the state decision maker, will see fit to exempt our community colleges from these mandatory cuts.

Thank you for your consideration.

Dr. William J. Campion