Financial topics dominate IVCCD Board meeting
With a heavy focus on finances, the Iowa Valley Community College District (IVCCD) Board of Directors received a glowing FY13 audit report, approved a FY2015 estimated budget (with a lower property tax asking) and held a public hearing on an estimated $2.8 million renovation at Marshalltown Community College when it met this week.
Auditor Alex Barr of Schnurr & Company reviewed Iowa Valley’s recently completed FY13 audit report, on which the District received the best possible (unmodified) opinion, with no audit adjustments recommended or required. For the year, IVCCD had an increase of $3.8 million in revenue over expenses, and decreased its outstanding debt by $4.4 million from the previous year. Barr said the report was “a good reflection on (Chief Financial Officer) Kathy Pink and her staff,” while Pink gave kudos to the college administrators and staff, who worked hard to achieve fiscal responsibility and sustainability over the year.
Also related to finances, the Board approved filing a FY2015 estimated budget, which sets the levy rates and level of expenditures in Funds 1, 2 and 7 for the District. CFO Pink noted that this marks the fifth consecutive year that IVCCD has reduced its property tax askings, which would decrease from 1.80616 in FY14 to 1.79506 in FY15 if the budget is approved. A public hearing on the estimated budget will be held at the Board’s March meeting.
Finances also came into play during the public hearing on plans, specifications, form of contract and estimated costs for a two-phase facility renovation at Marshalltown Community College. Architect Eric Vermeer of Haila Architecture in Ames shared plans for renovations in the Health Occupations and Advanced Manufacturing areas of the campus. In the Health Occupations area, the work will involve reconfiguring spaces and upgrading fixtures and finishes to enhance collaboration between credit and non-credit staff and students, including construction of a staff office suite and commons area for students. A more extensive remodel in the Advanced Manufacturing area involves reconfiguring classroom, lab and office spaces with extensive HVAC upgrades to replace outdated units. Work is expected to begin after graduation this spring, with completion of the Health Occupations area prior to the start of fall classes and of the Advanced Manufacturing area by November.
It was noted that the bids are structured in such a way that MCC will have options for accepting or declining certain project elements as appropriate. If bids come in over budget, the college may have to delay one of the remodeling projects until additional resources can be generated. Both projects are being financed with Accelerated Career Education (ACE) funding from the state of Iowa.
In other action, the Board: approved expansion of MCC’s Utility Technician program to include a two-year Gas Line Technician degree and a two-year Power Line Technician degree; approved the FY14 master contract with the Iowa Valley Community College Education Association; approved an early retirement application for ECC Physics Professor Jerry McCormick; approved an articulation agreement for transferability of nursing credits with William Penn University; and approved job training agreements with R.S. Stover ($20,000) and Montezuma Manufacturing ($8,482).
Ten donations were accepted by the IVCCD Board, including donations from Danielle Witt/Grace Adele, Suzanne Lux/Scentsy, Tracy Herrington/Tupperware, Jerilyn Splittgerber/Pampered Chef, Deborah Kupka/Tastefully Simple, Satomi Hoven/Thirty-one, and Leona McDonough/Heavenly Breads to the MCC Youth for Understanding fundraiser. Other donations included $500 from Stan and Nancy Van Wyk to the Friends of the Orpheum Seat Tag/Stars Fund, $500 from Cheryl Hayes/The Funky Zebra to the YFU Cultural Enrichment Fund ($250) and the YFU Scholarship Fund ($250), and 80 pounds of cabbage from Grinnell Heritage Farm for an Iowa Valley Continuing Education fermentation (sauerkraut-making) class.
No action was taken following the Board’s closed session to discuss collective bargaining strategy.
The next regular meeting of the IVCCD Board of Directors will be Wednesday, Mar. 12, at 4 pm in Marshalltown.