By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Staff reductions announced as BCC deals with pandemic fallout
Pandemic creates questions for budget

Barton Community College administrators recommend a reduction in staff for Fiscal Year 2021 in response to budget cuts prompted by the COVID-19 pandemic. The BCC Board of Trustees was shown three budget plans, A, B and C, created in anticipation of lost revenue. 

This was presented during the monthly board study session, where no action is taken. However, the board also held a special meeting so it could conduct business. That meeting began with a 30-minute executive session to privately discuss personnel – which was explained at the discussion of an individual employee’s performance. Barton President Dr. Carl Heilman joined the trustees via Zoom for this meeting.

When the open meeting resumed, Board Chairman Mike Johnson said the board had discussed “personnel matters” but had taken no action. The board then approved faculty contracts.

With the college facing a May 15 deadline to renew or non-renew contracts, the following individuals were listed as non-renewals due to “financial exigency”: Kimberly Bradney, Gerald Butler, Angela Campbell, Gilbert Cloud, Michael Cox, Charles Davis, Alissa Duncan, Timothy Folkerts, Ron Kirmer, Kenneth Kolembe, Erin Renard, Mark Shipman and Brenda Siebold.

The Reduction In Force (RIF) under Plan A required re-assigning 10 faculty to adjunct (that is, part-time) status effective Sept. 1, refilling two faculty positions with new duty assignments, and postponing filling two vacancies until the fall of 2021. Whenever possible, vacancies created by retirements or resignations will be left unfilled. This cuts $1.25 million from the budget for salaries and additional money from the budget for employee benefits.

Plans A, B and C

Next year’s contracts will reflect the possibility of the three possible scenarios. This will include contracts issued to faculty, administrators, management staff and coaches.

Vice President of Administration Mark Dean presented information about next year’s budget, which will be balanced by reducing the general fund and post-secondary funds by approximately $2.5 million under Plan A.

It includes reduction in both full-time and part-time positions, reduced budgets for programs and services, and elimination of capital outlay projects.

Plan A starts with a reduction in force and 0% increase to the base salaries.

Plan B cuts more jobs and reduces salaries by 2%. It shaves an additional $500,000 from the budget. Other cuts include scholarship reductions and more reductions to operational funds, programs and services.

Plan C cuts still more jobs and reduces salaries by an additional 2%, and makes even more cuts to scholarships, programs and services, to save an additional $500,000.

One thing that will affect which plan the college follows is whether students can resume face-to-face classes as they were offered before the pandemic. Dr. Heilman and Vice President Dean said there’s still a lot they don’t know and they probably won’t have all of the answers when the budget is approved this summer.