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Touch Base Tuesday 1-24-22
Dear Faculty and Staff:
Welcome to the first week of the spring semester! I have just a couple of updates for this week’s Touch Base Tuesday.
On January 19, Governor Parson delivered his State of the State Address to the General Assembly. Among the Governor’s priorities in his proposed budget were workforce and education, infrastructure, agriculture, community development, health care, and public safety. As a result of revenue growth and a strong economy, Parson shared that Missourians will receive an additional tax cut this year; the tax rate
will be reduced to 5.3%. Additionally, 2.5% of general revenue will be set aside in the “rainy day” fund.
Parson continues to support the A+ program and is proposing an increase of $6M in funding. New scholarship funding ($7 million) is being allocated to dual credit/dual enrollment students.
Also included in the Governor’s address was his proposal for supporting workforce and education. According to Parson “now is the time to double down on workforce development and skill up Missouri’s workforce.” Several years ago, he established the Fast Track program aimed at providing financial aid to adults who are pursuing a certificate, degree, or industry-recognized credential in a high demand workforce area. He has allocated $4.7 million to this grant and calls for the program to be permanently established.
In addition to Fast Track, the Governor allocated $31,496,061 for a new round of MoExcels (workforce development funding); the community colleges will receive $19,521,918. He is funding 19 of the 28 projects submitted by colleges and universities. SCC’s project came in at number 10. As such, we will receive $2.3 million.
To support the capital improvement projects for community colleges and four-year universities, Parson allocated $470 million from the America Rescue Plan Act to fund higher education. Proposals submitted by colleges and universities had to be “innovative and transformative,” focused on workforce and technical programs, and limited to capital projects. The total allocation for community colleges will be $79 million. From this, SCC will receive $18 million for the new Regional Workforce Center to be built in Wentzville. Fortunately, we were able to meet the Governor’s match requirement with the $10 million in bond funding that had already been allocated to this project.
Please note, both ARPA and MoExcels represent one-time funding. As such, the funds are not part of our general operating budget. However, the Governor’s budget does call for a 5.4% increase in core funding for colleges and universities. The Missouri Community College Association was going to advocate for a core increase of approximately 12%; nevertheless, it is always good to receive any additional funds to help
cover increased expenses.
For an overview of the Governor’s budget, please see the following link:
New Vice President of Human Resources
I wish to thank everyone who was able to participate in the candidate forums for our new Vice President of Human Resources. I also wish to extend my appreciation to the search committee for their good efforts in identifying three strong finalists. It is my pleasure to announce that Ms. Terri Edrich has been selected as our new VP. Terri brings 26 years of experience as an executive director of human resources within higher education and has experience as a Title IX Coordinator. Previously she worked for the Dallas County Community College District. Terri is originally from the St. Louis area where most of her family still resides today. For those of you who are native to the area, and therefore
understand what this means – she attended Affton High School. Please join me in congratulating Ms. Terri Edrich.
Best wishes for a wonderful week.