By Kathi Keys, The Courier-Tribune, Asheboro, N.C.
McClatchy-Tribune Information Services

March 21--ASHEBORO -- Randolph Community College is seeking $79,235 more in local funding for the upcoming fiscal year to cover increased employee benefits costs, property insurance and expenses associated with its expanded space.

The RCC Board of Trustees approved the 2014-15 county budget, as part of its consent agenda, at Thursday night's regular meeting. The request now goes to Randolph County officials for review and action by the Randolph County Board of Commissioners in June.

Utilities for the Continuing Education and Industrial Center, which opened in January 2013, are costing more than allocated this fiscal year and represent nearly 60 percent of the extra money being sought. Actual CEIC figures have been included to show telephone and telecom/data charges, heating, water, electricity and garbage/sewage costs at the 47,283-square-foot facility.

Most of the remaining amount requested is to cover anticipated state increases for retirement costs and insurance plus an expected rise in dental plan costs.

The increase sought is 3.4 percent more than the county operational funds allocated this fiscal year, $2,328,000, which is the same amount as appropriated for several years, according to Daffie Garris, vice president of administrative services.

RCC's total current operating request is $2,407,235, which includes $2,295,855 for the Asheboro Campus, an increase of $76,853; $81,103 for the Archdale Center, an $882 increase; and $30,277 for ESTC, $1,500 more than this year.

A year ago, RCC sought nearly $195,000 more from county commissioners to cover increased utilities due to its expanded space and insurance hikes.

To cover increasing costs, the 2014-15 budget anticipates use of parking fees to pay higher costs associated with operating and renting the space for the RCC Cosmetology Center at Hillside Shopping Center and campus security services. Garris said other general ledger funds will also need to be used.

RCC's county budget pays for operating expenses at its three locations. Funding covers all building operations including utilities, maintenance, repairs and general upkeep of all college facilities and other general expenses such as security, insurance, housekeeping and technology infrastructure.

RCC is also seeking $485,000 for future capital construction/renovations and repair, which is the same amount as allocated this fiscal year.


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