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Trustees Approve $42.4 Million FY'12 Budget; Tuition Will Rise 2.5 Percent

March 25, 2011

 Atlantic Cape Community College’s Board of Trustees adopted a $42,364,418 FY’12 revenue and expense budget and voted to increase tuition and some fees to support the fiscal plan when it met March 22 at the Worthington Atlantic City Campus.

The FY’12 budget is contingent on $8,869,741 in county appropriations that will be voted on at the upcoming meeting of the Board of School Estimate, a group composed of college and Atlantic and Cape May County officials. The state will contribute a projected $5,662,944.

Tuition will rise to $97.20 from $94.80, a 2.5 percent increase. Culinary arts and online tuition will also rise 2.5 percent, to $292.70 and $119.20, respectively. The new tuition and fee schedule begins with the 2011 summer session.  Corresponding increases were passed for out-of-county, out-of-state and foreign student tuition.

Mandatory fees (general, technology, facilities and activities) will increase an average of 2.4 percent, bringing the total per credit cost to $118.60.  For a student taking 30 credits a year, the cost will rise $87, to a total of $3,558, up from $3,471 in FY’11. A student taking 24 credits a year will see a $69.60 a year increase for a total of $2,846.40 over $2,776.80 in FY’11. Additionally, some program and course-related fees will rise 2.4 to 2.7 percent.

Nicholas Talvacchia, board chairman, said the 2.5 percent increase would help keep tuition affordable.

“Atlantic Cape remains an excellent educational value with a tuition rate that ranks it as among the most affordable colleges in the state,” Dr. Peter Mora, president, said after the meeting.  “We are grateful to the Counties of Atlantic and Cape May, as well as the State of New Jersey, for their continued support during these difficult economic times, allowing us to hold the line on tuition increases.”

Preliminary figures indicate Atlantic Cape’s tuition will remain in the lower quarter of community colleges statewide, and tuition and fees will not exceed the maximum Pell Grant award.

The revenue and expense budget will shrink slightly—just under $350,000—over FY’11.

The revenue budget is based on a projected 3 percent drop in enrollments due to changing student demographics and a 2.5 percent per credit tuition and fee increase.  The expense budget includes a 7 percent increase in health care, pension and other employee benefit costs of about $700,000, and a $350,000 projected savings in salaries and benefits from deferred hiring and position elimination. 

Operational budgets will decrease 3 percent and a contingency amount of $200,000 was established to cover non-recurring and emergency college needs.  Strategic initiatives are budgeted at $100,000, including funds to support the college’s effort to increase graduation rates.

Board Honors Retiring Long-Time Employees

The board approved retirements for George Richert, chef educator, and William O’Shea, journeyman and maintenance craftsman, who served the college for 27 and 25 years, respectively.

Chef Richert, of Mays Landing, was recognized for teaching with enthusiasm and instilling a “very good foundation” of culinary knowledge in his students.  During his time at the college, he participated in the Professional Chefs Hot Food Competition and numerous Restaurant Galas and search committees.  He will retire June 30.

William O’Shea, of Landisville, was recognized for being polite, professional and self-motivated, and for exhibiting “extraordinary” and “outstanding” efforts when assisting with renovations and office set-ups, snow removal and electrical projects.  He retires on April 29.

In Grants Activity, the Board:

--Authorized the college to apply to the U.S. Department of Labor, Education and Training Administration under the Trade Adjustment Assistance Community College and Career Training Grant Program.  The college is the lead agency in a consortium seeking the approximately $20 million grant.  If awarded, it would support workforce development training and run from September 2011 through August 2014.

In Other Business, the Board:

--Approved the Feb. 28, 2011, financial statement.

--Accepted a proposal from Ocean City Home Bank for banking services and approved a two-year agreement with the bank.

--Accepted a proposal from and entered into a two-year agreement with Official Payments of Reston, Va., for merchant card services.

--Reviewed revisions to a Student Personal Conduct policy relating to student alcohol use at college functions.

--Approved movement and reallocation of funds in the college’s remaining FY’07 Chapter 12 budget to reflect lower costs for some projects and additional costs for others.

--Designated Therese Sampson, executive director of administration and business services, as the college’s public agency compliance officer for administering EEO in public contracts.

Board Honors Dr. Dworsky For Her Service

Dr. Elizabeth Dworsky, who last year announced her intention to step down from the board, was honored for her outstanding service. Chairman Nicholas Talvacchia presented her with a plaque in recognition of her work on behalf of the college.  Dr. Dworsky, of Ocean City, joined the board in 2003 and held the positions of treasurer and vice chair and served as a trustee ambassador.  She was one of three members appointed to the board by Cape May County, which is now seeking her successor.

In the President’s Report:

--Dr. Mora reported on the recent plaque presentation to the college by the South Jersey Economic Development District highlighting the organization’s support in funding the college’s air traffic control tower simulator.

--Dr. Mora spoke about the statewide Big Ideas Project, a major sector-wide initiative for quality enhancement, and the initiative he co-chairs to strengthen joint purchasing practices.  He credited Terry Sampson for her key role in that project.

--Kathy Corbalis, executive director, college relations, gave an overview of college media coverage.

--Sean Fischer, executive assistant to the president/director, board services, reviewed the Board Development & Activity Calendar for the coming month.


The next meeting of the Board of Trustees will be held at 7 p.m., Tuesday, April 26, at the Cape May County Campus.  All are welcome to attend.