By Jade Inglada
The Budget Committee discussed the idea of creating a separate budget for the South Gate Educational Center to support its growth.
“One of the recommendations from the South Gate Task Force was for the Budget Committee to talk about the possibility of creating an allocation specific to South Gate,” Armida Ornelas, Los Angeles College Faculty Guild Chapter President, said.
Vice President of Administrative Services Ann Tomlinson said that although the SGEC is a satellite campus, it’s treated like another department at East Los Angeles College due to the way it’s set up.
“In order to set up another budget account, I have to ask the district office in the county to do it,” Tomlinson said.
Committee co-chair Jeffrey Hernandez suggested instead of creating a separate account right away, that they should track the SGEC’s progress every year based on estimated staff expenses, sections offered, utilities and rental contracts.
“The South Gate Task Force was concerned that the college shouldn’t have the South Gate campus set up so that it’s extracting a whole bunch of revenue and it’s not providing the services that the revenue should be paying for,” Hernandez said.
Since SGEC isn’t treated like an independent structure, it has no separate funding dedicated solely to that campus.
The money that’s being used to support and increase the South Gate campus is coming from the main campus budget.
“If we have it (SGEC) at center status, then the number of Full-Time Equivalent Students (FTES) has to be subtracted out of East,” Tomlinson said.
Ornelas said it’s important that they begin the planning to keep track of the budget for South Gate because the campus will eventually want some ownership of the budget, instead of being given funds on an as needed basis.
“Eventually people will want to take ownership of their budget there, and I think that’s to be expected,” Ornelas said. “People will have other ideas as how to spend the money that may differ from the main campus ideas, and that’s OK. That’s something we have to start planning.”
According to SGEC Dean Al Rios, there are only eight full-time faculty among more than 130 active teaching faculty.
About $1 million go into the SGEC contracts, including monthly rent, parking and shuttles during the fall, spring and summer sessions.
There’s a six percent increase in the number of courses offered at the SGEC, with 14 new summer sections added this year. However, there was a decrease in headcount and enrollment due to the changes made to one of the English 28 courses, a class that is usually in high demand.