Bill No.: HB0114 Drafter: DRN

 

LSO No.: 09LSO-0202 Effective Date: 3/15/2009

 

Enrolled Act No.: HEA0121

 

Chapter No.: 211

 

Prime Sponsor: Joint Education Interim Committee

 

Catch Title: Community colleges-amendments.

 

Subject: Execution of recommendations of the community college planning task force established under 2008 Laws, Chapter 48, Section 327, as submitted to the Joint Education Committee and Joint Appropriations Committee and forwarded by the Joint Education Committee. The law in essence required comprehensive recommendations on the statewide community college system.

 

Summary/Major Elements:

 

         Continues the statewide community college system strategic planning effort initiated by the 2008 Governor's Blue Ribbon Commission, to serve as the definition of statewide interests in community college education programs to which state funds are attached;

 

         Strengthens the authority of the Wyoming community college commission to review and approve education programs provided through the community college system, to attach state funds to programs aligned with the statewide strategic plan, to terminate state funds for programs inconsistent with the plan and to redirect the delivery of programs to accomplish statewide interests reflected in the strategic plan;

 

         Separates the biennial budget development process for community college system operational funding from the community college funding allocation model by establishing a baseline amount upon which to base the biennial budget request, subject to adjustment for enrollment fluctuations, the effects of inflation, the addition of new programs or expansion of existing programs through the strategic planning process, and other factors attached to statewide interests in the community college system;

 

         Continues the funding allocation model for commission distribution of legislative appropriations for college operational funding, refined to reflect use of system wide baseline costs sensitive to enrollment fluctuations, with model components separated by commission defined fixed and variable cost categories;

 

         Establishes a community college capital construction process whereby college building needs are prioritized by the commission based upon college needs as attached to state interests defined by the strategic plan, and are forwarded to the department of administration and information for study, review and recommendation to the state building commission for submission to the legislature;

 

         Links legislatively approved construction appropriations to a payment schedule administered by commission, contingent upon review, approval and oversight of construction project components by department of administration and information;

 

         Restricts state fund expenditure for college building major maintenance to facility space necessary to accommodate programs specified within the statewide strategic plan.

 

Comments:

 

         Appropriations are made to the Wyoming community college commission for additional staffing and additional administrative needs to execute provisions within the legislation;

 

         A detailed process is prescribed for development of initial strategic planning efforts in sufficient time to guide 2011‑2012 biennial budget recommendations, to include representation of joint education committee and joint appropriations committee membership, the governor's office and the established task force. A finalized strategic plan must be reported prior to the 2010 legislative budget session;

 

         Additional task force work is anticipated through the 2009 interim, with further community college system reform recommendations anticipated for the 2010 budget session.

 

Note: The Governor line item vetoed three items in this bill. The first veto removed a $150,000 general fund appropriation and one full-time position to the commission. The second vetoed section 5 of the bill, which the Governor viewed as mandating a baseline amount for purposes of determining the 2011-2012 biennial budget request. The third vetoed section 6 of the bill, which the Governor stated mandated the commission's minimum budget request for the next biennium be the amount in the current budget request, which is "neither fair nor realistic" in that governmental revenues are in significant decline.