Possible McNeese budget cuts - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Possible McNeese budget cuts

By Adam Hooper - bio | email

LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) - All available funds in operation, travel, equipment, and supplies have been removed from departments operational budgets. This is in preparation for what could be a fourth round of cuts for McNeese State since December, 2008.

"We are trying to make sure, that if in two or three weeks we are notified of another cut, the funds will be available to cut," said Candace Townsend with McNeese State University.

None of the Louisiana universities know if there will be a cut, or how extensive it could be. That all depends on the state revenue estimating conference, it meets early next month.
Candace Townsend said, declining state revenue has had a tremendous impact on higher education in Louisiana. So far, McNeese State University has had to cut around 17-percent, or 7-million dollars of state appropriations. 

"We have chipped away at all of the little things that we could. We have reduced the number of instructor positions that we have, the number of graduate assistant positions, we have left positions open and not filled," said Townsend.

In some cases one person is covering the job of two or three people. Townsend said, McNeese has made sure any cuts made so far would not affect the students.

"We are looking at ways that we can still continue to offer programs and services to students, primarily students, and then also to the community," said Townsend. But, at some point there is really nothing left to cut except people." 

In an effort to prepare for more cuts, Tomorrow, McNeese will go before the Louisiana University Systems board with a plan to merge two programs in the foreign language department. 

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