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State Forces BHC to Consider Budget Cuts

As the state budget impasse continues in Illinois, Black Hawk College is studying ways to raise revenue and cut spending. In a normal year, the state contributes about 22 per cent of the college's budget, or 7.2 million dollars, but this year Black Hawk has received nothing since the new fiscal year began in July.

President Bettie Truitt says one spending cut already approved is the elimination of three sports at the east campus in Galva.

The state of Illinois also contributes 247,000 dollars to Black Hawk College in the form of scholarships from the Monetary Award Program, or MAP. But so far no MAP money has been received, so the college has covered the shortfall.

If we receive the money we'll reimburse ourselves.

Doctor Truitt says layoffs also have to be considered because Black Hawk employs 680 full and part-time workers, and their salaries and benefits add up to 75 per cent of its operating budget. 

Making the problem even worse is falling enrollment - down 10 per cent this year so far - partly she says because of a strong local economy, but also due to state and national trends.