Jan 242014

By Nick Worth
Northland Pioneer College Vice President of Administrative Services Blaine Hatch gave a presentation on the financial position of the Navajo County Community College District to the district governing board Tuesday.
Hatch told the board that through the end of November, with 42 percent of the budget period over, the district had collected $2.8 million in revenues from primary property taxes. He said 53 percent of the taxes had now been collected.
Total revenues for the year-to-date are just over $11 million, while expenditures are $8.1 million.
In restricted funds, both revenues and expenditures total $2.3 million, while auxiliary revenues and expenditures total $233,913 each.
Hatch said the year to date cash flows from all activities total $14.7 million and expenditures for the total $12.6 million, leaving a net cash amount of just over $2 million.
Board member Frank Lucero asked Hatch if there was any update on how the Catalyst Paper Mill closure would affect the property tax revenue the district collects.
Hatch said the figures should be available in February.
“I heard somewhere it was near 10 percent,” said Lucero. “That worries me.”
Hatch next asked the board to adopt a resolution designating the National Incident Management System (NIMS) as the basis for all incident management for the college district.
“How much more will this cost?” asked Lucero, “because federal requirements are more expensive.”
Lucero said in one instance a department which was using $500 radios had to switch to $6,000 radios to meet the NIMS requirements.
“The cost will be minimal,” Hatch said.
“Isn’t it better to have the cost before we adopt this resolution?” asked Lucero. “I want to know how much it will cost before I vote yeah or nay.”
Board member James Matteson said his understanding of the resolution is that it does not require the district to spend any money.
Stuart Bishop, director of Public Safety Education and district emergency manager for NPC, said the NIMS resolution was needed because it would open up federal grants.
“The resolution is just saying the college will accept NIMS as the emergency management system,” said Bishop. “I’m not anticipating we’ll need to spend any money.”
Bishop told the board the college campuses could be involved in an emergency situation.
“They could need the use of our facilities,” Bishop said.
“If we had an active shooter, we would need to interface with whatever agencies respond,” said NPC President Jeanne Swarthout.
“I’m not opposed to NIMS,” said Lucero. “I’m only concerned with the cost. I just want to make sure our staff gets the training.”
Bishop told the board training for NIMS is free online.
Board member Prescott Winslow noted the adoption of NIMS is an unfunded mandate.
“I’m afraid it will require expenditures in the future,” he said.
“My understanding is that by adopting this, we will not be required to expend any funds,” said Hatch. He added that future grants may be contingent on adopting the system.
Handorf told the board that during the Rodeo-Chedeski fire, the school facilities in Pinetop-Lakeside were heavily used and recommended adoption of the resolution.
The board voted in favor of the resolution, with Lucero casting the lone dissenting vote.
In other action Jan. 21, the board:
* Approved awarding a design/build contract for a metal classroom at the Northern Arizona Training Center in Taylor to D.W. Lusk Contracting and SPS+ Architects.
Hatch said the money was appropriated by the state legislature, and that the cost would be between $250,000 and $300,000 depending on the size of the building. He said more than $400,000 had been appropriated for the building. The contract includes an award of no more than 10 percent of the total cost for the design aspect of the project.
* Approved a list of hearing officers.
* Heard a review of the progress on the budget development from Hatch.
Noting that the board always saves up for new buildings rather than financing them, Winslow said he would like to see a dedicated line item for future facilities funding.
“I want more transparency to the public to show we are saving up for future buildings,” Winslow said.
* Approved the results of the audit by the Office of the Auditor General.
* Approved an adjustment to the 2012-13 budget.
* Approved a program modification to the cosmetology program.
Vice President for Learning and Student Services Mark Vest told the board that currently, the practicum courses are in four-hour blocks, which doesn’t leave enough time to complete a course block between Thanksgiving and Christmas. He said this causes some students to sit out for a month before they can sign up for the next course.
Vest recommended the four-hour blocks be split into two-hour blocks so students could keep attending during the month in question. Vest said the change would not affect the Northern Arizona Vocational Institute of Technology students in the program.
“The real impact will be on the adult students who are trying to finish in a year,” said Vest.
* Re-elected Ginny Handorf as president of the board. Board member Daniel Peaches also kept his position as secretary.
Citing the good both were doing in their positions, Matteson moved to keep Handorf and Peaches in their current positions and the motion passed by a unanimous vote.