The Board of Trustees of Brookdale Community College voted on January 18 to adopt an $80,368,751 operating budget for the 2017-18 school year, along with a 4 percent tuition increase.
The budget, which includes new multi-year contracts for Brookdale’s faculty and administrative unions, will be forwarded to the Monmouth County Board of Chosen Freeholders for final review and approval by the Board of School Estimate.
As of July 1, Brookdale tuition will increase from $129.75 to $135 per credit. For a full-time student taking 30 credits per year, the change would mean an annual increase of $157.50. General service fees, which are calculated at 25 percent of tuition, will increase from $31.14 per credit to $32.40 per credit.
The board also voted on January 18 to approve the college’s $9.8 million capital budget, which funds facilities upgrades and renovations such as the college’s new Wall campus building, set to open this spring.
According to Brookdale President Maureen Murphy, the budget prioritizes student learning, support services and college facilities while maintaining affordable tuition rates for local students.
“This budget reflects many months of diligent work to maintain Brookdale’s affordable tuition while providing our students with the highest quality educational experience, both in and out of the classroom,” Murphy said.
“It will enable us to invest in new programs, resources and facilities for our students while accounting for the rising operations costs and funding challenges facing community colleges across the nation. Along with our new, mutually negotiated contracts for all Brookdale faculty and administrators, this budget will allow Brookdale to continue providing a world-class education for years to come.”
The 2017-18 budget represents a $2.1 million increase over last year. The majority of the increase – more than $1.2 million – is dedicated to the college’s learning division.
Despite the increase, the college’s operating budget remains down more than $10 million from the 2014-15 school year, when expenditures topped $90.8 million and required the use of more than $8.5 million in reserve funds. For the second year in a row, the college’s operating budget utilizes no reserve funds.
The board of school estimate is expected to meet in February.