By: Christopher Mines
The 2013-2014 annual budget has been approved by the Algonquin Board of Governors during their February meeting.
During the meeting Physical Resources Director John Tattersall presented a three phase renovation plan for Building B.
The plan is designed to improve maintenance and to decrease energy costs.
If it is adopted the improvements are expected to cost $53 million for maintenance operations.
Tattersall said in the meeting that if the roof for Building B is not fixed this year then the roof will simply be one year older.
Any new investments would have to come from the Ontario Ministry of Training, Colleges and Universities.
SA President David Corson reacted positively to this year’s budget as a “maintain year” but cautioned that there are still pressures for more growth and future maintenance costs.
College enrolment is expected to grow over three per cent next year and there are plans to hire 35 new staff and faculty
“We have had some pretty good financial stewardship,” said Corson. “I am really comfortable with the markers I see.”
Corson said Algonquin is in a better financial situation than other schools and has benefited by having strong government advocates like Bob Chiarelli.
Chiarelli served as the Minister of Infrastructure.
Some Ontario post-secondary institutions are in dire financial straits and hope Ontario’s new Minister for Training, Colleges and Universities Brad Duguid will soon announce new funding.
Premier Wynne announced her new cabinet in February and there is a chance Ontario could be headed for a spring election.
Either way the college should be prepared and Duguid’s timing is crucial.
“We’re waiting to hear his words. We can’t afford to wait,” said Corson.