Update – August 21, 2015

on August 21, 2015 in Weekly Update

Good Afternoon San Jacinto College Community:

I hope you are staying dry on this wet day!  Today, I want to give you updates on the 2015-2016 budget, fall enrollment, and San Jac Tomorrow.

  1. On Monday evening (August 17th), the Board of Trustees approved the 2015-2016 budget.  Reduced appropriations from the State and increased unfunded State benefits had a negative impact on our overall budget.  Luckily, the College’s tax base is strong and the increases in that base provided the estimated additional revenue required to limit budget cuts.  Also, the budget is based on a projected enrollment increase of 1.5%.  At this point, the budget is fluid because we are waiting for the final decision on property tax values needed to complete our taxation calculations, and because enrollment is still in process (see below for more on enrollment).  Expense dollars were repurposed within budgets, and approvals for new budget requests were limited, due to uncertainty about resource streams. Included in the budget was a $2.4 million compensation pool to cover full-time employee merit raises.

The Board approved merit pay adjustments for full-time employees (faculty, staff, and administrators) for fiscal year 2015-2016 are as follows:

  • Those evaluated at “Valuable Contribution” will receive a 3.15 percent merit pay adjustment.
  • Those evaluated at “Notable Contribution” will receive a 3.65 percent merit pay adjustment.
  • Those evaluated at “Exceptional Contribution” will receive a 4.15 percent merit pay adjustment.
  • Those evaluated at “Room for Improvement” will not receive a merit pay adjustment.
  • Those evaluated at “Unacceptable” will not receive a merit pay adjustment.

The following clarifications are provided and apply to all full-time employees (faculty, staff, and administrators):

  • Full-time employees do not include FTTC (full time temporary faculty) as noted in the attached guidelines.
  • Faculty, staff, and administrators hired during the first eleven months of this fiscal year (September 1, 2014, through July 31, 2015) will receive a pro-rata share of the applicable merit pay percentage (i.e. someone hired in March will receive 6/12 of the merit pay adjustment to cover the period from March through August).
  • Salary schedule range maximums for differentiated compensation purposes will not apply (i.e. if you are an employee earning near the top of your grade, you will not be capped; you will receive the full percentage of your eligible adjustment).
  • These merit pay adjustments are effective September 1, 2015, and will be included in the September 23rd paycheck for employees on the bi-weekly payroll and in the September 30th paycheck for employees on the monthly payroll.

Each year, merit pay adjustments are based on resources available and allocated through the budgeting process. The Board’s approval of this year’s merit pay adjustments continues to show the trustees’ support for our employees and our performance management system.

If you are interested in learning more about the College’s 2015-2016 budget, please see the action item and presentation from the Board meeting on Monday located in the following folder P:\Mandi Reiland. The Strategic Leadership Team reviewed and prioritized initiatives and work and repurposed dollars in order to advance the College’s strategic plan with a focus on our five strategic goals: Student Success, P-16 Pipeline, Workforce and Economic Development, Our People, and Continuous Improvement. The budget reflects the College’s commitment to teaching and learning and service to the citizens in our taxing and service areas and throughout the greater Houston region.  Budget areas will be reviewed during the year as college personnel continue to emphasize scaling promising practices, eliminating low value activities, and controlling costs in the context of sustaining excellence, innovation, collaboration, and a strong sense of community.

  1. The entire college community is focused on preparing for students who will arrive for the fall semester which begins Monday, August 24, 2015.  The next few days will be critical in capturing potential enrollment.  Please continue to focus on the many efforts in place throughout the College to increase our enrollment for this fall semester.  It is important that we get those students in our classrooms on the first day of class, and then keep them engaged in the teaching and learning environment.  My goal for enrollment growth this year was 3%, but as I mentioned earlier, we budgeted a 1.5% enrollment increase in order to be conservative with our projections. Currently, our college-wide enrollment is flat (doing variances between slight increase and slight decline).  Again, I ask for your help in continuing to capture any potential enrollment in our pipeline.
  2. On August 17, 2015, the Board of Trustees also approved a bond election order which calls for a $425 million bond referendum to be placed on the ballot to the voters of our taxing district.  The election will occur on November 3, 2015.  The bond program is entitled “San Jac Tomorrow” and focuses on continuing our efforts to meet the workforce and academic transfer needs of our community.  Over the next few months, you will be hearing much more about this program which will continue the transforming effects new and renovated facilities and learning environments have on San Jacinto College, our students, employees, and community.  The agenda item explaining the Board’s action is located in the following folder P:\Mandi Reiland and here is a detailed link to the informational website.  If you would like hard copies of the bond brochure, they are available at each campus Provost’s office and at the Marketing and Public Relations Office in the District Office Building.  I will be holding town hall meetings to discuss in greater detail.

There is a lot happening at San Jacinto College!  It is definitely an exciting time!!  I thank you for your hard work, dedication, and passion to San Jacinto College and our students.  I appreciate all that we are doing to serve our students and our community more effectively, and to ensure that our students are successful and prepared for the workforce or transfer to a university.  It’s going to be another great year.

Best,
BH

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