Northern Lights College to close campuses and cut staff

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By Adam Reaburn

Northern Lights College will close campuses and cut staff in order to balance it’s 2010-11 budget.

Northern Lights College made the announcement late Friday stating the college faced a short fall of $2.5 million in this year and a final short fall of $1 million last year.

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The college will close campuses in Stikine and Atlin by June 30th and cut 26 jobs. Of those jobs, 19 will be full time positions. This includes non-unionized staff, and unionized faculty and support staff who are members of the BCGEU. Discussions are underway with the BCGEU to provide impacted unionized staff members with their options.

The number of Deans, who oversee training and education program areas will be reduced from three to four and the Dawson Creek campus book store will be closed and merged into existing campus operations.

College staff will also have to reduce out-of-region travel expenses and will be encouraged to use new options like videoconferencing and teleconferencing.

“The recession has had an impact on Northern Lights College,” said President Jean Valgardson. “We have seen a reduction in projected revenues from a number of our of traditional sources of funding, and this has resulted in the College having to take a hard look at the entirety of its operation.”

The operating budget for 2010-11 is $31,257,612. The College’s Board of Governors approved the budget at its April 21 meeting.
Actual revenues for 2009-10 were $32,193,286. The original operating budget for 2009-10 was $33,621,593. During the 2009-10 fiscal year, the College pared expenditures by $1.14 million to post a surplus of $33,000. 

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