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EWC braces for statewide budget cuts

Tuesday, June 9th, 2020 • 8:13 pm

Eastern Wyoming College is in the process of trying to appropriately prepare for statewide budget cuts which could range from 10%-20%. These cuts could impact the College in the amount of nearly $600,000 to nearly $800,000.

At the June 9th monthly meeting of the EWC Board of Trustees, Dr. Lesley Travers, President, presented a tentative plan of how the institution might be able to react to the cut and alternate cost-saving measures. Details of the plan are as follows:

  • Classes with enrollment of less than 6 students will not be allowed
  • Only approved travel will be allowed
  • All department/programs will cut 2% across the board
  • Any purchase over $1000 will require prior approval
  • There will be a hiring freeze

The hiring freeze will have the following financial impact:

Number of current vacancies Type Approx. Amount
8 Full-time $442,748
4 Part-time $ 21,400
Proposed 2% expense reductions $128,716
TOTAL   $592,864

Dr. Travers has worked with the administrative team to identify a savings of at least $568,774, the value of a 10% cut, but in reality, the college may need to identify closer to $793,205.

“I do not want employees to lose their jobs after all the folks have been through this spring,” said Travers. “This is a hard time for our state and for EWC. We won’t be filling positions that we desperately need but it will save someone’s job.”

Travers also presented some long-range topics for consideration as there is speculation that the next budget cycle will also be bleak. “Long-term I want us to assess low enrollment programs and courses. We also need to assess the amount of fees that are currently charged for courses with high material costs and some of those may need to be raised due to those high costs. We also need to keep the amount of overload pay received by faculty to a minimum. Then, unfortunately, we will likely have to look at cuts of programs and personnel to meet additional state cuts.”

This is a draft proposal at this point as EWC awaits final direction from the Governor and Legislature which should be forthcoming in the next several weeks.

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