State Budget

Budget Facts following the 2010 legislative session

Once again, the community and technical colleges saw deep cuts to their base budgets: $44.8 million cut for FY2011 beginning July 1, 2010 ($37.7 million in basic cut plus an additional $7.1 million in additional compensation cuts (furloughs). Here are some of the facts:

  • Budget cuts for next year and beyond will equal 6.5% to the base;
  • For FY2011 only, the net reduction in state funds is 3.5% because of one-year only funds provided for additional Worker Retraining capacity ($17.6 million);
  • A tuition increase of 7% (subject to State Board approval) has been authorized but it will not make the colleges whole.

We are very grateful that the Legislature and Gov. Chris Gregoire focused attention on the needs of laid-off workers and low-income adults trying to train for high-wage jobs Worker Retraining and Opportunity Grants, respectively.  The colleges will continue to stretch to the degree possible to serve as many dislocated workers as possible as we work our way through this great recession.


College enrollments continue to rise

  • Enrollment demand has grown 10 percent over the previous year.
  • The CTC system is now serving 16 percent more students above the funded target.
  • Worker Retraining enrollments are now estimated to swell to 13,000 FTEs in the current year - that's double the amount funded by the Legislature

College students of all ages are also making clear decisions to reduce commute time, save money on gasoline, and learn in flexible ways.  On-line enrollments have increased by over 5,000 FTEs (a 25 percent increase) over last year at this time. Rising student demand paired with lower state support means that funding per student is dropping substantially:

  • Community and technical colleges have seen their spending from state dollars drop from $5,159 per FTE in FY2008 to $4,192 per FTE in FY2011.
  • State funding per actual student served has dropped 18.7% in just three years.

Community and technical colleges will need additional resources in the coming two years to sustain the current level of service.  The unemployment rate is expected to remain above 9 percent for the foreseeable future so colleges will remain under serious pressure to meet this record demand.