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updated: 8/28/2012 5:32 PM

MCC budget calls for no tuition increase

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McHenry County College's proposed budget for fiscal year 2013 includes expanded outreach and satellite sites in Huntley and Harvard, and no increase in tuition.

Enrollment is up about 7 percent compared to fall 2011, said Christina Haggerty, MCC's director of marketing and communications. The day-to-day operations of the college are funded by the education fund and the operations and maintenance fund.

The educational fund's $54 million or so expenses are about $3.5 million more compared to last year, much of it due to increases in the cost of insurance and the addition of new curriculums in the manufacturing, robotics, health information technology, culinary and sustainability programs, Haggerty said.

The overall expense for salaries remains relatively flat at less than $25 million in 2013, despite 2-percent raises for administrators and members of the college's professional and classified staff union. That's due to the consolidation and vacancies of some positions, said Laura Brown, MCC's vice president of institutional advancement.

The college is also projecting about $3 million more in revenues in its educational fund, most of it stemming from increased employees' insurance contributions and retirees' health insurance co-pay, Haggerty said.

The college is budgeting for ongoing maintenance projects within its nearly $10.6 million operations and maintenance fund, like revamping heating and cooling equipment, fire sprinklers and more, Brown said. "These are 42-year-old buildings. We have maintenance scheduled over four or five years, and every year we try to tackle some," she said.

In Harvard, the college is offering general education classes such as introduction to psychology and introduction to speech; in Huntley, the college is working with local high school officials to offer health care-oriented programming, Brown said. "Also, there is always a need in our county for manufacturing and closing that skills gap," she said.

A public hearing on the budget is scheduled for 6:30 p.m. Sept. 27, just before the next regular board meeting.

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