HCC not taking no as an answer

Haywood Community College remains hopeful that the county will increase funding to the college, despite reluctance by the county commissioners to provide what they see as special treatment to HCC amidst across the board budget cuts.

“I view it as an unresolved issue at this point,” said HCC President Rose Johnson.

During the recession, commissioners slashed capital funding to the college and public school system by two-thirds, cut out nonprofits completely and laid off nearly 40 county employees.

The county had previously promised to pay for two new roofs and a major renovation at HCC with the annual contributions. But now, commissioners plan to dip into a special sales tax fund to pay for the projects.

The special sales tax was approved by voters specifically to fund expansions at HCC — not maintenance, according to college leaders. The college wants the county to restore its annual maintenance budget and reserve every penny of sales tax revenue for new construction and expansion.

Johnson met with county commissioners earlier this month to plead the college’s case and plans to meet with the board again soon.

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