Lawmakers in Olympia are working on two budgets, one for
this year and one for the next two years. Unfortunately, it appears that the
answer for both will be less state funding for Shoreline Community College and
all of higher education.
On Friday, Feb. 18, 2011, Gov. Chris Gregoire signed a
laundry list of budget reduction measures for the current fiscal year that ends
June 30. On the list is $25 million the state is pulling back from several
financial assistance programs aimed at higher-education students. Of that $25
million, $13.14 million is coming from the State Need Grant program that helps
students at community and technical colleges.
Later that same day, officials at the State Board of
Community and Technical Colleges sent word of Shoreline’s share: $460,238. However,
students won’t be left without the financial assistance. The supplemental
budget also includes language directing colleges to make up the difference from
Despite the Governor’s signature, it isn’t clear whether or
not that number could grow.
The reduction package falls $226 million short of the deficit
projected by the state Office of Financial Management. Lawmakers are expecting that deficit to grow
after the March 17 state revenue forecast. “The March forecast will provide
remaining information to complete the final supplemental,” Gregoire said in a
Daryl Campbell, Vice President for Administrative Services,
said the college’s Senior Executive Team would begin reviewing potential steps
to meet the new reduction target.