[BLC] Operating and Capital Conference Budgets

Jamilyn Penn jpenn at sbctc.edu
Tue Apr 27 09:43:01 PDT 2021

Hello All,

Below, you will find information about the operating and conference budgets. This was a great legislative session. Kind regards. -Jamilyn Penn

Good Afternoon,

We are excited to report that the Legislature has now released final capital and operating budgets that are very good for the community and technical colleges!

Operating Budgets.  The Fiscal Year 2021 supplemental and the 2021-23 biennial operating budgets were released at noon this afternoon.

  *   The 2021 Supplemental Budget, consistent with the Senate budget proposal, takes back $6.8 million reduction associated with the foregone Fiscal Year 2021 exempt employee 3% wage increase.  As noted in previous conversations, the funds remain in the maintenance level budget and colleges are authorized to provide those forgone increases effective July 1, 2021.

  *   The 2021-23 biennial operating budget includes nearly all of the new investments that were in both the House and Senate budgets. The total state investment for next biennium is $1.89 billion, a 4.3 percent increase over the current biennium.  Considering the dismal budget outlook only a few months ago, this is an extraordinary improvement - one that will help stabilize our colleges in the face of continuing uncertainty.  Highlights of the 2021-23 operating budget include:
     *   $15.9M for Guided Pathways to fulfill the future commitments made in the Workforce Education Investment Act in 2019.
     *   $15.8M for implementation of SB 5194, the Diversity, Equity and Inclusion Strategic Plan, including $5 million to increase the number of tenure-track faculty, $6.8 million for strategic DEI planning, faculty diversity and outreach, and the remainder for pilot mental health counseling grants and enhancing support for students of color.
     *   $10M for the Job Skills Program for grants to colleges who partner with employers to provide incumbent worker training.
     *   $8M for emergency assistance grants to students experiencing unforeseen emergencies or situations that affect their ability to attend classes.
     *   $4M for Career Launch and High Demand enrollments to help expand enrollments currently in demand by employers.
     *   $3.2M for implementation of SB 5227, Diversity in Higher Education, a bill that provides for faculty, staff and student diversity training as well as  campus climate assessments at all colleges.
     *   $1.5M to expand the anti-racist curriculum review pilot currently focused on English 101.
     *   $1.03M to double the number of pilot programs at community and technical colleges to provide assistance to homeless students and students who were in foster care.

The attached worksheet provides a detailed comparison of the final Legislative operating budget (also called the conference budget) and prior proposals from the House, Senate and Governor. Remarkably, the final budget is larger than either the House or Senate! Employee wage and benefit policies are unchanged from the House and Senate budgets. Please get in touch if you have questions.  We will be working with the system throughout the coming week on the details of this budget.

Capital Budget.  The 2021-23 capital budget fully funds our request through project 26, Bellevue College's Center for Transdisciplinary Learning and Innovation. The budget provides a total of $499,619,000.   Different from our request, it combines minor program and infrastructure lists with 60% of the requested funding for the individual lists - similar to the Senate proposal. It also includes:

  *   $5,000,000 for Career Preparation and Launch Grants for equipment.

  *   Authorization for all requested local financing.

  *   A requirement for SBCTC to look at different ways to structure and prioritize our 2023-25 capital request and to submit a report to the legislature by December 15, 2021.

A side-by-side comparison with our capital request is attached.

Please feel free to connect with us for any questions you may have. Contact information appears below. Much thanks to all those who worked hard and advocated for our students and colleges.  Additional  thanks to Wayne and Cherie for pulling these summaries together so quickly!

Cherie Berthon
Operating Budget Director
Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges
cberthon at sbctc.edu<mailto:cberthon at sbctc.edu> * o: 360-704-1023 * f: 360-704-4415 * c: 360-339-2888

Wayne Doty, PE
Capital Budget Director
Washington State Board for Community and Technical Colleges
wdoty at sbctc.edu<mailto:wdoty at sbctc.edu> * o: 360-704-4382 * c: 360-827-1389
sbctc.edu<https://www.sbctc.edu/> * Twitter: @SBCTCWashington<https://twitter.com/SBCTCWashington> * Facebook: @WASBCTC<https://www.facebook.com/wasbctc/>

John Boesenberg, Deputy Executive Director
Business Operations
360-704-4303; jboesenberg at sbctc.edu<mailto:jboesenberg at sbctc.edu>

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