Statement by Dr. DeRionne Pollard, President of Montgomery College,  on FY12 Operating and Capital Budget Actions By County Council

“Montgomery College thanks the Montgomery County Council for recognizing the value of higher education and for taking courageous action to ensure that our community college remains accessible and affordable for everyone.

Councilmembers voted unanimously today to restore $4.7 million to the Montgomery College operating budget, which includes setting aside $1 million within the county to support future post-retirement benefits for College employees. The Council also approved $53.2 million for the College’s FY12 capital budget to fund the renovation of the Science East building on the Rockville Campus and essential IT infrastructure projects.

With today’s actions, the College will open its new Rockville Science Center on time with the necessary funding to hire staff to operate and maintain laboratories within the facility and will continue to support students with high-quality education.

With the support of the College’s capital budget, the Montgomery County Council will maintain the renovation schedule for the Science East and Science West buildings. Collectively, these two buildings, along with the Rockville Science Center, will create a comprehensive complex of science and mathematics classrooms and laboratories, which will address the growing enrollment in the science, technology, engineering, and mathematics (STEM) disciplines.

The College took decisive steps to balance our budget. This would not have been possible without the support and sacrifices of our College faculty and staff, who took furloughs this year and will not receive salary increases next year. The College also made the difficult decision to increase some student fees and to also increase tuition by $3 per credit hour for in-county students and by higher levels for out-of-county and out-of-state students.

During these challenging economic times, Montgomery County has needed its community college more than ever before. Montgomery College thanks the councilmembers for their commitment to serving the educational needs of our community and to helping this community college move forward.”

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