JJC Board of Trustees Approves FY18 Budget

The Joliet Junior College Board of Trustees approved the college’s FY 2018 budget at their June 13 meeting.

The total operating budget for FY18 is $ 91.49 million, representing a 2.8 percent increase over the FY17 budget. This is the 45th consecutive year that the college’s operating budget has been balanced.

“As the state budget crisis continues to negatively impact the people of Illinois and our college district, JJC has been forced to make some difficult decisions throughout our budgeting process, including the increase of tuition for the upcoming academic year,” JJC President Dr. Judy Mitchell said. “I am truly appreciative of the collaborative and respectful conversations we’ve had across our campus and with our community regarding these incredibly difficult issues. It is crucial that we not let the quality of our education or services suffer during this turbulent time.”

See the FY18 budget 

Despite the uncertainty of its revenue source from the state, the college balanced its budget with conservative assumptions and responsible spending. The annual budget was developed with comprehensive planning and input from the college community and is based on the 2018-2020 Financial Plan and annual priorities established by the Board of Trustees. The FY 2018 budget was developed with the following planning goals:

       address potential impact of the state’s financial crisis on the college’s budget;

       employ realistic projections in property tax revenues;

       maintain emphasis on student success;

       accommodate staff and resource needs to address enrollment;

       maintain responsible reserves; and

       address operational costs from the completion of the master plan projects.

Highlights of the new budget include:

·         a $19 increase in tuition to cover funding deficits created by the state budget crisis;

·         new personnel costs to support student success initiatives and facility maintenance for the opening of our new Event Center and Romeoville expansion; and

·         a required grant fund match for the U.S. Department of Education Title III Grant to support student engagement, persistence and completion programs.

Despite the recent tuition increase, JJC remains cost competitive with other community colleges and is significantly less expensive than public and private universities. JJC’s FY18 tuition currently ranks 15th of 38 community colleges across the state, and JJC’s cost per credit hour of $144 is near the state average of $141.

Additionally, this past fall, the college’s financial team was awarded the Government Finance Officers Association’s (GFOA) Distinguished Budget Presentation Award for the FY2017 budget. This marks the 12th year in a row JJC has received the award for its budget, which is only given to government bodies that meet the highest principles of governmental budgeting and achieve standards of excellence in financial reporting.

“I believe Joliet Junior College has survived and thrived over its 116-year history because at our core, we are quick to adapt to environmental stressors, we champion innovation, and we continue to be aware of the specific educational needs of our community and evolve to meet those needs,” Mitchell said. “We must invest in JJC to grow JJC.  The recent tuition increase was a difficult but necessary step ensure JJC’s financial stability during these unprecedented times,” Mitchell said. “Nonetheless, we recognize that any further cuts in state funding will have to be overcome by cost reductions rather than additional tuition increases.”

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