The college is looking to increase facility rental fees

Laramie County Community College won’t face budget cuts again for fiscal year 2018.

During the May 10 board meeting, Vice President of Administration and Finance Rick Johnson presented a tight but balanced budget.

“I’d have to say it’s down $2 million,” Johnson said. However, Johnson said the budget is balanced and the college can afford any critical needs that may come up. Johnson said that revenue collected from the college’s one-mill levy, a property tax paid by Laramie County homeowners, would no longer be necessary to fund operating costs. Instead, it will go back to the general fund, where it can be used for a variety of purposes.

The college will operate a budget of $1.8 million for the next fiscal year.

At the Trustees dinner prior to the board meeting, Arlene Lester, facilities and events program manager, suggested the college increase rental fees to bring in more revenue. Lester said the first thing the college did was to take a survey on rental rates at other community colleges in the state and with facilities similar to LCCC’s.

“One of the things it definitely indicated is that we are not charging profit organizations enough,” Lester said. However, she said the college doesn’t want to undercut other organizations in Wyoming because the college doesn’t pay taxes. Lester proposed that the college raise the rental rates for profit organizations 30 percent. Lester also said, “We should not be supporting a profit as a non-profit.”

She also suggested the college raise fees on government organizations by 20 percent and non-profit organizations by 15 percent. However, the groups that come to the college and benefit children won’t have to pay fees. Lester said it shouldn’t cause any issues because even with the fee increase the organizations are still getting a deal. For example, the continental room is $48 to rent for an hour, but with this fee increase, it would only go up to $60, which is still less than other facilities in the state, Lester said.

Lester said the college would be bringing in $18,000 more a year if it increased rental fees.

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